Last Updated on: November 16, 2020
It’s an essential item for every cat owner. Simple in concept though not always simple in design, litter boxes help contain the mess and smell of our felines’ waste. You can’t keep your cats inside without one. But that doesn’t mean you have to settle for a barebones plastic-ware tub for sifting your cat’s litter.
We’ve used a lot of litter boxes over the years, but when we set out to replace our last one, we decided it was time to find the best of the best. After ordering and comparing all of the top sellers, we finally settled the ones that were not just our favorites, but our felines’ as well.
To help you decide which litter box is right for you and your cats, we’ve written the following ten reviews to compare some of the best. We’ve even taken the liberty of recommending three of the top performers to save you the expense of trying them all.
A Quick Comparison of Our Favorites
|Best Overall||Omega Paw Roll'N Clean Cat Litter Box||
|Best Value||IRIS Open Top Litter Box||
|Premium Choice||Petmate ScoopFree Automatic Cat Litter Box||
|Tidy Cats Breeze Cat Litter Box||
|Catit Jumbo Hooded Cat Litter Box||
The 10 Best Cat Litter Box – Reviews 2021
1. Omega Paw Roll’N Clean Cat Litter Box – Best Overall
Convenient, affordable, and time-saving, the Omega Paw Roll’N Clean Cat Litter Box was our favorite litter box of 2020. It takes a lot of the work out of cleaning your cat’s litter box. Just roll this litter box onto the top and roll it back. Inside, the unique grill will scoop out your cat’s waste and leave it in the tray for you to easily remove. No more sifting through kitty litter!
This litter box contains odors much better than an open-top litter box. It also speeds up your cleanup process. For houses with more than one cat, this litter box can be just the time-saver you need. But keep in mind that some litter can leak out when you roll this litter box. You have to hold the waste tray when you roll it to prevent this, but if you forget, you’ll have a mess to clean up after you finish separating the litter!
2. IRIS Open Top Litter Box – Best Value
If you value function and good pricing over fancy features and designer price tags then you might want to check out the IRIS Open Top Litter Box. The open-top design might not be the best at keeping in odors, but it does keep the price low and provide plenty of room for your cat.
Though the top is open, this litter box features tall walls that form a deep pan help to create a semi-private space for your feline. Moreover, this helps to keep waste in while simultaneously keeping dirt out. Plus, the interior surface is highly polished and slick, making it easy to clean.
Overall, the simplicity, ease of maintenance, and affordable price make this the best cat litter box for the money in our eyes.
3. Petmate ScoopFree Automatic Cat Litter Box – Premium Choice
Some spoiled felines get everything that might possibly make their lives better. But it’s hard to say who’s spoiled more with the Petmate ScoopFree Automatic Cat Litter Box; the cat or its person! This awesome litter box is packed with some incredible features, but it comes at a premium cost.
The big draw of this litter box is its self-cleaning design. It simply sweeps your cat’s waste into the covered compartment 20 minutes after your cat goes. Plus, safety sensors keep your cat safe in case it re-enters the litter box. Altogether, this allows you to leave this litter box alone for weeks at a time without having to worry.
Rather than using regular litter, this litter box makes use of highly-effective and absorptive crystal litter. But it’s in disposable trays that have to be replaced; another expense added to an already expensive litter solution. Still, it’s going to save you time and we’ve all heard that time is money, so maybe it will actually save you in the long run.
4. Tidy Cats Breeze Cat Litter Box
Litter boxes are traditionally quite stinky, but that doesn’t have to be the case. The Tidy Cats Breeze Litter Box promises a new era of cat ownership that doesn’t require odors and extensive time spent cleaning up the litter box. But it will require the continued purchase of special litter pellets and disposable litter pads.
The special litter pellets allow for exceptional odor control and easy waste extraction. For liquid waste, it seeps through the grate beneath the pellets and gets absorbed by the disposable pads. These pads sit in a tray that pulls out so you can simply and quickly change pads whenever necessary.
This design is 99% dust-free thanks to the special pellets. The litter box itself isn’t too expensive, but purchasing those litter pellets and disposable pads isn’t going to be cost-effective in the long run. Still, this system is quite effective at reducing odors and saving you time, if you don’t mind the cost of additional supplies.
