While working on my desk, my pet cat walks up to me, and sits on my laptop. She finds the non-fuzzy hard piece of equipment, irresistible. Not that I mind though, as she keeps me company in this fast-paced city life, away from home. Keeping a cat comfortable in a small apartment is quite challenging. You need to have different types of kitty toys to keep them engaged so that they do not get bored often. In addition, since cats have a strong sense of smell, you need to keep their litter box clean and sanitized. This is all the more important in a small living space.
Cat litter boxes come in a variety of designs and sizes with various features.
Self-Cleaning Cat Litter Boxes
You must scoop the cat litter box at least once, daily. It becomes even more essential if your cat is sick or you have multiple felines to keep you company. In case you get too tired of scooping waste, you can go for self-cleaning cat litter boxes.
- They scoop themselves. Some of them come with specific programming, which can be set, to make them scoop multiple times a day. All you have to do is throw out the waste once or twice a week.
- An ideal self-cleaning cat litter box should be able to scoop frequently without backing up or spilling, and without making any noise. They must provide ample spaces inside for both senior cats and kittens.
- Self-cleaning litter boxes are expensive to buy and maintain. The replacement cost of its reusable parts is substantially high.
Litter Robot III is one such self-cleaning cat litter box that holds the litter of a single cat for about a week. It is quite spacious to look at, however, does not have much room for the cat inside. It is made of ABS plastic and good for cats who are sticklers for cleanliness. However, it can malfunction if cat litter blocks the sensor. Chances of getting clogged or jammed are too high with this self-cleaning cat litter box.
Automatic Cat Litter Boxes
Automatic Cat Litter Boxes come with self-cleaning and self-maintaining options. You must ensure that they are one and a half times longer than your cat and same as its width. However, beware of the loud noise, which might scare away your cat.
Catgenie is a set and forget self-cleaning cat litter box that resembles a toilet seat. It has more functionality than a regular commode. It uses washable and reusable granules that do not need replacing. After your cat uses Catgenie, the granules present in the basin allow the liquid cat urine to pass through into the reservoir underneath. The metal hand situated at one side of the basin, scoops out the solid waste from the granules. Water then liquidates the solid waste, which is flushed out through a sewage line. Catgenie also treats the bowl with cat-safe odor-killing sanitizing solution.
The smart cartridge at the top dispenses the correct amount of sanitizing solution. Clean water from the tank along with sanitizing solution washes the basin and granules to neutralize germs and odors. The basin rotates to facilitate the genie hand to use granules as scrubber to scoop any remaining waste. Hot air from the blower dries up the basin and the granules. The basin is left clean and shining, ready to be reused.
Catgenie comes with the loudest flushing sound, which can be a turn off for some kittens who might not like to use it again. It takes around 30 minutes to make the basin sparkling clean, which may be a little inconvenient for some owners. You can end up spending $160- $200 a year towards the cost of replacement of the cartridges and plastic litter granules.
Dog-Proof Litter Box
People who have both cats and dogs together as pets know what I am talking about. It is a constant struggle for them to keep the dog away from cat poop.
This litter box comes with a special lid on top and a big opening in the front. It is big enough for the average cat to pass through and allows some privacy. The dog, however, cannot pass through and is unable to disturb or scare away the cat.
There are a few challenges with the dog-proof litter boxes. If there is not enough room for the cat inside, it might get a feeling of being trapped, which is a big turn-off. Another disadvantage is that the odor is not treated and remains inside. You have to ensure scooping and cleaning of the box every day, otherwise, your cat, a stickler for cleanliness will never use it again.
Here are few ideas that you can use to keep both the dog and your cat safe and healthy.
- Restrict your dog’s access to the cat litter box. Set up the litter box at a height out of the reach of the dog.
- Build a baby gate few inches off the floor so that your cat gets under it, but it will not give access to the dog.
- Keep the cat litter box in a spare room or a closet and install a cat-gate on the existing gate to allow entry of the cat and restricting entry of the dog.
- Make sure cat litter box is scooped and cleaned every single day. The traditional poop boxes require cleaning every day. If it is inconvenient for you, go for an automatic self-cleaning cat litter box.
Hidden Cat Litter Box
Cat litter boxes are an eyesore, especially in a small apartment. The awful smell and the sight of the litter boxes are enough to drive away your guests. To combat the challenge, you can either indulge in buying a hidden cat litter box from the market which doesn’t looks like a litter box, or hide the existing litter box.
Good Pet Stuff Plant is one such hidden cat litter box, which looks like a clay pot. It is a cost-effective option and you can easily place it in one corner of your drawing room. Your guests will mistake it for a potted plant. The filtered vent controls the dust and odor and it comes with an easy cleaning option.
Large Cat Litter Box
If your cat is fussy and grown in size, you need to have a large cat litter box at home. It looks like a compartment with high sides so that even if the cat has a habit of flinging litter, it will not spill over. A flipping lid is attached to the front. You can remove the lid if your cat gets paranoid with a feeling of being trapped. There is enough room inside for the cat to turn around by 360 degrees. The lid acts as privacy as well as keeps the dog out.
Covered Cat Litter Boxes
Some litter boxes, be it traditional or self-cleaning ones come with a hood on top of the box. They are very uncomfortable for some cats, as the they usually prefer open spaces. These covered litter boxes provide ample privacy and are convenient to keep away the dogs. However, not all cats take a liking to it. You have to be really patient in training your cat to use a covered litter box.
Petmate Booda Cleanstep is a cost-efficient covered cat litter box that has built-in mat to reduce litter scattering. It is built of ABS plastic and has sufficient room inside.
Nature’s Miracle hooded litter box is suitable for small apartments. It has a unique triangular shape that can be placed at any one corner of the home. It comes with antimicrobial coating with a non-stick surface that prevents caking. Latching option is available to place the hood securely on top. The charcoal filter controls the odor to prevent its spread to other areas of your living rooms.
With so many options available, make an informed choice depending on the behavior, and grooming of your cat. Make sure the selected model best serves the purpose and is most convenient for your adorable furballs.