How can I recyle cat litter waste? Right now, my bags of it end up in trash disposal. I know someone who directly created a slope of it over a cliff, over time! In the past, I've used it to fill holes in my property. The point is, it's not supposed to be used in compost (except for flower beds), and if treated as trash, it just goes into landfills, doesn't it? I am looking for environmentally sound ideas about where to dispose of cat litter. What do you do with your clay or scoop stuff?
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Used clay, scoop, pellet, or paper kitty litter needs to go in to a land fill and/or buried. No flushing of even the clumped urine (or feces for that matter) down the toilet for certain! There is no other environmentally safe way to dispose of used litter other than buried. Food for thought: What do cats instinctively do? They bury it.
It's admirable of you to try to find an option but anything other than landfill or burying is not safe due to virus/bacteria.
I hope the friend who made a slope on the cliff buried the litter instead of simply dumping it where it remains air born and does not decompose as quickly.
But you can sterilize soil before using it. Why not sterilize it again after cats have used it?
Have you ever touched anything black on a hot sunny day? It's hot right? Just put the cat do-do in something black and let the sun bake it.
I have been dumping my used wood pellet cat litter in the yard for decades now. I can't see how it can be harmful. It's certainly no different from allowing a cat to go outside to do his or her business, nor that much different from the squirrels, bears, coyotes or wandering dogs that come around. The whole point of using pelletized wood litter is to avoid dumping it in the garbage. I don't see any reason that if I so desired, I couldn't just bury the clumpinig litter as well. This is a semi rural area, of course. I wouldn't do it if I lived an a sixth of an acre.
In my town, the "pooper scooper laws" claim that dog and cat waste is unhygienic and contaminates soil and water.
That's funny. My dad always used our dog's "manure" to fertilize our garden. Some people thought that was gross, but is cow manure any grosser? We know what went into our dog and what came out of her.
If I had a yard I would use cat waste for flower gardening and lawn maintenance. I would use biodegradable litter such as "Yesterday's News" (made from newspaper) or shredded paper.
The general rule is manure from animals that do not eat meat (Horses and Cows..) make great compost. Animals that can eat meat (Dogs, Cats, Humans..) not so much.
That's funny, Has your dad ever been wrong before?
Look at what your dog eats and then look at what a cow eats. Huge difference in what comes out. Your town is correct and as far as smell... I would rather smell cow manure any day.
Cows are vegetarian, and they have multiple stomachs. Their manure is much. much more wholesome fertilizer than dog poop.
Cows are herbivores while cats and dogs are carnivores therefore the excretions differ.
I am not so sure whether cow manure or dog manure is more wholesome, but, as far as efficient digestion goes, scientist know that what comes from a cow still has nutrients in it. Bird, like chickens etc, know this and find stuff to eat in a pile of cow dropping. In fact, research and development has found that they can dry out the cow pie, grind it into powder and add it to cow feed and the cows benefit from it, and it makes for cheaper feed.
The thing about cow manure is cows don't eat meat byproducts such as cats and dogs.
You are so right to try to find an answer to this question. Did you know that they mine for the clay just for the purpose of cat litter? That just strikes me as horrible, that we're using a natural resource for that purpose.
I have a friend who uses chicken feed instead of cat litter. She says her cats were allergic to the litter and had begun to get sick any time they scratched around to cover "stuff" up. A guy at the hardware suggested the chicken feed, and she hasn't had any problems since because the feed doesn't have a dust to it. And as a bonus, its cheaper.
I have tried using paper, and its ok, but it's hard to control the smell. Maybe baking soda would help.
Now getting rid of whatever you use for litter and the contents? Harder question. One thing I have considered doing is throwing it away in a paper bag. I mean, think about it. When we throw it away in a plastic bag, we've taken something completely biodegradable and made it almost completely un-biodegradable, since it takes about a hundred years for a plastic bag to break down.
So, my advice would be to use chicken feed (biodegradable) for the litter, and then throw it all away in a paper bag so that it can eventually break down.
Kudos to you for caring and thinking responsibly about what you and your animals consume.
I'm gonna try the chicken feed idea and will post my results:) Thx for all the great ideas
Breakthrough! Take non clay litter (you can put new litter in place while doing this and toggle them) and after it has been wet through (and solids removed), put it in the sunlight outside! Churn it if needed to expose wet litter. Let the sun bake out the litter and the smell! You can get multiple reuses this way. Gradually it breaks down into little pieces, but boy is this the way to go!
I have just come up with the idea to put my clumped liter in my back year, let rain or snow go over it and hopefully take the urion into the ground, then reuse the cat litter. Do you think this would work? I have to pay for each pound In my garbage can; most I am paying for is the cat litter.
I do the same thing take out the solids stir up the granules in the sun to dry out the pee gets around four weeks per tray
Three cats own us. Found this link while searching for environmentally sensible way to dispose of clumping clay kitty litter. We have two litter boxes that get cleaned with a sieve scooper every day and there is never any offensive smell, but that doesn't keep the litter out of the landfill. We NEVER have to replace all the litter by cleaning the boxes every day.
