A litter box is a must-have item for any cat owner! Managing a litter box can be tricky if you have a finicky feline or multiple cats. Cats can be picky regarding where they go to the bathroom, so it’s vital to find a litter box they’ll use! Otherwise, they may pick a less than ideal spot to relieve themselves.
We’ve researched the best litter boxes for different situations and types of cat. We’ve found that accessible design and hygienic materials are important when choosing a litter box. Whether you need a litter box to control odor or need a multi-cat household solution, we’ve got you covered! Read on to see our 9 best picks, and be sure to check out our buying guide reviewed by a professional pet care provider.
Arm & Hammer
Good Pet Stuff
High-Sided Litter Box
Top Entry Cat Litter Box with Cat Litter Scoop
Ultimate Stainless Steel Cat XL Litter Box
Jumbo Hooded Cat Litter Pan
Advanced Hooded Corner Litter Box
Booda Dome Clean Step Cat Litter Box
Senior Cat Litter Box
Plant Hidden Litter Box
A Simple Pan That's Easy to Maintain and Access
A Unique Top-Entry Box for Less Mess
Unique Sifting Action Instead of Scooping
High-Walled Box with Durable Stainless Steel
A Huge Mess-Proof Box with Odor Control
A Corner Covered Box with an Easy-Access Opening
A Domed Design Prevents Litter Mess
A Low-Entry Litter Box for Cats with Accessibility Concerns
Hidden Litter Box Blends in with Decor
|Size||23.4 x 18.25 x 11 in.||20.47 x 16.14 x 14.56 in.||18.88 x 15.21 x 7.86 in.||23.5 x 15.5 x 12 in.||22.4 x 18.3 x 17 in.||26 x 23 x 11 in.||22.5 x 22.5 x 19 in.||24 x 20 x 5 in.||64 x 19 x 20 in. without plant, 42 in. tall with plant|
|Materials||Non-stick plastic||Plastic||Plastic||Stainless steel, plastic||Plastic||Non-stick plastic||Plastic||Plastic||Plastic|
|Design||High-walled pan||Covered, top entry||Shallow pan, 3 nesting layers||Pan with wall attachment||Covered box with door||Covered, corner-style||Covered, dome-style||Shallow pan||Covered|
|Benefits||Easy access, easy cleaning||Odor control, prevents litter/waste mess||Easy access, easy cleaning, sift to scoop||Easy cleaning, easy access, durable materials, prevents litter/waste mess||Odor control, litter/waste mess prevention||Odor control, litter/waste mess prevention||Odor control, litter/waste mess prevention, privacy||Easy access, easy cleaning, low entry||Odor control, mess control|
|Concerns||No odor control||More difficult for cats to enter||Litter/urine mess, no odor control||Odor control, cats may dislike metal||Cats inhaling odors, may dislike door||Odor inhalation, more difficult to scoop||Odor inhalation, may be difficult to access and clean||Litter/waste mess, no odor control||Odor inhalation, chewing on fake plant|
|Extra details||Molded handles, spout-style entrance||Scoop included, scoop hook||Antimicrobial plastic, lipped edge for easy lifting||Non-stick, removable walls, no sharp edges, can buy pan alone||Handle, carbon odor filter included||Spout-style entrance, wide entrance, vents on lid, charcoal odor filter||Grooved steps to clean paws, handle, charcoal odor filter||Lipped edge, entry 3 inches from floor||Includes fake plant, includes odor and dust filter|
Here are our 9 best picks for litter boxes. We made our choices based on the points listed in the buying guide below, as well as reviewer comments when available.
