A Quick Update and a Lesson in Patience

My view this morning, as I’m trying to get some work done, my friends are relaxing and basking in the sunshine, from the bottom, Cali, Marty, and Bean.

I can’t really review the CatLink Automatic box yet. My cats are definitely taking their time getting used to it. I’m trying to be patient, but worrying it might be a failure. I can say it works really well. I’m still using it in manual mode to make sure I don’t accidentally scare the cats, but it cleans itself well. The app is a little quirky, mostly because the English isn’t great, but it works. It notifies me whenever a cat has visited the box, it tracks the weight of each cat, and lets me know if there is enough litter left in the box.

Knowing the weight of the cat that visited the box has been helpful in figuring out usage. I’m pretty sure that Puck and Martin are using the box, not all the time, but visiting it at least. I don’t think Bean or Logan has given it a try yet. 

I’m doing what was recommended and spraying the litter in the box with catnip spray, and letting the old box get dirty. Hopefully with patience they will all start using it.

In other news, I’m super proud of Hector today! We have had her for about 9 years now, and bathing her has always been a challenge. I’ve tried all different kinds of containers for her to bathe herself including the shower (with a special bird perch) and the kitchen sink. The only bath she will tolerate is a fine mist spray bottle, and no matter how long I stand there and spray her, it just doesn’t really soak her.

A couple of weeks ago I was cleaning out some pet supplies and came across a small litter box. I honestly don’t remember when I bought it, or what it was for, but it was new with the stickers on it. For some reason I thought it might be an interesting bath tray for Hector.

Two weeks ago I filled the tray with warm water and put it on top of her cage. She tried to spill it, but thankfully it was too heavy. She chewed the edge, then…. she got in! I was shocked. She splashed around a little bit and got out, very proud of herself.

The Magic Tray

The tray has been offered every few days for the last couple of weeks, and nothing, no interest. She’s chewed the edges, but not taken another bath. I tried again today, and she took a nice, long bath! She flapped around in the box, and spent enough time that her feathers actually look wet. The grey dusty looking coating on the box is feather dust from Hector. Greys make a lot of dust, and it is important for them to bathe and clean it off on a regular basis.

As I’m typing, she is standing on the edge of the tray again! When people say that African Grey parrots are slow to adjust, they aren’t kidding, new toys, new people, new food, everything takes so long for her to accept. Maybe, just maybe she’ll accept more pats and snuggles some day. I can hope, can’t I? I just need to remember to NEVER lose patience with a parrot. They are smart and they learn, but always at their own pace.

 

 

It’s here! Pretty Litter, and the New Fountain

My new CatLink Pro arrived yesterday. First impression? It’s BIG! The footprint is probably only 6″ bigger than a “regular” litter box, but it’s tall. Set up was a little finicky. We had to play with it a little to get it on our Wifi, but it wasn’t that bad. I read that any type of clumping litter works in it, but I don’t think the OXO Cat litter that I prefer is going to work out. It seems a little too light weight. The box is supposed to say when the litter is full, but ours kept saying it needed more litter. Eventually I realized I had over filled it, had to empty out some litter, reset it, and eventually we got it set up properly.  I think a clay-based scooping litter will work better, and I plan to try that.

It has only been set up for one night. So far the cats haven’t used it. Bean is curious and stuck his head in, but that’s about it so far. I may spray a little catnip spray in there to encourage them.  I’ll keep you all posted.

In other news, I’ve been using Pretty Litter for about a month. It definitely different than the traditional clumping litters I have been using.

I like how lightweight it is. Easy to fill and dump the box.

I’m not sure how well the “health monitoring” really works. My litter was just brown/yellow all month, so I guess that means regular healthy cats which is great. I don’t think my cats have any health problems, and nothing showed up with the litter, so I can’t tell you how well the health monitoring works or not, but I like the idea of it.

The cats took to it right away. We went from OXO Cat wood clumping litter to the Pretty Litter in one box. The cats had no hesitation in using it at all. They actually seemed to prefer it. I’ve got two boxes upstairs and tried the Pretty Litter in one box. While they continued to use both boxes, the Pretty Litter box definitely had more frequent visits.

As far as tracking, I do think it tracks less than regular litter, but I think part of that is because it is such tiny grains so it isn’t as noticeable. It did track some for me, but definitely less than my regular clumping litter. There was a little worry about my wood floors. The tiny grains of litter feel really gritty, and I’m not sure if they would actually scratch the floor or not, but I was careful to sweep it up and not find out.

Martin and Bean enjoy hanging out on the new rug

Odor control is good. It dries out the poop quickly so the smell doesn’t last. I definitely noticed when the litter box needed to be changed. Urine should get mixed in when you scoop the poop. Those urine spots dry out when they are mixed in with the litter again.

Pretty Litter lasts like they say it does. I have to say that I was impressed the litter went a full month before I felt like I had to change it. I was using it in one of my four boxes, so I wasn’t sure how long it would last. There wasn’t any doubt when it was time to change the litter box. The Pretty Litter was no longer white, it was yellow, and it started to smell. The urine spots no longer mixed in and they started sticking to the bottom of the box. 

Positives – it definitely makes the box easier to clean than regular clumping litter. I only had to scoop the poop, and the litter is small, so I didn’t have to shake out the litter scoop forever. I can honestly say it probably took me less than half the time to clean this box versus regular clumping litter. Other positives, good odor control, less tracking, easy to maintain the box. Another positive is that the cats took to it right away. No transition stress. It’s also lightweight and easy to refill and dump the litter box.

Negatives – it’s gritty. I worry about it scratching wood floors. And my only other negative was the price. Two cats the cost is $44 per month. You can’t buy it on Amazon, and it seems like the only way to buy it is with a recurring subscription.

My take? Overall I like it. If I only had one or two cats, I’d probably keep using it. For me with four cats it isn’t economical. I do have a couple of bags left, so I’ll keep using it in one box, but I can’t use it in my new automatic box because it doesn’t clump. Anyone else tried it? What did you think? Leave me a comment and let me know.

I finally found a pet fountain that I LOVE! Review soon…

 

I bit the bullet!

It’s probably pretty obvious that I’ve been obsessing about cat litter and litter boxes for the last several months. With four cats in the house, I feel like I spend half my life scooping boxes and sweeping up litter.

After doing a lot of research on automatic boxes, Litter Robot often comes up at the top of the reviews, but they are expensive! Another brand that I’ve seen come up near the top of many review lists is the CatLink Pro. I’ve been keeping an eye on it, because it looks and sounds like it is very similar to the Litter Robot, but a bit less pricey. Today they sent me a Halloween offer I couldn’t refuse. I ordered the CatLink Pro!

If it works out, I’ll probably want/need a 2nd one, but even cutting my litter scooping in half would be huge! Of course I’ll be posting a review, or maybe even more than one as the cats and I acclimate to it. Wish me luck!