Litter management is one of the main concerns for most pet owners. The general recommendation is to clean the litter box once a day, but this task can easily become arduous.
The sanitary conditions of both your pet and your home are paramount, which is why the growing popularity of automatic litter boxes doesn’t come as a surprise.
Looking for the most awesome automatic litter box for your cat? You’ve come to the right place.
Quicklook: Best Automatic Litter Box
What Is an Automatic Litter Box?
Simply put, it’s a modern take on the traditional litter box that does most of the dirty work for you. What’s more, some automatic litter boxes are designed to self-clean for weeks on end. This minimizes scooping, refilling, general maintenance, and other chores that you might not hold dear.
In essence, this relatively novel contraption makes your life with a cat or cats much easier. There shouldn’t be any haggling with your roommate or spouse over litter box duty. And you don’t need to worry about your children somehow finding their way into a dirty litter box.
Quality automatic litter boxes minimize odor and chances of mold as well. You might also find that your cat is happier since felines are known to be prone to tantrums if the litter box is soiled. Some models can even accommodate multiple cats with the ability to flush – a feature you probably did not expect.
In addition, there are also Bluetooth-enabled automatic litter boxes. With these models, you can monitor your cat’s toilet habit and health and receive notifications for this or that.
What to Look for in an Automatic Litter Box?
Automatic litter boxes represent the latest advancement in feline waste management, but there are models that are not exactly silent. There is a strong possibility that the noise might annoy your feline friend. Or worse, divert the cat from getting accustomed to the box.
Like the traditional options, automatic litter boxes come in various sizes. There is no exact science to determining the right size.
Generally, the box needs to be at least as wide as your cat and somewhat longer. Simply put, it should be big enough for the cat to find a fresh spot every time it needs to, or it’ll start searching for alternatives.
This goes double for those with multiple feline friends. You’d have to search for a model that can cater to two or more cats. Lastly, the box should fit a designated space in your home without taking up too much space.
A lot of automatic models are compatible with most cat litters found online or in pet stores. However, there are manufactures which will try to convince you to buy supplies directly from them. Before you do so, it’s good to check the size and spec of the recommended replacement litter to see whether you don’t actually have more choices than they say.
Alternatively, you can go for an automatic litter box that works with various types of litter (usually corn or clay-based). In most cases, you won’t have to change the litter that often.
The thing that makes automatic litter boxes so popular is the low maintenance. However, if you choose a wrong model, you might find out that there’s more upkeep than you’ve bargained for.
Ideally, it should be easier or as easy to maintain an automatic litter box as a manual box. After all, the thing has put the old litter in a separate compartment for you.
Some pet parents love to splurge on their feline friends. But spending more for an automatic litter box doesn’t necessarily mean you are getting the most suitable model.
For example, a multi-cat self-flushing model may set you back a few hundred dollars. It’s probably the best loo your cat can get but it requires a water outlet. You’d have to modify your plumbing or stick the box in the bathroom or laundry room.
Figuring out the budget is a balancing act between size, your cat’s preferences, and automatic features.
Top Automatic Litter Boxes
The main idea which guided our search was to find the litter boxes that our readers and their feline friends would enjoy. This means our favored automatic litter boxes must be easy to use, have a proven track record, and offer no-brainer maintenance. In addition, we also took into account things like odor removal, litter compatibility, and easy setup.
For the most part, these litter boxes are mechanical gadgets. Therefore, at the top of the list should be a straightforward mechanism with little room for failure or malfunction.
You’ll find below models for any feline lover regardless of the budget and number of cats.
1. LitterMaid Multi-Cat Series Automatic
- Multi-cat automatic litter box
- Carbon filter odor control
- Weekly maintenance
- Quick setup
- Includes a lot of accessories
- Easy-to-clean waste receptacle
- Very quiet
- Might require special litter for best performance
- Not a set-and-forget model
The LitterMaid automatic litter box has a nice balance of price, cleanliness, and ease of use. You also get a lot of accessories. The package includes four carbon filters and waste receptacles, a scoop-rake cleaner, paw-cleaning mat, and an AC adapter.
With the ramp included, this box measures 33 x 17 x 10 inches, which makes it properly sized for more than one cat. In addition, the LitterMaid can support more than 15 pounds. One of the things that makes this box stand out is the odor control. With the carbon filter and tightly sealed waste receptacle, there is no need to worry about the smell spreading to other areas of the house.
Once you set it up and get your cat accustomed to it, this box is very easy to use. The manufacturer promises weekly maintenance but there might be more to it. Testing out different types of litter helps and you should inspect the box every now and again, especially for urine stains and smudges.
Nevertheless, this is still one of the models that deliver a great balance of price, features, and simple upkeep.
