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So, you’ve selected the kitten you’ll be bringing home and now it’s time to get the house ready for their arrival. That means litter boxes, scratching posts, food, toys, and treats. But with all the organizing in the world, you still have to sift through pages upon pages of products to suit your needs. Well, to make life a little bit easier for you, we have created a list of the top 10 best cat litter options on the market for training your new kitten. We’ve even broken down our list into the best litters for different needs, from clumping cat litter to biodegradable, or even pine and walnut litter.
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We aim to take the hassle out of general pet care by creating comprehensive, in-depth guides that cover the many areas of pet-owning life. In order to do this, we utilize expert advice, customer reviews, reliable resources, pet owner opinions, and comparative analysis in order to arrive at solid conclusions that can be confidently presented to our readers. Not only that, but we also highlight the negatives as well as the positives to everything we review, so that you get the full picture of what it is you’re looking at and can make an informed decision.
The Naturally Fresh walnut non-clumping cat litter has won the best overall spot on our list for several reasons. Not only is it a proud USA company that both develops and manufactures their litter in their own factories, but they have also thought of almost everything when it came to designing a formula to suit a wide range of kitties and their toilet habits.
The 100% natural walnut shell formula promises no harsh chemicals, fragrances, or silica powder. It simply utilizes the entirely natural absorbency of the walnut shell along with its odor-controlling properties that can change that harsh ammonia smell to a more earthy, natural scent. Because of its natural formula, it is also compostable and biodegradable, making it excellent for the environment. Furthermore, Naturally Fresh cat litter is available in seven different litter lines including training litter for kittens and multi-cat litter.
One bag matches the absorbency of three clay litter bags
Available in multiple formulas
All-natural formula using Walnut shells
Can be composed and is biodegradable
Made in the United States
Brand: Naturally Fresh
Weight: 25.55 Pounds
Natural formula is gentle on kittens
Biodegradable and eco-friendly litter
Available in kitten litter training form
Odor-control design masks urine smell well
The lightweight formula can be kicked up easily
Dark coloration can make it tricky to spot wet patches
Fine dust particles can be kicked up whilst scooping
Purina’s Yesterday’s News litter is made using gentle, all-natural key components to create the ideal paper cat litter for kittens. The softer the litter, the less likely your kitten is to become irritated by it when trying to relieve themselves. Young kittens in particular are more sensitive to what’s beneath their paws than older cats, owing to the fact that a kitten’s paws are new and still soft.
Purina’s Yesterday’s News cat litter uses totally natural mineral oils and guar gum to produce the clumping quality so many cat parents know and love. This means so harsh chemicals are being used that could cause irritation for your feline friend. It is also made of 100% recyclable material, including the paper packaging it comes in. However, the downside to Purina’s paper litter is that the natural binding agent used does not produce the same clumping results as clay litter, meaning it can be a little bit trickier to scoop. Though this is the only real downside to a litter made to be completely healthy for your kitty.
Uses mineral oil and guar gum for clumping
Ultra-lightweight paper formula
Suitable for multiple cats to use
Mineral oils reduce dust residue
100% recyclable including the packaging
Brand: Yesterday’s News
Weight: 13.2 pounds
The odor-control is very effective
Natural mineral approach is gentle on cats
Lightweight formula is easy to store and move
Much softer on paws than other clumping litters
The sticky formula can track
The natural clumping binding agent is not very strong
Feline pine cat litter is made to be a naturally scented alternative to artificially scented cat litters. As well as utilizing naturally highly absorbent pine fibers, which works by the pellets reacting to moisture by breaking down into fine, dry sawdust, rather than becoming a damp patch in the litter box. This helps to prevent wet litter from producing as noxious a scent and makes cleanup time much easier.
Pinewood is known for its powerful, fresh aroma, which is present in the Feline Pine non-clumping litter. As pellets break apart they release the natural scent, ensuring the scent lasts for longer. However, seeing as the pellets break apart in response to liquid contact, they are not quite as effective as controlling odor with solid waste. Feline Pine is also a much cheaper alternative to clay clumping kitty litter, as you’re usually paying for the convenience of having a clumping design. Though it is worth noting that if the Feline Pine litter interests you, you may want to look at purchasing a sifting cat litter box to make the most of this pellet-style litter.
Chemical-free natural pine odor control
Clay-free and dust-free formula
Non-clumping litter is cheaper than clumping
Improved extra-absorbent formula
Feline pine pellets are easy to scoop
Odor control is effective with urine
Safe if ingested by kittens accidentally
Sustainable and environmentally friendly
Only needs changing every couple of weeks
Pellets break down and track easily
Odor control is not as effective with solid waste
Requires a sifting litter tray for the best result
Tidy Cats’ 24/7 cat litter is easily one of the best litters for kittens if you’re looking for a non-clumping type. They are proud to state that their Performance non-clumping clay litter range is the perfect blend to minimize sticky residue and maximize absorption. It is also specifically formulated to work especially well in households with more than one cat.
