In the article on the best standard litter boxes for cats, we looked at some of the best standard covered and uncovered litter boxes available in the market. One of the major challenges with standard litter boxes is that you need to scoop and sift the litter periodically to ensure that there is no feces and odor build-up. This becomes especially difficult if you are allergic to the litter dust, have multiple cats or have a very busy lifestyle. Enter self-cleaning litter boxes at the scene!
But which are the best self-cleaning or automatic litter boxes in the market? Do they really work and how can one ensure “litterbox nirvana” with these litter boxes?
In this article, we look at some of the best self-cleaning cat litter boxes available in the market. We will look at both manual or semi-automatic cat litter boxes and the more popular and convenient automatic cat litter boxes. Considering that these litter boxes are still emerging in design, we will also cover some of the factors to consider while picking up the best self-cleaning litter box for your cats and share our top picks. Finally, we will share some of the things to keep in mind while using such litter boxes.
Read On to find out which are the best self-cleaning cat litter boxes in the market.
Best manual self-cleaning cat litter box listSome of the best self-cleaning litter boxes (manual/semi-automatic) available on the market are listed below:
(L x W x H)
|Omega Paw Self-Cleaning Litter Box||M: 20" x 17" x 16"|
L: 23" x 20" x 19"
|- Best-selling Roll ‘n clean self-cleaning litter box that self-cleans with a simple roll-and-up. High-quality plastic construction with an enclosed hood design. |
- Relies on a unique patented grill/sieve to separate clumped waste. Easy removal through the tray. No need to sift through the litter or handle it.
- Smartly designed with an elevated (10") entry gate to minimize odors and litter tracking.
- Does not need electricity or filters. Works best with clumping/scoopable litter.
- Available in two sizes - medium for small and medium cats and large for large-cat or multi-cat homes.
- Backed by 30-day guarantee and a one-year manufacturer warranty.
|Hagen CatIt SmartSift Litter Box||26” x 25” x 19”||- Smart, manual self-cleaning covered litter box with an easy-to-use cleaning mechanism through a lever system. High-quality plastic construction.|
- To clean, simply pull the lever to activate a pull-and-refresh process. Waste is collected in the lined collection tray at the bottom.
- The cat pan also includes a carbon filter pad to control odors. Also, has a storage space for additional tray liners.
- Roomy, large litter pan, suitable for cats of all sizes. Has a removable, swinging door to minimize tracking and ensure privacy.
- Backed by a two-year manufacturer warranty.
|Le you pet quick cleaning cat litter box||19.7" x 19.7" x 18.1"||- Uncovered, self-cleaning litter box with an active cat litter separation grid, drawer-style cleaning box. Made with environmental-friendly PP plastic material.|
- Simple self-cleaning mechanism without having to sift through the litter. The litter flows through the separation grid and the clumped waste is collected in the drawer tray for removal.
- Elevated entrance, with a roomy design suitable for medium to large cat breeds and multi-cat homes.
- Uncovered design makes it suitable for cats that do not prefer enclosed spaces.
|Litter Spinner Quick Clean Cat Litter Box||20” x 18” x 14.5”||- A covered self-cleaning litter box with a recycled PP plastic body. Made in the US.|
- A small 7.5-inch entrance and 14-inch depth makes it most suitable for small cat breeds and kittens only.
- Spinning litter pan, which sifts the litter through a sifter and moves the clumped litter into the litter tray for removal. No scooping required. Works best with light clumping litter.
- Available in five vibrant colors.
Best automatic self-cleaning cat litter box listSome of the best automatic self-cleaning cat litter boxes available in the market are listed below:
(L x W x H)
|PetSafe ScoopFree Self Cleaning Litter Box||27.5" x 19" x 7"||- Most popular automatic self-cleaning litter box that relies on a raking cleaning mechanism. Works best with supported crystal type of litter ( supports pre-filled disposable litter trays)|
- Designed to work best with up to 2 cats per litter box. Each disposable litter tray can last up to 20 days, while the waste tray requires cleanup once 4-5 days.
- The automatic cleanup mechanism is triggered every 5, 10 or 20 minutes. Crystal litter absorbs the liquid waste and locks away solid waste. Raking removes the waste, which is collected in the disposable leak-proof waste trap.
