7 things to consider when buying cat litter
One of the frequently-asked questions among cat owners is: ‘What is the best litter for cats?’ While it seems like a new cat litter comes out every day, finding the best cat litter for your feline can be hard. A litter for cats comes with its problems, including odors, dust, granule size, and more. To help manage these issues, we have compiled a list of features to consider before making a purchase, as well as a top 5 of the best litters out there.
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- Scent and Odor-control
There is no right choice between a scented and unscented litter. It comes down to your cat and family preferences. Try different litter brands, both scented and unscented, to know what suits you and your cat best. You might also want to invest in an odor-controlling agent like carbon or baking soda. If you use other kinds of deodorizers, make sure it is not too heavily scented, as most cats dislike those.
Clumping litter, usually made with bentonite, is the popular choice among cat owners. It combines with cat urine and feces to form hard lumps that you can easily remove. The advantage is that you need to change the litter less often. In contrast, non-clumping litter, made from clay or plant-based materials, can absorb large volumes of urine and have better odor control. It is also the cheaper choice. However, it’s nearly impossible to remove soiled litter without replacing the entire box. Which means you may have to replace the whole litter more often.
- Low dust
Some litter boxes can produce much powder, which is an irritant for both cats and humans who scoop the boxes. It can especially be a bad idea if you or your feline has breathing issues already.
- Low tracking
Most cat owners readily admit that they want their cat’s litter to stay in their box and not get scattered around the home. Generally, larger particles tend to track less than small ones, because they are heavier and take more force to stick to the fur. While it can be hard to discern if the box is indeed low tracking, you have the option to purchase an anti-tracking cat litter mat on the market.
Rather than clean the litter box frequently, a litter pad makes it possible to catch any moisture that leaks through the litter and absorb it so it won’t settle on the box itself. This feature can help minimize odor as well as keep cleaning time to a minimal.
- Granule size
Although not often considered, the texture of a litter is critical towards guaranteeing hassle-free cat care. Granule size refers to the size of particles that constitute different types of cat litter. Both coarse and fine litters have their benefits. Cats tend to prefer fine-textured litter, which feels softer on their paws, but coarse litter is less likely to get tracked around the house. On the other hand, coarse litters are safer for kitten under three months old as they may inhale or swallow finer-grained litters.
When it comes to choosing litter for cats, you want to consider the cost involved in using one. You want to take into account the price and the frequency of litter change in your calculation. If you opt for a cheap litter only to change it every week, you might be spending more in the long run than a pricier litter that keeps working for a month or more.