When it comes to shopping for litter boxes, there's one thing that virtually all cat owners can agree on: it better be good at keeping odors away. But you may be wondering, what exactly makes the best cat litter boxes for odor control so special, since they're all supposed to do that in the first place.
The truth is, certain highly-rated litter boxes — especially those that are covered — can be better about containing smells because of a carbon filter. Automatic litter boxes can also be better at odor reduction but tend to be pricier. In addition, there are plenty of other things you can try out to eliminate stinkiness, like cleaning your cat's box after every trip they take, using a litter deodorizer, and keeping your box in a well-ventilated area.
Litter boxes serve an important function for pet cats, obviously, but for owners, they're a crucial way to contain messes and keep smells from wafting throughout the entire house. If you're eager to find the best option for trapping and containing smells, this is the perfect guide to start with. Whether you're looking for a disposable box or a self-cleaning version that does all the work for you, you'll be sure to find the right one, below.
1. The Best Overall Pick
While the Catit Hooded Cat Litter Pan isn't a good option if you're short on space, it's the all-around best for pet parents looking for something that can make short work of stinky odors and gives cats plenty of room to do their business in peace. It's equipped with a large hood, which lifts up quickly and easily for cleaning, plus a carbon filter that removes odors as cats use it repeatedly throughout the day. At 15 inches wide and 22 inches long, it's especially great for multi-cat households or bigger, heavier cats. This box gets tons of love from Amazon reviewers, who love its size, cost, durability, and functionality: "My cat and I live in a single bedroom and his litter box is only a couple feet away... but now I don't even remember it's there!" It even comes with a free scoop.
2. The Best Top-Entry Litter Box
This top-entry litter box from Modkat is a great option if you're trying to minimize messes and reduce odors. But it also goes the distance because it makes cleaning up less of a job for you. It comes with a locking swivel lid, which will keep litter in the box instead of scattered on your floors. It also has a sleek, modern design, which is a bonus if you've got the box situated somewhere that isn't a kitchen or bathroom. To use this, you've got to grab reusable liners from Modkat, since they're tailored to fit it directly and also last for up to three months at a time. One reviewer raved: "The product is fantastic! With the charcoal liner, you can’t even tell you have a cat. And the top entry design eliminates almost all of the litter sticking to their feet!"
3. The Best Disposable Litter Box
You're probably thinking that this cheap AF disposable litter box from Nature's Miracle would be terrible at containing odors. After all, it's so open and exposed, right? Except the thing is, it's a total game-changer when it comes reducing and preventing gross odors from forming. It's made using recycled paper and baking soda, which provides extra protection against tough litter- and ammonia-related smells. This helps completely offset the fact that this litter box isn't covered, and because it's so eco-friendly (and designed to be landfill-safe), you can use it with confidence. Reviewers say that each box is good for about a month at a time, and once they get totally soiled, you can just toss it out and pick up a couple more. Compatible with all types of litter, these also work great as liners and fit most standard square litter boxes. "The very best cat litter pan I have ever owned," one reviewer wrote. "Reduces odor. Does not leak. Regular scooping keeps it in long lived shape."
4. The Best Manually Self-Cleaning Litter Box
There's a lot to love about this self-cleaning litter box from Omega Paw. One of the biggest reasons though? It actually cleans itself. Just tilt the box and say goodbye to soiled litter — it's that easy. That's because it comes equipped with a patented grill inside that separates waste and deposits it into a pull-out tray. While it doesn't have the ridiculous convenience of a fully automatic litter box, it's significantly cheaper and definitely a great mid-way point in terms of price if you're looking to up your litter box game without dishing out a fortune in the process. Amazon reviewers also say that it helps to conserve litter and reduce odor saturation into the air, in part because of its unique self-cleaning method. "Super easy to use. Helps reduce odor, easy for anyone to use, and a great price," one reviewer raved.
5. The Best Automatic Self-Cleaning Litter Box
With close to 1,500 positive reviews on Amazon, this popular self-cleaning litter box from PetSafe is the best pick if you're looking for an automatic option and don't mind paying for the added convenience (and odor-control) that it offers. It comes with a hooded cover and self-cleans for weeks with no scooping, cleaning, or refilling necessary. Plus, it has a durable plastic tray lining that provides an extra barrier of protection against potential leakage. Reviewers say it's the best at controlling odors, and a big reason for that is because you can't use ordinary litter with it. Instead, you have to use the company's crystal litter. On the plus side, this litter, which won't stick to your cat's paws, is 99 percent dust-free and up to five times more effective at absorbing odors than ordinary litter. To prevent the build-up of smells eventually, reviewers recommend stirring the crystals on a semi-regular or weekly basis, which helps ensure their odor-squashing might isn't lost over time. Also, to get started with this box, all you have to do is plug it in and it starts working immediately.
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