5. Catit Jumbo Hooded Cat Litter Box
With an enclosed design that’s portable thanks to the handle on the top, the Catit Jumbo Hooded Litter Box helps contain your cat’s odors. But you can still scoop the litter without removing the cover, making it a convenient design. Or, it would be if the door you scoop through worked better. We had to remove the lid since the door wouldn’t open and close well, which is how we found out that the latches function poorly as well!
If you have multiple cats, you might appreciate the oversized design of this litter box. Otherwise, you’ll probably regret how much space it takes up. Still, it does have some convenient features that actually pan out. For instance, the inside bottom is slick and doesn’t allow the waste to stick, which makes it easier to clean. Plus, the carrying handle is strong enough that you can carry the litter box even when it’s full.
6. Van Ness Enclosed Cat Litter Box
Enclosed litter boxes are generally more expensive than open-top ones, but this enclosed litter box from Van Ness is dirt-cheap, making it affordable to keep those unpleasant cat odors contained. Whenever your cat enters or exits, the door flap will close, giving your cat privacy for use and keeping the odors inside when it’s done. Too bad the door flap keeps getting stuck!
Thankfully, this oversized design leaves plenty of space for your cat to be comfortable while taking care of business. But it’s not a very durable device. It has a handle on top, but it’s not strong enough to allow you to carry it once litter is inside. The latches that hold the top and bottom together are simply too weak. Attempt to lift it and they’ll break, ruining the litter box and making a mess at the same time.
7. Petmate Top Entry Litter Box
Does your cat constantly play with its litter, digging through it and making a mess outside of the litter box for you to deal with? If this is your situation, then you might benefit from the Petmate Top Entry Litter Box, at least in concept. The idea is that by making the entry at the top of a tall litter box, you’ll reduce the amount of litter that escapes. It does work, but several things are holding this litter box back.
First, it’s too small for larger cats. Even medium-sized cats might have difficulty turning around inside. And when you open the hinged lid to scoop the litter, it falls off almost every time. Worst of all, the litter box is weak and flimsy. When the cats jump on it to get inside, it bends and folds. After just a few weeks it collapsed! It needs to be stronger for the top-entry design to work.
8. Frisco Top Entry Cat Litter Box
Designed to help contain the mess and reduce litter tracking, the Frisco Top Entry Cat Litter Box missed the mark. The lid is supposed to minimize the tracking of litter, but in our testing, that wasn’t the case. Litter still managed to get everywhere, so it didn’t seem to reduce the mess at all. At least this one was built durable enough not to crumble under our cats.
On the plus side, the pivoting lid makes it easy to slide litter back into the basin. The basin is pretty tall, which prevents smaller cats from getting back out again. Yet it’s too small for larger cats to turn around in. Worst, it doesn’t seem to hold in any odors, so expect your house to smell like a litter box if you use this one.
9. Good Pet Stuff Hidden Cat Litter Box
If you love your felines but don’t love the look of their litter box, then you might find the Good Pet Stuff Hidden Cat Litter Box appealing. It’s designed to look like a large houseplant, hiding your litter box in plain sight. At first, it seemed like an attractive alternative to ugly cat litter boxes. But when it arrived, we were a bit disappointed that it wasn’t as attractive as we had hoped.
Unfortunately, this litter box takes up way more space than the average litter box. It’s also not very effective at containing odors, despite the filtered vent system that’s supposed to control dust and odors. This is especially concerning since this litter box is designed to be kept out in the open where you’ll be spending your time!
If you don’t want to constantly smell your cat’s litter box while it takes up half the space in your living room, you might want to skip this one. Cool concept, but not great in execution.
10. Nature’s Miracle Oval Hooded Litter Box
The Nature’s Miracle Oval Hooded Litter Box features a wide-open front doorway so it’s easy for your cat to access. The enclosed design and built-in odor neutralizers help to contain any smells from your cat’s waste. But the oval design makes it difficult to clean. It’s even hard to scoop since most scoops have a square design that doesn’t work well with the rounded corners of this litter box.
Though the inside of this litter box is somewhat slick, litter and waste still manage to stick to it, making it harder to clean. Plus, the latches don’t seal the top and bottom together well. This means that the litter box tends to leak and make a mess. Overall, we weren’t impressed with the quality of this litter box and recommend choosing something more reliable instead.
After using so many different litter boxes with our felines, we’ve developed a pretty good idea of what makes them more or less effective. In this short buyer’s guide, we’re going to share what we’ve learned with you in the hopes that it will help you make the right decision with less headache.
