If anyone is interested in an automatic/robot litter box, now is the time. I just got word that Catlink, the company that made the litter boxes I use, has a new “basic” model available. The new launch price is $359!
I haven’t used this exact model, but I have two of their other models and I’ve been super happy with them. You can see my review if you look back in the blog.
Check it out, and if you get one, let me know what you think: https://www.indiegogo.com/projects/catlink-lite-new-gen-premium-affordable-litter-box?secret_perk_token=75f5b927#/
Happy Hiking Dog! Cali may be little, but she loves hiking through the woods. I was so thankful the weather warmed up a bit last weekend and we got out for a nice hike. Now I just need to find time to give her a Spring haircut!
Before I talk about my new eufy pet fountain, an update on the Catlink boxes now that they are a regular part of my life. I LOVE THEM! They aren’t cheap, but they are worth every single penny we spent on them. Scooping litter boxes has become (mostly) a thing of the past. If I didn’t have a sick cat*, I wouldn’t be scooping boxes at all!
We have two Catlink boxes now, one upstairs in our laundry room, and one all the way downstairs under the staircase. I check the boxes once a day, honestly, sometimes every other day. I check to make sure there aren’t any clumps stuck to the top of the box, if there are, I just scrape it off with a litter scoop, and push the button to run the clean cycle, so easy! Once every 5 days or so, I check the bottom compartment to make sure it isn’t too full. When it gets full, I remove the bag, close it up tight, throw it away, and add a new bag. The whole process takes less than 5 minutes. One of the Catlink boxes will tell me when the bottom is full, but I’ve found if I wait for it to tell me, it’s actually a bit over full. Easier to check it every few days and change as needed. All of the cats have adapted to the Catlink boxes. I will say that the “optional” step really isn’t optional. It makes a huge difference. Not only does it make the box much more accessible for the cats, but it also helps keep any litter mess in check. Speaking of litter, cheap, scoopable, clay litter is all I’m using, most often TidyCat. The Catlink needs a litter with a little weight. TidyCat is cheap and readily available.
The only negative about the automatic boxes, and I think this is true of Catlink or any of the other brands, is that they are large. I’m very lucky I was able to find space for them where they aren’t in the way.
One more word of advice on the Catlink box, for reliability, attach it to a UPS/battery back up unit. They don’t deal well with power flickers. We lose power a few times a year usually, and often before the power goes out, we get flickers. Unfortunately, the Catlink box doesn’t deal well with the flickers and it sometimes stops working. We were having to reset the box with every power flicker, but that problem has been solved by plugging the boxes into a battery backup.
Another product I’m super excited about is the eufy pet water fountain P940. I’ve been using this fountain for a couple of months now, enjoying the simplicity of it. It’s easy to clean, and easy to use.
The eufy fountain is super simple to put together. It’s got a water basin, a tube for the water fountain, a filter and filter base, a stainless steel drinking surface, and the fountain spout.
It’s super simple to set up, just stack the pieces together and it’s good to go. The filter should definitely be rinsed before use so that there isn’t extra charcoal in the drinking water.
The tiny dot in the center of the white base is actually an LED light. If it’s red, the water level is too low and it’s time to refill. The water tank and everything on top of it easily lift off the base to refill. I pick it up, remove the spout, drinking tray, and filter tray, rinse everything and refill. Once a week, I do a more through wash of the whole thing before I refill it. With three cats and a small dog in the house, I am refilling every day, so I do wish the water storage was a bit bigger, but it works.
The unit plugs into an AC outlet, so there aren’t any batteries to worry about. For me this works out great, but if you don’t have an outlet near where you want to keep the fountain, it might be an issue.
Following are some visual from the box so you can see the setup diagrams:
Overall I’ve been really happy with this eufy fountain. I like that there is a stainless surface for the pets to drink from, so they aren’t drinking directly from plastic. I have had issues in the past with one of the cats breaking out on his face and chin, and the vet said it could be from a bacteria that gets into plastic surfaces, so now I only use metal food and water dishes. Refilling and cleaning are easy and quick. The filters are available to purchase on Amazon, or directly from the eufy website.
