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My DD and her husband are adopting a cat tomorrow.  What is the best cat little, esp for smell?  I know that cleaning it frequently is key but we want the best for control as well.

Cost is a factor so I'd a cheaper brand is really close to as good that would be great but I don't want them to buy the cheapest and have odor issues 

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We don't have cats currently, but we did for many years. I experimented with tons of different brands and types of litter. My tried-and-true that I always came back to was Dr. Elsey's.

Edited by Pawz4me
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We are using the Arm and Hammer clumping litter. We have it in our living area and there is very little if any smell. The key I've discovered besides scooping frequently, is having 3 - 4 inches of litter in the box. The instructions on the box say this but trying to be frugal we started out using only an inch or two. The odor control is noticeably better with 3 - 4 inches rather than 1 - 2 inches.

ETA: The cost is about $8 - $10 depending on where I buy it and we go through 2 boxes or so a month. It's not the cheapest brand (we tried some of the cheaper ones and they didn't control odor nearly as well) but it also isn't the most expensive brand we have access to around here (some are $15 - $20 a box/bucket).

Edited by sweet2ndchance
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Horse bedding pellets from Tractor Supply.

No smell.  Very inexpensive.  No chemicals.

The wet turns into a powder-- the solids dry out and are easily scooped. 

DD moved back in last year with her 2 cats.  With this litter you really cannot tell that we have THREE litter boxes in the house!

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1 minute ago, Jann in TX said:

Horse bedding pellets from Tractor Supply.

No smell.  Very inexpensive.  No chemicals.

The wet turns into a powder-- the solids dry out and are easily scooped. 

DD moved back in last year with her 2 cats.  With this litter you really cannot tell that we have THREE litter boxes in the house!

Yes! If your cat will use this it's great. If there's any smell at all, it's pleasant and piney and the stuff is CHEAP.

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2 minutes ago, Lostinabook said:

Yes! If your cat will use this it's great. If there's any smell at all, it's pleasant and piney and the stuff is CHEAP.

Yep. This is what we always used with fosters. Our current cat uses crystals because we had a previous finicky cat that would only use the crystals. I should probably try switching this cat back to the pine pellets now that she's our only cat again. It's what we originally used with her. I'm nervous to make any litter changes, though 😬.

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There really are huge differences between Cat Litters and the most expensive one in the store may not be very good, especially with regard to odor control. We found that out with different brands I bought in the supermarket. Also, there was another issue. One brand seemed to be good one time and then I bought it again and my wife said the quality wasn't the same.

THE BEST brand we bought was in the store where they sell out of the box. Consistently good and less expensive per kilo. 

And a few times, when he has it, we have purchased from the man we buy Dog and Cat food from and I think that is also high quality.

Again, the BEST and CONSISTENTLY BEST we have purchased is from the no frills store where they sell their own brands, out of the box. They insist on quality control from the companies that produce what they sell in that store, which a regular supermarket cannot do.

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1 hour ago, Jann in TX said:

Horse bedding pellets from Tractor Supply.

No smell.  Very inexpensive.  No chemicals.

The wet turns into a powder-- the solids dry out and are easily scooped. 

DD moved back in last year with her 2 cats.  With this litter you really cannot tell that we have THREE litter boxes in the house!

Oh, I do love this stuff...but my cats (and many other cats) do not. Every time I try even mixing it in the one cat starts peeing on the floor. 

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I also use pine pellets, with no issues with any of my cats, even the two feral kittens I had for a week. Clay litters are kinda an environmental disaster - if I couldn't use pellets I'd try plain sawdust or shredded paper before using a clay litter. (There's always plenty of paper even if I don't produce paper waste of my own.)

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I just finished doing a lot of research on cat sites.

The pine/wood pellets.  (tractor supply was what many use, if your local grange carries them.)  With a sifting litter tray.  (if you need deeper, it will fit inside some sterilite containers.)

This is what I got for a litter box.  SUPER fast to clean.  One woman in my reading has six littler boxes (multiple cats), and she went from 45+ mins cleaning litter boxes to under 15 minutes.    I started with regular clumping clay (which you can use in these), and scooping.  I'll take the sifting any day.  

