Summary List Placement
We spoke to veterinary behaviorist Dr. Wailani Sung and cat behavior consultant Daniel “DQ” Quagliozzi to find out what qualities to look for in a litter box.
We then tested 15 of the most popular litter boxes, including disposable, hooded, top-entry, and self-cleaning models.
The affordable Nature’s Miracle Hooded Flip-Top Litter Box, which can be used in three ways, is our top pick for the best litter box.
Cats are notoriously finicky when it comes to toileting. Many a cat household has been caught off-guard when their furry feline suddenly begins to urinate or defecate outside of the litter box. But while a cat who pees or poops on the floor or furniture may have underlying health issues, often inappropriate elimination is a cat’s best attempt at communicating that something about their litter box is not quite right.
Unfortunately, most of us do not provide our cats with the toileting options they would prefer, according to Daniel “DQ” Quagliozzi, cat behavior consultant and owner of Go Cat Go! in San Francisco. “In my experience, the human being makes choices based on their preferences,” he said. Hiding the box in an unused corner or placing it at a bottleneck where one cat may be bullied by another on their way to do their business can cause a cat to develop an aversion to using their litter box.
The size of the litter box and, in multi-cat households, the number of litter boxes available can also be major problems. Traditionally, experts recommend that a household should have the same number of litter boxes as they do cats, plus one extra. Those who are living in small spaces, though, may be able to get away with fewer, frequently cleaned larger boxes.
“If you have four cats, you ideally should have five litter boxes total,” said Dr. Wailani Sung, a veterinary behaviorist at the San Francisco SPCA Veterinary Hospital. “Who has room for that? However, if you provide a litter box that is twice the size of a traditional-sized box and clean it at least twice daily [that] may be sufficient for the needs of all four cats.”
No matter the number of cats, both Quagliozzi and Sung agree that most cats do best with large, simple litter boxes without a cover. I’ve taken their advice into account over the last several months as my two cats have tried out 15 different litter boxes, all but two of which (Nature’s Miracle High-Sided Litter Box and Petmate Booda Dome) were provided to Insider Reviews as editorial samples from their manufacturers.
Although most of the litter boxes I tested were good or even great, I selected the ones that both my cats and I preferred as our top picks. For the best overall, I chose the versatile and affordable Nature’s Miracle Hooded Flip-Top Litter Box, which can be used …read more
Source:: Business Insider