Wondering about the right size for your cat's litter box? This topic worries many cat owners who intuitively realize that the box they're using may be too small for Kitty.
Here's the bottom line -
Where it comes to your cat's litter box, bigger is better.
We're going to show you why cats prefer larger litter boxes and offer scientific evidence that supports the claim. Then we're going to talk about sizes of actual models currently on the market.
We checked all popular models available at amazon.com for exact sizes and bring you the list of the 15 largest cat litter boxes, along with pros and cons for each one, so you can make the best choice for you and your cat.
Why Cats Prefer a Larger Litter Box
Many cat owners have found that their furry friend loves a large litter box, but why is that? We’ve gathered a few possible reasons for you, along with an interesting scientific study done on the subject.
In a nutshell, the reasons cats prefer a larger litter box are -
Let's explain each of these reasons in more detail.
- It reminds them of the great outdoors
- There's more room to turn around
- Larger box = more clean areas
- Keeping solids separate from liquid
A large box is more like the Great Outdoors
Consider where a cat goes to the bathroom in the wild. They certainly don’t have a little 8-by-10-inch square filled with sand that they’re limited to. Instead, they can go pretty much wherever they want.
Although they do prefer to go in the same general area, they also like to have the ability to go in new spots when their old spots start to get full. With a large litter box, they get back some of that feeling of being in the great outdoors.
A larger box offers more room for turning around
Cats need to be able to turn around when they’re using their litter box. Part of it is because they need to find the perfect spot, and the other part is they need to be able to bury their waste when they’re finished.
If a litter box is too small, then your cat may not have enough room to properly turn around. This is especially true when it comes to top-entry litter boxes and others with high sides.
Nobody likes to encounter moisture when using the bathroom, and cats are no different. They don’t want to stick their paw in something they left in the box yesterday, so they always look for a clean space to go in.
The larger the box - the more clean surface area there is
With larger litter boxes, your cat has a much better chance of finding a clean spot, especially if you don’t clean it out as often as you should (which we’re all guilty of sometimes).
Provides Room for Separating Waste
For whatever reason, some cats like to urinate in one part of the litter box and defecate in another. However, a small litter box just doesn’t give them the opportunity to do this.
If you have a cat that regularly uses the litter box to urinate but defecates elsewhere or vice versa, it’s possible your cat just wants a bigger litter box so they can do both but in different parts of the box.
What science has to say about the size of the litter box
A recent study looked at a total of 74 cats over a period of 4 weeks to find out if they preferred a larger or regular-sized litter box. For the larger box, they used one that was 33 inches (86 cm) in length, much bigger than any pan you can buy at the pet store.
Not surprisingly, the cats chose to use the giant litter box far more often than the smaller one.
During the 4 weeks of the study, the big box was used 5,031 times while the smaller one was used 3,239 times. The difference might have been even bigger if they hadn’t switched the locations of the boxes halfway through the study.
For two days following the switch, many cats showed a location preference and continued going where the big litter box was before going to the other side of the room to use the large box once again. This proves that while cats are creatures of habit, they will change that habit to use a bigger litter box.
Why cat owners should want a larger litter box too
No, we don't mean that! Feel free to use your own toilets (whatever size they come in). We're talking about what's best for your budget as a cat owner - in the long run.
Although you obviously want to make your cat happy, there are a few reasons that you also benefit greatly from having a larger litter box for your cat. Here are a couple of the ones we’ve come up with.
Some cats are meticulous about using the litter box, so much so that they will hold their bladders and bowels if the box isn’t clean enough for them. This can lead to bladder infections or constipation, both of which are not good for your cat.
A bigger litter box means your cat has more space in which to go, so there’s no need for them to hold it, reducing the chance that they’ll have one of these issues. This not only helps give you more peace of mind about the overall health of your cat, but it can also save you money on vet bills. Bonus!
Sometimes, a larger box can solve litter box avoidance issues!
With over 740,000 cats across the United States eliminating outside of the litter box, you’re certainly not alone in your struggle. Unfortunately, it can be difficult to impossible to figure out what the problem is if it’s not an obvious medical issue.
Sometimes, the problem may be as simple as the litter box being too small or else the sides being too short. For that reason, a large litter box is recommended as it could end up solving your kitty’s problem. It may simply be that they just need a bit more room in the box to feel comfortable.
