Cat litter may not be the most glamorous purchase you make as a cat owner, but it is one of the most important. Bad cat litter can leave your home covered in granules and smelling foul, and worst of all, leave your cat extremely unhappy.
A good cat litter can sometimes be hard to find – there’s an element of testing out which litter is right for your cat, but to help you make your decision, we spoke to a variety of cat experts to uncover which litter should you consider.
The Recommended spoke to two top cat experts, a veterinarian and an animal behavioural expert, and scoured the web to find recommendations from owners to help us find the best cat litter for most cats.
Jump to the best cat litters:
- Best overall cat litter: Catsan Clumping Litter
- Best clumping cat litter: Ever Clean Extra Strong Clumping Cat Litter
- Best natural cat litter: Pettex Pampuss Woodbase Cat Litter
- Best eco-friendly cat litter: Bio-Catolet Light & Hygienic Recycled Paper Granules Cat Litter
- Best long-lasting cat litter: Worlds Best Cat Litter
- Best cat litter for kittens: Breeder Celect Recycled Paper Cat Litter
- Best anti-microbial cat litter: Fresh Paws Premium Wood Pellet Cat Litter
- Best organic litter: Cat’s Best Wood Fibre Cat Litter, 4.3kg, £10.49
- Best cat litter for small spaces: Ever Clean Fast Acting Odour Control Cat Litter
Our cat experts
Caroline Clark and Johnny Mullins are both animal specialists and trained veterinary experts, each passionate about the welfare and health of pets, dedicating their careers to the diagnosis, treatment and wellbeing of animals.
Caroline Clark has over 30 years of experience in veterinary practice. As well as being a qualified vet nurse, Caroline is an animal behaviourist and an expert in the management and treatment of companion animals – including cats – and was featured as the animal behaviour expert on Channel 4’s Embarrassing Pets. She works closely with pet owners to design tailor-made action plans to help modify, manage and hopefully resolve behaviour problems in their pets.
Johnny Mullins is a trained vet, and graduate of the Royal Veterinary College. He works in a veterinary practice in the UK, treating hundreds of pets each week, and advising owners on the best treatments and solutions for a variety of animal health and wellbeing issues.
We posed two key questions to both of them to understand precisely what you need to know when shopping for cat litter, to help you make an informed decision, and help us put together our list of the best cat litters you can buy online.
What should you look for when buying cat litter?
“Cats tend to have their own preferences for litter and get used to the ones they have been brought up with as kittens”, says Caroline. “However, look for unscented varieties as these tend to be favoured over scented ones. Litter needs to be comfortable for paws to walk on too and so it’s best to look for ones that are made of fine grains.”
Johnny agrees and advises to look for an eco-friendly and sustainable choice, “The average cat goes through 18kg of cat litter a month. With the majority of this ending up in landfill, I’d advise getting a compostable eco-friendly cat litter.”
What should you avoid when looking for cat litter?
“When looking to buy a litter it’s best to avoid any that are scented”, says Caroline. “Although we like the smell, most cat’s don’t. Litter that is a coarse grain texture can be uncomfortable for tiny paws so avoid those and opt for ones that are made of a finer grade.”
While cheaper cat litters might be a wallet-friendly choice, be sure to check whether they are biodegradable, as Johnny points out, the majority of cat litter ends up in landfills, so it’s worth considering the environmental impact of your chosen litter.
With this advice in mind, we took the web to research which cat litters ticked our expert’s boxes, taking into account litter recommendations from cat owners, who can vouch for their absorbency, odour-elimination and all-round tidiness. See our full list below.
The best cat litters
Best overall cat litter: Catsan Clumping Litter
Unscented, long-lasting odour control
This unscented litter is designed to absorb liquids and lock away moisture before odours can develop, leaving your litter tray odour free.
Catsan is one of the biggest names in cat litter, thanks to its fine, ultra-absorbent granules that lock in bad smells. This litter also promises easy cleanup, with quick clumping and low-dust mixture making it quick and easy to clean out solids and change litter when needed.
Cat owner Dhruba, who has two outdoor cats, rated the litter as one the best, saying, “the surface of the litter rapidly absorbs moisture, a bit like tiny sponges, safely locking it in” and that it “it did a good job for the urine” and “managed to keep the smell down.
Best clumping cat litter: Ever Clean Extra Strong Clumping Cat Litter
Easy to scoop and clean
Ever Clean’s extra-strong clumping litter is designed to quickly wrap around any solids, making them easy to remove while locking in nasty smells.
This litter uses Ever Clean’s activated carbon technology to counteract the nasty cat mess smells, while making it easy for owners to remove hard waste, reducing litter waste and keeping cat litter trays fresher for longer.
Cat owner Leigh has four Bengal cats, and after struggling with tracking and odours throughout their home, switched to Ever Clean, which they describe as “amazing” thanks to it being “easy to scoop as the clumping technology absorbs the urine easily and neatly which leaves the clean litter behind.
