Looking for the best paper cat litter for your kitty? We’re all looking for sustainable cat products, and paper cat litter happens to be one of them. But isn’t paper cat litter inferior to other types of litter?
Some say that clumping clay litter would always be the superior type. But what if you want to use something safer for your cats, or one that’s more environment-friendly? Would a paper litter suffice?
Join me in learning more about paper cat litters by reading through this overview.
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1. What’s paper cat litter?
Paper cat litter is basically made of post-consumer recycled paper. As early as 1947 when Ed Lowe invented the kitty litter, manufacturers have also begun reinventing the product to produce an eco-friendly version in the form of paper litter.
The most common material used in paper cat litter are pieces of post-consumer newspaper. They’re re-pulped, de-inked, and screened so that the resulting litter would no longer retain harmful chemicals.
2. Shapes of Paper Cat Litter
There are two common shapes of paper cat litter: the shredded and the pellet form.
Shredded Paper Cat Litter
Typically, you can only have shredded paper cat litter if you make it yourself. Most manufacturers would produce paper litter only in their pellet form.
If you prefer using the DIY paper litter, you can follow Ked’s DIY paper cat litter in this short video:
Homemade Cat Litter From Recycled Paper
- To do it yourself, simply shred your old newspapers using a paper shredder. Soak it in warm water (just as shown in the video above) and mix it with dish soap.
- You can then drain the water using a colander and repeat the soaking and draining process without the dish soap. Sprinkle baking soda on the wet paper and knead the mixture.
- Finally, squeeze the remaining water out. Crumble the mass of wet paper and leave to dry under the sun.
Paper Pellets Cat Litter
Paper pellets are slender-looking, tiny cylindrical forms of recycled paper. Compared to shredded paper litter, they look more uniform and feel more solid.
So, in terms of absorption, pellet forms of paper litter can perform better. They can absorb more urine compared to the thin and irregularly-shaped shredded type.
Eventually, paper pellet cat litter has more potential in reducing the smell coming from your kitty’s litter box. The only advantage of shredded paper litter is that it’s economical.
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3. Pros and Cons of Paper Cat Litter
Let me list the advantages and disadvantages of paper cat litter in bullet form. This way, you can weigh the two more easily.
- Highly absorbent
- Made from recycled newspaper
- Flushable and safe for septic systems
- Safe for kittens
- No harmful silica or clay dust
- Less odor control
- Can be more expensive than clay litter
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Top 5 Paper Cat Litter
The Purina Yesterday’s News Unscented Paper Cat Litter is a favorite of many cat lovers out there. Even highly qualified vets would recommend its use. This litter is also in pellet form, so it can last longer than your DIY shredded paper litter.
This paper litter can absorb moisture up to 3x more than the traditional clay-based litters. Because of its highly absorbent feature, it can effectively control odors.
Notice, too, that it doesn’t contain additional fragrances. So, by using this litter, your kitty’s sensitive nose wouldn’t have to suffer from irritation. He can even avoid having lung allergies with it since it’s 99.9% dust-free. It would be easier for you to maintain the cleanliness around the litter box as well as everything else around your home.
In case you’re worried about tracking, just note that this Purina product features long-grain pellets. Yes, it doesn’t have tiny bits of particles, so it would be far less likely for this litter to stick to your cat’s paws.
Finally, this litter is non-abrasive. So, it’s soft on furry feet and won’t hurt when stepped on.
- 99.99% Dust-free
- Absorb moisture up to 3x more than the traditional clay-based litters
- No added fragrance
- Designed for low-tracking
The Fresh News Recycled Paper Litter can easily satisfy your kitty’s preferences for many reasons. First of all, it’s dust-free. So, it can keep your kitty’s respiratory system healthy.
This feature works to your advantage, as well. If you’re hypersensitive to odor and dust just like me, then you’d probably prefer this litter.
It’s also made from 100% recycled paper. Whenever you use this Fresh News litter, you’re essentially reducing your contribution to landfills. Again, no additional trees had to be cut just to produce this paper litter.
Meanwhile, since it contains baking soda straight out of the box, it can neutralize odors powerfully. You don’t have to purchase a separate deodorizer if you use this litter. Overall, that would be time-saving and cost-effective for you.
Even further, by having baking soda included in the pellets, this litter can lock ammonia within. It even comes in a resealable bag, so it stays fresh while still in storage.
