What is Cat Litter?
Cat owners surely know what cat litter is. However, those new to the world of felines will have a lot of questions regarding the topic. In short, it’s a loose, granular material that absorbs moisture from your pet’s excrement and neutralizes the smell. Usually put in a litter box, it’s a great way for your pet to excrete metabolic waste if you don’t have a garden to let it outside.
There are different types of litter on the market. Although your pet’s waste is bio-degradable, sadly, the litter you buy isn’t. Get a cheap brand and it won’t do the environment good. Go through the Target cat litter section, however, and we’re sure you’ll find a great choice. Some of the options include:
- Flushable litter
- Clumping litter
- Non-clumping litter
- Recycled paper litter
- Grass litter
- Ever clean cat litter
- Pine litter
- Smart cat litter
By now, you’re surely wondering what the best type is. Well, it depends on your preference. There are many scented or unscented types of litter you can buy online – that’s something you should consider. In the end, it all goes down to one thing – money. If smart or flushable cat litter are simply too much for you, you can go for another brand.
Cat Litter Alternatives
Traditional litter is made of clay. This means that it’s not great for the environment since it’s not bio-degradable. If you’re willing to pay a little more, there are many alternatives you can try. These include some that we listed above such as paper litter and grass litter. Of course, these are far more expensive than the regular type, but anything to save the environment, right?
If you really love your cat and you’re environmentally-conscious, you’ll go for such cat litter alternatives. With them, you can also be sure that your cat won’t poison itself if it ingests a bit. Yes, a cat eating litter is a common problem for many owners. This can be very troubling if the type of litter you use isn’t bio-degradable.
Ever heard of bentonite toxicosis? It’s a costly treatment and terrifying for you and the cat at the same time, so it might be a good idea to consider switching to an eco-friendly brand of litter.
Why Is My Cat Eating Litter?
There are a number of reasons why cats eat litter. In most cases, it is due to nutritional deficiencies or anemia. Although licking a plastic bag is not that dangerous, ingesting some of the litter can cause intestinal blockages and cause serious, life-threatening problems.
Cats are highly curious creatures – you might spot your cat sleeping in a litter box. That’s funny and not a big problem. However, if you spot it eating the litter, it may be time for a trip to the vet. Both anemia and nutritional deficiencies are fairly easy to treat, so you better learn the reason why your cat eats litter on time.
Oh, and btw, make sure to keep the litter box at a safe, secluded spot, especially if you see your cat laying in a litter box. If this happens often, wash your pet and make sure it doesn’t happen too much. If you don’t, your pet can spread bacteria around your home and that may have an ugly outcome. Remember – the EPA considers pet waste a pollutant.
Best Types and Brands of Litter
So how do you pick the right type of litter? Many cat owners praise flushable cat litter, although there has been a hot debate whether you should or shouldn’t flush the clumps down the toilet. This type of litter is often made of wood, pine, wheat or corn – in short, it is bio-degradable. However, since some brands of flushable cat litter aren’t designed for septic systems, flushing them is not recommended by many experts.
Additionally, pet waste is classified as a pollutant by the EPA. It introduces parasites into waterways, so it’s probably not a great idea to flush it at all.
Smart Cat Litter
With the flushable type out of the way, smart litter is the next best thing. It’s a lightweight clumping litter made of grass that does the job perfectly. Oh, and some brands advertise it as soft and safe for your kittens’ paws if such comfort is a deal-breaker for you.
Smart cat litter out-clumps clay, is dust-free, and lightweight. Since most brands are made of grass, it is eco-friendly and chemical and fragrance-free. It’s one of the best litter alternatives to traditional clay types of litter if you’re willing to pay a premium price.
But, hey, your cat deserves it.
Everclean Cat Litter
Advertised as premium litter with maximum odor protection, the Ever Clean Cat Litter is available at select pet stores only. It’s “The Best Litter for the Best Cats” and the pick of thousands of cat owners across the USA.
There are different varieties such as scented and unscented, extra strength, extreme clump, and even a multiple cat type of litter. The Ever Clean formula introduces odor-fighting antimicrobial agents to the mix, making this brand one of the best on the market. Of course, it comes at a premium price as well, but doesn’t your kitty deserve the best?
What Do I Pick?
As mentioned, in the end it all comes down to the price. Many cat owners can’t pay for a premium brand so they’ll stick to the clay type. Some will even use sand-based alternatives. The grass and other eco-friendly types are best if you can afford it. If you can’t, at least make sure to properly dispose of your pet’s waste.
Use double-lined bags or two bags if you can’t find such. Make sure to tie the bag or bags nicely and throw them in a trash container with a lid. Don’t leave it by the container – this’ll attract other animals who can break the bag and spread the litter around your neighborhood.
Always go for ‘green’ litter if you can afford it, don’t flush the clumps, and take precautions when disposing of the waste. These are the tips you must keep in mind when handling the clumps.