- Powered by a standard power outlet. Equipped with cat motion sensor, which resets the cleanup timer when activated.
- A covered PetSafe ScoopFree Ultra Self-Cleaning Litter Box model with a privacy hood is also available.
- Backed by 90-day money back guarantee and a one-year manufacturer warranty.
|Litter-Robot III Open-Air Self-Cleaning Litter Box||29.2" x 24.1" x 26.7"||- Top of the line, fully automatic litter box that is designed to support up to 3-4 cats. High-quality durable construction with a carbon-filter drawer. Uses rotating cleaning mechanism.|
- The latest model from Litter Robot range with support for Wi-Fi Smart App synchronization.
- Features an adjustable timer for initiating the cleaning cycle, a waste drawer full indicator and an automatic night light. Motion sensor resets the cleanup time automatically if the cat re-enters.
- The patented sifting mechanism is designed to provide reliable cleaning and excellent odor control. Designed to hold litter between 5-10 days.
- Powered by 120V electricity, though backup battery option is also available.
- Backed by a 90-day money back guarantee and 18-month manufacturer warranty.
|CatGenie A.I. Self-Washing Cat Box||17.5" x 24.5" x 21"||- An innovative, self-cleaning cat litter pan that is designed to automatically wash-and-flush the waste using raking mechanism. Electricity powered and needs a connection to the water supply for draining the waste. Works best with up to 3 cats.|
- Uses litter-like washable granules which can last 2-5 months. Solid waste is liquefied and flushed along with the liquid waste. SaniSolution purifies the granules and the dryer heats and dries the granules.
- Cleaning can be done automatically, up to 4 times a day, on demand or based on cat activation.
- Water Hose may need cleanup once a month to ensure proper disposal.
- Backed by a 90-day money back guarantee and two-year manufacturer warranty.
- A dome is also available to convert to a covered litter box.
|Nature's Miracle Multi-Cat Self-Cleaning Litter Box||18" x 27" x 10"||- Intelligent self-cleaning litter box designed to automatically scoop waste after every use. Works with any standard clumping clay litter|
- Features an extra-large box that holds more litter with odor control receptacles and carbon filters to further contain the smell.
- Equipped with 3 operating modes and a smart pet-detection sensor to sift the waste only when the litter box is unoccupied.
- Also includes a night light setting for easy usage in dark. High side-walls and a paw cleaning ramp limit tracking around the box.
- Backed by a one-year manufacturer warranty.
|PetSafe Simply Clean Self-Cleaning Cat Litter Box||19" x 26" x 10"||- An automatic litter box that is designed to continuously clean the litter throughout the day. Features a slow-moving litter bowl that rotates constantly and quietly. Suitable for single-cat homes with small cats weighing under 15 lbs.|
- Powered by a standard power outlet. The rotation sifts the waste, which is carried up the conveyor into a covered waste bin.
- Low maintenance. Works with any standard clumping clay litter. Simple grocery bags can be used as waste liners.
- Backed by a 30-day replacement warranty and a one-year manufacturer warranty.
|Littermaid LM980 Mega Self-Cleaning Litter Box||25" x 17.7" x 9.8"||- Large-sized, automatic self-cleaning litter box designed specifically for multi-cat homes. Competitively priced. Suitable for up to 2-3 cats weighing 20 lbs. or less.|
- Designed to follow raking cleaning mechanism. Works with standard clumping litter. Has an automatic rake which pushes and lifts the waste and drops it in the waste compartment. Higher side walls prevent accidental spilling of urine. Built-in entry ramp minimizes tracking.
- Has a 10-minute delay between cycles. Also, equipped with cat motion sensors which reset the delay. Good for self-cleaning for up to 4-7 days.
- Can be powered by AC adapter or 8 batteries (included).
- Comes with battery backup, 4 carbon filters, 4 waste receptacles and a safety bar.
- Backed by a 30-day money-back guarantee and one-year manufacturer warranty.
- A smaller version - LitterMaid LM680C Automatic is also available for single cat/smaller cats.
|Pet Zone Smart Scoop Automatic Litter Box||18.5" x 26" x 7.6"||- A standard, electricity-powered, automatic self-cleaning litter box that relies on the raking mechanism to auto-clean the litter pan periodically. Sturdy construction with high side-walls. Equipped with a carbon filter in the pan to minimize odor.|
- Works best with a single large cat or 2 small to medium sized cats.
