If you're a cat owner, you know that choosing the right litter is important for your feline friend's health and comfort. Natural cat litter is becoming increasingly popular as pet owners seek out eco-friendly and long-lasting options. In this article, we answer all your frequently asked questions about natural cat litter.
What is natural cat litter?
Natural cat litter is often made from materials that are biodegradable and environmentally friendly, such as wood, paper, corn, or wheat. Unlike traditional clay litter, which is often mined from the earth and can contain harmful chemicals, natural cat litter is free from synthetic fragrances, dyes, and other additives. This makes it a safer and healthier option for both your cat and the planet.
We go into detail about the different types of litter, their benefits and drawbacks in another article. Here, we’re going to focus on the frequently asked questions and myths about natural cat litter.
Is all natural cat litter always clumping litter?
No, you can get non-clumping and clumping natural cat litter. Clumping litter is generally made from products like wood or corn, while non-clumping natural litter may be made from products like recycled paper or wood pellets.
Does natural cat litter track?
Generally, natural cat litters will track to some extent. This is because they are usually very lightweight so may leave the tray on your cat's paws or get kicked out the litter tray when your cat is burying their wee and poo. As a rule of thumb, the finer the litter the more it will track. That’s why you’ll find cat litter that is almost like sawdust tracks a lot. Natural cat litters that are more granular in texture, like Tippaws Long-lasting Clumping Litter, track a lot less. You can mitigate tracking by having a tracking mat and litter tray setup designed to reduce the likelihood of your cat walking cat litter through your house.
Does natural cat litter cause dust?
No, not all natural cat litters are dusty. Similar to tracking, the finer the litter, the more likely it is to be dusty. Dust can be very dangerous for cats and especially kittens and there are many benefits to using a dust-free cat litter such as Tippaws Long-lasting Clumping Litter, from ensuring good digestive health, to supporting respiratory health and overall wellbeing.
Why is natural cat litter more expensive?
This isn’t binary and depends on many factors including the price of the bag, whether you can purchase the bags of litter in bulk and most importantly, how long the litter lasts. A natural clumping litter may seem more expensive than a non-clumping litter, but the likelihood is in the long run you will probably save money as you’ll use a lot less.
Natural clumping litters are generally more expensive than clay clumping litters. This is purely because of the higher quality ingredients and the end-of-life eco-credentials of natural litter. You may be paying slightly more, but you know you are using a cat litter made from the by-products of other industries and that your litter is biodegradable, if not compostable. From our perspective, using a cat litter that reduces the cat litter waste we produce is totally worth the additional cost.
Is natural cat litter flushable?
Not all natural cat litter is flushable. Generally the company you are buying from will state if their cat litter is flushable. If it is, you still need to check with your waste water supplier to see if they allow you to flush clumps down the loo as every water supplier is different. You shouldn’t flush cat poo down the loo, this should always be disposed of in the bin.
Is natural cat litter good at controlling odour?
Absolutely, natural cat litters are some of the best at controlling odour. Litters like Tippaws Long-lasting Clumping Litter are made from highly absorbent ingredients and have a natural added clumping agent which makes the urine soaked pieces of litter clump tightly together. The result is the best odour control for your cat litter tray and a fresh smelling home!
How often do I need to change my cat's litter tray if I use natural cat litter?
Generally clumping natural litter lasts longer than any non-clumping litter and some litters, such as Tippaws Long-lasting Clumping Litter, is specifically designed to last a really long time. This means you can go up to 45 days without a full tray change (if you have an average, healthy, 4kg cat).
Can kittens use natural litter?
Kittens are incredibly curious (as we all know!) and will try to eat anything and everything. When it comes to cat litter for kittens, you need to assume they will eat some of it. So very fine natural litters should be avoided as small clumps could form in your kitten's gut if ingested. Most brands will advise if the litter is safe for kittens or not - it's very unlikely any responsible pet care brand will ever put a kitten in danger by recommending their litter when they shouldn't, so as a general rule of thumb, check with the brand or company. For example, Tippaws Long-lasting Clumping Litter is safe for kittens. If your kitten does ingest a large amount of cat litter and you're worried, call your vet immediately for guidance.
Can I compost natural cat litter?
You can compost some natural cat litter. You should ask the company you purchase from whether their litter is compostable. Generally if it is, it will have a compostability certification such as OK Compost. Read our Litter Guide to find out how you can safely compost your cat litter (at your own personal risk).
How do I maintain a litter tray when using natural cat litter?
1. Scoop the clumps out of your litter tray at least once or twice a day to remove urine and feces.
2. Replace the litter once every 30-45 days, following the manufacturer's recommendations. This helps maintain freshness and prevent odour buildup.
3. Clean the litter tray thoroughly with soapy water once a month to remove any lingering odours or bacteria.
4. Place the litter tray in a quiet and accessible area to encourage your cat to use it consistently.
Which is the best natural litter to buy?
You want to choose a natural cat litter that has superior odour control, clumps tightly and minimises the number of tray changes you need to do. You also want to ensure your natural cat litter if biodegrable to minimise the impact on the environment, and if you have a garden you may wish to try a natural cat litter that is compostable.
Overall, natural litter is an excellent option for you, your cat and the planet. It has excellent odour control performance, it is often made from by-products of other industries and can usually be disposed of in an environmentally friendly way. Cats also love natural litter as it’s soft on paws and easy to bury their wee and poo. Still undecided? Give our Long-lasting Clumping Litter a go, we have a money-back guarantee if you aren’t satisfied but as you can see from our Trustpilot reviews, our customers love it!
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