Use the Right Type of Box
Cats are desert animals, says Sheena Wheeler, program coordinator for Sherwood, Oregon-based shelter, Cat Adoption Team. “So, the litter box should replicate a desert—a large open space with no scent with a fine-grained substrate.”
Ideally, it should be about one-and-a-half times the length of the cat from the nose to the base of the tail to allow for free movement, Jeffrey says. You don’t have to spend a lot of money on an elaborate setup, either. “Many boxes found at stores are too small, so people can use a storage container.”
The box should also be accessible, she says. “If there is an older cat who has difficulty getting in and out of the box, a side can be cut down for easy entry. Be sure the cut edges are smooth.”
If you like the idea of an automatic litter box, first consider your cat’s needs. “It is powered by a motor, so if the cat is startled by noises, this may not be a good idea,” Jeffrey says. “It may be scared of the box and go elsewhere.” And this will defeat your goal of creating less mess.