Around 30% of American households have at least one cat, and each of those precious felines will cost about $500 to $1,000 a year to take care of when you add up expenses like shots, food, toys and cat litter.
Cat lovers would agree that it’s worth every single penny, but there are always ways to save!
How to save money on cat litter
Reddit user koipolloi recently asked for some tips and tricks to reduce the cost of cat litter and received more than 500 responses! Here are 10 of the best tips shared by users on the site:
1. Don’t waste unused litter!
justthisgirl: I use a sifting litter box. I don’t dump out the unused litter into the trash. The system I have has two pans and a sifting pan that you stack P-S-P. To clean, you dump the top pan into the sifting pan. Then you can wipe the pan as needed. You sift the litter, dump the chunks into the trash. The pan you sifted the unused litter into becomes the top pan.
2. Farm supply stores
FirstFoxyWolf: I find that farm supply stores have the best litter. The store brands are fragrance free and low dust, as I imagine it is sold really as a multi-use item (spill cleaner, traction for snow, barn moisture control, etc.). I get mine from Tractor Supply Co. here in the states. It’s $4.50 for a 15lb bag and it’s seriously the best stuff. Clumps wonderfully and no added scents/colors that could be harmful for my fur babies.
3. Buy online with free shipping
AndyPod19: Chewy.com has free shipping on orders over $75 and their prices are comparable to a club store like Sam’s or Costco. Previously we kept a Sam’s Club membership (for 9 cats and 4 dogs you HAVE to buy in bulk) but Chewy has the advantage of not worrying about my wife killing herself with 55lb bags. You would have to buy litter for a year for a single cat, but it’s an option if transportation is an issue.
4. Stock up on Black Friday!
Elphabeth: If you have a bit of storage space and can borrow a car once a year on Black Friday, PetSmart always has a great sale on Tidy Cats clumping litter. I buy a dozen tubs or so and store it in my mom’s garage or her storage building. And it’s not that crazy at PetSmart, not like it is at the mall or Best Buy.
5. Wood pellets
DrunkenMidget: Wood stove pellet wood, like this are great.
$6 for a huge bag that lasts months. I also used two cheap dollar store litter bins, drilled a bunch of holes in the top one and the second collects sawdust. All the sawdust that is created when this litter gets wet with pee drops through the holes and leaves basically clean litter in the top one.
Easy! Cheap! And non-smelly!
6. Chicken feed pellets
EraserGirl: I use chicken feed pellets. 50lbs for $12. It is pretty scoopable, and once a week, all of it goes out. It doesn’t weigh as much as ‘litter’ so I can put it in my trash bags.
7. Let them go outside
biscuitcat22: I’ve been lucky and now both my cats go outside in the backyard flower beds. I just use my scoop once a week and walk around the flower beds and pick up all the poops. Don’t have to worry about pees. Helps I have nothing in the flower beds other than dirt. I can buy bags of dirt for pretty cheap if I ever need to top off the flower beds.
8. Toilet train your cat!
RangeRedneck: I used the Litter Kwitter to toilet train my cat. It took about 3 months, but it is worth it. No litter, no litter smell. Only downside is needing to go to the bathroom and having it be occupied. I never kick the cat off the toilet because I don’t want him getting the wrong impression.
9. Buy in bulk at discount clubs
palmermarc: We only use Fresh Step, because we’ve noticed that it hides the odors well, and a previous cat that has since passed would actively not use other litter. We get 40lbs at Sam’s for like $17, which is pretty cheap when you look at it from other places.
10. Try a generic brand
MrsKravitz: Supermarket brand, unscented, clumping. One cat. ~$5/month.
I read somewhere that cats prefer a minimal amount of litter rather than a mountain, so I use enough to cover the bottom of the box by about an inch. Scoop and add a little bit every day, empty out and wash the box once a week. Cat seems satisfied with the arrangement.
Cats generally don’t like change, so if you’re planning to try out one of these ways to save, you want to remember to slowly change to a new litter over the course of about five days.
Read more: 9 foods your pets should never eat