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How do you maintain the litterbox?

post #1 of 20
Thread Starter 
How do you maintain your litterbox? I have one cat and he has two very large litterboxes. I have one in our big kitchen and one in one of the bathrooms. I check both boxes every morning and scoop out any 'stuff'! I check them when I get home and before I go to bed. I always check them really as I try to clear them out as soon as possible as I don't want him to have to go in a used box, he doesn't like that, neither would I. I also wash both boxes out every weekend with gentle cat friendly soap wash. What do you do?
post #2 of 20
I have 1 cat and 1 litter box. So I scoop it once a day when I get home from work. I buy the Fresh Step litter and change the whole box, clean it and replace the litter twice a month.
post #3 of 20
I use clumping litter and scoop it once a day in the morning. I wash the box each week with hot water, and I change the litter once a month. I find that the scooping litter stays clean with regular scooping, although I add some during the month as needed. Both of my cats have been quite fussy about the box, and this practice has satisfied them.
post #4 of 20
Quote:
Originally Posted by Althekitty View Post
How do you maintain your litterbox? I have one cat and he has two very large litterboxes. I have one in our big kitchen and one in one of the bathrooms. I check both boxes every morning and scoop out any 'stuff'! I check them when I get home and before I go to bed. I always check them really as I try to clear them out as soon as possible as I don't want him to have to go in a used box, he doesn't like that, neither would I. I also wash both boxes out every weekend with gentle cat friendly soap wash. What do you do?
I think you have a very spoiled kitty!
post #5 of 20
I have two Roll N' Clean boxes (large size) for two kitties -- although they both prefer using one of the boxes over the other at a 2 to 1 ratio.

I roll and scoop the boxes once a day. Try to keep them filled up to the three inch mark by adding additional litter as necessary.

I just changed the first box completely at the one month mark. Honestly, it could have probably gone longer. The litter was more or less clean (it essentially gets completely replaced gradually during the month). The only thing changing the litter did was get rid of some very small pieces (too small to get scooped) that build up in the litter over time.

There was no reason to hose down or wash the box. Other than one small place on the filtering screen where a wet clump had hit it (or something), the box was fine. If things continue like this, I can see only hosing down these boxes a few times a year. I think the large quantity of liter in each box (20 pounds) helps a lot. Also, when they are rolled over, you can give the now empty bottom and sides a good thump, knocking loose anything that may have stuck.

I can't imagine changing the litter every week. That kind defeats the whole purpose of clumping litter. Fresh Step, the litter I use, recommends a complete change once a month:

Quote:
1. Fill your clean litter box with 3-4 inches of Fresh Step® Scoopable litter. For best results, do not mix with non-clumping cat litter.

2. The litter quickly forms a clump around liquid waste. Remove clumps and solids daily and dispose in trash. Do not flush. The rest of the litter stays fresh.

3. Add more Fresh Step® Scoopable litter to refresh your litter box each time you scoop. Maintain level of litter at 3-4 inches. Once a month empty entire litter box. Dispose of contents in the trash.
BTW, this Fresh Step litter clumps very hard. I assume Scoop Away (also owned by Clorox, probably the same factory) performs identically.
post #6 of 20
I also use FS scoopable. I scoop once a day, before bed. My kitty usually uses the box in the am, after his wet food meal. If you scoop too soon after he pees, the clump is all wet, falls apart, and is disgusting. Waiting until night-time it is a firmer clump.

I also dump the box once a month, scrub it with dish soap and water and refill it.
post #7 of 20
Quote:
Originally Posted by meow meow View Post
If you scoop too soon after he pees, the clump is all wet, falls apart, and is disgusting. Waiting until night-time it is a firmer clump.
Hmmm ... I wonder if that's why there are often small pieces in the litter that the scoop misses. But the cats use the boxes throughout the day, so I don't know exactly when the clumps are dry enough.
post #8 of 20
Quote:
Originally Posted by Dave_L View Post
Hmmm ... I wonder if that's why there are often small pieces in the litter that the scoop misses. But the cats use the boxes throughout the day, so I don't know exactly when the clumps are dry enough.
Yeah. It takes a little while for the clumps to fully harden. Plus, it's inevitable that the scoop will knick little bits off from time to time. The buildup of those small pieces is really the reason you should dump the whole box and change it every once in a while.
post #9 of 20
Quote:
Originally Posted by hwc View Post
BTW, this Fresh Step litter clumps very hard. I assume Scoop Away (also owned by Clorox, probably the same factory) performs identically.
I haven't tried Fresh Step but found Scoop Away to be too dusty and heavily perfumed. The cats smelled, the room smelled, and poor DH had asthma attacks from it.
I will never use that nasty stuff again. As for clumping, it did ok - tidy cat and arm and hammer clumping is about the same if not a little better.


I scoop daily, completely change litter every 1 and 1/2 to 2 weeks and wash the box then. I use bleach to wash with and thoroughly rinse.

Some bacteria, viruses, and even protozoa (I do believe?) are only killed by bleach - it's better just to use something cheap and effective instead of a so called cleaner that isn't really cleaning anything.
No pets, including my reptiles who's aquariums I clean with bleach, have ever become sick from it.
post #10 of 20
I have two large covered littered boxes for the two kitties.

I scoop once or twice a day, and replace the scooped litter with fresh litter once a week.

