Choosing the Best Scoopable Cat Litter

The main reason people use scoopable, or clumping cat litters, is convenience. The soiled litter sticks together in—you guessed it—clumps, making it easy to remove from the litter box and leave the remaining litter, which can still have days or weeks of useful life, in place. But which scoopable cat litter is best for you and your cat? If you’re like me, you might not have even been aware that there were options, not only for types of cat litter, but even for types of scoopable cat litter.
Scoopable Clay Litter
This type of litter makes up about 60% of the market. Its advantages are that it provides the convenience and long-lasting effectiveness of clumping litters, and that it is relatively inexpensive. Disadvantages include the facts that it is not flushable and not too environmentally friendly. Most clumping clay litters contain bentonite clay, along with quartz or diatomaceous earth. Some cat owners have complained that scoopable clay litters are not best, since they can cause intestinal blockage or death if they are ingested by cats. However, others—including at least one veterinarian who specializes in felines—say that the risk of health problems for your cat from using scoopable clay litters is very low. For many cat owners, clay-based litters seem to be the best scoopable cat litter. The two leading brands, based on the most recent sales data, are Tidy Cat and Fresh Step.
Biodegradable Litter
If you’re interested in using a more earth-friendly product, there are also options available. Some claim that pine-based products such as Feline Pine, available in both pellet and natural clumping formulas, are the best scoopable cat litters, since they are made from renewable, biodegradable materials that can be flushed, composted, or placed in landfills with minimal long term effects. Reduced dust characteristics as compared with clay litters are also cited as an advantage, since heavy dust inhalation can lead to feline respiratory problems. Some natural products also provide improved odor control. A wheat-bran-based product, Swheat Scoop, is said by some users to offer the best choice for scoopable cat litter because of its odor control and flushability. Another eco-friendly alternative made from corn, World’s Best Cat Litter, is cited for superior clumpability. The principal disadvantage of most of the natural or biodegradable alternatives is that they are more expensive to purchase. However, if you want to use a litter that’s flushable, compostable, biodegradable, and low in dust, you may decide that one of the biodegradable choices is the best scoopable cat litter for your purposes.