2 alternatives to plastic litter trays (thinking of health and environment)

This is a quick note about the possibility of bacteria and other pathogens being harboured in plastic litter trays. Quite a lot is spoken about bacteria being harboured in plastic feeding bowls. The recommendation for feeding bowls is to buy ceramic or metal to deal with this potential problem.

And it occurred to me, as it probably has to other people, that if we are recommending metal food bowls for cat companions why are we using plastic trays when there are alternatives?

2 alternatives to plastic litter trays
2 alternatives to plastic litter trays. Image: MikeB based on Amazon photos.
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Link to stainless steel litter tray on Amazon.com (US).

The reason is probably down to cost. Plastic trays are incredibly cheap whereas stainless steel litter trays are around $50-$60 in the US. You can buy a plastic one for almost one tenth of that price and it will last as long as a stainless steel one. I can see a barrier there because the cost-of-living crisis in the UK and the cost of looking after a domestic cat can be a little bit burdensome to some people.

They want to cut costs as best they can. But there is also the environmental issue. Plastic is almost never biodegradable. Apparently 90% of plastic manufactured on the planet is still on the planet under the ground.

On that topic, you can buy cardboard litter boxes as another alternative. These are biodegradable. You buy them in packs of six but they cost around $40 in the US.

Kitty Sift make cardboard litter boxes and they make some big claims such as they are water resistant and won’t leak, reduce bacteria and toxic ammonia, quick and convenient, keeps litter drier fresher longer and can be used as a liner.

RELATED ARTICLE: Tidy Cats Lightweight Litter: Reports It Is Dangerous.

Personally, I would favour a stainless-steel litter tray over a plastic one. At the moment my cat doesn’t need a litter tray because he goes outside. When I used one it was made of plastic. Retrospectively, I have now decided I made a bad decision. I wasn’t thinking.

A lot of people don’t consider these two issues: plastic pollution of the environment which is a massive world problem today, and the possibility of pathogens being harboured in the scratch marks and indentations of a plastic litter tray.

That’s where the potential problem is. Plastic is not hard enough to resist the digging of a domestic cat. No matter how well you clean your tray it is likely that there will be some pathogens left in it. And how many people clean the litter tray profoundly once a month?

It might be a good investment to buy a stainless steel one in terms of cat health. There’s quite a lot of idiopathic illnesses concerning cats. The illness just happens and people don’t know why. It’s these kind of hidden hazards which can sometimes be the cause.

Another set of hidden hazards are chemicals in the home used to preserve carpets, furniture and to make the interior smell nicer. They’re all beneficial to people but what about the cat companion? The same applies to the dreaded litter tray.

Below are some more articles on cat litter.

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