PetSafe ScoopFree Ultra
- Self-cleaning automatic litter box
- Features a special hood
- Crystal cat litter
- Leak-protection lining
- Two color options
- Good odor control
- Doesn’t require scooping
- Dehydrates used litter
- The automatic rake could be better
This litter box is a more advanced approach to feline waste management. The crystal litter dehydrates the waste to minimize odor, smudges, and maintenance. You should be able to go for weeks without tending to this litter box. And when it’s time, you don’t have to do any scooping.
The old litter is placed in disposable trays which are good for about a month. In addition, the trays have a special lining to prevent leakage and they are easy to replace. The ScoopFree Ultra also features a programmable rake timer. You can choose either 5, 10, or 20 minutes and there’s a small display that counts the litter box usage.
The hood is also a nice addition to give the feline some privacy and keep your dog away from snooping at the box. The ScoopFree Ultra is designed to accommodate up to 3 cats of six months or older.
All the good stuff comes at a price so this model might not be suitable for every budget. On the other hand, Petsafe manufactures another hoodless model which is more affordable. It also has a lot of the same features, so it might be worth checking out.
PetSafe Simply Clean
- Rotary automatic litter box
- Conveyor waste removal
- Good for 1 cat
- Energy efficient
- 2-week maintenance
- Quiet self-moving bowl
- Removable disposal bin
- Easy maintenance
- Reduces odor
- Requires additional maintenance
With the Simply Clean, PetSafe took a slightly different approach to feline waste disposal. This automatic litter box features a slow-moving rotary box on a conveyor system. As it moves, it also sifts the litter for waste, which it removes and dispose of in the trash compartment. The trash you can empty in a plastic bag.
As you might imagine, with all that sifting (one rotation per hour) some of the waste might collect and clog things up. So, you can expect some additional upkeep with this model. For the most part, this problem can be prevented by using the right litter. The Simply Clean works best with clay-based clumping litter.
In addition, you need to use the right amount of litter as specified on a label inside the bowl. This model is a good option for single-cat households. It’s rated for cats that weigh under 15 pounds.
The PetSafe Simply Clean is one of the most affordable automatic litter boxes.
Pet Zone Smart Scoop
- Rugged and durable design
- Metal gear drive train
- Modular design
- Low-cost operation
- Durable metal rake
- Easy waste disposal
- Tall sides for minimal litter spillage
- 1-month plastic bag supply
- Waste might end up on the sides
You won’t miss box’s ruggedness for sure. Right out of the box, it looks and feels like it’s built to last. To top it off, the Smart Scoop sports a powerful motor with metal gears which runs smoothly with minimal noise.
The waste disposal action is triggered fifteen minutes after the cat did its business. The rake separates the waste from the clean litter and places it inside the bin, where there’s a carbon filter to keep the odor from escaping.
Unlike most automatic litter boxes, the Smart Scoop has extra tall sides. This is great for minimizing spillage.
- Multi-cat self-cleaning box
- Automatic flushing
- Programmable cycles
- Uses washable granules
- Designed for bathroom use
- Fully automatic cleaning and flushing
- Works with up to three cats
- Three different cleaning programs
- Requires special installation
- Might be prone to clogging
The CatGenie takes automatic litter boxes a step further. What you get here is a full-on automatic cat restroom. This model is designed to give your cat a star treatment and pristine sanitation. It scoops up the waste, liquifies it for more efficient disposal, and runs a wash cycle to flush it all away. But there’s more.
The cat-friendly SaniSolution, which comes with the package, purifies the granules. Once that’s done, this litter box runs a heat cycle to leave the granules dry and ready for the next use. However, you should know that some of the granules do get flushed away. It means you might use up the granules quicker than expected, especially with more cats.
These features are great but they translate to a more complicated setup which might not be exactly DIY-friendly. In addition, you’ll need special granules and a new SaniSolution cartridge every now and again, adding to the maintenance cost.
- Single-cat automatic litter box
- Compact design
- Quick assembly
- Accessories included
- Fits any household
- Great value for the money
- Removable rake
- Battery backup (8x D batteries)
- The motor could be more powerful
If you are looking for an automatic litter box that can fit smaller households and a single cat, you should check out the LitterMaid Classic. This box is simple and easy to use, and it comes with a lot of extras.
The accessories include eight receptacles and carbon filters. In addition, there is a cleaner for the rake and scoop. The Classic litter box is also quite compact, measuring 24.75 x 17.5 x 9.75 inches. But there’s more than enough space for a cat of up to 15 pounds.
The specially designed plastic receptacles and carbon filters are great at minimizing odor. This automatic litter box can run on eight D batteries. It’ll drain the batteries in no time, so keep it plugged in. The batteries will take over if there’s an outage.
The Bottom Line
Admittedly, there is still a lot of room for improvement in terms of the overall design and efficiency. If you follow the instructions closely, use the right litter, and understand your cat, an automatic litter box could be a life-saver.