The pros and cons of cedar kitty litter

Guest post by Craftykylee
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About five months ago the hubby and I made a big switch for our fur-babies we had been contemplating for a while: from clay to cedar litter.

We have discovered many things in this switch-up, and we would love to share some pros and cons with ya! Hope this helps any of you contemplating a switch to a more natural litter option.

Pros:

Less smell. The cedar really does smell like fresh wood chips. As with all things that hold excrement, it does get stinky after a few days of not scooping.
Easy to transport. We live in Brooklyn and do not have a car so when we purchase litter we carry it four and a half blocks home. Together we can schlep four bags easily as it is so light. It is at least half of the weight of the same amount of clay litter.
Saves some cash. We get a larger amount of cedar litter for at least $0.50 less per bag than the clay litter we were using. Plus the cedar litter lasts longer than the clay litter does. We go through two cedar bags in about three or four weeks. With the clay litter we were going through about the same mass in two weeks.
Better for the environment. The cedar is much less harmful to our Mother Earth than the clay, and is compostable.
Fresh air. The cedar litter we use does not contain any dust, unlike clay litter. This means that the fur-beasts aren’t breathing in any dust that is harmful to their lungs, plus us humans aren’t breathing it either.

Cons:

More noticeable tracking. The cedar is so light that it does track more than we noticed of the clay. As I mentioned, we live in Brooklyn so space is small. We sweep up every other day anyway so the tracking isn’t that big of a deal for us.
Urine does not form clumps. Kitty pee is absorbed by the cedar but does not clump up for scooping. To adjust for this we just scoop the poop and then fully dump and change the litter every 4-7 days. We are using less litter all together to combat wastefulness.
Felines need to adjust. This cannot be a switch that happens in one fell swoop. It took our little ones about a month to slowly transition. We spent that time slowly integrating the cedar into the clay litter a bit at a time until there was no more clay mixed in and only cedar remained. This type of transition was successful and they love the cedar now.

We are very happy with our switch for many reasons but mostly because of the health, environmental, and smell factors.

Comments on The pros and cons of cedar kitty litter

  1. We are in Canada and use the PC Green cat litter. I don’t imagine it’s available outside of Canada, but if you’re here, it’s a great option. From what I’ve heard it’s similar to the World’s Best stuff. Corn-husk based anyway. I LOOOOOOOVE the fact that we can scoop it right into the toilet; and it’s not expensive. Remember that with a lot of these non-clay litters you have to compare its price by volume, rather than weight, also that it seems (to me) to last much longer than clay litters do. Especially if you make sure to scoop every day or so. Didn’t take our cats too long to get used to it, but that depends on the cat.

  2. I used wood based litter for years. But when I finally could not handle the tracking any more I made the move to Newspaper pellets. And I will never do back. There is ZERO tracking. Apart from the odd escaping pellet, I don’t notice anything on the floor. Also the paper really sucks up and holds the pee, so there’s hardly any smell. Plus its SUPER cheap, recycled materials and biodegradable.

  3. I use chick starter as cat litter. It has basically the same properties as World’s Best Cat Litter, except it’s soooo much cheaper. I buy it at the feed store in 50lb bags for under $15, and use baking soda, a covered box, and daily scooping to deal with odor. Chick feed is corn-based (renewable), clumps reasonably well, has the same texture as clay litter (most cats adapt to it without a problem), and is safe for kittens if they decide to experiment with it as food. Not to mention the low cost and very little dust. Make sure you buy non-medicated feed and that it’s for baby chicks, ie, hasn’t been processed into pellets for adult chickens.

  4. I used to use wood pellets that smelled really good but they didn’t clump. Then we kitty-sat a friend’s cat who its own clay litter and my cat loved it, so we switched to clay. And I loved the clumping. Then I read a very scary article about what clay does when ingested and I wanted to change back to something more natural but I still wanted a litter that clumped.

    And I found Cat’s best oko plus and I am so happy with it. The smell is nice (spruce and pine tree), it clumps really well, I am no longer scared about my cats eating litter. It is biodegradable and compostable, it also says you can flush it down the toilet but I don’t think it’s a very good idea. For the tracking we bought a sort of doormat we put in front of the box and it wipes 60% of the tracks. It’s a bit more expensive than clay but since it clumps so well, we only throw the poop and the urine clumps away, and the litter stays very clean so we don’t change the litter base at all and we don’t have to buy it so often.

  5. We have Poof, who as her name implies, is VERY fluffy. we cannot do clay litters because my fiancée is madly allergic to the clay dust. We tried Feline Pine, Swheat Scoop, Yesterday’s News and all sorts of other natural litters, but since Poof thinks of using the litter box as an opportunity to practice interpretive dance and kicks up litter everywhere, she was generally always covered in dust and got hella litter in her foofy Poof pants. We switched to (get this) Dr. Elsey’s Precious Cat litter. It is spendy, but the one thing she doesn’t track EVERYWHERE and in our tiny apartment, that is worth every penny!

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