If there is one thing I would fix, I’d like a larger water capacity. Filling the fountain every day is fine, but it would be nice to have a large enough capacity to fill every other day. For most people, the capacity would probably be fine, but when we have four cats and the dog in the house, it takes more refilling than normal.
Martin is here visiting again, and he approves of the Catlink litter box and the eufy fountain! Anyone else use a pet fountain? What type do you use? What features are your favorites? Leave a comment and let me know or just say Hello!
*The reason I still have one litter box to scoop is that Logan, my old lady cat, is still living in her cat condo. She is lose for a few hours every day and uses the Catlink box, but she also has a regular box in her condo.
Bean and Cali went to the vet today. Bean for his annual check up. He’s all good, weighed in at his almost 16 lbs, and got his rabies shot.
Cali got her Cytopoint injection to help with her itchiness.
Mostly we talked about Logan. We’ve decided to try her on medication to try and help her anxiety. I don’t love the idea of medicating, but I hate the idea of having our couch peed on all the time even more.
We’ll start her on meds next week after my weekend trip when I’m home to monitor her for a while. Fingers crossed it helps!
Anyone else have cats with litter box issues? How did you solve it? Leave a comment.
Poor Logan is back in quarantine. If you read the post from a couple of weeks ago, you already know we thought she had some kind of urinary/bladder infection and treated it, but apparently there is something else going on.
After the “Sh*t Show” I’ve been cleaning up the aftermath, and making sure the Catlink boxes are working properly, but two days ago I found fresh urine by the fireplace. With three cats in the house (Marty moved with my son), I had to do a little detective work to make sure I had the right cat. Since Logan had recently been ill, I guessed it was her, and moved her to a nice big bathroom on her own. No more accidents in the house, so it was time to call the vet again.
Last time they told me bladder stones were very unlikely for whatever reason, but since the antibiotics didn’t completely clear up whatever Logan has going on, they think that might be the problem. Monday morning she’ll go back to the vet for an abdominal X-ray to see if we can figure this out. I’m hoping it isn’t anything too serious. Logan isn’t super old, but she is almost 1`5. For now, she is enjoying a break from the boy cats, eating and drinking well, and she seems to be acting fine. I’ll update after the vet on Monday.
Puck loves his heating pad in the colder weather, actually all year round!
I wish I could share the info on this pad because I love it, but I can’t find it on Amazon anymore. This particular pad stays safely plugged in all the time. It turns itself on with pressure, so when a pet climbs on, it heats up, and when it isn’t being used, it shuts down. It’s auto controlled not to overheat, it gets warm, but not hot. I’ll keep looking for something like it and post if/when I find one.
In Hector news, she took a bath this morning! I’ve posted about Hector hating baths before, so just wanted to update. I think I mentioned the green litter box that Hector has decided is OK for bathing in. She has a great bath routine now. About once a week, I fill her box with warm water and put it on top of her cage.
She doesn’t always touch it right away, and she didn’t use it at all yesterday, but this morning she decided it was bath time. She climbs in her box and splashes around, then chirps happily and I know it is time to go spray her. I have a fine mist spray bottle that I fill with warm water, then I stand there and spray her while she plays in the water, until my hands get sore, then I spray her some more!
She flaps her wings, dips her belly, and dunks her head in the water. It makes me so happy to see her enjoy a bath! It has been a very long road with lots of trial and error to find a bath system she likes!
Where to start… I’ve been traveling. We headed to Italy to visit my daughter. Absolutely amazing trip, but of course had to deal with the hassle of pet care while I was away. Cali to a friend, and a pet sitter to the house.
I still love my Catlink automatic litter boxes, but learning to live with them is definitely a learning experience, traveling definitely added to the learning curve.
A friend took Cali for me, so that was easy. I prep her food in individual containers to make it super easy, no measuring! Just add a little water and Cali is fed.
The rest of the crew, Hector, cats, and dragon, stayed home to be checked on daily by a pet sitter. As usual, very detailed instructions were left, but I hadn’t traveled since we got the new automatic litter boxes. I figured it would be super easy! I taught the pet sitter how to change the bags in the bottom every few days and I figured all was good. I even left extra litter in case the boxes ran low. Unfortunately, I didn’t think about power outages because we have a generator, but there are still short power outages as the electricity goes out and the generator comes on.
