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The 8 Best Dog-Proof Cat Litter Boxes

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Kate Barrington / Cats.com

Though cat poop smells unpleasant to human noses, to some dogs, it smells like food. If your dog finds it hard to resist the tasty treats in your cat’s litter box, you might need to change the game by buying a dog-proof cat litter box.

Few litter boxes are completely dog-proof for the most single-minded snackers, but high sides, top-entry designs, and automatic cleaning features can help keep dogs out.

I’ve chosen the Litter-Robot 4 as the best dog-proof cat litter box on the market. Its impressive performance and smart features make it a standout choice for cats and cat owners alike, but it’s also got a few tricks up its sleeve when it comes to deterring dogs.

But a pricey pick like the Litter-Robot isn’t the right choice for every household. That’s why we’ve selected a total of 8 top recommendations that run the gamut from automatic, self-cleaning models to standard open litter pans.

In addition to reading about our favorite dog-proof litter boxes in this article, you’ll learn what design qualities and features are the most effective in keeping dogs out and cat litter in.

At a Glance: 8 Best Dog-Proof Litter Boxes

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In the comparison table below, we’ve highlighted some of the most important features of each product. You’ll find more detailed information about each product later in the article.

Overall Best
Picked by 31 people today!

Litter-Robot 4 Automatic Litter Box

  • Robust design and reliable performance
  • Keeps waste hidden away
  • Can be used with any clumping litter
$699 At Litter Robot
Runner Up
Picked by 31 people today!

PetSafe ScoopFree with Top-Entry

  • Reliable, not prone to jamming
  • Easy to set up and operate
  • Rakes waste into a covered compartment
Premium Pick
Picked by 25 people today!

Modkat XL Top-Entry Litter Box

  • Modern and functional design
  • Top entry keeps out smaller dogs
  • Reusable liner for easy cleanup
Budget Pick
Picked by 21 people today!

Frisco Top Entry Cat Litter Box Large

  • Top entry keeps smaller dogs out
  • Flip-top lid for easy scooping
  • Strong odor control ability
Best For Small Dogs
Picked by 18 people today!

Frisco High-Sided Cat Litter Box Extra-Large

  • Generously sized litter bed
  • High sides help keep small dogs out
  • Affordably priced around $20
Best For Large Dogs
Picked by 18 people today!

Frisco Multi-Function Covered Cat Litter Box

  • May deter bigger dogs
  • Top flips up for easy scooping
  • Included litter scoop and caddy
Best Covered
Picked by 18 people today!

Catit Jumbo Hooded Cat Litter Pan

  • May be good for bigger cats
  • Clear door that flips out of the way
  • Large opening for easy scooping
Best For Senior Cats
Picked by 18 people today!

Petmate Booda Dome Cleanstep Cat Litter Box

  • Ramp entry for easy access
  • Minimizes tracking and scatter
  • Built-in handle for easy carry

Why Should You Trust Us?

Over the last several years, we’ve spent a lot of time researching the factors that make a litter box great. We’ve researched the different types of litter boxes on the market, scoured customer reviews, and performed in-home tests on dozens of options.

In addition to research and real-world testing, we consulted with veterinarians to determine what it takes to keep a dog out of the litter box without negatively impacting its cat-friendliness.

#1 Overall Best: Litter-Robot 4 Automatic Litter Box

  • Price: $699
  • Dimensions: 22”x27”
  • Features: Self-cleaning, programmable, health monitoring
  • Good For: Very determined dogs, cat owners seeking a scoop-free solution

With its thoughtful design, reliable performance, and app-controlled convenience, the Litter-Robot 4 by Whisker is one of our favorite litter boxes on the market. Our Head of Content, Mallory, tested it with her cats Wessie and Forest and says, “Overall, it seems more cat-friendly and more human-friendly than the Litter-Robot 3.”

The Litter-Robot 4 consists of a large globe that rotates, pouring the litter through a sifter that separates out clumps and waste. The waste is discreetly deposited in a waste drawer where your dog can’t access it.

Though buttons on the Litter-Robot 4 enable you to adjust the settings, you’ll find significantly more options for customization in the Whisker app. The unit is equipped with a combination of mechanical and laser sensors which detect your cat’s entry and exit and then automatically trigger a cleaning cycle. To maximize the Litter-Robot’s dog-proofing capability, set the cycle interval to the lowest option – 3 minutes.

The current model comes with an insert designed to help prevent litter from scattering outside of the globe. This feature may have the added benefit of making it a little more difficult for a dog to stand on the step and reach in.