Since cats need to turn around while they’re digging, eliminating, and then burying their waste, they need to have plenty of room in which to do that. If they don’t feel like they can do that in the litter box, they may find somewhere else to take care of business.
Having said that, keep in mind that one of the most common reasons for litter box avoidance is a background health problem. If Kitty goes outside the box, your veterinarian is the person to talk to first. Only once you rule out - or treat - health problems can you work on the behavior aspects of litter box avoidance.
Read more -
Litterbox Problems? Here's Why You Should Call Your Vet
How To Solve Litterbox Problems In Cats: The Ultimate Guide
So, what are the largest litter boxes available
Before you start clearing your schedule to find the biggest litter box on the market, relax. We already did the leg work for you. In fact, we managed to find 15 of the largest litter boxes that you can buy today so you can take a look and pick one out that you feel would be best for your feline friend.
Before we get to it, though, here’s some insight into how we determined which litter boxes to include in our list.
We found the measurements for the inside of the litter box to calculate the surface area. The dimensions we used don’t include anything but the litter pan itself, so the numbers were adjusted for self-cleaning boxes to ensure only the usable area was considered.
As you may notice, there aren’t any round litter pans on our list. That’s because they tend to be the same width as some of the largest ones, but because they’re round, they end up offering less usable space than a rectangular box.
Now, without further ado, here the largest litter boxes for cats:
15. Van Ness Sifting Cat Litter Pan
Van Ness Sifting Cat Litter Pan at a Glance:
- 21.5 x 17 x 19 inches (55 x 43 x 48 cm)
- Surface area: 365.5 sq. inches (2365 sq. cm)
- Volume: 7326 cubic inches (6945 cubic cm)
- Swinging door keeps odors down
- Coated in a finish that prevents staining and odor buildup
- Works with any clumping litter
- Low maintenance
The Van Ness Sifting Cat Litter Pan is the perfect solution for people who hate scooping. Be sure to keep the sifter in the empty tray rather than the one that’s in use to avoid clumps getting stuck to it and you’ll be golden!
- Multiple trays make it heavy even when empty
- Can get very messy if not used properly
14. So Phresh Open Cat Litter Box
So Phresh Open Cat Litter Box at a Glance:
- Open with rimmed or hooded options
- 22 x 17 x 5 inches (56 x 43 x 13 cm)
- Surface area: 374 sq. inches (2408 sq. cm)
- Volume: 1870 cubic inches (31,304 cubic cm)
- Familiar design to cats
- Works with any type of litter
Overall, the So Phresh Open Cat Litter Box provides an inexpensive option for a large litterbox. To add onto it, you may also get the rim attachment or hood.
- Have to buy hood separately to convert to a covered litter box
- Not the largest litter box available
13. PetMate Jumbo Hooded Litter Pan
PetMade Jumbo Hooded Litter Pan at a Glance:
- 22 x 18 x 18.5 inches (56 x 46 x 47 cm)
- Surface area: 396 sq. inches (2576 sq. cm)
- Volume: 7326 cubic inches (121,072 cubic cm)
- Provides privacy for shy cats
- Cover easy to remove for cleaning
- Large opening for easy access
- Carbon filter eliminates odors
The Petmate Jumbo Hooded Litter Pan works well for owners that need to have it in a high-traffic area of their home but don’t want to see or smell the dirty litter box. It also comes in an assortment of colors to match your décor.
- No flap option for door
- Some cats may not like covered litter pan
12. Catit Jumbo Hooded Cat Litter Pan
Catit Jumbo Hooded Cat Litter Pan at a Glance:
- 22 x 18 x 17 inches (56 x 46 x 43 cm)
- Surface area: 396 sq. inches (2576 sq. cm)
- Volume: 6732 cubic inches (110,768 cubic cm)
- High sides keep litter inside
- Locking tabs keep box together but are easy to remove to clean
- Provide privacy for your cat
- Removable door flap
When it comes to a well-designed litter box that’s easy to use for the cat and easy to clean for you, the Catit Jumbo Hooded Cat Litter Pan ranks high. If you want a really good deal, you can get this litter box kit that comes with a scoop.
