By: Judy Jantzen
Litter boxes are an important issue that most of us would rather not think about, but we need to.
Satisfying the cats needs for a good toilet and our need for a non gross out answer, to a necessity. There are so many kinds of boxes and litter to choose from. From the cheap disposable type to the high tech raking kind.
Some people even choose to teach their cats to do their business in a human toilet. This is a great way, if you have a spare toilet. It would save a fortune over the years in litter cost. The problem is with the training. It is not a cats natural instinct to squat over water and not be able to scratch afterwards.
If you live in an apartment where cleaning out a box would be a major problem, then the disposable box type might be your best solution. You still need to scoop the poop every day/ night to control the smell. Be careful about flushing the litter covered poop. Some brands are not toilet friendly. We recycle plastic grocery bags for scooped poop and wet clumps.
We were unhappy with a regular plastic litter box and the scattering of litter that happened on the exit from the box and vigorous scratching, that sometimes occurs. We purchased a Rubbermaid storage box that is 9 inches deep by 15 inches wide and 20 inches long. It works well with a washable grass style door mat on the exit side. We push the box in a corner, so that two side are tight against the corner.
It worked great on a sailboat and now in our house. We have it right in the bathroom beside our toilet. We still use the recycled plastic grocery bags for the poop and clump scooping, because the litter we use is not toilet compatible. My main complaint with litter is the dust that is generated.
The Rubbermaid box with its sealable airtight lid, is also great for traveling. Especially by car and getting into motels/hotels. You just put the lid on and the cat carrier can go right on top, for one easy load in and out.
Do not forget your recycled bags, scooper and deodorant spray can. We cover our back seat with plastic and then an old sheet. The litter box and the carrier then go on the seat in case it should be needed while under way. Use all fresh litter in a very clean box. Take Ziploc plastic bags with extra clean litter for each day and the return trip. Your nose will thank you.
The box needs to be cleaned often, this is our method of handling the chore.
Timing is important. A cats normal nap time is a good choice.
The old litter is screened with a recycled table fan screen cover, after it has been scooped as well as it can be.
Then the box is washed out with pine oil and then a bleach rinse.
Letting each one sit a few minutes.
The old screened litter is put back with a new batch of litter on top.
We like the multi cat type, because it has more odor control. Baking soda is another good thing for odor control. We buy the giant size box of baking soda.
Cats can use the same box, but we had one cat who insisted on having her own. We quickly figured out the problem and once she had her own box ,she was fine and we were relieved to stop cleaning up after her. When changing brands of litter it is best to mix some old with the new for acceptance.
Please remember – you would not like to use a dirty toilet so do not make your cat use a dirty litter box.
About the Author
Judy Jantzen – My husband and I have owned cats for the past 25 years. For the latest in cat supplies, including cat litter, cat litter boxes and cat carriers.