The problem is that the new litter boxes are pretty picky about the power supply, and with the power flickers we had from a storm, the litter box goes went into some kind of LaLa land and didn’t auto clean.
Well, we came back from being away and found both of the automatic litter boxes had not been cleaning themselves. The poor cats clearly tried to use the dirty boxes, but picked our living room as their new “Box” when they couldn’t stand the mess anymore. They made a lovely poop circle all around the living room rug. Thankfully, they mostly peed in the boxes, but there were a couple of spots that I’m still trying to remove the smell.
I had to figure out why the boxes weren’t automatically cleaning anymore, and customer service at CatLink was excellent. I used their chat feature in the CatLink App and someone helped me right away. They emailed me directions on recalibrating the boxes which took a couple of tries, but now they are working perfectly again.
Lesson learned. We bought battery back-ups for both litter boxes to help eliminate the power flickers. I’ll also leave better notes for the pet sitter about checking and cleaning the “automatic” boxes if necessary.
Hector D. Byrd hatched 30 years ago today! I feel so lucky to have her in my life. Her cage is in the center of our living space, halfway between the kitchen and my desk space, so I spend a lot of time with her every day. She’s sort of become my therapist. She’s always there for me to talk to, and she’s a great listener. She’s not a cuddly bird, but she loves to whistle, destroy anything made out of cardboard, and eat nuts! Her happy chirps and whistles have become part of our home. Love my red tailed Jungle Chicken!
My Logan girl has had a rough couple of weeks. About two weeks ago, she jumped on the back of the couch and peed a couple of drops, yikes! The boy cats had been chasing her, so I thought maybe they had just made her really nervous and I didn’t worry too much about it. Then I found a cat bed covered in pee. Hmmmm something wasn’t right. That night, Logan went over to scratching toy, climbed up on it, and peed a couple of drops again. The next morning I took her to the vet. Poor baby has some kind of urinary infection. The good news is that we caught it. A simple antibiotic shot seems to be clearing it right up, and she is back to her old grumpy self.
Since I got the CatLink boxes, I haven’t been using Pretty Litter, but I do have a couple of bags of it. When I had to confine Logan for a couple of days, I used the Pretty Litter in the extra litter box for her. I have to say, the crystals were turning red, a sign of infection. This morning, a couple of days after her antibiotic shot, the crystals are back to normal yellow. I guess they do work!
Speaking of the CatLink boxes. I still love them. It is truly life changing to not worry about cleaning cat boxes all the time! About once every five days, I open up the bottom, take out the waste litter in its easy little bag, throw it out, and put in a new bag, so easy! When I change out the bottom, I usually add some more clumping litter, and that’s it. Worth every single penny we spent on those boxes! With the optional step in front of the box, there is even very little litter tracking. Truly cat owner heaven!
Time to bring Hector more nuts and some new cardboard boxes, a perfect birthday for my feathered friend!
Four cats currently in the house and I no longer need to scoop liter! I was so skeptical that we would ever get to this point, but here we are!
It’s been almost two months of transition. If you are interested in my first impression of the CatLink liter box, check out: https://www.petmomma.co/2022/11/09/its-here-pretty-litter-and-the-new-fountain/
With four cats in the house, I’ve been scooping 5 litter boxes. It wasn’t fun. It was time consuming, and I felt like I was spending half my life scooping cat litter.
I wasn’t convinced a robot litter box would solve my problems. Would my picky, old lady cat Logan use it? Would giant Maine Coon, Bean, fit in it? What about little Puck, would he climb in?
My set up had started with litter boxes downstairs near the garage entrance. I had two nice big boxes down there, and having them near the garage made it easy to get rid of the dirty litter. The boy cats sometimes bully Logan (my old lady cat) a bit, and she wasn’t coming downstairs as much as she used to, so I added a litter box to our laundry room on the top floor of the house. Everyone seemed happy, except me. I was sick of scooping litter all the time.
Different types of boxes, different litters, I tried such a variety of things! The only thing I hadn’t tried was an automatic litter box. Robot litter boxes aren’t cheap, and what if it didn’t work? It just seemed like a big investment because I was feeling lazy about cleaning boxes.
