How to Pick the Right Litter for Your Cat

How to Pick the Right Litter for Your Cat

Selecting a litter for your cat is additional concerned than it made use of to be. Gone are the times when clay was about the only solution — now, you can discover litters created from a huge selection of components, from wheat to wooden. Here’s how to decide the correct solution for your cat.

Cats are notoriously picky, and it does not cease at their meals. They can also be incredibly fussy about the sort of litter they favor to use. Discovering the appropriate litter to fit your have kitty might imply some trial and error, but realizing a thing about the numerous litter kinds accessible currently can support make the approach a lot easier.

A Brief Heritage OF CAT LITTER

Prior to the late 1940s, individuals applied wooden ashes for cat litter. But in 1947, Edward Lowe designed an substitute applying repurposed absorbent clay. The new clay litter was marketed by a skeptical pet keep owner for 65 cents for a five-pound bag. Lowe also hawked his invention from the trunk of his motor vehicle, and demonstrated it at cat reveals. At the time, he had no concept how popular clay litter would sooner or later turn out to be.

When clay clumping litters are nevertheless greatly in use today, in portion due to the fact they’re among the the minimum pricey litter selections, they have their negatives, depending on the product. Some can be extremely dusty, which isn’t very good for a kitty’s lungs (or the lungs of all those who clear out the litterbox). As perfectly, the particles are inclined to adhere to the cat’s feet and get tracked about the household.


Currently, there are so quite a few other cat litter elements to select from that clay is no extended the go-to product or service. Pet keep cabinets are lined with a wide variety of plant-centered litters made from wheat, grass, corn, walnut shells, pine pellets, delicate wood, and paper. Other litters are made from silica sand, crystals or gel — and, think it or not, even tofu (also referred to as soy). Quite a few of these litters are designed from recycled resources, a bonus for individuals who like to be eco-pleasant.

Boxiecat, for example, provides a line of plant-dependent, sustainable clumping litters that aspect all-natural fresh new plant aromas. These light-weight dust-no cost litters function AirTight™ technological innovation that traps bacterial and ammonia odors. If you favor clay, the company also has a selection of dust-free of charge high quality clay litters.

WHAT TO Think about WHEN Selecting KITTY LITTER

Which litter you pick will rely largely on what your cat likes and will use, but it’s also important to take into consideration the subsequent aspects as perfectly:

  • Does the litter have clumping capabilities? They make cleansing the litterbox much easier.
  • Does it manage odor? Chlorophyll from crops will help manage odor the natural way. Keep away from litters that incorporate artificial fragrances — cats have incredibly delicate noses and the litter will be ineffective if your kitty is place off by the scent. Nor will a scented litter decrease the have to have for regularly scooping and cleaning the box.
  • Are dust degrees minimal? Look at a reduced-dust litter if you or your cat have allergic reactions or respiratory challenges. Retain in thoughts that though a lot of litters are marketed as dust-no cost, they may however release dust when you’re pouring it into the litterbox. If your cat sneezes while applying it, it’s much too dusty.
  • How considerably does it keep track of? Litters that never adhere to your cat’s toes suggest considerably less clean up-up for you.
  • How a lot does it weigh? Some litters, primarily clay, are heavy, so if you just cannot have a 40-pound bag seem for an additional content which is lighter.
  • Is the litter flushable? Some items assert to be, but do your homework prior to obtaining, particularly if you’re on a septic method.


When transitioning your kitty to a new litter, combine the outdated litter with the new (this works very best if the textures are related). Alternatively, you can offer a cafeteria-style collection — two or 3 different sorts of litter in different containers for your cat choose from. The “end result” will assist establish what your cat prefers.

LITTERS FOR Distinct Lifestyle Stages AND Requires

1. Kittens

Kittens learning to use the litter box have a tendency to phase in the dampness, then ingest the litter when licking their paws. Relying on the sort of litter, this could result in an intestinal blockage, so a paper-primarily based non-clumping litter is proposed. This variety of litter is normally created of recycled paper goods and is billed as staying environmentally-welcoming, absorbent, and great at odor and dust manage, with a lot less tracking.

2. Cats prone to UTIs

Silica gel litter is touted for its means to identify the pH of the cat’s urine and variations shade to show a trouble. Appear for items that are labeled “with well being indicator” or “alert.”

3. Cats with litterbox avoidance

If your cat suddenly stops making use of the litterbox, the very first stage is to consider him to the vet to make confident he doesn’t have a overall health difficulty. Other issues these kinds of as a soiled litterbox, significant website traffic placement, or ambushing conduct from a further cat in the house can also lead to a kitty to stay clear of the litterbox. The moment these troubles have been dealt with, a litter with a natural attractant these kinds of as catnip or chamomile can support attract cats with avoidance difficulties back again to the litterbox.

4. Senior kitties

Along with a litter box that gives comfy access in the sort of a decreased entrance and sides, a softer litter which is simpler on sensitive paws is a very good decision for more mature cats. A products that’s considerably less likely to stick to the genital spot is also handy for cats with mobility difficulties who can not groom them selves like they applied to.

5. Multi-cat households

It can be effortless to permit housekeeping get out of control when you have various cats. Because so many litters are geared toward odor regulate, the “multiple cat” billing may possibly be extra of a marketing and advertising system, because it’s nevertheless crucial to scoop, scoop, scoop. It ought to also go with no saying that having plenty of litterboxes for the cats is important — the rule of thumb is a person per cat, furthermore one.


An casual poll of cat individuals on Facebook reveals tastes as various as the diverse kinds of litter now out there.

  • Clay clumping litter: “I’ve utilized it forever… there is the fear that if I transform, the cat won’t like the new stuff and halt utilizing the litter box.”
  • Purple wheat litter: “It clumps truly very well and has superb odor regulate.”
  • Corn-based litter: “Clumps beautifully, scrapes up off the pans superbly, not tremendous dusty.” Poll respondents expressed combined thoughts about flushability.
  • Pine pellets: “Easy, not sticky like the clay, and it breaks down easily…”
  • Grass litter: “The odor control is terrific, it clumps definitely well, and it is light for the reason that it is built of grass.” A different comment: “Grass was not horrid but it glued itself to the flooring when it obtained damp.”
  • Silica sand (not crystals): “With 1 tray readily available for every cat, the litter lasts about a month. It binds all humidity, which implies absolutely no smells, even on underfloor heating, and a tricky surroundings for pathogens and parasites. It is also tremendous light-weight, however tracks very minor.”
  • Tofu: “The cats love the scent they have all been sniffing and using it, and it clumps so promptly.”

Sally E. Bahner specializes in cat-linked difficulties, particularly diet, holistic treatment and conduct. She has provided her companies as a feline conduct and treatment specialist and offers courses on cat treatment. Sally is the resident cat actions specialist on Tracie Hotchner’s Cat Chat radio application, and a member of the Cat Writers’ Association and the International Affiliation of Animal Habits Consultants.