You love your cats, but their litter boxes? Not so much. You might be wondering, “Is it okay to flush cat poop down the toilet?” After all, then you won’t have to deal with the odor of cat poop, and you’ll get it out of your house quickly.
Read on to find out more about disposing of your cat’s waste.
Can you flush cat poop down the toilet?
No, you cannot. It might seem like a fine idea, but the reality is that flushing cat poop or cat litter down the toilet can have serious consequences. This can cause issues with the plumbing, clog pipes and damage septic systems. A septic system uses a specific balance of microbes and is made only to process human waste and biodegradable tissues. Flushing cat waste means there’s more solid waste entering the septic tank that it may not be able to break down.
Cat waste contains a parasite referred to as toxoplasma that can harm humans. Wastewater systems are designed only to handle human waste—not toxoplasma or other harmful bacteria. That means that if you flush cat poop, toxoplasma could be discharged back into the environment and waterways, introducing new parasites that could harm wildlife.
Can you flush cat litter down the toilet?
If the problem is linked to the cat’s poop, then what if you separate the poop from the litter and then flush the litter down the toilet. Will that work?
The answer is still no. Flushing litter down the toilet is a recipe to overburden a septic system. Even organic or all-natural cat litter isn’t good to flush down the toilet.
Consider this: Cat litter is made out of bentonite clay, a material that hardens when wet and takes on a cement-like consistency. Imagine if this material got into your pipes. It’s easy to see how this will clog things up and make the pipes unusable. Flushing kitty litter down the toilet is a recipe for expensive plumbing repairs down the line.
How to dispose of cat litter
Put the used litter in a plastic bag; tie it up; and put it in your regular garbage. If you use a biodegradable bag, this will give it more of an opportunity to break down once it’s at the dump.
Cat litter also contains sodium bentonite, which has to be mined. Consider switching to an organic, biodegradable cat litter that’s made from wood shavings, paper, grain or another renewable resource. This will reduce the impact of the roughly 4 million tons of material added to landfills every year due to litter disposal.
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