Finally I started researching, different types, styles, and brands of automatic litter boxes. Litter Robot seemed like everyone’s go-to box, but they were super expensive, not readily available, and not everyone loved them. I found a similar style by a brand called Catlink. Honestly, the boxes look very much the same to me, except Catlink boxes are much cheaper. I bought the Catlink Luxury Pro on sale for about half the price of a Litter Robot.
As of yesterday, I have two Catlink boxes set up, upstairs and downstairs. The last regular litter box went out in today’s trash. I made sure to give the cats plenty of time to get used to the new boxes. It was definitely a big change for them. The cats have to climb up into it, and they aren’t the most spacious things, but as you can see in the photo, it works, even for Bean, my big Maine Coon.
My first bit of advice would be to be very patient. Don’t force the new box on your cats. Let them make the choice. I sprayed catnip spray on the litter in the new box, and a calming spray around the base. It was about a week before any of the cats dared to use the new box even once.
Cats are curious creatures, and mine were actually super interested when the box rotated to do its cleaning cycle. It’s too bad I never caught a picture of Marty sitting up on his haunches like a meerkat watching the box rotate!
Slowly, the cats started sticking their heads in, then a paw, and eventually they stepped in and dug around in the litter. Catlink recommends keeping the box in manual mode while the cats are getting used to it so that it doesn’t start cleaning and scare them. At first I only cleaned the box when there weren’t any cats around, but then slowly I started triggering it to clean when the cats were around, but at a distance. They quickly became curious.
As the manufacturer suggested, the old box remained near the new one, but I stopped cleaning it as often. Cats are clean creatures, and they learned to use the new box that was always clean instead of the old one that was definitely dirtier.
We saw a sale on Catlink boxes in early December and decided that things were going well enough that we should purchase a 2nd box. We thought we bought the same box, but it is a slightly different model. I’ll go into that later.
After about a month and a half, the old box was barely being used upstairs, and I took it away. They had another Catlink box downstairs along with one regular box. The transition downstairs went much more quickly since the cats were already used to the Catlink box upstairs.
If I had been asked how I liked my Catlink boxes a month after I got it, I probably would have been hesitant. The switch over definitely took a lot of time and patience, but it is so worth it! No more scooping cat litter!
Odor is almost non-existent, yes, it sometimes smells when the cat does what it needs to do, but within five minutes the box cleans itself and the odor is contained in the sealed waste compartment. The Catlink box does use a custom sized trash bag for the waste compartment, but I’ve just been dumping the waste from the bag into a regular trash bag. I should be able to get many uses out of a single bag that way. I haven’t tried using a standard kitchen trash bag in there yet, but I feel like there might be a way to make that work.
Another bonus is that very little litter gets tracked around. When I bought the first box, I didn’t buy the optional step. It seemed expensive at about $89, and I wasn’t sure a step was worth it. I ended up using a plastic container for the cats to step on to have easier access to the box, and then gave in and bought two steps. My advice: Don’t mess around, just buy the step. It really should just be included with the box and not listed as an option. The step makes it so much easier for the cats to get in and out of the box. It makes the whole thing less scary and more accessible for them. It also keeps litter from spreading around. The top of the step has holes that the litter falls through, so it is collected before the cat even touches the ground.
The step doesn’t attach to the box, but it has rubber feet to hold it right up against the box. I haven’t had any trouble with it slipping away. The step also has a little opening on the back that you can pop open to empty out the litter, super easy and convenient.
The Catlink app is worth mentioning, as it is the easiest way to control the box. You can set the amount of time after the cat uses the box that you want it cleaned, manual or automatic mode, and it can trigger a cleaning. As you can see, the app isn’t very detailed.
The main screen when you open the app shows both of my devices:
I mentioned that I had two different boxes. They are very similar, but do have a couple of differences. One is the “Luxury Pro” version and one is the “Standard Pro.” Both connect to Wifi, and both use the same app to trigger cleaning, access the settings, and to view a log of usage.
You can see that the “Upstairs” box shows there is enough litter, and the “downstairs” box just shows the mode it is in. The Standard Pro doesn’t tell you about litter quantity, or even if you get low on litter.
