Before the latter half of the 1900's, cat litter boxes are filled with sand, soil, and plant shavings. But the obvious tiresome task of cleaning litter boxes using these materials had resulted into much disgust, if not abhorrence, from cat owners. So someone came out with using a type of litter box filling made up clay minerals that absorb water; thereby isolating cat wastes. But still, this clay material did not satisfy cat owners for long as it collects urine and fecal moisture at the bottom of the litter box, becoming a cesspool of bacteria that produce foul-smelling ammonia. A few years before the turn of the century, scientists were able to come up with a new formulation of clay that clumps up when moisture or water is introduced to it. Called bentonite, this material allows wastes to be segregated and swept away.
What's more, bentonite has some built-in odor neutralizing characteristics. With bentonite, urine and fecal moisture is absorbed by the clay and slowly allowed to evaporate into the air. Today, a significant percentage of all cat litter boxes are filled with this highly absorptive litter that clumps cat's wastes. And clumping cat litter has become the trend for many cat owners.
Clumping cat litters was an instant hit because it offers convenience and money savings. Cat owners do not have to deal with the foul smell of feline wastes and they are spared from constantly changing litter like in the old days of sand, soil, and plant shavings. Instantly cleaned with zero effort and sweat, plus added with pleasing scents and deodorizers that give off a sense of a well-sanitized environment, super absorptive clumping cat litter became an overnight success story in the history of animal waste management. But all the sensation about clumping cat litter is now cast in doubt as more and more people have blamed it to have caused diseases and death to many cats. As it turned out, bentonite has been discovered to function like cement or plumbing sealing material.
And with water, it can even expand to almost twenty times its original size. As its size increases, bentonite can block not only cat's digestive system but also that of humans. It can even clog your sewage system. Unsurprisingly, cat owners have observed a sharp increase in the number of cats suffering from immune system deficiency, respiratory ailments, and digestive problems in the past two decades since clumping cat litter has hit the mainstream market. Several owners have found out that cats that have ingested clumping cat litter have discharged stuff which when combined with water, turns into a gel.
Now picture yourself having a gel-like mass somewhere in your digestive tract. This substance will certainly cripple your digestive functions much less than your pet cat who visits the litter box everyday. Research show that clumping cat litter can build up on the walls of the cat's digestive organs; and when this happens, food can not be properly absorbed into the cat's system and elimination can not be properly done. This results further into bacteria and other toxic matters accumulating inside your cat's body leading to other diseases like respiratory ailments and immune deficiency. Your pet will eventually have weaker disease-fighting mechanism which could ultimately lead to death.
So what do you do when your cat is suffering from an ailment that you suspect to be related to clumping cat litter? There are two things to remember when your cat becomes sick after you have just used clumping cat litter. First, simply take away the litter from the box. Second, plan a cleansing and home therapy regiment for your pet, like using curative herbs. It is best to consult a veterinarian to help your cat to recovery. Clumping cat litter is sure to give you a convenient way of managing your cat's wastes, but are you willing to risk your pet's life for your comfort? Manufacturers of clumping cat litter have repeatedly denied the connection between their product and feline casualties, but are you willing to leave your pet's life up to chance? Indeed the only way to prevent your cat from becoming one of the statistics is to go back to the old ways of cat waste disposal.
Sand, soil, and plant shavings used as litter may entail tedious cleaning routines; but at the very least, they are healthy for your cat.
Lee Dobbins writes for http://catlitter.topicgiant.com where you can learn more about cat litter, litter boxes and clumping cat litter.