There has been a lot of conversation within the pet community these last few years about the dangers of using a clumping cat litter. Is it really a danger? Can a premium clumping cat litter minimize these dangers?
What The Fuss Is About
There are two components in cat litter that people are concerned about. The first is sodium bentonite. When wet, the pieces of bentonite clay will stick together – clump – making it very easily removed from the rest of the litter. The entire litter box does not need to be discarded weekly – the soiled portions can be scooped out and discarded, and more added to bring the level of litter back up to the appropriate level for your cat (usually 2-3 inches).
However, those pieces, when wet, will grow to up to 15 – 18 times their original size, making them dangerous if ingested. A kitty or cat, cleaning itself with its tongue, could easily ingest a few pieces of the litter. If it is eaten, critics of clumping cat litter suggest than the litter can expand with the kitten, given the moist conditions, and that the litter can grow to block the digestive passage of the cat or kitten. They claim many kittens have died from this very condition, eating clumping cat litter. The Premium style is less likely to be ingested accidentally, and that’s one benefit of premium clumping cat litter.
Pet owners are also concerned about the dust from the kitty litter that their cat or kitten might breath in. The dust, fine as it is, could conceivably coat the inside of the cat’s lungs, giving them respiratory problems.
Also, clumping cat litter includes quartz silica. This component is a known carcinogen. It has been tested and deemed dangerous for humans. Can we even dare to assume it would be less dangerous for smaller creatures, cats and kittens?
What The Premium Clumping Cat Litter Manufacturers And Other Experts Say
Those who manufacture premium clumping cat litters say that they have studies the claims extensively. Many are members of the Sorptive Minerals Institute (SMI), their nationwide trade organization. As soon as the SMI heard of any concerns, they began an extensive investigation. They interviewed people who had no preconceived bias one way or the other about the issue. These included pet store owners, cat owners, and veterinarians. None were aware of any problems of a health nature that could be directly linked back to the clumping litters. They also investigated the situation thorough the National Animal Poison Control Center (University of Illinois), and followed up on the names and comments that had been reported through that agency. Those who were available were contacted, as well as their veterinarians. They even autopsied the animals that supposedly had died from the clumping litter. All autopsies showed that death was due to some other underlying cause.
But did the premium clumping cat litter manufacturers or SMI check into the claims of the original holistic veterinarian who raised this issue in the first place? Yes, SMI did. That veterinarian was not able to give any evidence that links clumping cat litter (premium or otherwise) to either sickness or death. Also, the ASPCA still recommends clumping cat litter, as they have identified no health risks related to using it with pets.
The Bottom Line?
Despite the claims to the contrary, there is no scientific evidence that links clumping cat litter (premium, dust free types or otherwise) to any health issues. We can continue to use clumping cat litter, whether premium or not, in comfort.
There has been a lot of conversation within the pet community these last few years about the dangers of using a clumping cat litter. Is it really a danger? Can a premium clumping cat litter minimize these dangers?
There are many kinds of cat litter available in stores today. There are clumping and non clumping cat litter, some are crystal or silica based, and others are biodegradeable. There are many options of pet owners. How can a pet owner choose? What are the things to consider?
Absorbency – A Big Consideration
Why would you want cat litter that wasn’t absorbent? You wouldn’t, of course. But how well does non clumping cat litter do at absorbing urine? Non clumping cat litter is usually made from clay, which is very absorbent. While there are other cat litter products that are even more absorbent, clay based, non scoopable cat litter generally does absorb sufficiently.
Odor Control – Does It Or Doesn’t It?
When it comes to odor, the amount a non clumping cat litter masks odor is variable. Some types are scented, some are unscented, but there is no general statement that can be made to cover the non clumping cat litter. It depends on the type.
Is There Dust Control?
That depends. Non clumping cat litter – especially premium kinds can be bought with formulas designed to minimize dust, but not all do. Check the package for each brands claims in regards to dust control. You want a brand that controls the dust so that your cat isn’t breathing in the dust that is stirred up by his paws digging and burying his waste.
Keeping The Litter In The Box
An important thing to consider is whether or not the litter tends to come out on the kitty’s paws, where he will track the litter around the house accidentally. Though you love your kitty, and you’re grateful he’s using his litter box, you don’t want bits of kitty litter throughout your house or apartment. Some types of litter track worse than others. Read the package – but usually, the smaller the pieces, the greater the chance of tracking it around on the paws.
