There are many options to choose from when considering cat litter. It is important to know what your needs and habits are, as well as those of your cat. Keep these things in mind as you look over the characteristics of each type of litter, for there is so much more available than the traditional clay clumping or non-clumping litters.
Clay is the traditional kind of cat litter. It comes in granules that absorb odor and urine. Clumping has smaller granules that form a hard shell
around clumped clay that has had direct contact with urine, tends to be fairly dust free, and makes for easy clean up. Non-clumping clay has larger granules that allow urine to pass through to the box bottom where it is slowly absorbed, and which don’t accidentally clump to your cat’s private regions. Over time, the clay loses its ability to hold any more urine and odor and the whole thing must be tossed out and replaced.
Now there are silica gel granules available that are not dusty, absorb odors well, and come in both clumping and non-clumping styles. There are also new eco-friendly litters made of things like cedar chips, pressed pine sawdust, recycled paper, and more. These tend to start as pellets which dissolve as they absorb urine. When the pellets have all dissolved it is time to clean the box. Some of the eco-litters tend to be dusty. Weigh the considerations and make the choice that is right for you and your cat. Remember, a transition time is often necessary when changing litters.