What We Liked:

  • Fully automatic and self-cleaning
  • Easy to program and customize through the Whisker app
  • Keeps feces and clumps secure in a discreet waste compartment
  • Can be used with any clumping cat litter

What We Didn’t Like:

  • Large cats may find it a little cramped
  • Very expensive, priced over $600

#2 Runner Up: PetSafe ScoopFree with Top-Entry

Kate Barrington / Cats.com

  • Price: $229.95
  • Dimensions: 27.6”x19.1”x15.6”
  • Features: Self-cleaning, uses crystal litter, covered waste compartment
  • Good For: People seeking a budget-friendly automatic litter box

If the price point of the Litter-Robot 4 is a barrier, the PetSafe ScoopFree offers a more economical self-cleaning litter box option. It’s a simpler design with a sifting rake that sweeps waste across an open litter pan into a covered waste compartment.

Unlike the Litter-Robot which works with any clumping litter, the ScoopFree can only be used with crystal cat litter. The silica crystals are highly absorbent, so they quickly soak up urine and dehydrate solid waste which improves odor control and scoopability. Less odor coming from the litter box may decrease your dog’s interest in what’s inside it.

While the automatic self-cleaning feature of this model may help keep your dog from eating cat poop, it cycles on a 20-minute delay. Adding the top-entry cover can keep your dog from getting at the waste before the cleaning cycle activates.

Earlier models of the PetSafe ScoopFree are available at a discounted price but they are not compatible with the top entry cover. The cover only works with the ScoopFree 2nd Generation and ScoopFree Smart. Having previously liked the original ScoopFree, I found the 2nd Generation’s performance a little smoother and I liked the use counter readout.

What We Liked:

  • Silica gel litter quickly absorbs urine and dehydrates feces
  • The top entry cover creates a physical barrier against dogs
  • Economically priced in comparison to many automatic boxes
  • Quick to set up and very easy to operate

What We Didn’t Like:

  • Top entry may make access more difficult for kittens and older cats
  • Can only be used with silica litter and branded litter trays
  • Tends to be extremely expensive over time

#3 Premium Pick: Modkat XL Top-Entry Litter Box

Modkat XL Litter Box, Top or Front-Entry Configurable

  • Price: $179.95
  • Dimensions: 21.3”x17.3”x16.5”
  • Features: Top or front entry, reusable liner, modern design
  • Good For: Homes with small dogs, kittens, or small cats

While top-entry litter boxes are difficult for your dog to access, they can be a challenge for some cats as well. The ModKat XL offers dual configurations for both top and front entry.

This litter box has a modern, functional design and plenty of customer-focused features. The cube-like shape maximizes interior space for your cat while the reusable liner makes cleanup a breeze. The ModKat XL comes with two of these liners, each designed for one of the two configurations.

I’ve been using the ModKat XL for months with my three cats, and they use both the front and top entry points. I placed the litter box on top of a bench to keep my dog, Archie, from reaching in through the front and it’s worked well for us. The front entry is high enough up that it helps keep litter inside and a removable step catches a lot of the litter that would otherwise be tracked from my cats’ feet.

The ModKat XL is on the pricey side for a non-automatic litter box, but its thoughtful design makes it easy to clean. It is recommended for smaller cats, however, because it only measures a little over 21”x17” but the dual entry points may make it feel a little more open than typical top-entry boxes.

What We Liked:

  • Dual configurations for top and/or front entry
  • Comes with a reusable liner for easy cleaning
  • Flip-up top makes it easy to scoop
  • Sturdy but sleek and modern design

What We Didn’t Like:

  • May be too small for bigger cats
  • Somewhat pricey, over $150

#4 Budget Pick: Frisco Top Entry Cat Litter Box, Large

Frisco Top Entry Cat Litter Box, Large

Kate Barrington / Cats.com

  • Price: $32.75
  • Dimensions: 15.4”x23.2”x15”
  • Features: Top entry, flip top lid for easy scooping, non-slip top
  • Good For: Homes with small to medium-sized dogs

If you’re not ready to spend over $150 for one of our top three picks, the Frisco Top-Entry litter box might fit the bill. The enclosed design is highly effective in keeping dogs out but litter and odor in. It features a textured top for non-slip stability and the opening measures about 8.7-by-9.7 inches.

While I also liked the Petmate Top Entry litter box, the Frisco model is less hassle to clean. You can flip the lid up to scoop rather than removing it entirely. It’s also a little bit longer and wider, though the shape is slightly tapered which limits the interior space.

Many top-entry litter boxes – like the ModKat XL – have holes in the lid which allows litter from your cat’s paws to fall back into the box. The Frisco model’s lid is solid, but you can simply flip up the lid to pour any accumulated litter back in.

