What is Cat Litter Made of?

Do you wonder what people ever did before cat litter was invented? It could not have been much fun to have an indoor cat before cat litter was invented. Cat litter is convenient, because it allows pet owners to have indoor cats without fear of what happens every time kitty goes to the bathroom.

Cat litter sure is convenient, especially that kind which does not track all throughout the home, helps to control odors, and is easy to clean thanks to clumping properties. However, why does cat litter have these benefits, or what we really should be asking is, what is cat litter made of? Let’s explore this topic right now and find out what exactly your cat’s litter is made of.

WHAT IS CAT LITTER MADE OF?

There are in fact many different kinds of cat litter materials out there. Some are cheaper than others, some have more beneficial properties than others, and some last longer than others. So, what is cat litter made of?

FULLER’S EARTH CLAY LITTER

The first and one of the most common types of cat litter out there is clay based cat litter, of which there are a couple of varieties to go with. Cat litter is actually quite modern, and the first real type of cat litter invented, or innovated we should say, is called Fuller’s cat litter. Fuller’s Earth is a type of absorbent clay which does a fantastic job at absorbing urine and liquids, and it does a decent job at dealing with unpleasant odors too. However, this type of cat litter does not clump, and therefore needs to be changed very regularly.

BENTONITE CLAY CAT LITTER

This is a slightly newer type of cat litter, one which was invented by scientists in the 1980s. Bentonite is another type of clay, somewhat similar to Fuller’s Earth clay, but there is a big difference. Bentonite Clay litter has the big time advantage that it clumps after it gets wet. In other words, when your cat urinates, the Bentonite clay absorbs that liquid, but it does not stop there, because it then clumps together.

This is a slightly newer type of cat litter, one which was invented by scientists in the 1980s. Bentonite is another type of clay, somewhat similar to Fuller’s Earth clay, but there is a big difference. Bentonite Clay litter has the big time advantage that it clumps after it gets wet. In other words, when your cat urinates, the Bentonite clay absorbs that liquid, but it does not stop there, because it then clumps together.

CRYSTAL LITTER – SILICA GEL

Another type of great cat litter available on the market today is crystal litter, often known as Silica gel litter. These are little granules of silica. Silica is a chemically inert substance, one that clumps when it gets wet. For this reason, it has been added to granulated cat litter, because clumping is very convenient and it definitely makes life a lot easier for cat owners. Silica litter is actually derived from sand, which happens to be a non-renewable resource, and with the world slowly becoming a little more eco-conscious, this type of cat litter is slowly going out of style.

OTHER

There are also some other types of cat litter out there made from various natural and recycled resources. Many people will choose to make or use their own cat litter, or just use household products to get the job done.

Some people use newspaper, wheat, pine chips, cedar chips, sawdust, peanut shell meal, processed corn cobs, and a variety of other things too. However, the problem with all of these types of litter is that they don’t absorb liquids too well, they don’t control odor very well, and they also do not clump.

WHAT TO LOOK FOR WHEN PURCHASING CAT LITTER

Before you buy just any old cat litter, there are various aspects or features which you should look for. Here are the most important factors to keep in mind when purchasing cat litter for your feline friend.

SCENT AND ODOR CONTROL

One thing to look for is the smell of the litter itself. Some come with the scent of nothing at all, some just smell like the ingredients, and some have an added scent. Scented cat litter might smell fine at first, but when it comes down to it, some lavender scented cat litter will just end up smelling like a mix of urine and lavender. Personally, we would go for a type of litter that does not necessarily have a smell, but does a great job at odor control, which is one of the most important aspects.

CLUMPING OR NON-CLUMPING?

Do you get litter that clumps or not? When it comes down to it, although clumping cat litter is more expensive, it also does a better job at controlling messes and odors, plus it is much easier to clean as well.

LITTER TRACKING

You do also want to look out for a type of cat litter that does not track horribly. This stuff can get stuck to the feet of your cat, and it ends up all throughout the home. It’s a gross mess that everybody would rather avoid. Non-tracking cat litter is a really big deal if you are fussy about how clean your home is at all times.

COST

While cat litter is usually not all that expensive either way, there are some big brand names that do charge big bucks. Personally, we think that good cat litter is an investment!

CAT PREFERENCES

The bottom line is that at the end of the day, it all comes down to what your cat prefers. Cats can be picky!

CONCLUSION

Whatever type of cat litter you get, as long as it clumps, has good odor control, and your cat likes it, there is no way you can go wrong!

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