thank you so much for replying!
i wonder if there are really so few people who use wood/pine litter? i guess maybe so. personally, i tried feline pine years ago but it seemed more expensive at the time. i guess it was, i was just using plain tidy cat clay which comes out to about .26 a lb. i switched to clumping a few years ago which is about twice as expensive but more convenient. i didn't factor in the cost of zeolite crystals i was using with the non-clumping litter, either.
the way they market feline pine, it costs about .65 a lb in the grocery store but wood stove pellets (they are exactly the same product. exactly. little pellets made from scrap pine--no additives. fp costs more because of advertising
) are a whopping .12-.13 a lb. i haven't used it long enough to say for certain that you need less, but i've heard you do. so at 4.97 for a 40# bag, i think it's hard to go wrong. plus if you meet a nice store owner who will hook you up with a bag to try, you're not losing anything.
the way you are using it is about exactly the way i am right now. even with the large booda domes, someone (i suspect one of the males--i can't be sure because i don't watch them go) is managing to dribble between the cover and liner. it pools a little on the outside of the liner but doesn't go all the way to the floor.
i don't think people believe there is no odor. of course if you just left it there certainly would be, but completely changing it once a week or however often we do eliminates the sawdust. i've heard
that if you have a sifting box, you don't need to change the pellets because once they're urinated on, they just disintegrate back into sawdust. if that falls through to the bottom, the other pellets would be fine. i don't think i'd never change them though, even if you scoop the poop daily (or twice daily) you'd still get little fragments of it left behind. plus, cat urine in strong enough that i think old pellets would probably start to smell after awhile. pine is a good deodorizer, but not THAT good lol.
plus for people who have yards, the sawdust (minus poo) is compostable/mulch. because of the cat urine, i'm not sure i would put it on a garden where fruit or vegetables grow, but for just trees and shrubs, i think it would work well.
people are probably also suspicious because of the low cost, but this is one of those things that really isn't too good to be true. of course it does
require extra effort in the beginning unless you have small kittens. you can't just throw the litter in a pan and expect them to use it. you have to start out mixing some with their old litter and phase out the old stuff in a week to two weeks, depending on how fast the cats adjust. i know some people who are really unhappy with it because they didn't give their cats a choice and they went outside the box, and once they do that, you know the drill. so if someone wants to change, you have to keep a back-up box with the old litter so the cat(s) won't be cornered.
i noticed you live in toronto. i love it there. i went to caribana in 2010, and i was going to come back this year but i'm going to vegas for my birthday instead
it's a beautiful city and i haven't been there to just sightsee for a long time, so that's what i'll do next time. caribana is fun, but if you don't do masquerade, there's not a lot of point in going again.