There are better options than the commercial dreck that clogs landfills.
But first of all, your cat overlords have to like it. You will know their displeasure instantly.
In years past, I collected pails of dry garden soil and dry sawdust to keep my cats happy over winter. Sawdust was added as the absorbent material, with sprinklings of garden soil as the compost accelerator. When the litter box was full, it went out on the shelterbelt trees (out of reach of my dogs).
It basically did not smell. The cats preferred it to the bought stuff.
I use stall bedding, aka stove pellets, aka compressed wood plugs. About the size of a jellybean. Doesn't smell, absorbs liquids so its easy to scoop, renewable, compostable. If you compost, the compost must rest for at least a full year before you use it. Personally I don't intend to use the litter compost, I'm just happy to know it isn't going to a landfill and will help amend the soil where it sits.
I've been looking into Korean Natural Farming systems for pig and chicken litter. You basically construct an 'hungry' patch of forest floor using indigenous micro organisms to eat up all the nitrogen before it goes smelly.
Now I'm wondering if I can adapt this concept to the liking of my personal cat overlord, Walter....
Thanks for the prompt!
I like the way you're thinking but I would not recommend using wood chips for litter. The cats are scraping their paws across it to bury their scat and I'd be concerned about them getting large splinters jammed into their paw pads or worse, tiny splinters you can't easily find. Wood chips also wouldn't be absorbent so the urine would pool at the bottom.
John F Dean wrote:The point is that I use litter that I can produce or am already producing . Because I have been running my woodchipper, wood chips came to mind.
I like that approach. How large are the chips? The stuff from a mondo commercial chipper would be way too coarse. But I had an 8HP chipper once that made very fine chips (and took forever). Mixed with a bit of sand or soil, I think my cats would have used those.