Best Wood Pellet Cat Litter: Are Wood Pellets Absorbent?

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best wood pellet cat litter

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Wood pellet cat litter is an excellent option for cat owners hoping for a more eco-friendly and less time-consuming option for their litter. However, many wonder if wood pellet litter works as well as the more popular clay-based litter.

This quick guide will cover the basics of wood pellet cat litter and answer questions like, “how does it work?” and “are wood pellets absorbent?” Read on to learn more about the best wood pellet cat litter.

The Benefits of Wood Pellet Cat Litter

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There are several benefits to switching to wood pellet cat litter, most notably the litter’s absorbency, odor control, the time spent cleaning, and the amount of product needed.


Wood pellet litter is absorbent, though the level of absorbency may depend on the brand you buy. Non-clumping wood pellets absorb urine and dissolve, leaving behind a relatively dry loose litter that you can scoop out. 


In any case, wood pellet litter is as absorbent, if not more in some cases, than traditional clay-based clumping litter. 

Odor Control

Wood pellet litter is considered one of the better options for cat owners whose primary concern is odor control. Since the wood pellet litter consists of wood materials, typically pine, a pleasant woodsy scent is present even after your cat has used the litter. 

Suppose you still notice a strong ammonia smell when using wood pellet litter. In that case, you should consult a vet, which may indicate a urinary tract infection or obstruction

Time Spent

Scooping a box of regular clay-based cat litter can be a timely ordeal, especially if you encounter the dreaded problem of the litter sticking to the bottom of the box.

Because wood pellet litter is non-clumping, there are no large chunks to clean out. A daily scoop of solid waste in the pellet litter box will take just a few seconds. 

Amount Needed

With wood pellet litter, you will find yourself buying litter far less often than with clay-based litter. Since the feces is scooped out rather than clumped and the pellets slowly dissolve with urine, wood pellet litter lasts longer in the box. 

Best Wood Pellet Cat Litter: Buyer’s Guide

Wood pellet litter is suitable for many cat owners, but if any of the below items are at the top of the list in terms of priority, then this is the perfect litter type for you.

  • Odor Control
  • Absorbency
  • Affordability
  • Environmentally Friendly
  • Quick Cleaning

When choosing wood pellet litter, there are some key things to remember. 


The primary features to remember when searching for the best wood pellet cat litter are odor control, absorbency, and materials used in manufacturing the product (i.e., recycled paper or pine). 


People commonly run into a few issues with wood pellet litter, but most are easy to fix.

Cat Won’t Use It

When switching from a standard clay litter to a wood pellet litter, you should use a mixing process to get your kitty accustomed to the new litter. Start by mixing a tiny bit of the new litter into their old litter, and then each time you clean the box, add more of the new litter and less of the old litter. 

Tracking Issues

Another issue people have with wood pellet litter is their cat’s paws coming out covered in sawdust-like material from the dissolved pellets. The solution here is to ensure you are regularly scooping and sifting out the dissolved loose litter as it is no longer useful and may get stuck on your cat’s paws. 

Types of Cat Litter

Several types of cat litter are available in stores, though they fall under the umbrellas of clay litter, silica litter, and biodegradable litter. Here is the breakdown of each kind, including their performance, general cost, and the pros and cons of each kind. 

Clay Cat Litter

Clay cat litter is the most readily-available and standard option of litter available, simply because it has been in use for a long time. These litters come in two options: clumping and non-clumping. Clumping clay litter creates large clumps when a cat uses the restroom so that you can quickly remove that waste. 

However, clumping litter requires frequent attention, and the product quickly runs out. There are potential issues with clumping and non-clumping clay litter regarding dust production. Cats have a delicate respiratory system, and there have been proven links between clay litter use and respiratory issues in cats. 

Silica Cat Litter

Silica cat litter is made from a similar material to the silica gel packets you’ll find in medicine or food containers. The litter functions similarly to clay litter, though there is a smaller chance of dust production and potential respiratory issues with silica litter. 

Silica cat litter can be pricier, but a bag of silica clay litter will last far longer than a bag of clay litter. The individual silica beads are incredibly absorbent. Feces is handled the same way as wood pellet litter, as you scoop the solid waste separately.

Biodegradable Cat Litter

Biodegradable litter includes wheat, corn, soy, paper, and pine. Litter made from wheat and corn ingredients is typically a loose litter, while materials like pine and paper usually come in pellet form. 

Biodegradable cat litter options are a more environmentally friendly option, as their materials do not contribute to excess plastic or possible dust issues in the ways silica and clay cat litters do. In addition, biodegradable cat litter will break down over time rather than remain as a product in a landfill. 

Cleaning Tips

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Cleaning your litter box is typically easier than the traditional clay types, but the process is a bit different and may take some getting used to. You scoop out the large clumps with clay-based loose litter and dispose of them.

With wood pellet litter, you scoop feces directly and then dispose of the loose litter resulting from pellets dissolving from urine.

An easy way of employing this litter-cleaning method is to use a mesh-bottomed litter box. The dissolved pellets will fall through to a bottom tray in the litter box, which can usually be pulled out and dumped directly in the trash.

Final Thoughts

Wood pellet cat litter has recently gained popularity over the traditional clumping clay-based litter. As cat owners become more knowledgeable about potential respiratory issues with clay-based litter, there has been a switch to finding alternatives in the market.

In addition, wood pellet litters are an environmentally friendly option that also comes with excellent odor control and absorbency.

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