I just changed the litter and cleaned the boxes for the first time, after almost four months of use. The boxes were getting a bit smelly, but I think I can get by with changing the litter once every three months.

This is a good article on litter box maintenance: The Litter Box from Your Cat's Point of View, by Lisa A. Pierson, DVM. It includes a video on a nice technique for scooping the litter box.
post #11 of 20
Right now I have 2 cats sharing 1 covered box. I scoop 1-2 times a day, add more if necessary, and then completely change the litter every 2-3 weeks. When I change the litter completely, I clean the litter box with white vinegar or bleach.

(We had 2 uncovered boxes that were large but now that we have a dog, it's just not practical).
post #12 of 20
Quote:
Originally Posted by Dave_L View Post
This is a good article on litter box maintenance: The Litter Box from Your Cat's Point of View, by Lisa A. Pierson, DVM. It includes a video on a nice technique for scooping the litter box.
This is a great link, thanks!
post #13 of 20
I have one very large litter box, and one kitty, and it gets scooped every morning. I replace the litter and wash it out with a little Javex and hot water twice a month. I use Purina Maxx Scoop clumping litter. Even though it says unscented on the box, it has a strong cinnamon-like smell that I find gross though, so I might change brands.
post #14 of 20
I have one very large covered box for 2 cats (they seem happy to share). Every morning and evening I scoop and once a week I tip out the litter (but save it) then wash the box with washing up liquid followed by johnsons litter tray disinfectant and cleaner. When it's dry and aired, the litter goes back in. I don't wash the hood of the tray every week but I do usually wipe it with a kitchen towel dampened with the disinfectant. About every 4-6 weeks I let the litter run as low as I dare and then throw it all away and start over.
post #15 of 20
Sunny has a covered litterbox that sits under the bathroom sink. I switched to Fresh Step last month and both he and I prefer it. It doesn't have all the dust that the Tidy Cats had and no more of the weird perfume-y smell that makes our small house stink to high heaven when he uses his box.

I scoop his box every evening before bed and add a little if needed. He gets a full litterbox change once a month. I use a mild detergent and water to clean it with after the big change and use the Fresh Step litter box wipes between full-on cleanings.

Sunny is an anything-goes kind of kitty He eats whatever food we buy for him and has never had any problem with any of the litters we have tried. I guess we are pretty lucky He does, however, like a clean litter box to use in the mornings.
post #16 of 20
For four cats, we have 5 uncovered litterboxes (storage containers) in different locations. Three with clumping litter and two with wood pellets, because our cats have different preferences.
We just use a very thin layer of litter, all litter is dumped nightly and boxes are filled with a water/bleach solution, left to soak for 20 minutes and rinsed every week.

Number and location of boxes is based on advice from behaviour experts, I encountered the small layer of litter/dump everyday method in a cat book but started using it after a cat therapist suggested it too, and the soaking in bleach comes from Dr Diane Addie's (FIP expert) website, since we got two kittens from a breeder two weeks after one of her cats died from FIP and later the brother of one of our kittens died from FIP too. We wanted to minimize the risk of FCoV transmission. (the fact that there is a litterbox for each cat means they don't have to come in contact with each others faeces too)
post #17 of 20
After doing hours of research I've found what I think might be best for Amy and her health. Amy is excellent as far as the litter box is concerned so if your cat is as well this might be for you.

I've chosen to use a stainless steel box:


dimensions: 20" x 12" x 6"


The benefits:

- Extremely hygenic
- Environmentally friendly
- Does not retain odor
- Smooth easy to clean surface
- Does not require heavy cleaning agents
- Scratch, crack, and rust resistant
- Last forever

The cons:

- Might not be deep enough for messy diggers or cats that stand to pee
- Can make a clinking noise that can scare some cats
- Not easy to buy - The box is actually a steam table/hotel pan


Use a fully stainless steel scoop that is easy to clean:





I fill it with 3" of litter. Scoop when necessary, and throw it in an odor-proof container. Like a Maxwell Coffee tin. I put the scoop inside of it after. On garbage day I'll empty its contents into the garbage and wash the tin and scoop with baking soda and a tiny bit of dish liquid. The washing process takes only a minute or less. Use a pinch of bleach and let sit for 1 minute if you want to completely sanitize the box of all germs.

Once again, I'm no expert. This is just an idea of mine that might peak someones interest.
post #18 of 20
The stainless steel litter box is a cool idea. Thanks.
post #19 of 20
We have a top-entry box, which I love, even though I was one of the suckers who paid $30 for what is essentially a Rubbermaid box with a hole cut in the lid.

Fresh Step and Scoop Away both have fragrance-free versions. I've been using the Fresh Step lately. I tried the Arm & Hammer litter, but it wasn't very good. It didn't clump very well at all.

When I do a full cleaning, I put a few drops of Dawn dish soap in, fill it with water. let it sit for a while. Dump it out, then wipe it out with damp paper towels that have Dawn on them. Hose it out again and let it dry. I think the only time I would use anyhthing stronger than Dawn or vinegar (i.e., bleach) would be if Albus were sick. I try to avoid bleach and antibacterial stuff as much as I can- bad for us, bad for the cat, bad for the environment.
post #20 of 20
i have 2 large boxes for the boys. tabitha uses the garden.

i scoop morning and night plus inbetween if necessary. wash both boxes out weekly with washing up liquid.

i have just started using fullers earth which clumps really well. far less dust too.
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