One of the most important decisions you will make as a cat owner is what the best types of cat litter are when it comes to both the needs of your cat and your home.

The best odor control with the least amount of paw transfer is extremely important!

But you also want the choice for which your sometimes fickle feline friend will approve.

So let’s take a look at the popular types of litter options you will find as a pet parent and help you find the perfect one.

What Types of Cat Litter Are There?

There are so many different types of cat litter: from clumping to non-clumping clay litter, to crystal, to wood, to eco-friendly, and so on and so forth.

cat coming out of her cat litter

The good news is that choosing which of the various cat litter types is best for you and your situation does not have to be overwhelming.

Simply understanding the different types, as well as their pros and cons, can make the choice so much easier. So what are the most common types? Keep reading to learn more.

Take a look at this quick comparison table.

Cat LitterProsCons
Clumping Cat LitterVery easy to cleanLess eco-friendly
Non-clumping Cat LitterAll-naturalDoes not absorb
Wood Cat LitterQuickly absorbing odorsCan create dust that gets tracked
Eco-friendly Cat LitterNo harsh chemicalsIt may not be as effective as other types at controlling litter box odor
Crystal Cat LitterLasts longerIt must be stirred daily

In this video, you will see some clumping cat litters that are highly recommended (and why). Some of the brands you may already know. Number 3 might surprise you!

1- Clumping Cat Litter

When you select this type of litter cat waste bonds with the particles to create clumps.

TRY CHECKING: Pellets vs Litter Review

PROS:

One pro of this kind is that it is easy to clean, which makes it a popular choice. You don’t have to clean the entire litter box, but rather can simply scoop the tight clumps away and leave the rest behind.

Another pro is that it is a cheaper litter in the long run. You will use less over time because you are only removing the clumps in the box.

It tackles bad odors effectively. One of the most important features of a cat litter is that it ensures your home remains smelling fresh.

The clumping clay absorbs quickly, eliminating emanating odors from escaping the waste and getting into your home.

It is the ideal choice for traveling since clumps can be detected so easily and discarded so quickly.

CONS:

Bentonite clay is the main ingredient in clumping litter but it is less environmentally friendly as it is sourced by strip mining. (2) 

It is a bit expensive, and thus the initial price of the cat litter purchase may be higher than others (though you use less so it lasts longer).

Though the silica-based gels do not transfer dust, the clay-based ones that are very common do. This means your cat will likely transfer dust from the box to various places throughout your home.

This is especially true if your cat has water on their feet (perhaps from the water bowl) or any area of their body that touches the clumping clay. It is not as serious as it sounds, but it does happen.

Ingestion of these clay-based litters, perhaps occurring during the grooming stage, can cause health problems to your cat. This is true with any type of cat litter your kitty might inadvertently ingest.

In this video, you will see 5 recommended non-clumping cat litters that work well to neutralize odors. Some of the brands may be familiar, but there is at least one that will surprise you!

TRY READING: Paper Pellet Cat Litter Pros and Cons

2- Non-Clumping Litter

Non-clumping cat litter does not form clumps when it comes in contact with cat waste. There are some pros and drawbacks to choosing it.

PROS:

It is probably all-natural. Non-clumping litter is usually made from things like shredded paper, corn kernels, wheat, or other naturally absorbing materials that will not harm your kitty.

It is not likely to cause health problems if accidentally ingested through the grooming process.

There is no dust for little paws to track around the house.

CONS:

It does not absorb as well as the clumping variety so odors are likely to form quickly

It is not as easy to clean cat litter boxes. Because you are not scooping up a clump to discard, more of the litter is thrown away and needs to be changed at one time. This can be time-consuming for the pet owner.

3-Wood cat litter

One of the favorite litters for those who prefer natural options is wood.

wood cat litter

The best wood cat litter to use is a matter of choice. You can find it in various versions such as pine chips, shavings, pine pellet cat litter, etc.

PROS:

Wood cat litter has a great track record of quickly absorbing the odors that naturally take place when your cat uses the bathroom.

It is often made from recycled materials. And it is often sold in very large bags, so your purchase will last a long time.