The best I have done so far is to empty the indoor bag into the garbage can bag and hope that when it hits the landfill, the bulldozer will rip it open so the contents can return to the earth, and not stay locked up inside two plastic bags.
So far the garbage can bag has never broken when the garbage collectors pick it up. If we didn't have kitty litter, we would only have to put our garbage out once a month. Reduce! Reuse! Recycle!... or in the words of my mom, from WW II era of austerity... wear it out, use it up, make it do, or do without!
I thought the purpose of scoopable cat litter was so that you didn't have to replace all the litter? I leave mine in for months at a time with no problem. My one cat has a very sensitive nose and lets me know when the litter box is too dirty or smelly. You can also add baking soda in between cleanings. Also, did you know that scoopable cat litter is a good way to take orders out of carpet? Just put on a good amount and let it sit for a few weeks if you can. Keep your cats away from it though! If that doesn't do the trick, try oil dry! If that doesn't work, you have a major problem!
I have a down-sloped backyard, the farthest part of which is rarely used. I am going to try an experiment. I have 8 indoor cats and a lot of outdoor furries (who go "wherever"). The amount of scoopable waste really builds up, so I have plastic store bags full of about 5-7 lbs. each time I clean the 3 large litter boxes. I am going to try the sandbag method of stacking said bags of litter waste, and begin to fill my yard in a wall that will even out a section.
After getting a good area filled, I will throw lime and soil onto it and begin in another area. Since it is clay, it should provide a decent, weed-free area where a brick terrace/patio can be laid over ground cloth. What does anyone think of this? There is no run-off or ground water issue where I will be doing this, and we have public water- the wells are 42-foot deep and far from any water seepage.
I for one think it would work. I have added loose litter (after sifting out solid waste which I burn in an outdoor wood boiler in winter only) to a low spot in my yard. The grass grows up through it and I believe it becomes incorporated in to the earth. Yours may smell though if it becomes concentrated but as the urine brakes down and dilutes I think you would be fine. Of course someone may disagree but that is the purpose of a forum. :)
Was just wondering if you tried that and how did it turn out? I thought it was a great idea!!
I too am interested in better ways to get rid of cat waste. But, is dog poop better for compost and / or direct application to veggie gardens than cat poop ?
Putting cat litter in sandbags and building a wall seems somewhat good . . . until the wall is finished, then what ? If you leave the poop in there, wouldn't it smell a lot until completely broken down ? Especially after a rain ? And even when the first / earlier poop has broken down and stopped smelling ( maybe ) you are adding new poop on a regular basis.
I agree ( partially at least ) that burying it stops the smell, but defeats building a wall if you bury it after each addition of litter.
What if a person adds, in the right proportion, Portland cement to the outgoing litter ( with poop still in because removing the poop would not really solve the issue = you would still need to deal with the feces ) and create more of a concrete brick out of the litter. That should contain the smell better, make better / longer lasting building bricks, but now you add the cost of the cement.
Since cats like doing their business on the beach in the sand, or in a child's sand box, why not use sand in the litter box ? Most soils could use the addition of sand, and no addition chemicals are in the sand. It also seems to me that the sand could be ''rinsed'' (with rain water ) to remove urine remains, feces, and smell; then baked in the sun ( ideally under a cover so it does not get rained on ) and then reused as litter, or added to compost or gardens when turning the soil.
I realize what you are saying about no runoff, but really now, there is ALWAYS runoff = there is always someone / something downstream.
Its the law of gravity.
To tom24od, I have considered burning. I heat with wood and burn many different things. Some places in the world, where resources are scarce as well as money, they burn cow pies for heat and cooking.
So, dried out feces is organic and should burn nicely while giving up free BTUs. I have not tried it before, but maybe I will begin. And if it smells, I won't smell it, just those down wind of me. :-)
Please do not bury PLASTIC BAGS. They are a petroleum product that while it rots away (in about 100 years !!), it contaminates the surrounding soil and water table. Better to build a stone wall and just dump the used litter inside the area, and cover with some dirt, layer after layer, year after year.
We have ground hogs by me and dig under our porches. I dump used cat litter in the hole then cover with dirt. They don't dig there for at least 2 years then just add more and cover.
If you have poison ivy in your yard put the used litter on it and it will die.
That is a great suggestion!
Killing poison ivy with used cat litter ? ? ? ?
I would like a botanist to confirm or deny that. And if it works, why ?
My thinking and experience is that poison ivy is not all that easy to PERMANENTLY kill. That is why there are special chemicals marketed for poison ivy that have a different chemical from general weed killers and cost more. You can 'top kill' it, but it comes back from the roots. Maybe you can smother it with enough of a pile on top, but I think the roots are just so resilient, that they find a way to reemerge.
What do you say botanists ?
I use the clumping litter and it works so well that I rarely empty the whole litter box. When I feel that it needs to be changed I empty it a little at a time, but mostly just clean out the urine and poop and add a little fresh litter. I think that it's great; saves on litter and what is put into a landfill. If you are so inclined, you might explore the "green" litter alternatives, like the shredded newspaper.