It may be a simple color, but when used the light grey turns to a clear dark grey shade making it easy for you to spot when the litter is wet. Additionally, the dyed green and blue granules allow you to see when the litter is saturated, even after drying. Furthermore, the highly-absorbent non-clumping clay litter formula is a more affordable alternative to most typical clumping brands. However, like all litter, it has its downsides. Urine can seep to the bottom of the tray if the litter becomes over-saturated. Additionally, according to previous customers, the formula can be a bit dusty when initially being poured into the tray.
Deodorizing formula keeps fresh scent for longer
Designed to work well for multiple cats
Non-clumping formula lasts longer between cleanups
Highly absorbent litter is easy to scoop
Recyclable paper bag is environmentally friendly
Dyed granules provide a clear indicator of saturation
The sandy formula is less sticky than other clay litters
CatSpot’s coconut litter utilizes 100% coconut husks for their highly absorbent properties as a safe, healthy alternative for typical cat litter. The use of coconut makes this a kitten-safe litter, even with tiny kittens. This is because accidental ingestion will not have a negative impact on their health. Unless of course, they are eating it in large amounts, which it’s best to avoid.
The best part about this litter is that it is compostable and biodegradable, making it the perfect choice for anyone looking to protect the environment whilst giving their kitty a quality place to pee. This coconut cat litter typically absorbs urine four times more than standard clay litter, and can simply be thrown on the plants when you’re done with it. Furthermore, if you’ve got a cat that frequently struggles with skin issues due to environmental allergens, this ultra-limited formula can help you to avoid litter as one of those allergens and keep your kitty comfortable.
5 lbs of CatSpot is equal to 20 lbs clay litter
Chemical-free, all-natural with no added fragrances
Lightweight formula for easy carrying
Minimal components less likely to cause a reaction
Made using 100% coconut husk
The compostable biodegradable litter is eco-friendly
The Precious Cat Dr. Elsey’s training litter is specifically designed to make the transition from floor to litter as smooth and easy as possible. This is done using a carefully thought-out formula containing natural attractants and pheromones to entice kitties into the litter box. Once there, they should feel at ease quickly, allowing them to focus on learning to relieve themselves in a foreign environment.
Whilst mommy cats recovering from the stresses of childbirth, she can be calmed by the fact that her kittens are not in distress as they are learning. Most cat owners that have used Dr. Elsey’s training cat litter for kittens have found that both mama and babies have been soothed by the herbal attractants, which helped to make the entire process go much more smoothly. Just keep in mind that whilst the training process might be made easier for your kitty, you will still have to deal with the mess, and unfortunately, the small granules of this litter make it easy to track, especially when it becomes sticky after use.
The Febreze scented clumping litter is definitely among the top litters for kittens when you have multiple felines to train at one time. The super-deodorizing and ammonia black technology used with this litter is ideal for cover the strong scent of several young kittens in training. It is even capable of masking the scent of their solid waste, just until you get the chance to scoop it up.
This particular Fresh Scent litter has been improved upon so as not to produce as much dust as the previous version. It may be effective at eliminating odors, however, minimal dust is the priority for young kittens. Fortunately, this is a highly absorbent cat litter, meaning the smell of fresh urine won’t be around for long until it is quickly covered by the fresh mountain spring scent.
SWheat’s unscented clumping litter proudly uses the most natural components to produce a litter with minimal risk to your kitten’s health whilst they learn to use their tray. Some kittens have a tendency to chew no their litter in the early stages, but the 100% natural wheat formula used for sWheat cat litter means any small amount of ingested litter will pass through without any problems.
Unlike clumping clay litter sWheat’s clumping kitty litter uses totally natural components to gain their clumping result. The lack of clay in this formula makes it a more lightweight formula that can be moved around with much more ease. The fact that sWheat’s litter is unscented also leans that most kittens take to it easily as there is no harsh or offensive smell to make them want to turn away from the litter box. Just be mindful that a natural clumping medium does not produce as solid a clump as clay litter, so be gentle when scooping your kitten’s waste.
Arm & Hammer has produced a natural cat litter that is ideal for multi-cat households. Not only does it use 100% natural corn fibers to provide extreme absorbability, but the added scent is capable of masking the odors of multiple cats. So if you’ve got yourself a few kittens in training, this could be the ideal kitten litter for you.