*Please note that these products were chosen after extensive research by mybest writers. The choices are not necessarily affiliated with or recommended by Sheri Rydyznski. For more on our selection process, check out our editorial policy. Prices were gathered from respective EC sites on July 11, 2022.
|Size||23.4 x 18.25 x 11 in.|
|Benefits||Easy access, easy cleaning|
|Concerns||No odor control|
|Extra details||Molded handles, spout-style entrance|
|Size||20.47 x 16.14 x 14.56 in.|
|Design||Covered, top entry|
|Benefits||Odor control, prevents litter/waste mess|
|Concerns||More difficult for cats to enter|
|Extra details||Scoop included, scoop hook|
|Size||18.88 x 15.21 x 7.86 in.|
|Design||Shallow pan, 3 nesting layers|
|Benefits||Easy access, easy cleaning, sift to scoop|
|Concerns||Litter/urine mess, no odor control|
|Extra details||Antimicrobial plastic, lipped edge for easy lifting|
|Size||23.5 x 15.5 x 12 in.|
|Materials||Stainless steel, plastic|
|Design||Pan with wall attachment|
|Benefits||Easy cleaning, easy access, durable materials, prevents litter/waste mess|
|Concerns||Odor control, cats may dislike metal|
|Extra details||Non-stick, removable walls, no sharp edges, can buy pan alone|
|Size||22.4 x 18.3 x 17 in.|
|Design||Covered box with door|
|Benefits||Odor control, litter/waste mess prevention|
|Concerns||Cats inhaling odors, may dislike door|
|Extra details||Handle, carbon odor filter included|
|Size||26 x 23 x 11 in.|
|Benefits||Odor control, litter/waste mess prevention|
|Concerns||Odor inhalation, more difficult to scoop|
|Extra details||Spout-style entrance, wide entrance, vents on lid, charcoal odor filter|
|Size||22.5 x 22.5 x 19 in.|
|Benefits||Odor control, litter/waste mess prevention, privacy|
|Concerns||Odor inhalation, may be difficult to access and clean|
|Extra details||Grooved steps to clean paws, handle, charcoal odor filter|
|Size||24 x 20 x 5 in.|
|Benefits||Easy access, easy cleaning, low entry|
|Concerns||Litter/waste mess, no odor control|
|Extra setails||Lipped edge, entry 3 inches from floor|
|Size||64 x 19 x 20 in. without plant, 42 in. tall with plant|
|Benefits||Odor control, mess control|
|Concerns||Odor inhalation, chewing on fake plant|
|Extra details||Includes fake plant, includes odor and dust filter|
The best litter boxes suit your cat's needs and your own needs. Think about what kind of box your cat is physically able to use first, then consider what additional details are most important to you. Keep these four points in mind to help you choose!
Some litter boxes still can be too small or cramped for cats to use comfortably. If they don’t feel like they can move around freely, they may avoid using the litter box. Many cats like to cover up their waste or kick litter, which requires a little extra room to paw around.
Bigger cats obviously may need a larger box, but even smaller cats won’t turn up their nose at extra space, too! Your little box should be at least as long and wide as your cat, but it’s recommended to add several inches to be safe.
However, make sure your litter box fits your ideal space. Some cat owners like to hide litter boxes out of sight in cabinets or bathrooms. If you do have one specific spot in mind, it’s a good idea to measure the space just to be safe!
Your litter box will need to be cleaned! Litter boxes are usually scooped at least once per day, but you’ll also need to deep clean your litter box regularly. Make sure the litter box is easy to both scoop and clean.
Open pan litter boxes will be easiest to scoop, while lidded boxes may require a little maneuvering. Check the design details as well. For example, grooved edges, electrical components, or sifting trays may require detailed cleaning. Simple litter boxes with gentle curves and plain design will be the easiest to deep clean.
You may also consider seeking materials that don’t absorb odors like plastic or metal. Other materials like wood may look attractive but are impractical. Any kind of soft fiber or natural material may be difficult to clean, prone to molding, or get easily scratched.
Thinking about your cat’s habits and your own priorities will help you choose an ideal litter box. Litter boxes come in a variety of designs that all offer their own functional benefits.
Litter boxes that consist of a pan only without a top or enclosure. They are the most basic and common type of box, as they suit a wide variety of cats. The open-top design helps cats to not feel boxed in, and it’s super easy to clean.
For most cats, a wall height of five to seven inches is enough. If you have a cat that sprays or kicks litter, consider higher walls or a covered box. These are also ideal for multiple cats. Your cats can easily see when the box is occupied, which helps them to feel safe and in control!
Older cats or those with mobility issues often do the best with shallow open-pan boxes. They are the easiest to get in and out of and don’t require any jumping.