- Uses standard clumping litter. The raking mechanism is automatically triggered every 15 min to collect the waste. The scooping rake automatically dumps the collected waste in the waste bag.
- Comes with 4 universal waste bags, a carbon filter and a rake cleaning tool.
- Backed by a 30-day return guarantee and one-year manufacturer warranty.
What are self-cleaning cat litter boxes and why do I need one?
Self-cleaning litter boxes, as the name suggested, refer to cat litter boxes which do not require sifting and scooping to remove the cat feces and urine clumps from the litter box. They accomplish it by using manual levers, manual roll-ins or electric power.
Scoop-free, self-cleaning litter boxes were first introduced in the mid-1990s, but they became really popular with the introduction of automatic litter boxes in the mid-2000s. Since then, the technology around self-cleaning litter box has evolved considerably and you have more reliable options available in the market.
There are primarily two types of self-cleaning litter boxes:
- Manual or Semi-Automatic Cat Litter boxes: These cheaper self-cleaning litter boxes require some manual intervention for separating clumped litter from the litter box. They do not need any electric power or water supply. In simple terms, a manual self-cleaning litter box has a litter pan, a smartly designed separator sieve or grill, a tray to collect the clumped litter and a mechanism to run the litter in the pan through the grid. They are not as convenient as the automatic litter boxes but are considerably cheaper. And since they do not require a power outlet or water supply, they can be placed anywhere in the house.
- Automatic Cat Litter Boxes: Automatic cat litter boxes use electric power to operate and hence need a connection to the outlet or backup batteries. The self-washing cat litter boxes even need a connection to the water supply. They rely either on the rotating cleaning mechanism or the raking cleaning mechanism. Automatic cat litter boxes are also capable of detecting the presence of cat through infrared sensors or pressure pads and are almost totally self-reliant. Some high-end models such as the Litter-Robot III Open-Air Self-Cleaning Litter Box even support integration with smartphones. These automatic cat litter boxes offer maximum convenience to the owners as they need attention only one or twice per week. Because of this, automatic cat litter boxes are especially beneficial for multiple cats or large cat homes.
Pros and Cons of Self-Cleaning Litter boxes
From the above discussion, it is clear that self-cleaning litter boxes offer a distinct advantage over standard litter boxes. They provide comfort and odor-free and hygienic environment to the cat and owners and are suitable for people who have multiple cats or have challenges scooping and sifting the litter frequently.
In the next sections, we will look at some of the major factors to consider before picking the best self-cleaning cat litter box for your household and share our top picks. We will also list some things to keep in mind while using these semi-automatic and automatic cat litter boxes.
Which are the best self-cleaning cat litter boxes and what our picks are?
Omega Paw Self-Cleaning Litter Box review – Editor’s pick for the best manual/semi-automatic self-cleaning cat litter box
If you want the convenience of a self-cleaning litter box, but are on a budget and do not mind some manual effort, then the best-selling Omega Paws Self- Cleaning Litter Box is the best self-cleaning cat litter box option to look for.
The Omega Paws Self-Cleaning Litter Box features a smartly-designed, covered litter box featuring a sturdy and durable plastic body. The only problem can be the grate that can break at the bend, so you might want to reinforce it with some duct tape beforehand. It is available in two sizes – Medium or Regular, which is 20-inches long, 17-inches wide and 16-inches high, and Large which has dimensions of 23-inches by 20-inches by 19-inches. The Regular model is suitable for small to medium cat breeds, while the large litter box is most suitable for large cats or multi-cat homes.
Upon first looks, the Omega Paws litter box may not look much different from a standard covered litter pan. But it is! With a little effort, you can easily clean the litter pan without scooping and sifting. To do so, simply roll the litter box until the top touches the floor and then roll it back to the upright position. A unique patented screen separates the clumped waste from the clean litter. The clumped waste is collected in the removable waste collection tray and can be disposed-off periodically. You may need to repeat the process a couple of times and that’s it! This unique self-cleaning ability ensures that you need less litter than the traditional litter boxes and all that without any electric connection or filters.
The covered design of the litter box ensures that the box provides full privacy to your cat and minimizes odors and dust around the house. And the elevated entry gate, with a clearance of around 10-inches, ensures that there is minimal tracking of litter around the house. It uses any standard clumping or silica litter and is backed by a 30-day money-back guarantee and a one-year of manufacturer warranty.