Can You Scoop? Cleaning Info
Does non clumping cat litter scoop? Nope, not the urine. You can scoop the feces, but with non clumping cat litter the urine will just soak into the bits of litter and await a dumping. Because you can scoop the urine chunks, the litter box will need to be emptied, washed, and freshened more often – about once a week. By contrast, the scoopable kinds only need a thorough change about every month or so. But you would need to scoop out the chunks of urine and feces daily to keep the box smelling nice.
Cat litter is just cat litter, and any kind will do. Just buy the cheapest stuff – it doesn’t matter what kind you get – right? Well, not exactly. Let’s take a look at the kinds: non clumping cat litter and clumping cat litter – which is best?
Basic Principles – Cat Litter 101
Whichever cat litter you choose, it will work along the same principles: the cat’s urine is absorbed by the litter, and the feces is covered. The idea is to reduce the odor from bacteria, and so some people prefer using a litter with a scent included. Most cats don’t really care if there’s a scent or not, so you can generally follow your own preference in regards to smell.
Two Categories – Non Clumping And Clumping Cat Litter – Choosing The Best ഀ ഀIf you use a clumping cat litter, the best thing is that the urine clumps the litter together, making it very easy to scoop out the affected portion of the kitty litter (solid and clumps). The whole box of litter doesn’t need to be dumped out each day – and not even every week! It is sufficient to empty the whole box and disinfect it before refilling approximately every 4-6 weeks. This is to eliminate bacteria. Other than that, each day when you scoop out clumps and solids, replace the amount of clumped litter again in the box.
Non clumping cat litter is best if you want a litter that is made from natural clay. It is dried into granules, and comes as just unscented or with various types of scents to keep it fresher. It can also have baking soda added in to help it stay fresh longer. You can still scoop the solid parts every day or as needed, but the cat’s urine will accumulate at the bottom of the litter box. Hence, the whole box of litter will need to be emptied once a week. Also, clean the box, disinfect it, and then refill it with new litter. Sometimes it will need to be replaced more often than once a week – depending on your cat or cats, but generally once a week is sufficient.
Which Is Best For You And Your Cat?
To decide which is the best, clumping cat litter or non clumping cat letter, it is best to determine how you feel about dumping versus scooping. To me, the clumping makes the most sense, but you get to choose for yourself and your cat.
If you’ve got a cat or kitten, you probably know a lot about cat litter. Developed and marketed originally in the 1948 as “Kitty Litter”, the name is now used to denote any type of litter for cats. Before this time, sand was used in litter boxes, but it isn’t very absorbent and the small pieces make it easily tracked out of the litter box and around the house. When “Kitty Litter” was introduced, clay was used as the absorbent matter. That worked much better. Not only was it more absorbent, but it was less likely to be tracked out of the box. It was a great improvement. But that paled in comparison to the benefits of clumping cat litter.
Clumping Cat Litter – New And Improved!
The next big improvement was the advent of clumping cat litter. It was developed in the United Kingdom in the 1950s out of calcium bentonite. Bentonite is a substance that most of us have never heard of. It is made of granulated bentonite clay. This clay clumps together when it is wet and makes a solid piece that can be easily removed from the rest of the litter. This way, the pet owner doesn’t have to change all the litter when there is just a few bits of waste in it – they can just sift out the clumped part and throw it away. Periodically, the entire box should be changed to avoid bacteria buildup, but this only needs to be done every month or month and a half. The litter box should also be disinfected at the same time. Given these changes, the hassle and cost were diminished when clumping cat litter became available.
Still Just Bentonite? Not! But Are There Dangers?
The best news? Cat litter that clumps isn’t just made from bentonite anymore. Now it also contains quartz or diatomaceous earth. These assist with the clumping action. Cat litter should not be flushed down the toilet. Some people claim that clumping cat litter is dangerous to cats because they can ingest it or inhale it as they use their litter box. Once inside them, where it is moist, the litter can swell and solidify. This is supposed to be especially dangerous for kittens, who are more susceptible to these dangers.
Clumping cat litter also contains crystalline silica, which is silica dust. This is a known carcinogen. While it isn’t dangerous to humans, there are no scientific studies to show if or how it affects cats and kittens.
While these claims seem serious, they are only anecdotal. There have been no studies done on this matter, and so the situation remains unsolved. Is clumping cat litter dangerous? If you think so, don’t buy it. If you don’t worry about it, enjoy the advantages of clumping cat litter. Now, about 60% of the kitty litter sold is clumping cat litter.
Of course there are those plain, boring cat litter boxes that you can get for your furry friend, but if you really want to treat them to something nice and especially if you are going to be leaving the cat litter box in an area of your home where your guests will be able to see it, then you will want to get a decorative cat litter box.
