In this post we are going to look at how to keep a litter box clean. If a litter box is dirty, your cat may use a substitute such as your carpet, and it’s also bad for yours and your cats health. A cats smell is also 14 times stronger than a humans. This means that although the litter box may appear clean to you, your cat could consider it dirty and smelly.
This is why it is important to have a consistent procedure to ensure that your cats litter box is clean. In this guide on how to keep a litter box clean we will show you what you will need, preparation, schedule and cleaning tips and techniques.
Preparing to Clean Your Litter Box
What You’ll Need (Basics)
All cats are very unique with some preferring a closed litter box and others preferring an open litter box. The only way to know for sure is with trial and error. They both have advantages and disadvantages. Closed litter boxes offer more privacy and decrease the amount of litter going on the floor. Some cats may also be scared to be closed in.
Covered Litter Boxes
The Catit Jumbo Hooded Cat Litter Pan is a great basic option with well over 15,000 reviews on Amazon.
Open Litter Boxes
Pet Mate Arm & Hammer Large Sifting Litter Pan as an example and a great option.
- Clay clumping: Easy to clean up but it creates a lot of dust and isn’t biodegradable.
>>Click here to view a full range of clay clumping products<<
- Clay non-clumping: Not so easy to clean and don’t form into clumps for easy scooping.
>>Click here to view a full range of clay non-clumping products<<
- Crystal cat litter: Usually made of silica and more expensive but they control odor better.
>>Click here to view a full range of crystal cat litter products<<
- Corn, wheat, and pine: They don’t clump but dust levels are low and are biodegradable.
>>Click here to view a full range of wheat products<<
Litter Box Liner
These are great for people with a busy schedule. Just add a replacement litter box liner after each clean and your ready to go.
This DuraScoop Jumbo Cat Litter Scoop which has well over 11,000 reviews on Amazon is an excellent choice.
What You’ll Need (Optional Extras To Make Things Easier)
These are optional extras, but every cat owner hates cleaning a litter box and these options will make the whole process 10 times easier!
Kitty Litter Matt
Cat litter matts are placed under your cats litter box. They work by capturing any stray litter that will be stuck to your cats paws as they exit the litter box. Our recommendation is the Gorilla Grip Original Premium Durable Cat Litter Mat.
The Litter Genie is a cat waste disposal system with a seven-layer refill to lock away odors. They come in different sizes with the standard and plus holding soiled cat litter for up to two weeks, and the XL up to three weeks.
Self Cleaning Litter Box
Although these are a little more expensive than conventional litter boxes, they provide much more automation and convenience when it comes to cleaning litter boxes. A great example of this is the PetSafe ScoopFree Automatic Self-Cleaning Cat Litter Box.
Pet Odur And Stain Remover
If you cat is going to the toilet outside of their litter boxes, you’ll find that they will keep going back to the same place. To prevent this you can get a product like this Unique Pet Odor and Stain Eliminator which will neutralize the odar.
Setup And Preparation
#1 Select and Place the Box
- Place the litter box in a spot where your cat has privacy, but at the same time will be convenient and offer easy access.
- Never put a litter box close to water and food bowls.
- Whatever room you choose to place the litter box, make sure the door is always wedged open to prevent your cat being from being locked either inside or out. Another option is to create a put door.
#2 Line the Litter Box
Liners are optional, but they are very convenient, a lot cleaner and will save you a lot of time. They can tear if you cat is aggressive at covering their waste, but they still do a great job of keeping out most of the excess urine.
#3 Pour in the Cat Litter
Around two to three inches of litter is usually the recommended amount to pour into the litter box. If your cat is a deep scratcher, you can increase this to three to four inches. As all cats are different it’s just a case of experimenting to see what works best for your cat. Don’t forget to level off the litter to provide a nice flat surface for your cat.
Tips On How To Keep A Cat Litter Box Clean
#1 Wear Gloves And A Mask:
Litter boxes are full of bacteria and parasites which can be harmful to both you and your cat. It’s always safe practice to wear gloves and a mask to provide full protection.
#2 Scoop Up Waste
You should scoop any waste out of the litter box at least once a day. Doing this more, and even every time your cat uses the box is an even better option. If you lose a significant amount of litter after scooping, you can just replace by adding some more in there.
#3 Dispose The Waste
Oder can be an issue so it’s important to dispose any waste properly. The Litter Genie that we mentioned at the start of this article is a great option for this. Although it is optional and no an essential product you need, it will make the whole process a hell of a lot easier.
#4 Add Litter Every Two or Three Days
The litter is going to go down after a few days of scooping, so if you notice it’s lower than the minimum two inches, top it back up again.
#5 Thoroughly Wash the Litter Box Every Week
Every week it’s essential that that you empty the entire contents of the litter box and give it a full thorough wash. Clean the box by using mild, non-scented detergent. You can use warm water with either a rag or sponge to give the whole thing a good scrub. A drop or two of vinegar in the detergent helps to kill microorganisms.
Another great tip is to use a tablespoon or two of baking soda whic will help remove any odor on the litter box. Never use cleaning products that are going to be harmful for your cat.
#Preventing Problems With Litter Boxes
Replace the Boxes
As with anything else, the litter box over time will become scratched and worn due to daily use. The main problem here is that bacteria can hide and build up in the scratches which not only causes strong odor, but can also be bad for your cat health. You should replace cat litter box once per year.
Keep these features in mind before choosing a litter box:
- The litter box should be at least the same length of your cat (from the tip of the nose to the tail).
- The entrance should be low to allow easy access. This is especially important for older cats.
Add Multiple Litter Boxes
It’s recommended to have one litter box per cat plus one more. So for example, if you have two cats, then three litter boxes are required.
Hope you enjoyed this guide on how to keep a litter box clean. Hopefully you learnt some great tips which will allow you to keep a nice clean litter box. If you have any questions just drop them in the comments below.