PetSafe ScoopFree Self Cleaning Litter Box review – Value pick for the best automatic cat litter box
If you are looking for an automatic self-cleaning litter box but do not want to spend as much money as the Litter Robot, then the PetSafe ScoopFree Self Cleaning Litter Box is the option to consider. This self-cleaning litter box is not as rich in features as the Litter Robot, but still does the job pretty well.
This best-selling automatic litter box boasts of a durable plastic construction. The litter pan has overall dimensions of 27.5-inch by 19-inch by 7-inch (pan is about 14-inches by 14 inches). The high-elevated sides prevent spilling or urine and defecation accidents. The standard litter box is uncovered, though a covered version is also available. Moreover, if you desire, you can get the hood separately at a later stage as an accessory, if your feline prefers full privacy. It is designed to support up to 3 cats, though 2 cats per litter box are ideal.
It uses standard electric supply and relies on a raking cleaning mechanism and works with its brand-specific crystal type of litter. These crystals are contained in leak-proof and disposable litter trays for easy cleanup. The crystal litter does an excellent job of managing liquid as well as solid waste and has a superior odor control when compared to standard clumping litter. The only requirement is to keep the crystals away from humidity. Each tray can last from 10-20 days. And if you want to improvise and save some money, you can buy a properly sized plastic tray and just buy the crystals separately.
The rake is supported by an adjustable timer which can be set to three different settings – 5, 10 and 20 minutes. The raking process separates the waste from clean litter and collects the waste in the waste trap. Like other automatic litter boxes, it is equipped with a cat motion sensor and resets the cleanup timer if the cat re-enters the litter pan. The waste tray can hold waste for up to 3-5 days. It also has a built-in health counter to keep a record of how many times the box has been used. This is especially useful to track the health of your feline if you have only one.
The PetSafe ScoopFree Litter Box is backed by a 90-day money back guarantee and a one-year manufacturer warranty. And considering, PetSafe is an established brand for pet items, you can expect an efficient and friendly customer support service.
UPDATE: The PetSafe ScoopFree is now also available in a 2nd generation design with a sleeker look, additional button to trigger manual raking and an additional button to reset the usage counter to helps you in programming the cleaning schedule accordingly. Similarly, among covered PetSafe ScoopFree Ultra Automatic Cat Litter boxes, you also have the option to pick a top-entry, hooded cat litter box. Moreover, you can also get an automated waste bagging system for your Scoopfree – the Litter-Bagger for Scoopfree Litter Boxes.
Litter-Robot Open-Air Self-Cleaning Litter Box review – Editor’s pick for the best automatic self-cleaning litter box for multiple cats
Litter Robot is an established name in the field of automatic litter boxes for about 15 years and their earlier models Litter Robot I and Litter Robot II have been quite popular. But they have really perfected the self-cleaning capabilities with their third generation automatic litter box – the Litter Robot Open Air Litter Box. It is easily the most advanced and reliable self-cleaning litter box out there.
The Litter Robot has a futuristic, beautiful globe design which is as sturdy and durable as its elegant looks. With an approximate dimension of 29.2-inches by 24.1-inches by 26.7-inches, this litter pan is big enough to handle all cat breeds. It is designed to support three cats, though most multi-cat owners have used it for four cats as well.
There are a lot of excellent design features available with this litter box that make it almost 100% reliable. It relies on standard electric power, though a battery backup option is also available separately from the manufacturer. It has an automatic night light which is activated by a smart motion sensor.
It works with any premium clumping litter and follows a rotating sifting mechanism for self-cleaning. The waste is smartly collected in a large waste drawer every 3, 7 or 15 minutes. A cat motion sensor resets the self-cleaning mechanism in case the cat re-enters the litter box. Since it has a spherical design and uses a rotating cleaning mechanism, you do not need to scrape the bottom of the litter pan or clean stuck feces from the box sides or edges.
The carbon-filter drawer virtually eliminates the odors and needs cleanup only every 5-10 days. It even has a full-waste drawer indicator to indicate when the waste drawer needs cleanup. To simplify cleanup, you can also choose to use a grocery bag as a waste liner.