I'm doing an experiment of throwing clumped litter into the bushes to see if it has any effect on the rabbits around here . . . . . 

 

eta: the complaint reviews on the litter box are mostly by people using it wrong.  You have a tray on top, the sifter, and a tray on the bottom.  (it comes as a set.)  You dump the tray on top into the sifter, let it sift into the bottom tray.  Dump out the sifter, put the old tray on the bottom, then the sifter, then the tray that is now full of litter on top.  

Edited by gardenmom5
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World's Best Cat Litter. It's made from corn, it clumps and is flushable, and has sort of a green-growing-plant scent. We tried several before I settled on this, including the crystals and pine and that stuff that doesn't stick to anything. Settled on this one.

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I'm excited for your daughter!  I would consider getting two kittens.  They play together and are actually less destructive when they have a friend to play with.  If they were getting older cats, I would not recommend two, unless a bonded pair.  

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3 hours ago, Ellie said:

World's Best Cat Litter. It's made from corn, it clumps and is flushable, and has sort of a green-growing-plant scent. We tried several before I settled on this, including the crystals and pine and that stuff that doesn't stick to anything. Settled on this one.

I heard good things about this one, but my weird cat thought it was an awesome treat and ate it 🙄😂

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My favorite-favorite was the crystal stuff sent in subscription boxes. Unfortunately, they don’t come in a size that my 14yo cat approves of, so it didn’t really work for us. I tried using it in our own box, but found the final clean up of it absolutely horrifying.

For “regular” litter, I’ve stuck with Dr. Elsey’s Precious Cat.

If I were starting over with a kitten, I’d do everything to make those crystal subscription boxes work.

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We use Arm & Hammer’s Multi Cat.  I try other brands, even the ‘World’s Best Litter”, and always come back to the Arm & Hammer b/c nothing clumps and reduces smells better IMO.

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15 hours ago, Ellie said:

World's Best Cat Litter. It's made from corn, it clumps and is flushable, and has sort of a green-growing-plant scent. We tried several before I settled on this, including the crystals and pine and that stuff that doesn't stick to anything. Settled on this one.

Just be cautious in very humid environments....I've used a similar corn product and got stuff growing in a corner I missed that was damp!

4 hours ago, Familia said:

We use Arm & Hammer’s Multi Cat.  I try other brands, even the ‘World’s Best Litter”, and always come back to the Arm & Hammer b/c nothing clumps and reduces smells better IMO.

If you think that is great, try the Slide one by Arm and Hammer! Same clumping, but doesn't stick to the box. 

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20 hours ago, Pawz4me said:

We don't have cats currently, but we did for many years. I experimented with tons of different brands and types of litter. My tried-and-true that I always came back to was Dr. Elsey's.

👆 This! Whenever we experiment, we always come back to this. The cats like it better too.

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4 hours ago, ktgrok said:

Just be cautious in very humid environments....I've used a similar corn product and got stuff growing in a corner I missed that was damp!

We're in Texas. Humid. Even my very straight hair sometimes frizzes. No problems with this litter. 🙂

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25 minutes ago, Terabith said:

We need pictures of new kitten!

I am still waiting for a picture of the new cat.  I guess she is 2-3 years old.  Black and White 

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We have a cat who does best with Arm and Hammer. I think the odor control is good, and it isn't leaving a cloud of dust like some others do. She was using pine pellets at the shelter before we got her, so we continued with that but she wouldn't bury it. We also tried crystals for a bit, but it stuck to her fur. 

She has 2 boxes side by side. She doesn't like to go into the box again after she used it until after it is cleaned. She will come tell me when she has finished; Hey mom, clean it up!

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18 hours ago, kand said:

I heard good things about this one, but my weird cat thought it was an awesome treat and ate it 🙄😂

 

Some dogs will also eat that or wheat based litter. 

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15 hours ago, Carrie12345 said:

My favorite-favorite was the crystal stuff sent in subscription boxes. Unfortunately, they don’t come in a size that my 14yo cat approves of, so it didn’t really work for us. I tried using it in our own box, but found the final clean up of it absolutely horrifying.

