Why does my cat litter smell so bad?
You might think once you’ve trained your cat to use its tray or box, life will be (and smell) peachy. So just why is that cat litter still so stinky? Well there are all sorts of reasons your cat litter tray might smell, from not using the best cat litter to not knowing how often to change cat litter or even where to put the cat litter box. Foods and health issues can cause problems, and the natural urea (turned to ammonia by bacteria) and pheromones in your cat’s urine are also to blame – especially in unneutered males.
Of course, if you find it unpleasant, your beloved cat will too – so do your feline family a favour and read these tips on how to stop cat litter from smelling.
Choose the right cat litter box
It’s surprisingly common for cats to be given trays that are too small, especially with the covered variety. Your cat needs enough room to stand up, move around and find an area they want to use, so get a cat litter tray that is 1.5 times the length of your cat from nose to the start of the tail, and as wide as your cat’s length.
If you have more than one cat, you will need at least one tray each, as cats are highly territorial, and if you have space, get an extra one to avoid any scraps or messes outside the box.
Put the tray somewhere airy
Where to put the cat litter box is an important consideration. You might think you don’t want the whiffs to circulate round the house, but putting the tray in a dark, airless corner can make things even worse, concentrating those smells so your cat doesn’t want to use it, and you don’t want to clean it.
Try to find a quiet area that still has good air circulation and then follow the rest of these tips to make sure your space remains fragrant.
Keep an eye on your cat’s health
Pongy trays can also be caused by anything from diet to gastro-intestinal issues, diabetes or other diseases, so it’s important to be aware of what is normal for your cat, and whether anything is changing. If things do change, you should see a vet, but also consider modifying your cat’s diet.
If your cat is prone to urinary or gastrointestinal issues, a cat litter such as CATSAN™ Hygiene plus litter can be particularly helpful because, as well as being hygienic, it comes in a bright white colour that will help you see any colour changes in your cat’s urine.
Remove solids once or twice a day
You wouldn’t want to use a toilet that hasn’t flushed, so why would you expect your cat to use a tray that isn’t clean? How often to change the cat litter depends a little bit on your cat’s toilet habits, and how many cats you share your home with, but as a rule you should ensure you clear the solid deposits at least once a day. If you have more than one cat, you should clear the solids at least twice a day.
If you have clumping cat litter, such as CATSAN™ Ultra plus litter or CATSAN™ Natural Clumping litter, remove the clumps at the same time. If you choose a non-clumping cat litter, look for a more absorbent formulation, such as CATSAN™ Hygiene plus litter, which soak up the liquid safely until it’s time to clean the tray.
Clean the tray regularly
How often to change the cat litter isn’t just about cleaning out the solids. For non-clumping litters you should also clean out the whole tray at least once a week – and some lower-quality labels require it even more often. With clumping litters such as CATSAN™ Ultra plus litter, you will need to do a full clean around every two to three weeks, or even less, depending on your cat’s habits. Check out our article for everything you need to know about cleaning the litter tray.
When you clean the tray, throw away all the litter that’s there – you might want to consider a 100% biodegradable litter, such as CATSAN™ NATURAL Clumping Litter. You can dispose of these litters in your communal bio waste where local regulations allow.
Cat litter disposal can be a messy, difficult and time-consuming job, so CATSAN™ Smart Pack litter offers an easy solution. It comes with a highly absorbent pad encased in a foil bag that folds over the rim of the tray, allowing the whole bag to be removed at once, leaving a pristine tray underneath. It’s filled with CATSAN™ Hygiene plus litter, too, which boasts over 97% ammonia reduction, for amazing odour control.
Choose an odour-busting litter
All CATSAN™ litters are designed to control odours in the best possible way, thanks to a combination of the right raw materials and some extra little treatments, like the mineral spray in CATSAN™ Hygiene plus litter.
Tried, tested and safe, these are natural ways to stop cat litter from smelling that cats will appreciate as much as humans!