|Purred: Fri Jun 14, '13 6:15am PST |
|As to the first question--I'm not a fan of "self-cleaning" litter boxes. For one thing, they seldom do as good a job as you will cleaning the litter box. Second, you can learn a lot about the health of your cat from cleaning the litter box. A VERY strong urine odor can mean a urinary tract infection. If your cat is having loose stools, you'll also be able to tell that. If you aren't the one cleaning the box, these observations can't be made. I definitely understand wanting to control odor. I have 4 cats and it can be a challenge. I have found that a half and half mixture of World's Best Cat Litter and Blue Buffalo litter works great at corralling the smell. It clumps well, doesn't create much dust, and doesn't track as badly as some litters. Even though you just have the one cat, I'd go ahead and get multiple cat litter. It does a better job of clumping and will last longer with one cat than regular litter will. I would also invest in a Litter Genie. The concept is the same as a Diaper Genie (and they're made by the same company). It prevents the whole "look for a plastic grocery sack with no holes in the bottom" search that happens every time the box needs cleaning. With only one cat, you should only have to change the bag every couple of weeks or so. Clean the box once a day and it will take you a minute, tops.
As for dander and hair, the best practice is to be proactive. Brush your cat regularly. I have one who LOVES to be brushed. Just goes crazy for it. By brushing your cat out every day or every other day (probably more in the summer), you'll see a dramatic difference in the amount of stray cat hair roaming your floors. That being said...with a cat, you'll never be completely hair free. Wood floors are definitely a good thing, but there will be hair on your furniture, on your clothes, on the bed. However, you can minimize the effect with regular brushing.
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