For “regular” litter, I’ve stuck with Dr. Elsey’s Precious Cat.

If I were starting over with a kitten, I’d do everything to make those crystal subscription boxes work.

I don’t know about this subscription, but will have to check into it since we use the crystals. I do really worry about breathing the dust from it. I hold my breath when I dump a new bag in and leave the room quickly and close the door with the fan on for an hour or so. Last time I did it outside instead, and don’t know why I didn’t think of that before, so I will do that from now on. I’d still like to try going back to pine pellets, but afraid of messing with a good thing, since this cat had some litter box issues when we first got her, but hadn’t had a problem for years now. 
 

One compromise I remembered while reading this is that when our cat did start having litter box issues when we first had her, I bought the Dr. Elsie’s  litter attractant additive and just mixed a little bit of that into the pine pellet litter, and that worked really well. Much less expensive than buying the doctor Elsie’s litter. If you have a cat who will except the texture of pellets, that is. I only used about a tablespoon each time, not half the jar or whatever ridiculous amount it tells you to. 

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On 10/22/2020 at 6:33 PM, Jann in TX said:

Horse bedding pellets from Tractor Supply.

No smell.  Very inexpensive.  No chemicals.

The wet turns into a powder-- the solids dry out and are easily scooped. 

DD moved back in last year with her 2 cats.  With this litter you really cannot tell that we have THREE litter boxes in the house!

We just quit using the pellets because the solids still stink until they dry out.  

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I'm trying OKO cat right now and liking it so far. It's wood, but scoopable. And very light! There are a few kinds, I got the finest grind so my cats would use it - after them peeing on the floor due to the pellets I wasn't chancing the gritter chunky version. 

https://amzn.to/34sIfSC

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We have six cats and use Tidy Cats non-clumping litter. I've tried a bunch of others and this is the one that my cats like and that is easy to keep clean. 

I know a lot of people rave about Dr. Elsey's, but that was the litter I hated the most. The wet litter stuck to the box like concrete and was impossible to pry off, and my cats also tracked it around the house.

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30 minutes ago, ktgrok said:

I'm trying OKO cat right now and liking it so far. It's wood, but scoopable. And very light! There are a few kinds, I got the finest grind so my cats would use it - after them peeing on the floor due to the pellets I wasn't chancing the gritter chunky version. 

https://amzn.to/34sIfSC

Have you used it long enough to know whether it lasts long enough to offset the price? 

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At the beginning of covid we had a run of different litters here for what we could get curbside or delivery. We are back to So Phresh from Petsmart.  You can get 30 lbs refillable bins.  We tried WAY more expensive brands and none worked as well for us in terms of smell.  

https://www.petco.com/shop/en/petcostore/product/so-phresh-advanced-odor-control-scoopable-fragrance-free-cat-litter-30-lbs-2297805?cm_mmc=PSH-_-GGL-_-CMB-_-PME-_-PET-_-AQU-_-0-_-PM_GGL_FY20_SBU02_All_PLA-SMRT-_-0-_-0&gclid=CjwKCAjwoc_8BRAcEiwAzJevtZVvL2sRwwKLtlScA0L0GpTTyfXGoQB-dTLvEk00lae1MlwHAw-TzBoCqe4QAvD_BwE&gclsrc=aw.ds

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36 minutes ago, katilac said:

Have you used it long enough to know whether it lasts long enough to offset the price? 

I have not - this is my first box. I mixed it with my usual Slide litter at first, now it is mostly OKO cat...so we will see. Odor wise is it great - I find wood based to be the very best for urine odor. We will see how well it clumps as it is more that and less the other stuff. 

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We use the Target brand scented cat litter.  We’ve tried a few others and it seems to work the best of the ones we tried for odor control, and it’s not too bad dust-wise (but still enough that I make them change the litter in the garage).  I got litter mats for under the boxes and nothing gets tracked out of the area.

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Update.....dd and sil got a second car.....NOT my idea but now they have 2 cats.   We will have to experiment with which works best for multiple cats.  They likely will have 2 little boxes now.

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