Tuesday, 29 May 2012

Kitty Litter Alternative

Recently I have been looking at different types of kitty litters and wondering what all the fuss was about with clay litters.  This came about because I noticed that, while there were a number of brands on the supermarket shelf, they were nearly all the new crystal looking ones.  I think there were only two other options to purchase.

Inexpensive brand from discount store
The marketing on the packet of the crystal one told me it would last for 30 days and so skeptically I bought that at first.  It didn't clump and despite removing soiled litter the urine was impossible to remove and after about a week it was discoloured and a bit smelly.  I would not use it for much longer than that because of the bacteria build up, which make it an expensive option, so I needed a different approach.

Some research later I came across the argument about clumping clay litters being bad for cats or kittens because they could ingest them and then the clumping action would occur inside the cats stomach.  After further research I came across this article which I think dispels the myth about clumping cat litters and I have decided that I am happy using them for my cat.
Inexpensive brand from discount store
So that being decided I set out to find a cheaper alternative to buying my kitty litter from the supermarket. I had already decided that I did not have the time or the inclination to make my own from crumpled, dried paper mache made from bleached newspaper.

First I tried a Discount Store where I found it much less expensive than the regular supermarket and promptly bought a couple of 3kg bags.  These cost me $2.30 each.  So that is 76c per kilo.

However later I was at our local farmers supplies co-op and while they didn't carry kitty litter they said that Bentonite clay would most likely do the same thing and I could buy a 25kg bag of Organic Bentonite Clay for $5.70.  Just 22c per kilo.  That is nearly a 60% saving.  Now I realise that $2.30 per week is not a lot of money to spend but it is a saving and every little bit counts and also buying a 25kg bag would last me for months without having to buy more.
Covered kitty litter tray
Further research to ensure that this would not harm my cat revealed that most clumping kitty litters are made from Bentonite anyway and then some have silica or deodorants mixed in.  Upon inspection of both the Bentonite and the cheap litter from the discount store there is no visible difference.

Some people also seemed concerned that the dust from the kitty litter being sprayed around would make a mess but because I have a covered tray that did not concern me.  So Bentonite Clay it is.  I am happy it won't harm the cat as it is used in Koi fish ponds and is an organic natural product.


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