Compared to dogs, cats are a much more low-maintenance pet. You don’t have to take them outdoors to do their business, and they could be perfectly happy if you left them alone for three days.The only trouble with cats is scooping the litter box.
No one likes scooping litter, but it is a necessary evil if you are a cat owner. The more often you scoop the box, the less likely you are to smell that unpleasant odor. Plus, if you keep your litter box clean and odor-free, your cat is more likely to keep using it than to seek out another option (like your favorite houseplant).
If you want to reduce odor between scooping, think about buying a cat litter designed for odor control. Keep reading to see our top picks for the best cat litter for odor control.
Our Top 10 Picks for the Best Cat Litters for Odor Control
#10 Nature’s Miracle Natural Care Litter
If you prefer to use all-natural cat litter in your litter box, Nature’s Miracle Natural Care Litter is a great product for you. This cat litter is made from gentle, natural corn fibers so it’s easy on your cat’s paws and it doesn’t contain any harsh fragrances. Plus, Nature’s Miracle Natural Care Litter is lightweight and easy to carry so you don’t have to lug heavy tubs of litter around.
Nature’s Miracle Natural Care Litter creates hard clumps for easy scooping and it is naturally dust-free, so you don’t have to worry about it irritating your cat’s eyes or lungs. This litter also offers an excellent defense against odors with the Bio-Enzymatic Odor Control System that starts counteracting odors on contact, helping to keep your home smelling fresh. Plus, it even works in automatic litter boxes.
Pros: All-natural corn fibers, clumping formula, no harsh fragrances, lightweight and easy to carry, dust-free, easy on paws, works in automatic litter boxes
Cons: Not as hard-clumping as clay litters, some cats don’t like the feel
#9 Purina Tidy Cats 24/7 Performance Clumping Litter
The Purina brand is a big name in the pet industry and their Tidy Cats line of cat litter offers many wonderful options. This Purina Tidy Cats 24/7 Performance Clumping Litter is specifically designed for odor control, offering three layers of protection against urine, feces, and ammonia. It is a hard-clumping formula perfect for multi-cat households and it features Tidy Lock protection which locks away odors on contact to keep your house smelling fresh and clean.
This Purina Tidy Cats 24/7 Performance Clumping Litter is highly affordable, costing just $20 for a 40-pound box. It is highly absorbent, forming tight clumps that are easy to scoop, and it doesn’t contain any harsh fragrances. You’ll also love that it is 99.9% dust free. Simply put, if you’re looking for a hard-clumping, odor control cat litter that won’t break the bank, this is a great option.
Pros: Triple protection against odors, hard-clumping formula, 99.9% dust-free, highly affordable, perfect for multi-cat households, Tidy Lock protection locks away odors
Cons: Somewhat heavy to carry, clay materials may stick to some litter boxes
#8 Arm & Hammer Double Duty Litter
When it comes to keeping your litter box free from odors, you need protection against both urine and feces – that is exactly what Arm & Hammer Double Duty Litter delivers. This double-duty litter eliminates odors on contact from both urine and feces to keep your house smelling fresh. It features advanced dual odor control technology and comes in a hard-clumping formula that is easy to scoop – it is also perfect for multi-cat households.
This Arm & Hammer Double Duty Litter features powerful moisture-activated baking soda crystals boosted with odor neutralizers that attack and destroy odor on contact. This formula destroys both urine and feces odors immediately, so the litter box doesn’t smell between scooping. It is a 99% dust-free formula and very low tracking, plus it comes in a range of different sizes from 14 pounds to 37 pounds, all for under $22.
