Cat owners all over will attest that good cat litter is one of the most important things to have available whilst keeping cats. Having been a cat owner myself, this article will prepare you for your next cat litter shopping trip or for new cat owners who are not entirely sure of what type of cat litter they should be buying.
Compressed Wood Pellets Cat Litter
A by product of the timber industry, wood pellets make cheap and environmentally friendly cat litter. Wood pellets have been used in our kitty litter boxes for ages, simply because they work great. They are highly absorbent and (in my opinion) smell great, not when they’re soiled, of course.
Basically, what happens is, once any form of moisture comes into contact with the pellets, they are absorbed almost instantaneously. The pellets then expand and turn into a ‘powdery fluff’ of cat pee/poop. This ‘powdery fluff’ also falls to the bottom of the tray as y’know, cats love to dig around their litter boxes which really quickens this process. After which all you will need to do is to either 1, scoop up the poop on the top layer. Or 2 , sieve out powdery fluff of pee and the rest of the solid pellets are still usable. Apart from being extremely moisture absorbent, wood pellets also do a great job at keeping wafting foul smelling cat poop at bay.
The only disappointment that I had was that wood pellets tend to be pretty dusty, And having used wood pellets for quite some time, although the dust is bearable, people who are sensitive to dust will definitely have an issue.
Pros: Great absorbency. Controls odour extremely well. Rather easy maintenance.
Popular Brand : Pee Wee Cat Litter
Recycled Paper Pellets Cat Litter
As the name suggests, recycled paper pellets are made from recycled paper. Similar to wood pellets, moisture is absorbed almost instantly. However unlike wood pellets, these recycled paper pellets do not turn into ‘powdery fluff’, instead they expand upon contact with moisture. Sort of like small pieces of wet scrunched up newspaper. Maintenance is rather easy, as the soiled areas and the unsoiled areas are quite easy to tell apart, all you will need to do is to scoop up soiled areas and the rest can still be used.
There is not much to dislike about recycled paper as cat litter, except the fact that it does not absorb smell very well. Although it isn’t as that recycled paper does not do a good job, just that , occasional whiffs of cat poop really irk me.
Pros : Absorbs moisture very well. Easy and fast to maintain.
Cons : Controls smell moderately
Popular Brand : Breeder Celect Cat Litter
Clumping Clay Cat Litter
The first time I used this type of litter was actually by accident, when I went to my local pet store and bought what I thought was supposed to be recycled paper but turned out to be something else. So i decided to give it a shot. Long story short, I was pleasantly surprised by the performance of my accidental purchase.
Clumping clay, as its name suggests, clumps in contact with moisture. Unlike the recycled paper and wood pellets, clumping clay does not expand or disintegrate. Rather, it fuses together forming a piece of ‘Clay’.
The absorbency of clumping clay is also pretty darn good, both smell and moisture are well under control.
Just check this out, the clay REALLY sucked the be’jesus out of that piece of poop.
But, clumping clay tends to get a little messy because the little clay bits are so light, they fly all over the place when my cats go to the loo. Because they’re so small and light, they easily escape the reach of my mighty broom and dustpan.
Pros : Controls both moisture and odour relatively well
Cons : Clay bits are small and get everywhere
Popular Brand : Cat Leader Cat Litter
Crystal or Silica Cat Litter
Silica has been used for a long time by us to keep equipment such as cameras dry because of its moisture absorbing properties. Made up of pores that enable the crystal to absorb many times its body weight, it really isn’t a mystery why silica is being used for cat litter.
One of the biggest pros of silica cat litter is the fact that it is able to absorb many times its body weight and thus owners perform less frequent litter box changes. The day you scoop less poop is the better day ^^.
Silica also does a relatively good job at absorbing odour, and thats actually pretty good judging from my impervious standards.
However, like clumping clay, the silica bits are small, light and get all over the place. The only difference is , because of the silica crystals shape, stepping on one really makes you want to break something close by.
Pros : Absorbs moisture and odour relatively well. Easy to maintain
Cons : Silica bits are small and get everywhere
Popular Brand : Vitakraft Magic Clean Cat Litter