The Litter Robot is designed to reduce the litter consumption by up to 50%. It has a litter level indicator and a smart entrance with a litter tracking preventing ramp/step. You just have to ensure that the litter level is close to the desired level.
One of the best features of Litter Robot is that it is Wi-Fi enabled and can be managed through the Litter Robot Connect Smart Application. This means you can even manage the litter box remotely. This is a big benefit if your cat is home alone for more than a couple of days.
Another excellent thing about the Litter Robot is its reliable and friendly customer service. And like earlier Litter Robot products, the Litter Robot is backed by a 90-day money back guarantee and 18- month manufacturer warranty.
Self-Cleaning cat litter box accessories
Now that we have looked at the best self-cleaning litter boxes, the obvious question that comes to mind is to pick the best clumping litter for the litter boxes. For automatic litter boxes, manufacturers have their own brand-specific litter supplies available and you should always prefer them. However, if you are using manual self-cleaning litter boxes or are looking for alternatives, you can consider the following options:
- Purina Tidy Cats Lightweight Clumping Cat Litter: High-quality clumping litter which is about 50% lighter than most other litters – making it suitable for mechanical litter boxes. Controls fecal, ammonia and urine smell. Also available in Clear Spring and Instant Action versions.
- Arm & Hammer Clump & Seal Lightweight Litter: Lightweight litter from the litter-best seller. 100% dust free and designed to control odor for up to 7 days.
- Precious Cat Ultra Premium Clumping Cat Litter: One of the most popular, medium-granule, heavy, non-tracking litter. Hypo-allergenic, contains no plant proteins, perfumes or scents.
While self-cleaning litter boxes are designed to minimize tracking, you can still look at getting a litter mat to trap the litter from your cat’s feet as it exits the litter box. Some of the best litter mats available in the market are listed below. For some more options and buying advice, check out our article on the best cat litter mats.
- Blackhole Cat Litter Mat: High-end litter mat, made with patented soft EVA material. Dual-layered to provide maximum litter removal from cat’s paws. Large size and available in three colors.
- Gorilla Grip Premium Cat Litter Mat: Best-selling premium litter mat with a non-slip, meshed design. Effective in trapping litter and easy to clean. Available in three colors and two sizes.
- Easyology Premium Cat Litter Mat: Another popular litter mat made with an extra thick PVC material, with a meshed design. Extra-large, so suitable for multiple litter boxes.
How to pick the best self-cleaning litter box for your cat?
With so many options available in the market, especially for automatic self-cleaning litter boxes, picking the best self-cleaning litter box can be a challenging task. Still, you can consider the following major factors while picking the best litter boxes for your cat (or cats).
Just a word of advice – Considering that a self-cleaning litter box is costlier than standard litter boxes and it is your cat that essentially picks its litter box (as opposed to the other way around), it would be a good idea to put the litter pan immediately to use. That way you can return it within the money-back period in case your cat just refuses to use it.
- Type of self-cleaning cat litter box
- Construction and design
- Size and self-cleaning capability
- Maintenance and operation requirements
- Additional features and considerations
Type of self-cleaning cat litter box
Probably the first decision you need to make is the type of self-cleaning litter box you should opt for. This would largely be governed by the budget that you have for the litter pan.
As discussed earlier, self-cleaning litter boxes can be manual or automatic. Manual self-cleaning litter pans are about twice as costly as the standard litter boxes and require frequent personal attention. However, you still do not need to scoop and sift the litter considerably.
Automatic litter boxes are more self-reliant and require only minimal attention. They are, however, 5-10 times costlier than the standard litter boxes. Moreover, you would have to keep in mind that most of such litter boxes would require a connection to the power outlet and self-flushing ones such as CatGenie Self Washing Self Flushing Cat Box even need a water connection. Only the Litter-Robot III Open-Air Self-Cleaning Litter Box and Littermaid Multi-Cat Self-Cleaning Litter Box support battery-powered operation, that too as a backup.
If you have a multi-cat home, have a busy lifestyle or have some limitations in handling the litter frequently, then you should consider going with a reliable, automatic self-cleaning cat litter box. It would truly create a hygienic and comfortable environment for you and your cat. On the other hand, if you do not mind some manual intervention and are just looking for some convenience over standard cat litter solutions, then go with the mechanical/manual self-cleaning litter box. They are still better than the standard cat litter boxes in minimizing the odor and require less maintenance.