The natural components used in this litter produce strong, easy-to-collect clumps, making cleaning time a much simpler affair. Additionally, Arm & Hammer are able to boast that their litter absorbs twice that of your standard clay litters. Furthermore, the lightweight formula is not only easy for your kittens to work with, but it can make litter box changing time much easier and storage and transport are made much easier. However, the drawbacks of this particular litter are that the scent is not every cat’s cup of tea, and you may find they reject it. It is also considered a slightly more expensive option, so consider your budget before buying.
ökocat’s natural wood litter is ideal for kittens with sensitive paws, as the rounded pellet-style litter does not present the harsh texture that can be found in clay litter. Until your kitten’s paws have toughened up, wood litter may help to keep them comfortable. Furthermore, once broken down the pellets turn to powder instead of chips, so there is no need to worry about splinters.
ökocat litter does not use any artificial fragrances or chemicals. It is an entirely natural litter that is able to control odor using the scents found in the wood itself as opposed to adding scents during the manufacturing process. The added benefit of pellet litter is the fact that pellets produce next to no dust, and so you can rest assured your kitty won’t be kicking up dust plumes every time they relieve themselves. However, ökocat’s litter can become sticky when wet meaning it can be tracked if your kitten steps in a wet patch. Additionally, this is another litter that does better in a sifting litter box.
No toxic dye, synthetic chemicals, or artificial fragrance
Wood pellets reduce dust to almost zero
Effective odor control from natural wood scents
Able to absorbed two times more than clay kitty litter.
Whilst kittens may not strictly need kitten-specific litter, there are certain elements to the litter you chose that should be taken into account. For example, kittens have softer, more delicate, tiny paws, so finding the right litter with a soft texture that will be gentle on their feet is highly important. They should also have a smaller litter tray to save on litter wastage and encourage them to go to the bathroom in a more concentrated area. Other questions you might want to ask yourself are:
Does Your Kitten Have Long Fur?
Clumping cat litter can get stuck to long hair, which can spread the smell of dirty litter. A scented litter can help with odor control until you’re able to clean them up. Clay can also be difficult to remove from long hair, so a non-clay-based litter would be better still.
Do you Have Multiple Kittens?
If you have more than one kitten coming into the house then you definitely need to look for a cat litter that is good at neutralizing odors caused by double the urine concentration. highly absorbent cat litters are often more capable of handling this task. It is extremely important that their tray is kept clean and emptied as much as possible, even with the best odor control.
Is Your New Kitten Hyperactive?
Hyperactive kittens are more likely to mess around in their litter trays. This isn’t the end of the world of course, how else are they going to learn? However, you’ll want to look for a kitty litter with minimal dust and a low-tracking formula. This will help you to avoid any unnecessary mess when they’re hopping in and out of their litter box.
What Type of Litter is Best for Kittens?
If you haven’t had a chance to meet your kitten yet and are not entirely sure what their personality is like, don’t fret! There is plenty of kitten safe litter out there that you case chose from. If you know enough about your kitty to be somewhat confident that they won’t try and eat their litter on a daily basis, then you can expand that search to other cat litters that are also suited for kittens.
All-Natural Clumping Litter
Natural clumping kitten litter tends to utilize more digestion-friendly methods of clumping. So if you have yourself a kitten that sees its litter as cat food, the natural source of clumping litter would be the better of the clumping options. Additionally, natural clumping kitty litter tends to be a more lightweight litter, so it’s easier for you as the cat owner to clean out their tray and replace the litter when it needs refreshing.
Non-Clumping vs Clumping Litter
Non-clumping litter may not be as quick to scoop as clumping feline litters, but it has its own benefits. Non-clumping cat litter typically has better odor control than clumping due to the fact that while clumping litter reacts quickly to create a slid mass, non-clumping kitten litter is capable of absorbing a lot more and it is typically the best cat litter for multi-cat households or cats with, particularly pungent urine.
Silicone Crystal Pellet Litter
Many cat owners favor silicone crystal cat litter for their kitties due to its high absorption rate making it excellent for odor control and the fact that it often comes with colored indicator pellets which are able to show how saturated the litter is, meaning you save on cat litter costs in the long run. Though the downside to silicone litter is that it is not flushable and is predominantly bad for the environment. But for cat owners that need to watch their cat’s urine frequency and color, it is extremely useful.
Scented vs Unscented Litter
Scented litter can be especially helpful in smaller households where the litter tray is having to be kept in close quarters with the living space. Getting a cat litter that is pre-scented allows pet owners to keep the tray nearby without being overwhelmed by ammonia. The only thing you need to consider with scented litter is that cats can be quite sensitive to smells so you need to pick the scent that your cat likes and is willing to deal with. A good unscented kitten litter will have natural scents in it and the capability to coat or cover the waste so as to mask the smell properly and is typically gentler on your cat’s nose.