Pros: Dual protection against urine and feces odors, hard-clumping formula easy to scoop, 99% dust-free, low-tracking formula, moisture-activated baking soda crystals, highly affordable
Cons: Clay materials may stick to some litter boxes, some cats are irritated by fragrances
#7 Blue Buffalo Naturally Fresh Multi-Cat Litter
If you’re looking for a natural option for cat litter, consider Blue Buffalo Naturally Fresh Multi-Cat Litter. Instead of being made from traditional clay materials, this litter is walnut-based which makes it all-natural and virtually dust-free. This clumping cat litter is also excellent for odor control which makes it a good choice for multi-cat households. It features Advanced Odor Defense which neutralizes three odor sources, keeping your house smelling fresh for days on end.
Not only is Blue Buffalo Naturally Fresh Multi-Cat Litter excellent for odor control, but it is highly absorbent. In fact, one bag of this litter is equal to three bags of the leading clay litter, so it actually saves you money to buy it! This litter is quick-clumping for easy cleanup and it won’t stick to your cat’s paws to be tracked all over the house. You’ll also love that it is environmentally-friendly.
Pros: Made from natural materials, environmentally friendly, quick-clumping formula, non-tracking, virtually dust-free, good for multi-cat households, neutralizes three odor sources
Cons: May not clump as hard as clay litters, may not be as absorbent as clay litters
#6 Purina Tidy Cats 4-in-1 Strength Litter
If you’re looking for a cat litter that neutralizes odors on contact and keeps them away for days at a time, consider this Purina Tidy Cats 4-in-1 Strength Litter. This powerful odor-busting formula neutralizes three odor sources – urine, feces, and ammonia – to keep your litter box smelling fresh between cleanings. It comes in easy-to-handle plastic jugs and it is made in a unique lightweight formula as well, making it even easier to carry.
This Purina Tidy Cats 4-in-1 Strength Litter offers 4-in-1 strength – it attacks three sources of odor and forms hard clumps that are easy to scoop. This formula is excellent for multi-cat households and it is 99.9% dust-free. If you’re tired of lugging around heavy bags of litter and dealing with unpleasant litter box odor, this may be the litter for you.
Pros: Fights three odor sources, hard-clumping for easy cleanup, lightweight formula, comes in convenient tubs, great for multi-cat households, 99.9% dust-free formula
Cons: May not be as absorbent as clay-based litters, lightweight formula may track more than other litters, some cats dislike the texture
#5 Ever Clean Extra Strength Unscented Cat Litter
If you don’t mind spending a little more for a high-quality product, Ever Clean Extra Strength Unscented Cat Litter is a great option. This litter comes in a 25-pound box and it is made with activated charcoal which eliminates odor on contact. The activated carbon is both mixed into the litter and bonded to the granules themselves, so you can rely on fast-acting odor control. The litter itself, however, is unscented, so it won’t irritate your cat’s eyes, nose, or lungs.
This Ever Clean Extra Strength Unscented Cat Litter does more than just eliminate odor – it also forms extra-strong clumps which are easy to scoop. This litter also contains an antimicrobial agent which prevents bacteria from growing in the litter box and causing odor. The only downside of this cat litter is that it forms a little more dust than some formulas, but for clumping and odor control it is hard to beat.
Pros: Fast-acting odor control, activated charcoal absorbs and neutralizes odor on contact, forms extra-hard clumps, antimicrobial agents, comes in a 25-pound box
Cons: Some cats don’t like the fragrance, may be dustier than some brands, somewhat expensive
#4 Arm & Hammer Platinum Clump and Seal Cat Litter
This Arm & Hammer Platinum Clump and Seal Cat Litter does exactly what it says – it forms hard clumps that seal away odor. This formula is made with 10% more odor eliminators than the original Clump and Seal formula to guarantee an odor-free home for 7 days. Because it works so well to seal and destroy odors, it is an excellent option for multi-cat households or simply for cat owners who want to scoop the litter box once a week instead of every day.
In addition to being an odor-destroying formula, this Arm & Hammer Platinum Clump and Seal Cat Litter is also dust-free. This cat litter features a proprietary blend of moisture-activated micro-granules as well that form a hard, tight clump. Not only does this eliminate odor, but it helps reduce litter waste as well – you can simply scoop the clumps and keep the clean litter in the box. It is also affordably priced under $20 for a 27.5-pound box.
