Orange cat with CatPak Attapulgite clay litter

What is Attapulgite?

There isn’t much information on attapulgite, let alone attapulgite cat litter when compared to other litter materials. It also has a strange name; some of you might think “what the heck is this?!” and decide to put it off as an option–I understand! But in this post, I will shed some light onto this unique mineral and explain why it could be a great kitty litter option for you and your furry friend(s). If you are a cat owner with a fussy one, or a new cat owner, this post might help!


The Quick Answer: 

Simply put, attapulgite is a clay that is part of the fuller’s earth family; and it has unique physical and chemical qualities. Due to its special properties, such as high liquid and oil volume absorbency, it has proven useful in many industries. These industries are not limited to but include the medicinal world and more relevantly, the cat litter industry. 


Confused Scottish fold kitten

The Slightly-More-Complicated Answer:

For a more in-depth answer; attapulgite (also known as palygorskite) is a rare clay composed mainly of magnesium aluminium silicate. It is fibrous in composition and comes as very fine flaky particles. It is typically grey-ish white in colour with a powdery texture. 


Attapulgite was first discovered in Attapulgus, Georgia (hence its name) and is still primarily produced (around 80%) in southeastern United States today. In Australia, the major production of attapulgite comes from Lake Nerramyne, which is located 400 km north of Perth, Western Australia. 


A little history lesson: The name palygorskite was first used in 1862, by Von Savchenkov in Palygorsk, Russia. It was identified again in Attapulgus by Albert de Lapparent later on, but he considered the clay to separate from the palygorskites because of their difference in mineral mixtures. It was Simonne Caillère and Stéphane Hénin (1961) who claimed that the properties of the two were not distinct enough to be distinguished. Because of this, today we see this clay fall under different names… There are other names, like pilolite and lassalite, but we won’t get into that today.


As mentioned earlier, attapulgite is part of the fuller’s earth family. To be categorised in this group, the substance must possess a special characteristic that allows it to absorb impurities and contaminants from multiple sources; fats, grease and oils. Attapulgite clay has a high surface area and porosity also means that it can absorb large amounts of water and other liquids without swelling, and it can form gels and other thixotropic fluids (gels that become fluid when disturbed). 


Attapulgite is used in various industrial and commercial applications. While it is highly functional as an industrial absorbent, it can be found in cosmetics, animal feed and many other industries. In cosmetics, attapulgite can be used as a thickening agent, stabiliser or impurity absorbents. When utilised in animal care, it is used to treat diarrhoea by binding to bacterial and toxic substances found in the stomach and digestive tract. 


When applied in the cat litter industry, its advantages come from it being an effective adsorbent of both liquid and odours, and its ability to last longer than many other litter types for the same reason. 



CatPak Attapulgite Clay Litter


Benefits of Attapulgite Cat Litter

Cats are notorious for their pickiness (rightfully so!), and the litter they use is definitely not exempt from this. If your cat is showing you signs that they dislike their litter- for example, if they pee or poop outside of the box, it might be time to try another kind. Or, maybe you’re a pet-parent of a kitten looking for the best-fitting litter options. 


High absorbency 


  • The biggest quality that sets attapulgite litter apart from others is its extreme absorbent capabilities–for both liquid and odours! They can absorb moisture quickly, preventing unwanted liquids from pooling in the litter box. Our natural cat litter naturally hides the ammonia smell without any added scents or deodorisers. 


Safe for your cat’s ingestion


  • Attapulgite clay is also used for other animals’ medicinal purposes, particularly for treating digestive issues such an upset stomach and diarrhoea. This also means that attapulgite litter will not be harmful for your cat if it is ingested. 

100% Biodegradable




  • Our attapulgite litter is 100% natural; it is mineral-rich with no added chemicals. There is no harm for your cat and can be safely returned to the environment. CatPak™ 's attapulgite litter can be disposed of safely in the garden, as long as it is scattered away from food-producing and edible plants.

Attapulgite clay is a unique substance with many benefits, the most notable one being its absorbent capabilities. While its potential uses range from industrial care to animal health, it also makes an effective cat litter. Hopefully from this post, understanding a bit more about this material might answer some questions you may have about the CatPak™ litter–as it is made of 100% pure attapulgite clay! Are you interested in giving our cat litter a try? Visit our website now!

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Cat-ch ya next time!



Energy Mining – Palygorskite | Energy & Mining. Britannica – Fuller’s earth | clay | Britannica Digital Fire – Attapulgite, Palygorskite mineral ScienceDirect – Pharmaceutical and Cosmetic Uses of Fibrous Clays - ScienceDirect J.M., Huggett. (2005). Encyclopedia of Geology. Elsevier. R.L. Gremillion. (1931). The Origin of Attapulgite in the Miocene Strata of Florida and Georgia. The Florida State University ProQuest Dissertations Publishing.

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1 comment

Attapulgite is good, Used on my cat, and its super absorbent and odour free.

Huan Xu

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