Kitten Training Litter
Cat litter for kittens to train with tends to use natural pheromones and scents that will entice your kitty to go to relieve themselves in the right place. Pheromones are generally highly effective with cats of all ages as they work on the basis of pheromones they will have smelled from their mothers. Therefore litters that use pheromones for training purposes to be some of the best cat litters for difficult kittens.
How to Select The Best Litter for Your Kitten
The easiest way to ensure that you have chosen the best cat litter for your kitten is to take into account their behavior, their health, their environment, and what you need from it. If a kitten has problems that could affect urination then a silicone litter may be better for monitoring color and frequency. If you need to be able to school waste away quickly and easily then a clumping kitty litter would work.
If you have a small home maybe look at a scented cat litter. Likewise, if your home is large enough to have the tray out of the way, or if the tray is covered, then it would be best to look unscented. Furthermore, if you’re having trouble litter training your kitten, then a kitten litter designed specifically to make training easier would definitely be worth a look. One thing should look out for with your kitten litter, however, is that it’s a low-dust formula to avoid respiratory problems early on.
Tips for Training Your Kitten to Use the Litter Box
Slow and steady is the key with any training. You need to exercise patience and perseverance in order to get the best result, along with using plenty of positive reinforcement. You can begin litter training your kitten the moment you bring them home. In fact, if the kittens have come from your own cat and you have them from birth, then you can start training them as early as 4 weeks (if you’re lucky, the breeder may have already started the process for you).
Start small: Purchase two kitten litter boxed around 13″ x 9″. A full-sized litter tray can appear intimidating to a tiny kitten, and so you need to create an environment they can be comfortable in. Be sure to pick the best kitty litter tray for your new feline friend before you start.
Pick a litter: This is where you’ll want to select the type of litter that best suited your new feline companion. Young kitties can be fickle when it comes to accepting a new litter, but be patient and give them a week to adjust. If they’re still not liking it, perhaps look to try another litter for a while.
Introduce your kitten to the litter box: Now you’re set up with multiple litter boxes and the perfect litter (hopefully), you can start to introduce your new kitten to their new toilet. There are three key things you’ll want to do here:
Gently show them where the trays are and let them sniff and explore the tray in their own time. Rushing won’t help at all.
Once they seem comfortable in the vicinity of the tray, gently place your kitten directly onto the litter and let them feel it under their paws. They may even start to paw at it instinctually – this is a good sign. If they don’t, you can demonstrate by running your fingers through it. The part can get a little messy, so laying down a litter mat to prevent the litter from getting all over your floor would be a good idea.
Moving forward you should encourage litter use by placing your kitten on the litter every time it eats, drinks, or wakes up. They should pick it up relatively quickly, though they will still undoubtedly have accidentally.
Positive reinforcement: Make sure you provide plenty of reinforcement for good behavior through verbal praise and make sure if you give them a treat that it’s given immediately after they have used their litter box. It is important that you DONT yell at them if they have an accident. Just calmly clean the accident area using an enzymic cleaner
You can start training a kitten to use the litter box as soon as 4 weeks of age if the kitten is born of a cat you own and therefore born into the household. However, if you’re getting your kitten from a breeder you should be bringing them home from the age of 12 weeks onwards. Generally speaking, by that age they will have some experience with toilet training, but it is best to assume they have none and start from scratch.
All forms of clumping litter can be used with kittens, but certain types are not recommended unless absolutely necessary. Some kittens have a habit of chewing their litter. If your little fur baby has this habit then clay clumping litter should be avoided as it can impact their teeth and digestive system. Generally speaking, it’s best to stick with non-clumping litters for small kittens.
Clumping clay litter is more high-risk than natural clumping litter as it is especially heavy, sticky, and dusty, not to mention the fact that it is made using volcanic ash which cats can’t digest, and no ingesting clumping cat litter can cause discomfort and constipation for kittens and adult cats alike. If your kitten were to ingest a large amount of clay clumping litter it can cause severe bowel obstruction.
As a general rule of thumb, you need to scoop your kitten’s litter box once or twice a day, ideally morning and night. Then the entire box will be emptying, cleaning, and refilling once a week. Though you must take extra care to avoid handling the soiled litter with bare hands as cat feces contains toxoplasmosis parasites and the E. Coli bacteria.
Eloise is the owner of a Malamute/Akita cross, a first-time mum, and an animal enthusiast from England. She comes from a family which has never gone a day without a pet (or 3!), and over the years has learned all the best tips and tricks to raising a difficult pet. A knowledge that she has put to good use, to help others navigate the limitless world of pet care.