Switching cat litter – tips for a smooth changeover
Sometimes it’s necessary to switch cat litter. There are 6 good reasons for this:
- You might wish to change to a biodegradable cat litter, because it’s more environmentally friendly.
- You might like to switch to a clumping litter, as it’s easier to clean the cat toilet.
- You might wish to spare your cat’s delicate sense of smell by not using fragranced cat litter.
- You might wish to use a cat litter that’s easier to dispose of.
- You may wish to look after your cat’s respiratory tract by using a low-dust litter.
- You might like to use a more economical litter.
Cats are creatures of habit and sometimes react very sensitively to change. Switching cat litter is not a decision to be taken lightly, therefore, simply because you want to try something different. Even if there is a good reason for switching, you should proceed with caution. Change the cat litter gradually over several weeks, then your cat is sure to accept the new litter.
Switching cat litter – how to do it
Many cats react to a change of litter by soiling. They avoid the new litter and look for another place in which to do their business. Others continue to use the cat toilet as before, but it’s plain that they don’t like the cat litter variety. Instead of using the middle of the tray, they go at the edge. As a result, the urine comes into contact with the plastic or the litter falls on the floor when they are scratching around. Implement the changeover slowly and give your cat the necessary time to adjust to it. Here are a couple of tips on how to switch cat litter:
- Put a thin layer of the new litter in the cat toilet and cover it with a thick layer of the old variety. The cat’s paws will thus come into contact with the old litter. If your cat is sensitive, the new litter should not account for more than 20% of the total litter.
- The layers slowly become mixed each time the cat uses the toilet. Once your cat has accepted the mixture, increase the height of the layer of new litter next time you clean out the cat toilet. In this way your feline companion can gradually become accustomed to the new litter.
- If you wish to switch from a non-clumping to a clumping litter, bear in mind that clumps will only form after several complete changes. Reliable clumping, in which no urine seeps through, only takes place with a layer of at least 5 cm.
How to implement a gradual changeover
Week 1: 20% new litter, 80% old litter
Week 2: 40 % new litter, 60 % old litter
Week 3: 60 % new litter, 40 % old litter
Week 4: 80 % new litter, 20 % old litter
Week 5: 100% new litter
Observe your cat’s reaction carefully – it will determine the speed of the changeover to a new cat litter variety. If your cat reacts sensitively to the changes, increase the new litter in smaller steps.