Dear Home-Ec 101,
Why is cleaning out cat boxes such an ordeal? How can I make my cat’s litter box smell better if I’m a little bit remiss about getting them scooped every day? What about the Litter Maid? Does that actually work?
Scoopless in Saratoga
Man, do I ever feel your pain. There is nothing in this whole world I hate more than scooping kitty litter boxes, except having my entire house smell like a kitty litter box, so I scoop, scoop, scoop.
When I was pregnant and was not able to scoop the catboxes due to the possibility of toxoplasmosis, I broke down and bought a Litter Maid. I can tell you with no uncertain terms that it was a total waste of money. When it actually did work, it didn’t do a very good job and I was constantly having to clean the rake thingy, and it quit working altogether after a few months. I used only the recommended brands of cat litter, and followed all their recommendations and it still sucked. Plus, one of my cats was totally afraid of the Litter Maid, so I had to keep another box around for him anyway.
The very best way to keep your cat boxes clean and sparkly is to scoop morning and night, use a great brand of cat litter and sprinkle baking soda in the box every morning. If you do this, you will never have a problem with odor in your cat boxes.
However, we can’t always be perfect about getting the cat boxes scooped. After all, we have about 8 billion other things we need to be doing rather than scooping cat boxes. So if you’re a little lazy about cleaning out the cat boxes, here are a few more tips:
- Use a VERY good clumping cat litter. I’ve tried about 8 billion brands and my 2 favorites are Arm & Hammer Multi Cat and Tidy Cat Small Spaces.
- Make sure you have at least one cat box per cat owned. Also, if you have an upstairs and a downstairs, have at least one cat box per level.
- The cheapest method of controlling cat box odor is baking soda in the boxes. Arm and Hammer and Tidy cats make cat box deodorizers, but baking soda is just as effective and is a heck of a lot cheaper.
- Do not use a covered cat box. If you use an uncovered cat box, your nose will definitely remind you of when it is time to dump the cat boxes.
- Dump cat boxes entirely every single week. I dump mine on trash day so my dumpster doesn’t get too stinky.
Sometimes I’m surprised that I am a veritable font of information having to do with cat poop.
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