The Pro version has an interior scale so it can help identify which cat used the box by weight. The Downstairs box tells me when a cat has been there and what they weighed, but doesn’t attach a name like the upstairs box did. I had to input data on each cat for the upstairs box: name, breed, gender, birthday, weight, notes. I can also attach a Catlink Collar for more tracking, and include a picture if I wanted to.
It’s nice knowing that the cats are using the boxes, but I’m not sure there is a lot of value in knowing the exact usage by cat.
Here’s an example of Puck’s day:
The app is a little quirky, but it does what it needs to. It’s nice seeing the log and knowing that the box is being used, and there have been times when I have wanted to manually trigger the box and the app has been helpful.
I think having the Wifi available litter box is worth it. It’s nice to be able to control the box with the app and not have to squat next to the box to figure out the settings and trigger a clean. Both of my boxes work fine, and I really don’t have a preference on the Luxury Pro versus the Standard Pro.
It works well! The box cleans itself after the cat uses it. I really don’t have to do anything other than empty the waste bin once a week, and add some litter every couple of weeks.
I haven’t had any trouble with the mechanics of either box.
The app makes it easy to trigger a cleaning.
The step (optional) helps keep kitty litter well contained.
Any type of scooping cat litter works. No fancy litters to buy.
The company offers a one year guarantee on the boxes and offers a return for any reason. If my cats start hating the box for some unknown reason, I have a year to return it.
The biggest con is the price. These boxes aren’t cheap, but in the long run, I’m convinced it will be worth it.
The app isn’t great. The user interface takes a bit of getting used to. It’s functional, but not pretty.
I think the “optional” step should just be included with the unit. It is a big jump up into the box without having the step, and my cats definitely adjusted better once I had the steps.
I wish the waste bin didn’t require specially sized bags, but so far it hasn’t been an issue dumping the waste into a standard bag and reusing the specialty ones.
The bottom line is that I have four cats in my house and I don’t scoop litter boxes anymore. Litter doesn’t track all over the place, my cats are happy and relaxed, and I’ve removed a big daily chore from my life!
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.
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…
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!
I’ve been searching local pet stores and of course Amazon lately in my quest for the perfect litter box. During one of my Amazon searches, I came across the SiftEase.
Seems like a really interesting product. You don’t need to use any special litter box, but in theory, it should help save time scooping.
Here’s the idea, a big scooping tray, with a bin underneath so that you just pick up your litter box and pour the litter through the sifter. The sifter catches the clumps (clumping litter obviously required) and you throw them away. The bin underneath catches the clean litter and you can just pour that back in the box.
Here’s the giant sifter. It sits on top of the grey bin shown in the first photo. I have to say that I really like the idea of this product. I’ve tried litter boxes with built in sifting devices and I’ve never had much luck with them.
Unfortunately, this product just didn’t work for me. First of all, dumping a litter box into the strainer/sifter is much harder than it seems. I tried to be careful, but litter spilled onto the floor. While I tried to scrape clumps loose in the pan before I dumped it, there were still clumps in the box after I dumped it into the sifter.
Next problem, the holes in the sifter didn’t let all the litter through. Maybe that’s my fault, and I’m sure there are other types of litter that might work better than the OxoCat litter that I prefer, but I have enough issues with litter boxes right now, and I’m not changing my litter.
So I have a sifter full of dirty cat litter. I tried shaking it, but it only helped a little. I had to get my litter scoop and push the litter around in the sifter until I could get most of the clean litter through the slats and dump the clumps. I ended up wasting a lot of litter between the spills on the floor, and the litter that was thrown out because it didn’t sift well.
Finally removed the sifter from the base and dumped the litter back into the box. Time to sweep up the giant mess before I was done. All this hassle, and I only cleaned one box. Four more to go? I don’t think so.
Once I finished sweeping, I cleaned out the SiftEase and folded it back up. I put it back in the box, and told Amazon to come pick it up. This is not a product for me. As much as I hate scooping. This product didn’t save me any time or hassle at all.
I’m going to continue my dreams of having a LitterRobot. There have been many times I’ve been tempted to just spend the money and try one out, but I know I would need at least two of them, and I’m not convinced it would work out for my big Maine Coon, or whichever cat likes to use two boxes to take care of business. I have heard they have a 90 day money back guarantee, so maybe I’ll give it a try one of these days. The joys of cat ownership do not include litter boxes!