I always wait until the last minute to get kitty litter. That means that I sometimes am running to whatever store is open to try to get more litter. Last time this happened, I found myself in the cat products aisle at the Target staring at an empty space where they normally stock the Feline Pine. D'oh!
Scanning the shelves, I looked for an alternative. They didn't have Yesterday's News or World's Best, and I just don't feel right filling the box with those scary, chemical-laden crystals. That's when the Fresh Step Naturals box caught my eye. It was that off-white color with lots of greens and browns that can mean either an eco-alternative or some good, old fashioned greenwashing. I hoped for the former, but a quick glance at the ingredients revealed that I wasn't that lucky.
So what's the problem? It proudly proclaims over 99% natural ingredients right there on the front! What could be in there that's not so hot?
Unfortunately, natural doesn't mean eco-friendly. The side of the box listed the ingredients:
Natural clay, wood chips, carbon, minerals.
Its the clay that got me. Clay litter is terrible for the environment, and most of the problem happens before you pick up the box at the store. To get all of those little, grey pellets, companies use strip mining, which is just a shade less destructive than full on mountaintop removal mining.
Making the Switch to Eco-Friendly Cat Litter
When you decide to ditch the clay, the key is to make a gradual switch. Our kitties handle change pretty well, but pickier cats will get upset if you change their litter. You don't want them to retaliate by going outside of the box! If your kitty is finicky, take a few weeks to switch, starting with 1/4 new litter to 3/4 old, then 1/2 and 1/2, then 3/4 to 1/4, then finally a whole box of the new litter.
It can be tricky to find an eco-friendly cat litter that you and your cats both like. I definitely went through several sorts before settling on Feline Pine. We tried Yesterday's News and Schweat Scoop before settling on this one.
Do any of you have a favorite sort of earth-friendly kitty litter? I'd love to hear your suggestions!