katalyce (kirin76) wrote in animal_talk,

For you pet lovers...

Not my cat, but my parent's cat had to spend the last few days in hospital. She was refusing to eat and loosing weight and she had a fever. So my parent's took her to the local vet. They xrayed and did some tests and told my parents to take Squeeky to the University Vet in Providence. Turns out she had been eating the scoopable cat box filler! It got stuck in her intestines. They had to surgerically remove it but apparently she is doing much better and my dad is picking her up today.

I think my dad is seriously considering switching to Feline Pine or Yesterday News now. He didn't even realize you could buy something other than scoopable cat litter.

If you are not aware of this, you should be: They DO make cat box fillers out of products other than clay!

Scoopable cat litter is made from strip-mined clay and the dust from it can be harmful to people and pets. As my dad found out the heart-breaking and wallet-busting way, if your cat ingests the scoopable cat box filler, it can have disastorous consquences!

I personally use Feline Pine. It does work like the label says. It does a pretty good job of absorbing the smell. Just be prepared if you have more than one cat, to empty it more often than the reccommended two weeks. It is however, the same price or cheaper than the scoopable cat litter depending on where you buy it.

I have also tried Perfect Litter. This stuff is amazing and great if you have a cat that is prone to urinary issues, because it really does change colors if your cat is dehydrated or stressed giving you a heads up before it gets to the point of no return. (This happened to be what I had in the cat box when my kitty came home from spaying. The first day she was home it turned light pink. In a day or two it was back to normal color). It is however, a bit more expensive and you can only get it through the website.

I have also seen in the store, but not tried myself, Yesterday News made by Purina. It is made from recycled newspapers. It is the same or cheaper than clay-based scoopable litter as well.

I think one of the other great things about these products is they are made from renewable resources. In other words, they are more green than clay-based litter. So for the health of your pet (and the sake of your wallet), give them a shot!

x-posted a bit.
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I switched to Swheat Scoop a few years ago after I read about how dangerous the clay-based scoopable litters are to your cat's health, and how bad they are for the environment (strip mining etc.). Swheat Scoop is made from wheat and if your cat swallows some it just goes right throught them. It's been working well and I'm happy with it. It's also much less dusty than the clay-based scoopable litter I was using. I use covered litter boxes (have to or else they kick it out all over the floor), and my cats were inhaling all that clay dust in an enclosed area. Bad, bad, bad! So much dust was generated that despite the covered litter boxes, there was a fine coating of dust all over the walls, furniture and cabinets near the litter boxes. With Swheat Scoop there's hardly any dust at all.

The one drawback is that the clumps don't set up instantly, like they did with the clay litter. I'm such a fanatic about keeping the litter boxes clean, I used to stand there with the scoop in my hand, waiting for my cat to finish so I could clean the box right away. Can't do that with Swheat Scoop - the clumps take about fifteen to twenty minutes to harden, and if I try to scoop them sooner, they fall apart. And they never set up completely as hard as they clay litter did. If you have the kind of scoop where you have to shake it to sort the clumps from the loose litter, they still have a tendancy to break apart, even if they've been sitting there hardening for an hour. But then I got a really GREAT scoop called the Litter Lifter ( www.litter-lifter.com ), and it solved that problem. This thing works so well that you just have to give it the merest little half-shake and all the loose littler falls right out. It may sound silly to get excited over a cat litter scoop, but really, this scoop is the best thing since the invention of scoopable cat litter. I got mine at Petsmart. I don't think Petco carries them. But you can probably get them online.