Pros: Affordably priced, 7 days of odor control, great for multi-cat households, reduces litter waste, forms tight clumps, dust-free formula, seals and destroys odor on contact, 10% stronger than original
Cons: Fairly heavy compared to other litters, may stick to the litter box
#3 FreshStep Extreme with Febreeze
If you’re looking for a cat litter that eliminates odors and smells fresh, consider FreshStep Extreme with Febreeze. This cat litter absorbs odors while leaving behind a fresh scent that deodorizes the litter box for up to 10 days at a time. It is a great option for multi-cat households and for cat owners who hate scooping the litter box.
This FreshStep Extreme with Febreeze comes in a 20-pound, 34-pound, and 42-pound box so one will last you for a long time. In addition to being excellent at tackling tough odors, FreshStep Extreme with Febreeze forms hard clumps that are easy to scoop. This is a low-dust formula as well, so it won’t irritate your cat’s eyes or respiratory system.
Pros: Provides up to 10 days of odor control, leaves behind a fresh scent, low-dust formula, forms hard clumps for easy scooping, reduces litter waste
Cons: Fragrance may be too strong for some cats, containers can be heavy and awkward
#2 Dr. Elsey’s Ultra Premium Cat Litter
This Dr. Elsey’s Ultra Premium Cat Litter is a popular choice among cat owners for a variety of reasons, not the least of which is its superior odor control. Though it is a completely fragrance-free formula, this cat litter traps odors on contact and keeps them locked away. It is a hard-clumping formula that is easy to scoop and it is highly absorbent, so you don’t have to worry about litter sticking to the sides of your litter box – it slides right out.
In addition to being easy to scoop and great for odor control, Dr. Elsey’s Ultra Premium Cat Litter is excellent for multi-cat households. Odor control is a key component in this formula, but this litter takes it to a whole new level – it even works well in small spaces where odor control is essential. This cat litter comes in 18 and 40-pound bags and it is surprisingly affordable.
Pros: Traps and locks in odors, hard-clumping formula, excellent for multi-cat households, 99% dust-free formula, made from natural clay materials, doesn’t stick to the litter box
Cons: Large bags can be difficult to manage, may track more than other litters
#1 World’s Best Multiple Cat Clumping Cat Litter
There is a reason this cat litter is called World’s Best – because it is one of the best cat litter brands out there. World’s Best Multiple Cat Clumping Cat Litter offers outstanding odor control, making it a great choice for multi-cat households. It is a concentrated formula to ensure long-lasting performance and it forms hard clumps that are easy to scoop. Clumps won’t fall apart or sift through the scoop, plus you can flush the litter instead of gathering it up in bags!
World’s Best Multiple Cat Clumping Cat Litter is not significantly more expensive than other brands and it may actually save you money by reducing litter waste. It is 99% dust-free and septic safe, plus it comes in a lavender scented version if you like scented litter. Overall, it is an excellent choice for odor control.
Pros: Outstanding odor control, forms hard clumps for easy cleanup, 99% dust-free, septic safe and flushable, doesn’t stick to the litter box, good for multi-cat households
Cons: Large bags can be tricky to manage, some cats don’t like the fragrance version
Cats are fastidious animals. Not only do they spend hours each day cleaning themselves, but they expect their environment to remain clean as well – especially their litter box. Unfortunately, litter boxes are designed to contain waste, so it makes sense that they get a little dirty – or a lot dirty.
So, how can you keep your cat’s litter box clean and what should you look for when purchasing cat litter? Keep reading to find out.
Tips for Keeping Your Litter Box Clean
Keeping your cat’s litter box clean isn’t quite so simple as just scooping it once a week. Think of it this way – would you be happy using the bathroom if it were filthy? Your cat doesn’t like it either.
