Saturday, April 11, 2009

Review: Feline Pine Scoop Clumping Cat Litter

Do you know which review I consistently get the most comments on? It's not a moisturizer or any of the many soaps I have reviewed, it's the cat litter. Which tells me that there's a real need out there for natural cat litters - we're all still searching for the holy grail of perfection.

Currently kitty and I are using Feline Pine clumping litter. I'm not exactly sure what I expected when I picked this up, but the very lightweight box should have tipped me off. Feline Pine Original is pellets but the Scoop variety is...sawdust. OK, it's sawdust with some guar gum added but it looks, smells, and acts just like sawdust.

The smell of this is quite pleasant - if you like sawdust. And actually, it's got very good odor control abilities. It really does keep the litter box smell down. The clumping ability is fairly adequate. However, I find that clumps fall apart pretty easily when scooped, so I end up not shaking the scoop too vigorously and throw away quite a lot of good litter with the used. This means that I go through a lot of this product, and at $5 a box (or thereabouts) that can add up pretty quickly. The real problem with this litter is that kitty and I track it all over the house. All over. It's so lightweight and clings tenaciously to you that it gets everywhere. The rugs and kitty's favorite lounging spot now need de-sawdusting on a regular basis.  And the floors? Sometimes I have visions of one of my shoes somehow getting involved in a criminal investigation and ending up puzzling the CSI as to the flecks of sawdust embedded in the insole: "it's as if this person was walking around barefoot in a lumber yard and then tracked the sawdust into her shoes.  But then there's minute quantities of guar gum and cat urine mixed in...?"

I am putting up with the sawdust because I like the odor control, and because it doesn't kick up clouds of dust with that chemical nostril burn that regular litter has.  In fact, we've been using it for months and have no current intention of switching. But it's not my holy grail.

Three stars.


armywife19k said...

I can't stand tracking, so I'd never use this product now that you have given your review of it. Thanks for the info! I only have one cat, and I said this on the October review of the Arm & Hammer litter too, but I use Yesterday's News and love it. It doesn't clump at all but I still manage to get the soiled litter out every day with no issues because it darkens when wet.

As for smell problems, I admit to using those crystals you add to litter because otherwise the ammonia smell gets a bit strong--even with daily cleaning.

Does anyone have info on the environmental impact/possible hazards of using kitty litter odor absorbing crystals? I'm using Yesterday's News to avoid strip-mined clay litter, but I don't want to negate my efforts if the crystals are harming the planet anyway!

Anonymous said...

I use the regular version of Feline Pine, and love it. My cat started using it when he was a kitten 10+ years ago, and doesn't like anything else. Yes, it tracks. But it's pine. We even put it into his tiny litterbox in the carrier and realise that he needs changing when it smells like fresh pine in the car! But compared to others (including Yesterday's News, which stank and became gummy), Feline Pine (traditional) my favourite.