CONS:

Wood litters can create dust that gets tracked around your home. Pine litter seems to be the least tracking offender when it comes to the different kinds of cat litter made from wood.

It can be expensive to purchase since it generally only comes in a larger size bag.

The best wood cat litter is the one your cat likes the best, and the one you feel most comfortable using.

4-Eco-Friendly Versions

There are others you can purchase that are good for the environment as well. The best eco friendly cat litter to choose is the one that best fits in with your ideals and your cat’s preferences.

eco friendly sign

PROS:

Items like wheat litter, grass, corn, and recycled paper, are all-natural materials that are easy to find.

There are no harsh chemicals or mechanically produced harmful ingredients. This is good for obvious reasons.

Most have a natural or no scent (some cats are bothered by scented varieties).

Many of the eco-friendly choices can be flushed. Be sure to consult the label before attempting to do so.

CONS:

These types may not be as effective as other types at controlling litter box odor.

Certain types, such as walnut litter, can create a lot of dust that tracks around the home. This can lead to respiratory issues.

Not all options are created equal. Some, such as corn, can lead to various health problems for cats if not cleaned quickly and often.

5- Crystal cat litter

Crystal cat litters are another option. Created of synthetic materials, they are also the most attractive in the sense of getting a little bougie in the cat box.

Crystal cat litters

PROS:

They tend to absorb quickly which means good odor control.

Crystals last a long time, which means they are cost-effective in the long run.

It is lightweight, making it easier to handle for you.

The crystals are made of non-toxic materials which is very good news for your cat.

CONS:

The initial price may be higher, but they do last a long time so maybe you will save In the long term.

Cats are creatures of habit and may need an adjustment period to get used to the texture.

It is not clumping.

It must be stirred daily to prevent urine from collecting in the bottom of the box.

In this video, you will learn some great tips on how to use crystal litter material.

Cat Litter Types: Which One Should You Buy?

What is non clumping cat litter? Is it better or worse than clumping? Should you buy an eco-friendly version like paper pellets?

Are the ingredients in cat litter toxic? Can you flush? Do you prefer an unscented variety or a scented one?

All of these questions may be forming as you try to determine which types of litter work best for you and your kitty. 

One question of major importance to ask is: What type of litter is safest for cats? There are pros and cons to each kind available, so it pays to do your homework.

You want to find a product that is safe for your cat, has excellent odor control, and is conducive to your lifestyle and beliefs.

Cat litter reviews can help. A lot of research and trial-and-error has already been done for you. Take the time to read what people are saying about the products they have purchased.

The most important factor in determining which one to buy is whether or not your cat likes it. It doesn’t matter how much you like a certain type of cat litter if your cat won’t use it.

How do you know your cat likes their litter? According to Veterinarian Amy Hohenhaus, scratching is a good indicator. The more cats scratch, the less likely they are to enjoy their litter choice. (1)

Follow kitty’s lead to help determine which type you ultimately choose to buy.

FAQs

Conclusion

Though there are many types of cat litter options when it comes to choosing what is best for you. There is also a lot of information available to help you choose the right one for your particular situation.

Understanding the pros and cons of the various choices can help you determine the best fit for you and your adorable feline friends.

Trial and error may well end up being the best way to make your choice. Pay attention to your needs as well as kitties, and you are sure to find a cat litter that fits.

What Types of Cat Litter Are There

What type of cat litter do you prefer? Please let us know what your first choice is in the comment section below!

References

1. “Bigger Is Better and a Lid Doesn’t Matter When It Comes to Cat Bathrooms.” The Animal Medical Center, 10 Dec. 2014, www.amcny.org/blog/2014/12/10/bigger-is-better-and-a-lid-doesnt-matter-when-it-comes-to-cat-bathrooms. Accessed 13 May 2022.

2. The Sustainable Cat: Making Better Choices for the Environment. iaabcjournal.org/the-sustainable-cat/. Accessed 13 May 2022.

Rosey A
Rosey A

Rosey A. is a teacher by day, a freelancer by night. She enjoys family, friends, travel, and writing.
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