Construction and design
The construction material and design of the self-cleaning litter box governs the reliability of the self-cleaning mechanism and hence is an important consideration.
Most manual/semi-automatic self-cleaning cat boxes are covered and have a rotating or rolling mechanism, making them pretty suitable for apartments, flats, studios or small homes. As long as the litter box is easy to rotate or roll with its litter, you can expect reliable cleanup of clumped litter. Check-out the sifting mechanism to determine if you would be able to perform that operation without hassles.
Automatic self-cleaning litter boxes are generally uncovered, except the high-end Litter-Robot III Open-Air Self-Cleaning Litter Box, which is a fully covered litter box. Some other options such as the popular PetSafe ScoopFree Self Cleaning Litter Box do offer hoods and domes as accessories. The design of the side walls, raking or rotating cleaning mechanism and waste separation mechanism generally governs the reliability of such litter boxes. You can generally get an idea of the reliability of the self-cleaning operation from the reviews and feedback from other buyers.
The top three automatic litter boxes that we list all are over 80% reliable in cleaning up the litter automatically and hence should be the first options to consider.
Check out all these design features to pick the design that would be most comfortable for your cat.
Size and self-cleaning capability
In addition to its design, the size of a litter box is also an important consideration to keep in mind as it governs the weight, breed, and number of cats supported by the litter box. Cats, like humans, love a big bathroom! So the bigger the litter box is, the more your feline would love to use it. If a cat needs to cramp in the litter box, chances are that it would eventually lead to box aversion and your cat may simply refuse to use the litter pan.
The general rule is to have a litter box 1.5-2 times the size of your feline. Among semi-automatic litter boxes, all the options that we have listed except the Litter Spinner Quick Clean Cat Litter Box are suitable for all cat breeds and ones weighing less than 20 lbs. The Litter Spinner is suitable only for small cat breeds because of its small entrance and limited litter area. Among automatic litter pans, almost all options work for small, medium and large cat breeds. The Litter-Robot III Open-Air Self-Cleaning Litter Box is probably the best option for large cat breeds.
If you have a multi-cat home, then you need to also look at the self-cleaning capacity of the litter box. This governs how soon you would have to dispose-off the waste from the collecting tray. Manual self-cleaning pans would require regular disposal of feces from the waste tray – once every 2-3 days. Manual litter boxes are most suitable for 2 cats, though frequent cleaning can help them support up to 3 cats as well. A general rule of thumb is that you need about half the number of self-cleaning litter boxes when compared to standard litter boxes.
Automatic litter boxes have an adjustable cleaning time and would require cleaning up only once every 3-5 days. So, such a litter box can support 3-4 cats easily.
Depending upon the number of cats you have and their size and weight, you can choose the most suitable model of the litter box to opt for.
Maintenance and operation requirements
The maintenance and operation requirements and costs are also an important factor to consider before picking the best self-cleaning litter pan. This generally translates to the litter, filter and liner requirements, the frequency of disposing waste and cleaning frequency and mechanism.
All the manual self-cleaning litter boxes that we have listed rely on standard clumping litter. You can opt for any premium, lightweight clumping litter available in the market. In addition, some models may require carbon zeolite filters which are also cheaply available. Moreover, in order to simplify the upkeep of waste tray, you may choose to use a waste bag liner or improvise and use a grocery bag.
In case of automatic litter boxes, any premium clumping litter would work except for a couple of options that we have listed. CatGenie Self Washing Self Flushing Cat Box relies on its proprietary litter-like washable granules, while the PetSafe ScoopFree Self Cleaning Litter Box needs model-specific blue-granule litter trays. Keep this in mind as this can increase the operating costs.
Even though self-cleaning litter boxes do not require you to scoop and sift the litter daily, they do require cleaning up the body of litter boxes (in addition to waste trays or drawers). A standard self-cleaning litter box can require a cleanup once per month depending on the number of cats and their size. For automatic self-cleaning litter boxes, you need to clean up the unit less frequently, though it would generally take more time because of many moving parts involved. The PetSafe ScoopFree Self Cleaning Litter Box is probably the easiest to clean up as it relies on disposable litter trays.
You can check out the videos and reviews of the specific model to determine how easy or difficult it would be for you to clean and maintain the litter box and then take a call.