What We Liked:

  • Top-entry design keeps small to medium-sized dogs out
  • Flip-top lid makes it easy to access for scooping
  • Does a great job of containing litter and odor

What We Didn’t Like:

  • Bigger cats may find it a little cramped
  • Lid is not perforated like some top-entry models

#5 Best For Small Dogs: Frisco High-Sided Cat Litter Box, Extra-Large

Frisco High Sided Cat Litter Box

  • Price: $24.99
  • Dimensions: 18”x24”x10”
  • Features: High sides, lowered entry point, large litter bed
  • Good For: Homes with small dogs, bigger cats

Another litter box I’ve used for over a year, this Frisco litter pan features high 10-inch sides. Not only does it do a great job of containing urine spray and litter scatter, but it may keep small to medium-sized dogs from easily accessing your cat’s waste.

With its 18”x24” footprint, this litter box is much roomier than the average open-style litter pan. It’s a good choice for bigger cats and those who dislike the confined feeling of a covered litter box. Though the sides are high, the entry stands just a little over 5.5 inches off the ground for comfortable access by most cats.

When it comes to deterring dogs, this litter box is most likely to be effective against small to medium-sized dogs. Bigger breeds may be able to reach over the sides.

I found this litter box to be fairly sturdy compared to other similarly priced models. Handles on the sides make it easy to carry, and a wide lip on the front doubles as a step for your cat and may help knock loose litter that sticks to their feet.

What We Liked:

  • High 10-inch sides may deter small dogs
  • The large litter bed may be more comfortable for bigger cats
  • Sturdy design with handles for easy carry
  • Affordably priced around $20

What We Didn’t Like:

  • May not be effective against large dogs

#6 Best For Large Dogs: Frisco Multi-Function Covered Cat Litter Box

Frisco Multi-Function Covered Cat Litter Box

  • Price: $74.99
  • Dimensions: 29.73”x17.5”x17.64”
  • Features: Large interior, flip-up top, included scoop and caddy
  • Good For: Bigger cats, homes with large dogs

When high sides and top entry aren’t enough to keep big dogs out of the litter box, this unique option from Frisco is one to consider. Though designed to be used with a smaller litter box inside, some cat owners simply fill the whole tub with a few inches of litter.

This is the best litter box I’ve found to contain my cat Munchkin’s urine spray. I place a pee pad under the litter pan inside and just swap out the pad to keep things fresh. It works well as an alternative to top-entry boxes when my cats simply want to step in and do their business.

I’ve witnessed my medium-sized dog, Archie, trying to raid this litter box with little success. If you use a small enough pan inside, you can tuck it into the corner, so it isn’t directly under the opening. Large dogs may find it particularly difficult to reach down and into this litter box.

Cleaning this litter box is very easy because the entire top flips up. It also comes with a litter scoop and caddy you can place inside or hang on the outside of the box.

What We Liked:

  • Spacious interior for bigger cats
  • Can be used with or without a smaller pan
  • Flip-up top makes it easy to clean
  • Comes with a litter scoop and caddy

What We Didn’t Like:

  • Somewhat pricey, over $50
  • Included litter pan is pretty small

#7 Best Covered: Catit Jumbo Hooded Cat Litter Pan

Catit Jumbo Hooded Cat Litter Pan

  • Price: $39.99
  • Dimensions: 19.7”x22.4”x18.3”
  • Features: Spacious interior, optional flap, integrated filter
  • Good For: Bigger cats, homes with small dogs

Another option in covered litter boxes, the Catit Jumbo Hooded Cat Litter Pan is one I’ve been using for years. With its almost square shape, it offers much more interior space than the typical covered litter box and I like the fact that you can use it with or without the flap.

This litter box measures 19.7 inches wide and just under 22 ½ inches long. It features a deep base and tall cover that secure tightly to each other with four sliding clips. The opening is generously sized for bigger cats and it comes with a clear door you can flip up out of the way if desired.

Though the flap on this litter box may not bar the most determined dogs, it seems to be effective against small breeds. My cats are all pretty small, but customer reviews seem to indicate that even bigger cats feel comfortable using this litter box.

What We Liked:

  • Larger than the average covered litter box
  • Clear door that can be flipped out of the way
  • Integrated carbon filter for odor control
  • Base and cover secure tightly together

What We Didn’t Like:

  • Flap might not deter very determined dogs
  • Some cats dislike enclosed litter boxes

#8 Best For Senior Cats: Petmate Booda Dome Cleanstep Cat Litter Box

Petmate Booda Dome Cleanstep Cat Litter Box

Kate Barrington / Cats.com

  • Price: $57.33
  • Dimensions: 22.5”x22.5”x19 inches
  • Features: Spacious interior, ramp entry, built-in handle
  • Good For: Older and mobility-limited cats

The same features that keep dogs out of the litter box can make it difficult for older cats to access it. This dome-shaped litter box features a spacious interior and a gently sloping internal ramp entry perfect for small kittens and senior cats alike.

