Help using Crystal Litter - Cat Forum : Cat Discussion Forums
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post #1 of 6 (permalink) Old 02-07-2015, 11:52 AM Thread Starter
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Anjalena's Avatar
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Location: Orono, Maine, USA
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Help using Crystal Litter

Hey guys. I've used crystal litter in conjunction with scoopable before, just in bits here and there but never completely by itself. So I'm hoping for some advice.

My son has moved out/left the nest (FINALLY!!! Holy crap! the boy was 25 yrs old. been trying to get him out there to start his life FOREVER!) but I'm still adjusting to life at home by myself. I'm disabled and I don't have the strength to do a lot of things by myself so I'm having to find work-arounds.

Here's where the crystal litter comes in. It's a LOT lighter. My cat, Kira, like 18 lbs. He's a big boy. So when he pees, you have a small watermelon in the box. *laugh* And what's not so funny is when it sticks to the bottom/sides and I have to try to dig it off the bottom/sides. It's very very hard for me. And then trying to heft all that weight, I just can't do it.

The OTHER reason I decided to switch to crystal litter (besides the obvious reasons of it controlling the odor much better, drawing up the liquid, being larger pieces so usually doesn't track as much, lasts longer, etc etc) is that in exactly four days (Feb 11, 2015), I'm going in for a hysterectomy. I mean it's going to be the robotic laparoscopic hysterectomy so hopefully my recovery time and pain will be a LOT less (though I have fibromyalgia so i do expect a little extra than the norm), but still, it's major surgery on the abdominal wall and trying to clean a litter box with HEAVY litter like scoopable ... I don't think I could do it. So I thought crystal might be the perfect answer. So I went and bought some, cleaned out his old box, put in his new litter last night and we're golden! He's even pee'd in it already I can tell.

BUT, I was hoping for some tips, advice, and suggestions from you guys on using crystal litter. Anything and everything! I have a couple of questions but please throw in anything and everything, not just what I ask about, okay? =)

1. Do I need to stir the crystals around every day, or several times a day? How often exactly should I "stir" the crystals? And what purpose does this serve?

2. How often do I go in and clean the waste (just turds, I imagine) out?

3. And how often should I completely replace the crystals? I know the bag says 1 month for 1 cat but me being as poor as I am, are they pushing that in order to get you to buy their product a little more often than necessary? Can you stretch that a bit?

Anyway, those are all the questions I have for now. As I said, any and all tips and suggestions and help is welcome! Kira and I thank you muchly. And he is being a big butt-snuggler right now cuz it's time for him to eat so I better go feed the monster. *giggle*

Thanks guys,

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post #2 of 6 (permalink) Old 02-08-2015, 04:38 PM
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I used a crystal litter when I first adopted my cat and I didn't like it much, but I wanted to keep her on her old stuff until she got used to the new home.

I stirred it probably twice a day, the reason being that most cats tend to pee in the same corner, and once a crystal has absorbed to the max it won't absorb any more liquid, so if you stir it around all pieces in absorb pee equally, in theory anyways.

I had to completely change it about every 3 weeks or pee would pool at the bottom. The crystals were supposed to change color when they can't absorb any more, but to be honest it started to smell before that ever happened.

You only need to scoop the solid waste, so if you stir it twice a day, you'll see the poop and can scoop it right away. It'll look like fossilized poop because the moisture will have been absorbed.

My biggest issue with it was that chemical dust when you first open it. It says to keep it away from food or something like that and I just didn't like that my cat would lick her paws after stepping in it and yet I have to keep my food away. I understand the situation you're in, I hope it works at least as a temporary solution and good luck with your surgery

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post #3 of 6 (permalink) Old 02-10-2015, 01:54 AM
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I don't know to be honest. I don't think crystal litters are very popular, might just be that people don't use it.
But I'm glad I could help!

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post #4 of 6 (permalink) Old 02-10-2015, 02:09 AM
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I don't use crystals....I would suspect that you would be able to smell or see when they are ready to be dumped out.

With 4 kittens, we scoop their 5 boxes several times a day. We find using those little doggie waste bags useful for this....keeps the boxes clean, kitties happy, smell down, and the bags are small, lightweight.

...Always in my heart... Mocha....Nov. 13, 2002 - Dec. 6, 2013
.... Slave to Bengal Cats....Luna, Mystik, Simba, Komet, Meli,
, and Star
.....and a collection of kittens at various times.
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post #5 of 6 (permalink) Old 03-02-2015, 07:05 AM
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Location: Massachusetts
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I use Fresh Step crystals. It's a love-hate relationship! They do get all over the place. The reduction in odor is great, but I still use Arm & Hammer deodorizer on occasion. I stir it daily with one cat. I change it completely every 2 weeks. But I use the Fresh Step brand because it has almost no dust!

I wish you a speedy recovery from your surgery. I had that surgery when I was about 27 (many moons ago!)

And I know the feeling of having the last child move out! Mine was about 35! LOL!
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post #6 of 6 (permalink) Old 03-02-2015, 08:23 PM
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I love crystal. Currently using Scoop Free Auto Box with crystal litter in conjunction with wood pellet, so, I have 2 litter box for 1 cat. My cat uses the wood pellet for poo and crystal for pee, not exactly what I wanted, I'd wanted him to do it the other way round, but oh well...this is how he wanted, tell me how to do get him to do it the other way, sigh, never mind then.

My 4lb bag lasted me only approx 30 counts, so if he pees 3X daily, it lasts me 10days, not 30, but he uses the crystal 1-2X daily for pee, he still does it on the wood pellet, so I don't change out in 10days, I base on the number of counts on the counter, about 30 counts, then I started sniffing around, if it smells, I change out, sometimes I can go upto 35 counts at most.

When I'm on holiday, I use different crystal brand, 2 bags of 5lb bag in a deep litterbox. Works great, I like it so much. The poo gets dehydrated, no smell, my boy love it too, he was using the deep litterbox exclusively for poo and pee. My neighbour who helped out, was amazed, it didn't smell and wasn't gross, cos the poo was all dried up.

Ummm...hope that helps. I love crystal litter, especially since I have switched to the round crystal, it doesn't turn to dust, no at all dusty and stray crystals doesn't hurt the feet when you step on it.

Hope everything is well for you. It will be difficult to bend forward or even lift things. Take care! you might even wanna consider asking your son to come back during that recovery period, just a suggestion.

Last edited by snowy; 03-02-2015 at 08:27 PM.
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