Here are some simple tips for keeping your cat’s litter box clean:
Choose the right location for your litter box – it should be out of immediate view but still easy to access at all times (if you keep it too hidden away you’ll forget to scoop it).
Keep your supplies nearby so it’s quick and easy to scoop the litter box on a daily basis.
Make it easy to dispose of used litter – you can purchase a litter disposal unit such as a Litter Genie or make your own version.
Buy a litter collection mat to keep excess litter from spreading and your cat from tracking it all over the house.
Consider buying a litter box liner or use disposable litter boxes that you can just throw away.
Get into a routine for scooping and cleaning the litter box like you would any other chore.
In addition to taking these steps to keep your cat’s litter box clean, you also need to invest in a good quality litter. If odor is your main issue, you’ll be glad to know that there are plenty of odor control cat litters out there. Keep reading to learn what to look for when shopping for cat litter.
What to Look for When Shopping for Cat Litter
When you walk down the cat aisle at the pet store, you see boxes, bags, and totes of litter stacked one on top of the other. They all look the same, don’t they? Well, there are many different types of cat litter and you should know the differences before you start shopping around.
So, what do you need to look for when shopping for cat litter? Here are some things to consider:
Dust – Different types of litter create more or less dust but you want to find one that has as little dust as possible because it can irritate your cat’s eyes, nose, and lungs.
Tracking – When you buy cat litter, you want the litter to stay where it belongs – in the box. Look for a low-tracking cat litter so you won’t find it all over the house.
Scent – While it may be tempting to buy scented cat litter, fragrances can be irritating for your cat – it’s better to get odor-absorbing litter and to scoop the box frequently.
Comfort – If your cat hates the feel of the litter under his paws, he’ll stop using the litter box so find something comfortable for your cat.
Clumping – It is largely a matter of preference and price whether you choose clumping or non-clumping litter, but clumping litter is better if you want to make cleanup easy.
The best cat litter for your cat is one that meets these requirements but also fits your budget and your own preferences. Odor is your primary concern, try one of the odor control cat litters reviewed above.
Types of Cat Litter Explained
How to Resolve Common Litter Box Problems
Cats have a natural instinct to bury their waste, so predators can’t catch their scent. Keeping your cat’s litter box clean is the best way to ensure that he keeps using it but, even if you do, some cats will develop problems with using the litter box anyway.
According to the ASPCA, at least 10% of cats develop elimination problems.
For some cats, that means they stop using the litter box altogether. For others, it might mean using the litter box for urination or defecation, not both. Some cats may also avoid one litter box in favor of another or turn a regular household object into a litter box instead.
So, how do you deal with litter box problems?
The first thing you need to do is take a closer look at what your cat is actually doing. Does he use the litter box when you first clean it but starts to avoid it after a day or two? Does he use the litter box for urine but prefers to poop on the floor? Taking a closer look at your cat’s behavior can help you get a better understanding of the underlying issue.
Here are some reasons a cat might stop using the litter box:
- The litter box isn’t being scooped or cleaned often enough
- Your cat needs more privacy (such as a litter box with a hood over it)
- There aren’t enough litter boxes in the house for the number of cats you have
- The litter box is too small for your cat to comfortably use it
- Your cat has a hard time getting into or out of the litter box
- The litter box isn’t always easy to access at times
- The level of litter in the box is too deep or too shallow
After you’ve taken a closer look at your cat’s behavior and have reviewed the list above, it may be obvious to you what the problem is. If it isn’t, or if you try to make a change and it doesn’t resolve the issue, talk to your veterinarian. Elimination problems can often be a sign of an underlying health issue, so make sure you get your cat checked out.
By now you should feel like an expert on cat litter! Not only have you learned how to shop smart when buying cat litter, but you’ve also received some helpful tips for keeping your cat’s litter box clean. So, if you’re ready to stop smelling your cat’s dirty litter box, buy some of the odor control cat litter reviewed above and start using it!