With its 22.5-inch diameter, this litter box offers a decent amount of interior space. The ramp consumes some of the litter bed area, but the domed top may make this model feel less confining for claustrophobic cats than the standard covered litter box.

While toy-breed dogs may be able to walk into this litter box just as easily as your cat, the design seems to be effective in most cases. Some users report that the top doesn’t always fit securely into the base, however, so determined dogs may be able to knock it loose.

What We Liked:

  • Gently sloping ramp for comfortable access
  • Domed shape increases interior headspace
  • Many users report their dogs can’t get into it
  • Built-in handle for easy carry

What We Didn’t Like:

  • Takes up a significant amount of floor space
  • The hood doesn’t always secure tightly to the base

What To Look For in a Dog-Proof Litter Box

Coprophagia, the scientific term for eating feces, is a natural behavior for dogs in certain situations. To keep the nesting area clean, nursing mothers sometimes consume their pups’ feces. Puppies sometimes mimic this behavior, though most grow out of it once they discover that food tastes much better.

But why do some adult dogs eat cat poop straight from the litter box? And should you be worried about it?

Dog breath is bad enough, but snacking from the little box ups the grossness factor. Eating cat poop also comes with the potential to expose your dog to harmful bacteria and parasites – some of which can be transmitted to humans, like toxoplasmosis or salmonella. The bits of cat litter a dog might consume along with the feces can be problematic as well.

Changing your litter box could be the key to keeping your dog out. Here’s what to look for when shopping for a dog-proof litter box.

High Sides

Basic litter pans have short walls which enable your cat to access the box from all sides. With no barrier to entry, however, these litter boxes offer optimal snacking opportunities for your dog. High sides make it a little bit harder for your dog to get at the goodies inside the box.

Most high-sided litter boxes have lower entry points for cat accessibility. This might be enough for some dogs to reach in, so you may need to combine a high-sided litter box with other solutions.


Enclosed or covered litter boxes may be more effective against large dogs than high-sided boxes. The entry should be big enough for your cat to comfortably come and go but small enough that your dog won’t be tempted to stick their head in.

While covered litter boxes are great for odor and scatter control, some cats dislike the feeling of being confined while they do their business. Translucent tops and clear doors may help mitigate this concern.

Top-Entry Design

Top-entry litter boxes combine the security of a covered litter box with high dog-stopping sides. Rather than stepping into the litter box, your cat drops down through an opening in the lid.

This type of litter box is most likely to deter small dogs who can’t reach the opening, but large dogs may be tall enough to poke their heads in.

Consider the interior space when selecting a top-entry litter box, as these tend to be more confining than open-style litter pans. Big breeds like Maine Coons may find top-entry litter boxes uncomfortable.

Automatic Cleaning

An automatic, self-cleaning litter box scoops the poop and stores it away where your dog can’t get to it. It’s a win-win situation for you, considering it saves you the hassle of cleaning the litter box yourself.

The downside of automatic litter boxes is that they tend to be expensive. Some models are more dog-proof than others as well, so think about the mode and height of entry to limit your dog’s access.

Models like the Litter-Robot 4 enable automatic cleaning immediately following your cat’s exit, and you’re able to adjust the cycle timer to decide how long it’ll wait to clean after use. The longer the delay before cleaning, the more opportunity your dog will have to sneak in and steal a snack.

Remember to consider your cat’s preferences.

Ultimately, the best way to prevent your dog from eating cat poop is to scoop the litter box before it becomes an issue. Should your dog be particularly persistent, however, consider your cat’s preferences when shopping for a new litter box.

Top-entry litter boxes and models with high sides can be a challenge for kittens and older cats – especially those suffering from arthritis. Some cats feel claustrophobic in covered litter boxes while others find the added privacy comforting. Automatic litter boxes can scare skittish cats with their sound and movement, though they’re hard to beat when it comes to keeping things clean.

Thoughtful litter box placement can help limit your dog’s access as well. A baby gate raised a few inches off the floor will keep your dog at bay while your cat can slink underneath. Or place the litter box on a table or another piece of furniture to keep it out of your dog’s reach.

Just make sure you don’t make it needlessly difficult for your cat to get into the box themselves or you may find yourself dealing with another problem: litter box avoidance.

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About Kate Barrington

Kate Barrington is a writer with over twelve years of experience in the pet industry. She is an NAVC-certified Pet Nutrition Coach and has completed coursework in therapeutic nutrition, raw feeding, and the formulation of homemade diets for pets at an accredited university. Kate enjoys cooking, reading, and doing DIY projects around the house. She has three cats, Bagel, Munchkin, and Biscuit.