- 100% Recycled Paper
- Added Baking Soda to prevent odor
- Soft natural pellets
- Resealable bag for extra freshness
The So Phresh Paper Pellet Litter is quite a unique entry in this list since it’s not marketed exclusively for cats. Note that 95% of this litter comes from post-consumer paper.
It also has baking soda like the Fresh News Litter we’ve discussed above. And it would be safe to assume that the baking soda is part of the remaining 5% of the ingredients.
That said, the So Phresh Paper Pellet Litter can control odors efficiently. The pellets are also quite versatile and would retain their form even when wet. This spells good news for your most frequently-peeing cats.
You can give the credit to the natural paper pellets since they are strong absorbers of moisture.
And just in case you want the confirmation, this So Phresh Paper Pellet Litter is biodegradable. As we’ve discussed above, you can compost this litter and help lower your kitty’s carbon paw-print.
- 100% Recycled Paper
- Safe for use in all small animal habitats
- Added Baking Soda for effective odor control
The ökocat Natural Paper Cat Litter has a rather bold claim. It can block the production of ammonia odors in the litter box for as long as 7 days. If you’re wondering how this can be possible, think of a paper pellet’s structure again. Each pellet can trap the odors of your cat’s urine. Just by the nature of the internal structure of the pellets.
Plus, like any other paper litter, it’s non-clumping. But, this litter can completely absorb your kitty’s liquid waste. As a result, the pellets can stay dry for longer.
The large pellets of ökocat paper litter produce no harmful dust as well. Again, that’s a huge plus for highly sensitive cats and cat moms and dads. Well, it’s dust-free because the paper pellets are softer and not as dry compared to others.
In case your cat has some respiratory ailments, you would appreciate the hypoallergenic feature of this ökocat litter. It doesn’t even contain chemicals and scents. And take note, this litter is unlike the others we’ve mentioned. Unique as it already is, the ökocat litter comes from 100% sustainable, reclaimed paper pulp, not recycled paper.
So, in its own way, this litter is still eco-friendly. Just with the added advantage of having no ink remnants within each pellet. It can be so much safer for your cats than other brands.
Obviously, it’s biodegradable as well. And not just that. It’s also certified flushable, so cleaning up could never be any easier.
- 100% Natural Paper
- No added harmful chemical or scent
- Quite expensive
Speaking of uniqueness, the Hartz Multi-Cat Paper Cat Litter is surprisingly clumping. It even claims to be the first-ever scoopable paper litter. This paper litter, unlike all the others, can form tight clumps to trap the nasty urine smell. In an instant.
Moreover, the clumps can turn into blue when soiled. The clumps won’t stick to the litter pan either, so it can lessen your clean-up time significantly.
If you’re wondering how come it clumps, you should probably know that it’s made of 80% recycled paper. The remaining 20% includes a super-absorbent polymer and starch. These ingredients would explain the clumping ability.
Still, it’s 99% dust-free like the first paper litter brands we’ve featured above. Plus, it’s 70% lighter than clumping clay litter types. That means convenience to you, especially whenever you have to refill your kitty’s litter box.
Finally, the Hartz paper litter is sensitive to your cat’s paws. It doesn’t feel hard to step into, so your cat would most likely fall in love with its use.
- 80% Recycled Paper
- Quick clumping
- 70% lighter than clumping clay litters
- Remaining 20% includes a super-absorbent polymer
- Not flushable
1. Is paper cat litter flushable?
Generally speaking, YES. Paper is biodegradable, so as long as there are no added non-biodegradable ingredients in your paper litter, it’s safe to flush.
To be on the safe side, though, just flush a small amount at a time.
Even better, let the “soiled” or used litter soak in the bowl for a while. This allows the paper litter to absorb a little water before it’s flushed. Take it as a precaution so you’d prevent the litter from causing plumbing problems.
2. Is paper cat litter compostable?
The short answer is YES, it’s compostable. Since paper cat litter is basically biodegradable, you can safely compost it and let nature take care of the bulk of the process.
Moreover, paper fibers can degrade in no time. You can follow your usual composting procedure and wait for 6 to 18 months before using the resulting compost.
3. How often do you change the paper litter?
The quick answer is to replace the paper litter weekly.
