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Old 01-22-2013, 12:52 AM   #1 (permalink)
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Default Cat owners: Self cleaning litter box?

Just wondering how many people use a self cleaning litter box for their cats?

I have 2 cats and am interested in getting one. I have heard good and bad reviews on them. I don't want to create more work for myself (like cleaning poop out of the different parts, etc.) since lets be honest, cleaning the litter box is a pretty easy task.

I live in an apartment and would like to be able to have the litter box cleaned every time they go instead of once or twice per day.

Also, any recommendations on brands, etc. would be appreciate.

Thanks all!
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Old 01-22-2013, 12:58 AM   #2 (permalink)
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I've never tried them but I've heard they clog and aren't worth the money. Am interested in what others have to say though...
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Old 01-22-2013, 12:59 AM   #3 (permalink)
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I dont have any recommendations but I can tell you our experience. Two cats, two boxes. We had to empty the "hold container" a couple times a day, buy clumping litter and still ended up cleaning ick out of various parts. For us, it was more unpleasant than just jumping the dirty litter, spraying out the box and replacing the litter. I think it's one of those things that works better for single cats but I've always had multiple cats. The box my inlaws had would start the cleaning run and get stuck halfway through. I don't know if the litter was getting caught in the slider or what but they also had multiple cats using it so that could have been it too. Just overloaded. My experience wasn't good but a friends was so it really depends on you and the box you get since there's a lot of choices.
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Old 01-22-2013, 01:05 AM   #4 (permalink)
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That is my worry.

With 2 cats and a possibility of another in the future, I don't want to spend all the money on this thing for it to turn into more hassle.
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Old 01-22-2013, 02:26 AM   #5 (permalink)
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I have three cats, one automatic box (Nature's Miracle Multi-Cat Box), one regular.

I absolutely love it! The only reason we have the non auto box is due to a very skittish cat who was sitting next to it when it went off. She hasn't been in there since. We were cleaning our two normal boxes every other day because our oldest cat leaves very large pee clumps and the boxes were on their way to full after forty-eight hours.

The container can hold almost three days of two cats using it and there is no odor at all, whereas the normal box in the same area started to give off an odor after a day and a half. It's not jammed once, even with the big clumps left by Pudge. It's super easy to clean; push lid onto container, place in plastic bag, put new container in litter box, repeat three days later.

The containers come in a box of 18 and were less than 15.00$ for them. You can find them online for cheaper than they come at PetCo, where I bought the box and supplies.

The other thing I like is the bottom of the box is hard, hard plastic. The cats haven't scratched up the bottom and I feel as if the litter box retains the smell a bit more when there are gouge marks from the claws on the bottom for the pee to sink in and it never seems to come completely clean and fresh smelling, but I have mild OCD, so that may be a factor in it.

There are three things I don't like:
1) There's a fill line on the box. It tells you to not go over it for fear of the box jamming. I found that the litter level was too low and the rake wasn't getting to the bottom of the box where all the pee and feces settled. There seems to be small, less than 1/2" gap between the bottom of the rake and the bottom of the box. We've been experimenting with adding a bit more litter every time and the box seems to function better with the additional litter.

2) You have to scrape the litter using a regular scoop once every so often. Sometimes, the pee gets to the bottom and because of the gap, it doesn't get raked up. Also, if there are small pieces of feces, they can slip through the teeth in the rake and not get put in the container. It's very minimal. We've had the auto-box for about a month now and I've only ever found pee on the bottom twice and the occasional piece of feces gets through.

3) Every once in a while, you have to brush the litter off the track. It just piles up on there and it lifts the rake, not allowing it to go through the litter as well.

All of the negatives are things that, I've maybe done once or twice this month. I did a good clean today; rake was clean, so I didn't have to worry about that other than just wiping with a clorox wipe to get the litter dust off, brushed off the tracks which took less than thirty seconds, ran the scoop through the litter and found no errant clumps, took out the container and added a new one, wiped off the outside, added more litter and was done. Took me less than ten minutes.

Cleaning the other box was more time consuming, even though not all three cats are using it regularly. My hubby didn't want an auto-box because he had several before that stopped working within a month or two. He has always had 3-5 cats and they were the multi cat version, but they still died quickly.

Hope this helps.
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Old 01-22-2013, 06:27 AM   #6 (permalink)
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I had 3 cats ( recently reduced to two)and two cat boxes. One is auto the other is not but will be soon. The problem with regular bozes is even if you put a liner in it, my cats rip the lining apart and wind up making a mess. In the auto box is just scoops it into a little changeable bucket and you can either change or dump the bucket. This only has to be done maybe once a week verses every day or two. Also we had to get a cover for the old box cuz my GSD thought that the cat box may be the snack treasure chest... that probelm has been fixed hahah. All in all I would invest in at least 1 auto box. You live in an apartment, this should reduce any odor as long as you maintain it! Good luck (will look at the one we have when I get home to fund the brand)
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Old 01-22-2013, 07:01 AM   #7 (permalink)
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Had a LitterMaid, went back to regular deep box as it wasn't worth the aggravation.
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Old 01-22-2013, 07:11 AM   #8 (permalink)
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I've heard enough bad things about them to stay away. I have 2 of the Omega Paw Self Cleaning Litter Boxes and they are great. You roll the litter box and your done. I clean the litter boxes really good once a month
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Old 01-22-2013, 10:23 AM   #9 (permalink)
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I've used them in the past and after 5 months,it burned out. After having a $180 box burn out in a few month, I've gone back to my regular oversized litter pans.
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Old 01-22-2013, 11:44 AM   #10 (permalink)
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Don't know what type of cat you have, but my over active Siamese thought the automatic litter box as a giant toy and everytime it would start to clean he would jump in and knock it off the track. Perhaps for a less pesty, active, PIA cat it would work. I returned it and got him a lovely huge cat tree with the store credit. I use the blue buffalo litter and have no smell at all with either my rabbit or cats litter box with only cleaning every two days or so.
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