I like the clumping litter because it removes the odor immediately. When I can smell it, I know it needs to be refreshed. It is also possible to teach the cat to use the toilet. I don't have the patience for that, but there you go, if you do.
I'm so glad for your responses! Nope, Deeli, the friend just tossed!
You know, another problem (mine & hers) is that my trash can be collected (for free) only in 1 large weekly bag, & the 7-10 individual bags in in filled w/ litter is very heavy! Very bad for my back!
Thriftyboo, from what I understand it's not the litter itself that's the problem; it's the waste. Meat-eaters, such as cats & people, shouldn't recycle what they expel into any ground used to grow edibles. Isn't that the case?
Hi, Thrifty Me. I have 6 indoor cats, so potty-training's not practical here. And, like you, I'm now using scoop litter, but still have about a 5-lb (?) bag per day. I've read the pros & cons of "greener" litter, but it's more expensive & not very well praised. When I clean the entire boxes, of course, then I'm really weighted down that week in used litter!
Cats are no different than humans or any other omnivore. Waste can, over time be composted. Does anyone with land REALLY believe cats,dogs and rodents don't liberally do their business in garden beds?
Human manure can and is used for fertilizer in many countries. It was used in China, India and Taiwan, And I suspect is still used in some places
The key is human manure is composted separately from other manures and is aged. Most bury it for about a year, then add it to a hot compost pile.
That manure produces some of the largest and sweetest veggies
Humans are considered one of the nastiest, unhygienic species on the planet. If our waste can be composted, and nature composes animals in the wild, why not cat scat?
A lot of us need to get over ourselves. Most cat viruses do not cross species though mycopathogens and bacteria are not specie specific and so are a concern.
POOP is a byproduct of life. Cat poo and pee is not anymore "nasty" than any other animals'
JUST be certain the litter is biodegradable and that the manure is heated to around 165 degrees for a good while before sifting the compost and using..best to use on flower beds and around trees , but in a pinch, why not try it on cover crops that recycle?
The resistance to using pet byproducts is mostly the prejudice that the cats are nastier than cows or sheep or other animals.
Cats are predators, on your land, birds who predate as well as coyotes, raccoons, opossumso, squirrels, and other animals poop in your garden...quite a few of them will have parasites and diseases that are only specific to their species.
Bacteria are normally heat labile, however, many viruses from all species may not be.
I was going to try and stack two metal barrels so bottm one would be the furnace wood fired and the top one to hold used kitty litter I was hoping the heat would turn the waste to ashe harmless and make reusing the litter possible just adding baking soda as needed Whats others opions anyone else try this?
Just train your cat to use the toilet
I don't think you should reuse ashes, though. Ashes and cat pee may well turn into something the may harm them
Isn't chicken feed a natural resource like clay and even gold and diamonds ??? I am confused by the guest post about what the problem is with clay :-(
Oh my, Nica, that you have so much kitty litter to dispose of :-o Yes, that's a big job !!!
What I just for my "little guy", 15 lb. male 1/2 main coon, is Arm and Hammer natural corn litter. Its a bit expensive, $7.99-11.99 a bag depending on size, but what I've found is that if you clean out the littler box 1-2x a week using the paper bag method. Then add new litter on top and sprinkle a little baking powder as necessary between cleanings. A 7 lb. bad of littler will last a whole month. Plus, its ground up corn so its completely biodegradable.
It's also safe if you have other pets that tend to play... or eat -.-! the litter like rats, dogs, gerbils, ect. It's safe on their tummies unlike clay littler so you don't have to worry about vet visits, instead about what to do about their breath. lol.
I have a cat that goes outside for a few minutes and then comes back in and the neighbor's cat is an outdoor cat. I found our cat peeing on our garbage can in the garage one day and I came to the conclusion that the neighbor's cat could smell the waste in our garbage can so he marked our can to say "This town ain't big enough for the two of us!"
So when we brought our can in, our cat smelled the other cat on the can and started marking it to make his statement. Meanwhile, we have litter in the basement, waste in the can and marking wee-wee in our garage if our guy goes into the garage for any length of time. We figured this out because he never wanted to come back in the house from the garage until he seemed bored in the dark.
But one day we tried to physically remove him from the garage and he started hissing. Then we caught him doing his thing. So we thought to eliminate the problem but now we are afraid that apart from the environmentally unfriendliness of the litter, the smell will attract the neighborhood cats to our property to do their business in our vegetable garden or yard. Anyone agree?
I just installed a homemade composer for the cats and also dogs. Dug a hole about three foot, drilled a bunch of holes in a trash can with a lid, sunk it in,added river rock and rid x. 2dogs,2 cats in a small yard,I needed some relief. Seems to be working. Make sure to use biodegradable bags. They're cheap and convenient.
Well, to Mom and Fran, and all others, there is one really definitive answer. Very environmental, no worry about virus / bacteria.
Do not own a cat. Do not set out feed for a feral cat. Do nothing to attract them to your property where they might decide to do some business.
Nothing to clean up. Nothing to dispose of. No contamination / no smell.
That SHOULD be the 'no-brainer' answer from a life form that is at the top of the food chain.
I know, here comes the hate mail.
from 4 cats one dog
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