Lid lifts back for easy scooping
Carbon filter eliminates odors
Front door sticks
Slide latches don’t feel secure
In the world of pet products, there can be a tenuous balance between ones that are built for your furry friends and ones that are built for you, the owner. For example, overdesigned litter boxes may have impressive features, but at the end of the day, if your cat doesn’t use it, it doesn’t do you any good.
Along with our three fickle but wholly unbiased cat companions (Pinky, Oliver, and Rose), we tested the Clean Hooded Jumbo Cat Pan from Catit out for three weeks, evaluating key elements like its design and its odor control. Read on to see how it performed.
Design: Subtle and smart
Catit’s Jumbo Hooded Cat Pan is large and made from sturdy plastic. Its walls are also very high—which, combined with the way the hood and pan overlap, prevents leaks due to spraying or if your cat aims high. The walls would also come in handy if your cat decided he or she preferred it without the hood, as it would be harder to kick out litter or track it onto the floor. The depth also means its litter capacity is higher, which is great for cats who are really into digging.
The hood’s doorway features a translucent mud flap door that didn’t quite work out for our cats, who’d never used a cat door before. For example, when we put Rose, our feisty 1.5-year-old calico, into the box and lowered the door, she gazed out for a few minutes before laying down in the (still unused) litter. Since our cats never grasped the concept of nudging it open, and it didn’t fit the doorway that well anyway—it was getting stuck—we opted to remove it.
The walls are very high—which, combined with the way the hood and pan overlap, prevents leaks due to spraying.
The hood is held to the pan with four sliding lock tabs, one of which was missing when it arrived. They didn’t feel very secure—we would’ve preferred clips—but it was only a concern when we were carrying the litter-filled pan via the ergonomic handle on the top.
One human-friendly innovation we appreciated was the “bag anchor.” It’s the simplest thing: A protruding lip along the interior edge of the doorway that you can use to catch the front of the garbage bag you’re scooping into, holding it open. We didn’t know we were missing that feature in a litter box, but now that we’ve used it, we’re dumbfounded as to why all models don’t have this. It made scooping so much easier.
Odor Prevention: Might work (if you use the door, too)
A slot for a replaceable carbon air filter sits at the top of the litter box’s doorway. With the plastic front door removed, odors were free to escape, so it wasn’t really allowed to live up to its full odor-fighting potential. We noticed approximately the same amount of odor as when we tested an open-top litter box, but also acknowledge that there’s only so much a little cartridge can do when faced with a wide-open doorway.
The hood is held to the pan with four sliding lock tabs, which we thought didn’t feel very secure.
To keep your litter box as fresh as possible, Catit also sells replacement carbon filters; a pack of two is priced at around $6 (view at Amazon).
Ease of Cleanup: Access is key
The carbon filter receptacle can be lifted and folded back, extending the wide doorway halfway across the roof. This feature made for easy cleanup, giving us a clear view and direct access to all four corners of the litter box. For our multi-cat household, this was a game-changer, as we scoop and replace litter at least once a day.
This litter box is efficient, smart, and useful, especially if you live in a multi-cat household.
Price: A great value
This litter box retails for approximately $30, and we think it’s an excellent buy. The design is updated and thoughtful, it’s made from quality materials, and our cats enjoyed it.
Competition: Not everyone needs a jumbo-sized box
Van Ness Sifting Enclosed Cat Litter Pan: The noblest goal of litterbox design is to minimize interaction with waste. You learn to live with daily scooping, but if there’s a faster, neater, more efficient way to clean a litterbox, we’re all ears. The Van Ness sifting litter box (view on Amazon), uses two nesting pans and a sifting screen to separate the clumped solids from unused litter. If you really loathe scooping, we’d go with this one over the Catit.
IRIS Top Entry Cat Litter Box with Cat Litter Scoop: The Catit is big and friendly, but maybe you have a solo cat who doesn’t need that much real estate. The IRIS Top Entry box (view on Amazon), is lower-profile, has a softer silhouette, and comes in a variety of décor-friendly colors. If you have multiple cats, go with the Catit, but the IRIS would be great for a single kitty household.
Need some help finding what you’re looking for? Check out our list of the best cat litter boxes.
- Product Name Jumbo Hooded Cat Pan
- Product Brand Catit
- Price $29.99
- Color Warm Grey
- What’s Included Litter pan, privacy hood, charcoal filter