Best natural cat litter: Pettex Pampuss Woodbase Cat Litter
Made from recycled materials
This litter from Pettex ticks all of the sustainability boxes. Made from biodegradable pellets, its high absorbency and advanced odour control should keep all cats happy.
Considering most cat litter ends up in landfills, this eco-friendly litter is a great choice for reducing you and your cats impact on the environment, and its natural pine fresh aroma, promises to help keep litter trays smelling fresh.
Cat owner Meggan shares her home with one full-time indoor cat, and rates this litter for its eco-credentials and the fact it’s made of pellets rather than granules, saying, “it’s better than the gravelly stuff in terms of clean up, my cat has been using this for a good six months now and has no issue.”
Best eco-friendly cat litter: Bio-Catolet Light & Hygienic Recycled Paper Granules Cat Litter
Absorbent and dust-free
This light, dust-free litter from Bio-Catolet is 100% biodegradable, can be composted and promises to absorb 250% of its own weight.
The litter is made entirely from light, cellulose paper granules, making it gentle on your cat paws. It also contains a vegetable-based insect repellent to get rid of pesky flies and bugs.
Cat owner Sam rated this litter thanks to its easy cleanup, saying “It expands to absorb urine but doesn’t fall apart, like wood litter does, so it doesn’t get dust everywhere.” While fellow cat lover Neil says “We love this litter, as does our cat. It doesn’t create a dust cloud every time you fill the litter tray, it’s also soft on her paws.”
Best long-lasting cat litter: Worlds Best Cat Litter
Quick clumping and septic-safe
This litter is made from whole-kernel corn, making it naturally absorbent and long-lasting, promising more than 60 days of use for one cat.
This litter is made from sustainably sourced corn, with no added chemicals, making its manufacturing process kind of environment, while it’s been tested as flushable and septic safe, making clean up easy and reducing the weight of your household waste.
Cat owner Larah describes the litter as “brilliant”, saying “By far the best cat litter, we have one cat and the bag lasts nearly two months”, while fellow cat lover Henri the litter has “genuinely made my life so much easier and my cats so much happier than the old cheap stuff we used to use”.
Best cat litter for kittens: Breeder Celect Recycled Paper Cat Litter
Soft on little paws
This litter from Breeder Celect is made from 99% recycled paper, making it ideal for young or sensitive paws. It’s also natural and non-toxic, making it a great choice for kittens.
This recycled paper litter is made to be highly absorbent with natural odour control, promising to keep your house smelling clean and fresh, and as it’s made from natural ingredients, it can be composted once the waste is removed.
Cat owner Becca really rates this litter, saying “I have tried quite a few different sorts of litter for picky cats, this is definitely my favourite. This doesn’t break up into tiny pieces that spread around everywhere. It’s still going to get kicked out a bit but it doesn’t get walked around the entire house.”
Best anti-microbial cat litter: Fresh Paws Premium Wood Pellet Cat Litter
Soft litter with a fresh scent
This anti-microbial, absorbent cat litter doesn’t allow germs or bacteria to form, so stops unpleasant odours and nasty bugs or pests from upsetting your cats.
This litter is made from 100% British softwood and has no additives, glues, fragrances or chemicals added. Thanks to its natural ingredients, Fresh Paws says it makes for great compost as it is 100% biodegradable.
Cat owner Helen loves this litter, saying “This cat litter is brilliant. I live in a high rise flat so my cat has to use a litter tray as he rarely goes out. This is great cat litter as it’s really absorbent and reduces smells significantly. I always use this brand as it’s the one I’ve been most happy with after using most of the other brands.”
Best organic litter: Cat’s Best Wood Fibre Cat Litter
100% pure organic
This wood-based, clump-forming cat litter is made from 100% pure organic fibre, designed to effectively bind liquid and odour to stop bad smells.
This low dust litter is completely biodegradable, making it compostable and flushable, and its wood fibre consistency makes it less likely to stick on your cat’s paws and be tracked through your home.
Cat own Gethyn highly recommends this litter, saying “I can’t believe this cat litter, it’s truly amazing! I’ve not changed the litter in 2 months, just topped it up, the urine just forms a “ball” and can be lifted out, there is absolutely no smell at all, it’s truly amazing, can’t praise it enough!”
Best cat litter for small spaces: Ever Clean Fast Acting Odour Control Cat Litter
Blocks smells in seconds
This litter has been specifically designed to trap and lock in odour rather than masking it, eliminating urine, faecal and ammonia odour within seconds.
Ever Clean’s fast-acting odour control litter uses activated carbon and clumping clays to efficiently target nasty litter smells quickly and stop them from lingering in the tray, making it ideal for smaller spaces.
Cat owner Clare love this litter, saying “This is the best litter I’ve used by far. With this stuff, I’m not paranoid in the slightest anymore. I can never smell when my cats have left a little ‘present’ for me. I don’t dread having to change the litter either as even when I’m next to the boxes I barely smell a thing.”
Want to read more expert-recommended pet product round-ups? Check out our Pets page for a full list of recommendations, including our list of the best dog beds for your furry friends, as recommended by dog experts.