Whether you are looking for a decorative cat litter box, clumping cat litter, or any other product for your kitty pet, there are a couple of companies in particular that are going to be worth you going through, and here are a few of the best ideas.
This is a great place that you can shop at if you are looking for a decorative cat litter box. They feature this nifty little hidden cat litter box, which is in the shape of a plant and which guests will never even be able to tell is a cat litter box at all unless you tell them.
Finally, you will have a cat litter box that you do not have to worry about hiding and which will not make your room look hideous. This cat litter box comes complete with an attractive high quality plant and a hand-finished Tuscany sand color.
This pot is great for larger cats and multi-cat households because it is of such a large capacity, and as long as you keep some non-smelling cat litter in the box, you will probably forget it is even there at all. This is a great decorative cat litter box that you can get for yourself or as a gift for someone you know has a cat.
Another company that will be worth your time going through if you want to get a nice decorative cat litter box is Cat Genie. Here they offer some of the most advanced and yet affordable pet products on the market today and this includes their cat litter box that is not only decorative but as well which flushes away waste and washes itself clean.
This is great because it means that you will never have to worry about touching, smelling or buying cat litter ever again.
There are some really great options out there today when it comes to cat litter boxes, and so don’t stick with those basic plastic ones that you have to clean yourself and which look awful in your home.
If you have some larger sized cats or a multi-cat household, you are going to need to get them a large cat litter box. This will actually be just as much for you as it will for them, as it will ensure that you have a bit more time before you have to clean the box, and as well that the odors will not be so strong.
Not only that, but with a large cat litter box your cats will have more room to move around in there, and if you have more than one cat they will be able to go in at the same time rather than having to wait for the other to be finished.
The good news is that there are some great options out there when it comes to finding a large cat litter box, and you can even purchase a decorative cat litter box that will be hidden in your home, for instance disguised as a plant holder, so that guests will not be able to see the cat litter box and it will not stick out like a sore thumb in the décor of your home.
Where to Buy
If you think that buying a large cat litter box for your home would be the best idea, you can usually find at least a remotely decent selection at any local pet supplies store, but there are a couple of companies in particular that you will want to check out and which offer the largest selection of large cat litter boxes for you to choose from.
Available through the Amazon Company, there are a few different large cat litter boxes that you can choose from. They are all well decorated so they will look nice and blend into the décor of your home rather than standing out.
PetSmart is another great company that you can go through for a large cat litter box, and their prices are very reasonable as well so you don’t have to worry about spending hundreds of dollars, as you do with some companies.
Also keep in mind that you can not only get a larger sized cat litter box, but as well one that is self cleaning. This will really be to your benefit because it means that you will never have to worry about cleaning and refilling the cat litter box again. As well you know that your house will never be smelling like dirty cat litter.
There are so many advantages to a hidden cat litter box that you will wonder why you haven’t made the switch already. One of the best things about a hidden cat litter box is that it will blend into the décor of your home, rather than standing out like a sore thumb.
This is important because this is one of the biggest problems that pet owners have with their cats, is having to look at that awful cat litter box every day and trying to find a decent spot in their home for it.
There are some great options out there for a hidden cat litter box, some that you will be very surprised at. For instance you can find a hidden cat litter box that is shaped like a house plant, and which may even have a real house plant on the top of it. The hole should be facing a corner, and so any guests that come into your home will think that it is just a plant and will never have any idea that there is a large cat litter box in it.
Where to Shop
Now if you have decided that you do want to get one of these cat litter boxes, you will need to know where you can go shopping for one. The PetSmart store is one of the first that you will want to check out here, as they offer one of the largest selections of these hidden cat litter boxes for you to choose from.
There is also the Pets Best Products Company that you may want to go through, and at which you are sure to find just what you need.
Using the Internet will definitely be the best idea if you want to get a cool, hidden cat litter box, and you will also be able to get the best price by shopping online as well. Just make sure that you are aware of any return policies before shelling out any money for any of them, in case you get it and find out that you actually do not like it or it is different than you thought it be.
There are also self cleaning hidden cat litter boxes that you can get which will save you even more time and hassle because you will never have to worry about cleaning the cat litter yourself. This is a job that no homeowner wants to do no matter how much they may love their pet.
If you have a cat for a pet, then you obviously know how much trouble it can be to clean up after them. It probably seems as though you have to clean the cat litter box every day if not more, especially if you have a multi-cat household.
If this is the case, then you do have a great option available to you which will solve a lot of your problems here, and this is to get a self cleaning cat litter box. With a self cleaning cat litter box, you will never again have to worry about cleaning the litter yourself, which will be a great treat.