However, open boxes won’t trap odors or keep curious dogs or kids at bay. Cats that spray may also end up peeing on your wall instead of the box depending on the wall height! If you need something more protected, consider a different style.
Covered boxes are also a popular style, as they help trap odor and keep litter out of sight. Some cats prefer a little privacy, too! Covered boxes may also be ideal for cats that kick litter everywhere or have issues with spraying. The enclosed top means any flying objects or liquids will stay in the box.
Some covered boxes even have doors for added mess and odor protection, but some cats dislike using a door. Cats may end up avoiding using a litter box with a door entirely, as many cats value ease of access above all else when it comes to a litter box. Thankfully, you can usually remove the door if your cat dislikes it.
However, some cats find covered boxes to be too cramped, and it’s not the ideal choice for cats with asthma. Trapped odors or fumes can be harsh for cats to inhale, especially for those with respiratory conditions.
Some boxes have electronic components that sift and collect cat waste for you. These are extremely helpful if you’re busy or if it’s physically difficult for you to scoop a litter box.
These can also be helpful if your cat is sensitive to odors. Some cats won’t use a litter box that seems unclean, so a self-cleaning model that continually keeps the box waste-free may put them at ease!
The functions vary widely depending on the model, and you may want to keep in mind that electronics are usually more difficult to clean. Some of them may kick up dust as well from the sifting motion.
Some cats may dislike the sound or motion of automatic boxes, so if you have a skittish cat you may want to reconsider a self-cleaning model. Some electronic models only work with specific types of litters as well, so keep that in mind if you have a preferred brand.
Some also recommend avoiding self-cleaning litter boxes because they can erase evidence that could indicate health issues. Keeping an eye out for any changes in your cat’s waste is a good way to monitor their health.
Some litter boxes have added details that make them more useful. Some boxes may come with a scoop included, non-slip feet, or a carrying handle.
Other boxes may have a lipped edge to help keep litter in or may disassemble for easy cleaning.Think about any unique needs you may have as well. For example, if you travel a handle may be useful!
If you have a cat with mobility issues or concerns, you’re going to want to look for a box with a low entrance. Whether it’s a pan or covered litter box, the entrance should be wide, without doors, and require minimal maneuvering to get inside. The entrance wall should be less than four inches tall.
If you want to prevent a smelly house and an unhappy kitty, there are some tips you can follow for maximum hygiene and comfort.
In addition to your litter box, you’ll also need a scoop, litter, and a litter mat. A large litter mat is recommended, as it will help keep litter from being tracked around your home! If you have multiple cats, it’s recommended to take the number of cats and add one. So if you have three cats, you should have four boxes.
Cats have different preferences, but generally don’t need their litter to be very deep. A few inches is enough! Some people like to use box liners to absorb liquids, but many cats dislike how these feel and they may slip around during use.
It’s recommended to scoop your litter box at least once per day, both for comfort and hygiene. Ammonia smells aren’t only unpleasant, they may be irritating for your kitty. Plus, cats are hesitant to use a box that already contains waste.
Scooping more than once per day may be necessary to prevent accidents. Some cats even hold in their urine to avoid using a dirty litter box, which can lead to health problems. Deep cleaning is also recommended whenever you replace the litter.
Your litter will have instructions regarding how often you should replace it! This can range from twice weekly to once a month depending on the type. Be sure to use non-toxic cleaners that are safe for pets. After cleaning, make sure the box is completely dry before adding in the new litter! Otherwise, litter will start to clump or may mold.
Consider where you will place your litter box. You’ll want to choose a location that’s quiet and out of the way so your cats can do their business in peace! Also make sure to place the litter box far away from your cat’s food and water. Just like humans wouldn’t want to eat next to a toilet, neither does your cat!
Finally, if your cat doesn’t take to their new litter box don’t worry! There are many factors in play, so try a little adjustment to see how your cat responds. You can change the location, type of litter, or even try improving the ventilation of the space to help with odor.
Need a little helping finding the best pet products for your cat? Check out these other cat products!
This expert reviewed the contents of the buying guide for accuracy and provided factual corrections when necessary. They did not participate in the product selection process, nor are they affiliated with any of our choices unless explicitly stated so.
Author: Sara Chittenden
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