Trying to work out how much cat litter costs each month?
This article has you covered.
The short answer? The average cost of cat litter is between $16.50 – $24.50 per month for one cat.
Now, this depends on a variety of factors:
- The type of litter you use
- How well the litter is maintained
- Your cat’s bathroom habits
- And much more
This article will break everything down to help you work out a reasonable budget to spend on litter each month.
I’ve also included a cat litter calculator at the end. This is useful if you want to get really accurate.
Let’s dive in.
Side note: If you are looking for a low cost cat litter, Dr. Elsey’s Ultra is an great all rounder. It clumps well and will last 6-8 weeks. That works out to about $15 – $20 per month, which is a bargain.
Table of Contents
What are the Average Cat Litter Costs per Month for One Cat?
Here is a quick breakdown of the average cost of cat litter. Prices differ depending on the different types of litter and how well they’re maintained.
- Overall average: Between $16.50 and $24.50 per month for all types of litter.
- Clumping litter: $22.75 – $31.50 per month
- Non-clumping litter: $8.50 – $16.50 per month
- Natural or biodegradable litter: $18 – $25 per month
- Crystal litter: $17 – $25 per month
Please note that these are estimates calculated at the current 2023 prices. The wide ranges are to give you a guideline.
Reading this entire article will help you make cat litter costs as low as possible.
How much litter does a cat need per month?
If you want to get really accurate on cat litter costs, then you’ll need to know how much litter they’ll use.
This can differ depending on factors such as how much your cat drinks, how active they are, their size, and more.
Also, depending on the type, the average cat will use around 7 pounds (clumping) to 14 pounds (non-clumping) per week. This equates to 28 – 56 pounds per month.
However, if you maintain the litter box often, it’s possible to make litter last much longer.
How many pounds of litter per box is needed?
The recommended amount of litter to put in the litter box is around 2-3 inches.
So, depending on the size of your litter box, will depend on how much litter you’ll need to add. The bigger the box, the more you’ll need.
However, placing more litter in the box doesn’t mean your furry friend will use more. In fact, from personal experience, my cat litter lasted longer when I bought a bigger box that held more litter.
I think the reason for this is that it took longer for the rest of the litter to become contaminated.
How Much Does Cat Litter Cost Per Month?
Here’s the complete breakdown of cat litter costs for different types of cat litter.
How much is clumping cat litter?
The average price for clumping clay litter is around $0.79 per pound. Some are cheaper, some are more expensive.
For instance, a 14-pound box of Fresh Step costs around $11 – $12. But buying a bigger box can work out cheaper.
For example, Dr. Elsey’s Ultra comes in a 40 lb bag and costs around $21 – $24.
So how much does clumping cat litter cost per month?
Well, it should last for at least 4 – 6 weeks. Therefore, you can expect clumping litter to cost around $22.75 – $31.50 per month.
However, if you scoop out used litter daily and clean the box monthly, it could last a lot longer.
These estimates are for one cat using one litter box.
If you have a multi-cat household, you’ll go through more litter.
Will it cost double for two cats?
Not necessarily. That’s because the amount of litter you go through doesn’t only come down to how much your cats use it.
It also comes down to how well cleaning is maintained.
Using these figures above, you can expect to pay $273 – $378 per year for clumping cat litter.
Read Next: How to Clean a Cat Litter Box in 5 Steps
How much is non-clumping cat litter?
The average price for non-clumping clay litter is around $0.41 per pound.
For instance, this 40-pound bag of Tidy Cats Non-Clumping Litter costs around $15 – $18.
And this 35 Lb bag of Fresh Step is around the same price.
A 40-pound bag of non-clumping litter for one cat can last anywhere between 4-8 weeks.
Therefore, non-clumping litter will cost between $8.50 – $16.50 per month depending on how well it’s maintained.
Even though non-clumping vs clumping litter is a lot cheaper, you’ll need to clean and replace the litter every week to prevent smells.
This is because, after around 5 – 7 days, the urine will stop being absorbed and won’t dry out any longer.
Non-clumping litter can also get used up quite quickly if it isn’t maintained well.
The benefit is that you don’t need to scoop urine, as it just dries out and mixes with the rest.
