Tag Archives: litter box

Death Star Litter Box aka Litter Robot

One day at work, my coworkers asked me if I had heard of the Death Star litter box. I hadn’t. One of the guys said that his friend had it and thought it was pretty cool. He wanted to get a cat because of it since it meant not having to scoop poop, which is the drawback to having cats. When a friend was convincing me to get a cat a couple of years ago, I brought up the litter box cleaning part. She said that I could get an automatic litter box. However, after I got my cats, cleaning the litter box wasn’t such a horrific chore, and I heard that the automatic litter boxes on the market had issues with the rakes getting clogged, etc.

When I got home, I did a search for the Death Star litter box and found out that its name was actually Litter Robot. After reading several reviews on its site and on Amazon, I decided to give it a try since there is a 60 days satisfaction guarantee return policy. The $300 price tag made it a tough decision. I was also concerned that Mr. Darcy might be too big for it and end up touching the inside surface and get litter on his fur. Then I figured I could buy it and see how he fit in it before putting in the litter. If he didn’t fit, I could return it. I would have to eat the cost of shipping but I figured it was a gamble I could take if it meant not having to scoop litter and replacing it completely after a few weeks due to it not clumping as well, etc.

I had it shipped to my work address, but I should have had it shipped to my apartment. The box was so huge it didn’t fit in my Honda Accord trunk, even after putting down the back seats. I ended up opening the box and putting the individual parts in the car.

I let my cats get adjusted to the Litter Robot in stages. I was concerned about the adjustment period since not only was I introducing a new litter box, er sphere, I had to switch from Swheat Scoop to another litter due to compatibility issues with the Litter Robot. I put the new litter in the old litter box so my cats would get used to the litter. I left the Robot unplugged without litter for a day or two to let my cats feel comfortable with the Robot’s presence. I put it through the cleaning cycle so that they can get used to the motion and sound.

I eventually put in litter, but my cats didn’t use it still. I left it off so I would know when they used it. Meanwhile, I left the old litter box unscooped, to discourage them from using it. Eventually, I saw something in the Robot and ran the cleaning cycle manually. It took half a week before my cats used the Robot.

After making sure that the cats weren’t using the old litter box anymore, I was able to get rid of it. Yay! That reclaimed some space. The Robot takes up space, but it is in a less obtrusive location.

It’s so cool not having to scoop anymore. I still have to empty the drawer that contains the waste products but that takes much less time and effort to do. Now my cats have clean litter all the time. This is one less thing for me to worry about if I ever have to go away for a few days.

Here’s an animated demonstration on how the Robot works:

Although the Litter Robot has a high upfront cost, it does help save money in the long run:
- I no longer have to buy those more expensive litter box plastic liners. I can use regular garbage bags in the waste receptacle.
- compared to the regular uncovered litter boxes, there is less litter that shows up outside of the box.
- it saves time, and time is money. :)
- it reduces the amount of litter used. I haven’t had the Robot long enough to personally confirm it, but I can see that it does a good job of not wasting the litter, as long as I don’t overfill it. From the web site:

The Litter-Robot saves you even more by wasting very little of the clean litter. The patented litter sifting process keeps the litter very clean, eliminating the need to frequently dump all of the litter because of soaked and loose clumps contaminating the clean litter.

Customers have reported litter savings of up to 40% with the Litter-Robot as compared with traditional litter boxes or other self cleaning litter boxes. With the Litter-Robot, a bag of litter lasts a long, long time. It saves you on trips to the pet supply store, and it is friendlier to the environment.

Cat Litter Deodorizer to Fight Litter Odor

With two cats, the area around the litter boxes can smell funky. Since I was going to have a friend visit for a weekend, I decided to try something to fight the odors. At the pet store, I came across Arm & Hammer’s Cat Litter Deodorizer. Honestly, I didn’t think it would work. But it has worked wonderfully. It has pretty much eliminated the ammonia smell from the urine. I don’t remember waking up to the smell of poop since I have started sprinkling the baking soda on top of the litter box after scoopings.

Added on 2007-10-21: There are a couple of other factors that affect litter box smell. The greater the food quality, the less stinky the poop. Since I wrote this post, I switched to feeding my cats Felidae and did not even have to use the deodorizer. I resumed using baking soda now that my cats use the Litter Robot since the waste is in the drawer for the few days it takes for it to fill up. The litter in the sphere itself doesn’t smell, but when I open the drawer to check on the waste level, it’s stinky. I decided to use regular baking soda, which is much cheaper than the Cat Litter Deodorizer.

Another way to fight litter odor is to use litter that has odor fighting properties.