Whether you are looking for a combination hidden cat litter box that cleans itself, or just a self cleaning cat litter box that is pretty basic, here are a few of the best options.
The ScoopFree self cleaning cat litter box is one of the most popular options. With it you are able to leave it alone for up to a month before you have to remove the tray and then just put it back in and you can leave it for another month. The disposable trays come pre-filled with FreshStep Crystals which means you don’t even have to worry about having to spend money on cat litter or fill the trays with litter yourself, because it is already done.
The technology used in this cat litter box is truly incredible and ingenious. The litter locks in odors for unbeatable odor control, and the crystals absorb wetness so there are never any clumps of urine.
For the best self cleaning cat litter box, you are definitely going to want to consider going with the LitterMaid name. With this cat litter box you never have to worry about scooping again, and it is easy, clean and convenient to use, and features a compact, space saving design.
The company here has worked together as a team in order to develop their self cleaning litter box that literally takes all the chore out of litter cleaning and which works to provide you and your cat with a constantly clean, odorless environment. It automatically scoops the litter and empties the waste into a sealed, disposable receptacle.
Regardless of which particular litter box you decide to go with, the most important thing is that you are going to be saving yourself a great deal of time and effort as an end result.
Of course we are all used to the more basic, plastic cat litter boxes, but with the invention of the automatic cat litter box, pet owners everywhere are thrilled. With a self cleaning cat litter box, you will never again have to worry about cleaning up after your cat, or with dealing with the awful smell of dirty cat litter in your home.
It is just important that you get the right automatic cat litter box, and shop at the right places to get your automatic cat litter box. Of all the different cat supplies stores around that you could choose from, there are a few in particular which will definitely be worth your time.
One of the most renowned companies offering an automatic cat litter box is LitterMaid. They already have over 4 million satisfied customers, and hundreds more people are buying their automatic litter box each and every day, always with the best things to say.
Their Mega Self-Cleaning Litter Box is ideal for extra large cats or multiple cat households, and as the cat leaves the unit, what happens is sensors are triggered to set the timer for the cleaning cycle, and about ten minutes after this the cleaning cycle will begin and rake any clumps toward the waste receptacle.
The rake opens the waste receptacle and deposits the clumps before closing cover and returning to home position. The model comes complete with 12 disposable waste receptacles, 4 odor-absorbing carbon filters, and as well a BONUS paw cleaning ramp.
Another company that you can go through for an automatic cat litter box is Scoop Free. With their new no-touch litter box, you can leave it alone for up to a month, and it comes with disposable trays that are pre-filled with FreshStep Crystals.
The crystal litter works by locking away odors so your home will never smell bad from the cat litter box, and there is no need for you to ever scoop, clean or refill the litter. This is major because it means that you will be able to save yourself a great time of time, money, effort, and more than anything you will be able to enjoy a better relationship with your furry friend knowing that you do not have to clean up after them.
These are just a few of the many different examples of automatic cat litter boxes out there that you can choose from.
So you are looking to buy a cat litter box but don’t know where to go to get a good selection. There are actually quite a few different companies that you can go through if you want to get a cat litter box, and at the best possible price. Here are a few of the top picks if you are shopping for a cat litter box.
This is definitely one of the first companies that you can go through if you want to get a decorative or automatic cat litter box. They feature the Cat Genie Self-Cleaning Litter Box, which is really great. It means that you will never have to worry about cleaning the cat litter box on your own again.
The self-cleaning litter box has no litter to scoop, touch or change, and the litter system automatically washes, sanitizes and dries box to leave it dust, odor, and germ free, and the system actually works because it is connected to a water line in the bathroom or laundry room and is powered by an AC outlet.
It acts just like a toilet only for your cat, and will really make you enjoy spending time with them more because you do not have to worry about cleaning after them so much, and your cat is sure to love it as well because they will not have to put up with the smell of a dirty litter box.
Fat Cat Creations
Another great company that you can go through if you are looking to buy a cat litter box is Fat Cat Creations. They feature The Litter Chest, which features clean lines and classic style, so only you and your cat will know what is hidden inside. It fits seamlessly into any décor which is nice, and it is also affordable.
You will never again have to worry about guests being turned off by the look or smell of your cat’s litter box and this alone makes it worth every penny.
As you can see from this there are some great pet supplies stores out there that you can head to if you are looking for great litter boxes and other items. This way you know that you will almost always be able to find just what you are looking for, and have the best relationship with your cat.
No one wants to have a litter box out in their home looking and smelling bad, and with these companies you can get what you need and never have to worry about this again.