Sifting litter boxes save you the hassle of chasing down every clump and piece of waste with a handheld scoop. They make an unpleasant task just a little bit easier and may even help minimize litter waste. The theory behind sifting litter boxes is sound but not all of them live up to the promise of simplifying litter box maintenance.
In this guide, we’ll discuss how different types of sifting litter boxes work and what design features to look for. We’ll also cover our top recommendations for the best sifting litter boxes on the market.
At a Glance: Best-Rated Sifting Litter Boxes to Buy in 2024
Why Trust Cats.com
I’ve spent the past few years testing and reviewing over two dozen of the most popular litter boxes on the market. More than that, however, I’ve spent the last 14 years as a cat owner learning what works and what doesn’t. With three cats, I’m always on the lookout for a product that makes scooping the litter box even a little bit easier.
Drawing on my personal experience, conversations with cat behaviorists, and market research, I selected an assortment of sifting litter boxes to try for myself. I then spent several weeks testing the litter boxes at home with the help of my cats to assess their durability, effectiveness, and convenience.
In addition to my own testing, I read hundreds of customer reviews to get a feel for what other cat owners think of these products. This gave me an idea of potential issues to look for during testing and helped me narrow down my final list of recommendations.
The 7 Best Sifting Litter Boxes
In a multi-cat household, I find that sifting litter boxes significantly reduce the amount of time I spend scooping and scraping. One of my personal favorites is the Tidy Cats BREEZE system from Purina for its reusable pellets and slide-out tray. But it’s not the best choice for every household.
Every cat has their own preferences and some sifting litter boxes are more convenient in certain situations. Whether you’re looking for a budget-friendly option, a high-sided litter box to minimize mess, or a model that takes cleaning the litter box out of your hands completely, one of the recommendations below might be the perfect fit.
What to Look for When Shopping for a Sifting Litter Box
A great sifting litter box streamlines the chore of cleaning the litter box but a poorly designed model may make more work for you in the end. If the holes in the sifting pan are too large, you might find yourself having to scoop the pan after sifting. Holes too small may cause reusable litter to be discarded along with waste.
After scouring the market and reading countless customer reviews, we’ve learned what features make a sifting litter box effective and easy to use. Here are some things to look for when shopping for a sifting litter box.
In a standard litter pan, solid materials ensure durability against the rigors of daily scooping and scraping. With a sifting model, sturdy materials are even more important because the pan does the work for you. The sifting litter tray should be strong enough to hold the weight of a full box’s worth of litter as well as the tilting and shaking needed to loosen litter stuck to the sides.
Look for a sifting litter box that comes with multiple solid pans. This design enables you to place the sifting tray directly into a clean pan after disposing of collected waste. Then you simply pour the reusable litter in and tuck the extra solid pan underneath.
If you’re going with a covered litter box or a self-cleaning model, make sure any additional features don’t hinder the use of the sifting aspect. Some sifting litter boxes are made from recyclable or disposable materials which makes them a convenient option for travel.
Easy To Clean
Though a sifting litter box will cut down on the time you spend scooping, you’ll still need to clean the litter box now and then. Look for features like ergonomic handles that make the litter box simple to hold and move. For covered models, the top should snap securely in place for transport but be easy to remove for cleaning purposes.
Some sifting litter pans are coated with a nonstick finish to prevent litter from sticking. Consider the size and shape of the openings in the sifting pan—some designs are easier to clean than others. In many cases, a quick spritz with the hose does the trick.
Frequently Asked Questions
Do sifting litter boxes work?
Yes! Sifting litter boxes can greatly reduce the time and effort it takes to scoop the litter box, as long as you use the right kind of litter. Most sifting litter boxes work best with regular litter (ideally clumping litter), though some may work with crystal litter. The key is to find a litter that makes it no problem for the sifting mechanism to separate waste from clean litter.
How do I clean a sifting litter box?
Most sifting litter boxes feature a 3-pan system including two regular pans and one sifting pan. To clean the box, lift the sifting pan to separate the soiled litter from the clean litter. Dispose of the clumps then place the empty sifting pan into the empty solid pan. Then, simply pour the clean litter back into the sifting pan and store the extra solid pan underneath. Depending how dirty the sifting pan gets, you may need to rinse it off between uses.
Are sifting litter boxes really worth it?
It depends. If you’re looking for a new litter box to reduce the time and effort it takes to clean the litter box then yes, definitely! If you use an alternative litter or non-clumping litter, however, it may not work as well as it could, and you might end up being disappointed.