Easy to Clean
Some litter boxes don’t provide easy and ample access to the inside. This makes them hard to clean since you’ll have a difficult time simply getting inside to access the messy parts.
More than just easy access, you’ll want a litter box with a glossy interior. This will make it harder for waste and litter to stick, which will make it much easier to clean.
A few of our favorite litter boxes even took cleaning a step further by cleaning themselves. Some were truly self-cleaning with electronic rakes that would sweep the mess into containment areas to hold in the smell. Others simplified the cleaning process by allowing you to clean the litter without actually touching it.
Unless you want to clean your cat’s litter box every day, it’s important to find one that contains odors well. Otherwise, your whole home might start to smell like a giant litter box!
Enclosed litter boxes tend to be better at containing odors than the open-top ones. But they can also be more difficult to clean, making it a tradeoff. You can also look for litter boxes with built-in odor neutralizers.
A litter box isn’t going to do you much good if it breaks when your cat uses it! This is especially pertinent when discussing top-entry litter boxes that can collapse under your cat’s weight if it’s not built sturdy enough.
But other litter boxes need to be strong too. If they’re not, you might lift the litter box by the handle to move it, only to have it fall apart and leave you with a big mess to clean up.
You’ll also want to consider the size of your litter box compared to your cat. If the litter box is too large, you might end up wasting litter or your cat might not like using the litter box. On the other hand, too small of a litter box will be uncomfortable for a large cat or they might not fit at all!
If you get a top-entry litter box and it’s too big, then your cat might not be able to get out again once it’s inside! And if it’s too small, then your cat might not be able to turn around.
Also, think about how much space the litter box you choose takes up in your home. Smaller litter boxes can be kept out of the way in a closet or side room. Larger litter boxes might need to be kept in a main room where there’s plenty of space, which might end up introducing unpleasant smells into the entertainment areas of your home.
A final consideration is the price of the litter box you choose. While litter boxes aren’t generally too pricey, they can get quite expensive when they’re equipped with certain features.
Self-cleaning litter boxes might save you a lot of time, but they’re going to cost you quite a bit upfront for the convenience. Even among standard litter boxes, some models cost two or three times as much as others without necessarily offering any improvement in functionality.
Look for the litter box that has the features you need at the most affordable price point possible. And remember, more expensive doesn’t always mean better!
After reading our reviews, you’re aware that there are tons of options available for providing your cat with a litter box, ranging from basic and affordable to extravagant and expensive. You could even choose a plain old plastic tub if you really wanted a cost-effective solution, but you’d be giving up some great features.
For our money, the best choice was the Omega Paw Roll’N Clean Litter Box. It saves you time and hassle by simplifying and speeding up the litter cleaning process. Just roll the litter box over and it will separate the waste for you.
We think the best value was to be found in the IRIS Open Top Litter Box. It’s priced cheaply but still a great solution with tall walls that create a deep pan, forming a semi-private space for your cat. Plus, the high-gloss interior is easy to clean since waste won’t stick to it.
If you want to minimize your workload and you’re willing to pay a premium for the convenience, then you’ll like our premium pick: the ScoopFree Original Automatic Cat Litter Box. It automatically cleans the mess, minimizing odors and allowing you to forgo maintenance for extended periods.
Featured Image Credit: Ocdp, Wikimedia Commons
Roland has been an animal lover all his life, with cats holding a special place in his heart. He is owned by three felines: Wheely, KitzKitz, and Nugget (all rescues) who bring all the laughter and mischievousness one can expect from the feline master race. As the creator of ExcitedCats, his mission is to assist in the search for the best gear to help improve the health and wellbeing of cats everywhere.
- A Quick Comparison of Our Favorites
- The 10 Best Cat Litter Box – Reviews 2021
- 1. Omega Paw Roll’N Clean Cat Litter Box – Best Overall
- 2. IRIS Open Top Litter Box – Best Value
- 3. Petmate ScoopFree Automatic Cat Litter Box – Premium Choice
- 4. Tidy Cats Breeze Cat Litter Box
- 5. Catit Jumbo Hooded Cat Litter Box
- 6. Van Ness Enclosed Cat Litter Box
- 7. Petmate Top Entry Litter Box
- 8. Frisco Top Entry Cat Litter Box
- 9. Good Pet Stuff Hidden Cat Litter Box
- 10. Nature’s Miracle Oval Hooded Litter Box
- Buyer’s Guide