Additional features and considerations
In addition to the major factors discussed above, there are a couple of other considerations that can make a purchase more attractive than others.
One such factor is the accessories that come with the litter box. Most of the models we listed come with one time supply of the additional items they need to operate – liners, filter pads, and litter/litter trays.
Some models such as the Littermaid Multi-Cat Self-Cleaning Litter Box even include backup batteries and additional filters and waste liners. The availability of these additional accessories can also be a factor.
The popular PetSafe ScoopFree Self Cleaning Litter Box scores big in that category as you can find a lot of accessories such as litter mats, hoods and litter trays with different flavors for the litter box. It even has its own PetSafe Scoopfree Dash button for quickly ordering the replacements.
Another important factor to check out is the warranty and service support provided by the manufacturer. Almost all the options that we listed support the 30-day or more satisfaction guarantee service and one to two years of manufacturer warranty. The top-of-the-line Litter-Robot III Open-Air Self-Cleaning Litter Box is our favorite in this category as it offers a 90-day money back guarantee and an 18-month manufacturer warranty. And the customer service team is just awesome. They were happy to answer all the technical questions and queries we had.
Keep these other small considerations in mind while picking the best self-cleaning cat litter box for your household.
Things to remember while using a self-cleaning cat littler box
Training your cat to use the litter box and making sure it does that every time it has to urinate or defecate may be a challenging task. And this task becomes more challenging with a self-cleaning litter box, especially the automatic ones. But by following the recommended training system, you can make it reasonably convenient for yourself and your cat, so look at following the recommendations by the manufacturer. Some other considerations to keep in mind are listed below:
- Place the litter box at a quiet place where there is minimal disturbance and interference from other pets or people. Pick a place that is reasonably far away from your cat’s feeding bowl or eating place, as cats tend to be finicky about it.
- Even if your cat is trained to use a litter box, introducing a new self-cleaning litter box can take some training and get used to. Start slow and follow positive reinforcement to initiate the new litter box. Remove the old one as soon as your cat gets comfortable with the new litter box. You can also spray some catnip on the new litter box to create positive attraction towards it.
- Self-cleaning litter boxes use clumping litter, which is more comfortable for cats to walk on. However, considering that cats have a strong sense of smell, pick an unscented litter, unless your cat is habituated to a specific scented litter.
- One of the major advantages of self-cleaning litter boxes is that you need fewer litter boxes in a household. A semi-automatic litter box can work well with 2-3 cats while a single automatic litter box can manage anywhere between 2-4 cats, though you would have to replace the litter and disposable trays more frequently. Still, if you have multiple cats, ensure that you have a backup litter box.
- Even though self-cleaning litter boxes do not require daily scooping and sifting, it is still a good idea to clean the unit periodically. For manual self-cleaning pans, it means removing the litter tray every 2-3 days and cleaning the whole unit once a month. You can even use a liner around the tray for easy disposal or use a Cat Litter Deodorizer Spray. Such sprays further minimize the odor without affecting the clumping capabilities of the litter.
- If you find your cat excreting outside the litter box, it may be a sign that it is not comfortable in the litter box. Consider picking another one. In case your cat stops using the litter box completely, immediately consult your vet as it may be a sign of discomfort or any other medical condition.
Following these basic guidelines would help in making it comfortable for your feline friend to go about its natural business conveniently and with as little hassle to you as possible.
Final thoughts on the best self-cleaning litter boxes for your cat
Your cat’s litter box is one of the most important items for feline’s comfortable upkeep. Frequent scooping and sifting the litter box to remove the waste can be a hassle. And if you have multiple cats or are someone who has a very busy lifestyle, then the problem of keeping the litter box odor-free for your home and your cat becomes even more difficult. Self-cleaning cat litter boxes are a perfect solution for such situations.
In this article, we looked at some of the best self-cleaning cat litter boxes available in the market. We focused on both mechanical or manual litter boxes and the latest automatic self-cleaning litter boxes. We also looked at some of the most important considerations to factor in while picking the best one for your needs and shared our top picks. Finally, we shared some of the popular accessories that go with these litter boxes.
We hope that you found this article would help you in picking the best self-cleaning cat litter box as per your requirements and preferences. Do let us know your feedback and questions by commenting below. Until next time, have a happy time with your furry friend!