Synthetically produced from sodium silicate, Silica Gel cat litter is a porous, granular and vitreous form of silicon dioxide.
This type of cat litter resembles small, irregularly shaped pieces of glass and exhibits properties dissimilar from traditional clay cat litter, such as its hardness and powerful drying ability.
Silica gel is that material used in small packets that are placed in various perishable and non-perishable goods to control humidity and prevent spoilage.
Before it was developed as a cat litter, silica gel was used during World War II as a way to keep penicillin and military equipment as dry as possible, especially when these items were exposed to the hot, humid environments of southern Japan.
Larger silica gel packets are also kept in libraries and museums housing valuable paper artifacts to regulate humidity levels and inhibit damage to these documents caused by condensation and moisture in the air.
A French import created by a veterinarian, this unique cat litter can detect certain health problems common to cats when the cat urinates on the crystals.
If the litter changes color, this indicates the possibility that a bladder infection or kidney/liver disease may exist and should be checked out by a professional.
Color-coded crystals contain chemicals that react to urine that has extreme pH levels.
For example, if a cat has a kidney infection, the crystals will turn green. Cats that have kidney stones and urinate on Early Detection silica gel cat litter will cause the litter to turn red.
Owners should be aware that the color change needs to be a dramatic one rather than a slight one to warrant taking a cat to the vet for a check-up.
Some owners prefer using a combination clay/silica gel simply because their cat prefers it over all silica gel litter. Cats that have always used clay litter may refuse to even enter a litter box full of all-silica gel litter.
Introducing a cat to silica gel by using a mixture of the two materials may be one way of acclimating a cat to something totally different from what he has become accustomed.
Types of clay/silica gel combo-litters are:
Cat owners can purchase silica gel cat litter online from Pet Food Direct or Petco. This Cat Litter comes in 10, 14 and 20 pound bags or jugs.
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