Yes, it has to be more frequent than when using other types of litter. If you leave it for a longer time, it would just be too stinky. Paper litter absorbs your kitty’s waste at the bottom of the litter pan. So, you have to avoid filling the litter box with too much litter — just 2 inches will do.
This allows you to save as much paper litter, but it also requires you to change the entire litter box contents more frequently. In addition, you have to scoop the solid wastes daily.
4. How to switch to recycled paper cat litter?
Switching from one type of litter to another follows the same basic rule: let your cat know virtually nothing about it. You have to make the transition so subtle that your cat won’t notice, and hence, he would forget complaining.
Pro Tip: Gradually add some paper litter into your cat’s litter box whenever you have to replace the scooped old litter.
Observe your kitty
Just note that you have to closely observe your kitty whenever he’s doing his business (Or maybe not too closely, else he might suspect).
Anyway, what’s important for you is to note his litter box behavior. See if anything has changed. Keep the atmosphere relaxed and act normal around your cat as much as possible.
Prepare a second litter box
If you notice your beloved feline has become a little distressed or suspicious, slow down a bit. Perhaps it would be better for you to prepare another litter box instead and put paper litter there. Let your kitty’s curiosity figure it out.
Increase the amount of paper litter slowly
If, on the other hand, your cat would seem oblivious to the paper litter mixed with his old one, then proceed with your original plan. Slowly increase the amount of paper litter in the ratio between the new and the old.
Soon, your precious cat would just realize that the transition to paper litter has already been done.
5. How to deodorize paper cat litter?
Most paper cat litter don’t have added fragrances, so you’d wonder how they might be able to control odor efficiently. Also, even if you’ve gotten rid of the paper litter, you might have to endure the lingering smell around the house.
Luckily, there are several techniques you can use to deodorize your kitty’s paper litter.
For instance, you may use the following products.
Baking soda absorbs stinky odors without leaving another distinct scent after use. So, you can mix the powder with hot water and sprinkle it in your cat’s litter box, in your cushions, and even under your carpet. You can also spread the powder at the bottom of the litter pan.
A pineapple candle can freshen up your home with its natural, fresh scent. That’s because of the pineapple’s powerful enzymes that work to neutralize the unwanted ammonia and fecal odors. Just light up the candle to witness the effect immediately.
Coffee grounds were traditionally used as odor neutralizers. So, if you happen to be brewing some coffee, don’t throw the coffee grounds just yet. You can place them around your home to control the litter’s odors.
Cat litter deodorizer
Try being more aggressive in your quest against attacking foul litter odors by using a specially-formulated cat litter deodorizer. Usually, this product is composed of citrus ingredients like orange, lemon, and tangerine, plus some grapefruit. A deodorizer can either be in powder or liquid form, so you can spread it pretty easily on the litter box.
6. How to scoop paper cat litter?
In order to scoop your kitty’s paper litter properly, you have to use the appropriate litter scooper. If you’re using paper pellets, it would be better to use scoopers with long and slender holes. These would match the pellets’ cylindrical shape and inch-long size.
For crumbly shredded paper litter, it might be best to use scoopers with larger, circular holes. This allows the “unsoiled” or clean litter to fall back into the litter pan more easily.
Note that paper cat litter is non-clumping. Whenever your kitty pees on it, the pellets don’t come together in the form of clumps. So, they might not be as easy to scoop as clumping clay litters.
Non-clumping litters, however, don’t stick to the bottom of the litter pan or even to the scooper itself. Even if they’re not essentially “scoopable,” they won’t be as hard to take away from the pan or the scooper as would a sticky litter.
Pro Tip: Use a non-stick or stainless litter scooper so that any exposed solid waste won’t stick into the scooper’s surface.
7. What if a cat eats recycled paper litter?
Recycled paper litter is generally a non-toxic type of litter. So, generally, it won’t do much harm.
In fact, if you’ve been using clumping litter, and your kitty starts to bite on some, then we’d recommend switching to paper cat litter. It’s non-clumping and thus won’t hurt your kitty’s tummy in case of ingestion.
Still, if your cat has been chewing on his litter, it could mean something else is wrong. The safest course of action is to bring your cat to a vet for a check-up. Your furry Tom might be suffering from anemia or some mineral deficiency.
So, what’s the best paper cat litter? I thought you had the answer.