It’s also recommended to use non-clumping cat litter for kittens as they might try to eat clumping litter, which will be harmful.
From these estimates above, non-clumping litter will cost between $102-204 per year.
How much is natural biodegradable cat litter?
The average price for natural litter is around $1.18 per pound.
Natural cat litter or biodegradable is made out of a variety of materials such as wood, walnut shells, corn, wheat, and grass.
You can buy clumping and non-clumping versions of them, depending on the type of material it’s made from.
Another good low-dust option is ökocat litter, which is made from wood and costs around $27 – $30 for a 16.6 pound bag.
The thing to note about natural cat litter is that different materials and the weight you buy will last different amounts of time.
For example, a 40-pound bag of walnut litter might not necessarily last longer than a 16.6 pound bag of ökocat wood litter.
It all depends on how well you maintain the litter, scooping habits, and full cleans being done every 3 – 4 weeks.
That being said, a 40-pound bag of walnut litter can last up to 8 – 10 weeks, and okocat wood litter possibly about the same.
Some cat owners report these litters lasting up to 3 – 4 months.
So, the average cost of biodegradable cat litter, of all the different types, is around $18 – $25 per month.
This comes to an annual cost of $216 – $300 for natural cat litter.
How much is crystal cat litter?
The average price for crystal cat litter is around $2.89 per pound.
Most bags you buy weigh around 5 – 8 pounds and should last around 4 – 6 weeks.
That means the average cost for silica crystal litter will be between $17 – $25 per month.
So, even though crystal cat litter is quite expensive for a small amount in weight, it can still work out affordable in the long run.
This low-priced, 5-pound bag of Ultra Micro Crystals costs around $13 – $15.
And PetSafe Blue Crystal Litter costs about $25 for 8.6 pounds and comes in two bags.
This equates to roughly $204 – $300 per year for crystal litter.
Things to Consider When Working Out the Cost of Cat Litter
There are a few things to consider if you want to work out how much cat litter will cost each month.
The following factors will determine whether the costs will be higher or lower.
Indoor cat vs outdoor cat
Some cat owners let their cats go outside as well as use a litter box. If you have the ability to do this, then you can cut cat litter costs down significantly.
That’s because your cat will find a place to do their business outside and won’t use their litter box as much.
How many cats and boxes you have
It goes without saying, but the more cats you have the more litter you will get through.
But, as I’ve already mentioned, having two cats doesn’t necessarily mean double the litter usage.
As long as you stay on top of scooping out clumps and cat poop daily, the fresher the litter will stay.
Also, if you do have a multi-cat household, make sure you have the right number of litter boxes per cat.
This will actually help to maintain the litter and keep it fresh for longer, before needing a full clean.
What type of litter you use
Another factor that will determine the cost of cat litter is the type of litter you use.
For example, non-clumping litter is normally the cheapest, but it doesn’t last as long as some others.
It’s a good idea to try different types to see which one works best for you and your cat.
How much litter does a cat use in a month
Some cats can develop bad habits when using their litter.
For instance, they might spend a lot of time covering up their urine. This can cause the urine to be spread around too much and contaminate the fresh litter.
Or maybe your cat drinks more water than the average cat. This could result in your cat peeing more often and using more litter.
How often you change the litter
How often you clean the litter box will have a big impact on the amount you use.
Try to develop a daily scooping habit twice per day for the best results. Then give the entire litter box a thorough clean once per month to keep everything fresh for your cat.
The size of the litter box
Some cat parents might think that the bigger the box, the more litter you’ll use.
But this isn’t always the case. That’s because a bigger box can sometimes make it easier for your cat to cover their pee and poop.
When it’s easier for your cat to do this, it can cause less contamination throughout the litter box.
How to calculate the cost of cat litter [Cat litter calculator]
Here is a cat litter cost calculator to get really precise on your cat litter costs.
Conclusion on Monthly Litter Costs
Now you know how much cat litter costs per month, I hope this article was helpful.
The best thing to do is experiment with different brands and types of litter, to see which one lasts the longest.
If you want to experiment further, there are some cat litter alternatives you can try to see if they work out cheaper.
Remember, getting the cheapest litter isn’t always the best option. Try to find a litter that balances good odor control, low dust and tracking, good clumping, and long-lasting.