When bringing a new feline friend into the family you’ll no doubt have a shopping list of items you’re going to need, with kitty litter high up on that list. If you’ve never owned a cat before you might think that this is an easy decision to make. However, if you haven’t done your homework first you might find yourself breaking out a sweat when it comes to choosing the right kitty litter for your cat.
What kitty litter does your cat prefer?
You might be surprised to learn that cats actually have their own individual preferences when it comes to the type of kitty litter they like doing their business in.
Some might find certain kitty litter too harsh on their paws, others may have developed a habit during their kittenhood, or some simply prefer one type over the other for no particular reason.
Whilst this might be frustrating and mean you have to go through some trial and error, it is important when choosing the right kitty litter for your cat that you do provide them with the type that they are clearly comfortable with using so that you don’t find yourself in a mess, literally!
The different types of kitty litter to choose from
Clumping litter is usually made from a clay called bentonite which absorbs the urine and creates a nice solid lump, leaving the rest of the litter around it dry and clean. When it’s cleaning time, you just scoop out the hardened urine clumps along with the faeces. The Ever Clean Clumping Litter is a good place to start if you’d like to try a clumping variety.
The benefits of clumping litter is that it is easy to keep the litterbox clean and just replace the contents you have taken out rather than empty the whole tray, whilst the negative is that it can be dusty and non-biodegradable.
Non-clumping litter simply lets urine sift through, and can also be based on clay that absorbs the urine but doesn’t form clumps, so you can’t just scoop out the mess. The only way to clean the urine from the box with the non-clumping ones is by changing all of the litter, at least once a week.
Non-clumping litter is often less expensive than the clumping version, and sometimes cats simply prefer it so you have to weigh up these pros and cons.
Non-clumping can also be based on silica crystals, which absorb the urine more quickly than grains of clay would, but they can be tough on the paws of a cat so some may not like the texture. The Trouble and Trix Angel Silica Crystal Cat Litter is one to try for a non-clumping option. Other non-clumping options use wood shavings or pellets and even recycled paper.
Scented or Non-scented
Cats have a sensitive sense of smell, so they will most likely notice if their litter box is dirty before you do.
They may also not like a strong floral scent that simply masks the smell, so generally it is recommended to opt for a kitty litter that absorbs odour with baking soda or charcoal rather than masking it, which scented litters usually just do.
Is kitty litter bad for your cat?
Some owners find that clumping litter can “stick” to the cat if they have long-hair so they could ingest it as they groom themselves.
They might also lick it if it gets stuck in their paws, or inhale dust as they dig around in the box, so that’s where dust-free or low dust options are good.
On rare occasions cats might be prone to eating their kitty litter. Generally kitty litter is non-toxic to cats, but if they do eat a considerable amount of it, you should take them to see the Vet.
Choosing the right kitty litter in a multiple cat household
An individual cat requires two kitty litter boxes, so if you have a multiple cat household then you should cater for their individual preferences and supply each with two kitty litter boxes of their own.
If you happen to have two cats and they both have the same preference for kitty litter, then you can get away with providing one box per cat plus an extra box.
To watch this fun but informative video about Choosing the Right Kitty, check out the PETstock Pet Smarts video HERE
Or you can talk to your local PETstock staff member who will be more than happy to provide you with the right information about Choosing the Right Kitty Litter. Of course, if you already know what kitty litter you cat prefers, click here to order online.