- Unprotected filter allows curious cats to get at it
- Does not work for cats that spray
11. PetFusion BetterBox
PetFusion BetterBox at a Glance:
- 22.5 x 18 x 8 inches (57 x 46 x 20 cm)
- Surface area: 405 sq. inches (2622 sq. cm)
- Volume: 3240 cubic inches (52,440 cubic cm)
- Curved sides are inviting to cat and make cleaning easier
- Open design feels more natural to cat
- High walls keep litter in
- Made of durable plastic
All in all, the PetFusion BetterBox works for cats of all ages who don’t like covered boxes. If you do have a home with multiple cats, we recommend you order the set of two to make sure all of your cats have a place to go.
- Cats may fling litter from the low opening
- Slippery surface can prove difficult for elderly cats
10. AmazonBasics Hooded Cat Litter Box
AmazonBasics Hooded Cat Litter Box at a Glance:
- 23.5 x 18 x 16.5 inches (60 x 46 x 42 cm)
- Surface area: 423 sq. inches (2760 sq. cm)
- Volume: 6979 cubic inches (115,920 cubic cm)
- Removable door in case your cat isn’t a fan
- Snaps are sturdy enough to keep it together but still easy to remove for cleaning
- Made with heavy-duty plastic so it lasts
- Works well with any type of litter
Altogether, the AmazonBasics Hooded Cat Litter Box has a lot of conveniences to offer a cat owner and is already well-loved by cats and owners as well.
- Crevices on back wall can become clogged with waste
- Replacement filters difficult to find
9. So Phresh Scatter Shield High-Back Litter Box
So Phresh Scatter Shield High-Back Litter Box at a Glance:
- 24 x 18 x 10 inches (61 x 46 x 25 cm)
- Surface area: 432 sq. inches (2806 sq. cm)
- Volume: 4320 cubic inches (70,150 cubic cm)
- Low entry point for kittens and older or arthritic cats
- Slick surface makes cleaning easy and reduces bacterial buildup
- Open design that reminds cats of being outside
All in all, the So Phresh Scatter Shield High-Back Litter Box solves the problem that owners of large or multiple cats face with a simple yet effective solution.
- Over-exuberant cats can toss litter out of low side
- Can’t be easily converted into a covered box
8. Suncast Litter Pan
Suncast Litter Pan at a Glance:
- 24 x 18 x 10 inches (61 x 46 x 25 cm)
- Surface area: 432 sq. inches (2806 sq. cm)
- Volume: 4320 cubic inches (70,150 cubic cm)
- High sides that prevent messes
- Durable and long-lasting material
- Slick surface that makes cleaning a breeze
- Low entry point
The Suncast Litter Pan is large enough for multiple-cat homes or larger breeds of cats and helps you out with slick surfaces that don’t allow anything to stick to it.
- Relatively expensive
- Low side may still allow for messes to occur
7. Petmate Open Litter Pan
Petmate Open Litter Pan at a Glance:
- 25 x 18 x 10 inches (64 x 46 x 25 cm)
- Surface area: 450 sq. inches (2944 sq. cm)
- Volume: 4500 cubic inches (73,600 cubic cm)
- Fits up to 30 pounds of litter, which means less frequent changes are needed
- Durable plastic saves you money on replacements
- Sloped area in front allows most cats to enter easily
- Keeps litter and other messes inside the box
If you want to solve the problem of accidental spills and misses from big cats or those who need extra space in the litter box, the Petmate Open Litter Pan is the answer.
- High entry point makes it unsuitable for elderly cats and young kittens
- Extremely heavy when filled with litter
6. Petmate Giant Litter Pan
Petmate Giant Litter Pan at a Glance:
27 x 17 x 10 inches (69 x 43 x 25 cm)
Surface area: 459 sq. inches (2967 sq. cm)
Volume: 4590 cubic inches (74,175 cubic cm)
Convenient compartments for storing scoop, etc.
Tall sides all around keep litter inside
Open design provides a natural feel for cats
Micro-ban plastic helps reduce bacteria and therefore odors
Side compartments are off the ground, so if a cat steps on them, they could dump the litter
Curved area in front could lead to accidents
For an easy way to store your dirty litter scooper and a great way to give your cat plenty of room to take care of business, the Petmate Giant Litter Pan is what you’re looking for.
5. Omega Paw Self-Cleaning Litter Box
Omega Paw Self-Cleaning Litter Box at a Glance:
20 x 23 x 19 inches (51 x 58 x 48 cm)
Surface area: 460 sq. inches (2958 sq. cm)
Volume: 8740 cubic inches (141,984 cubic cm)
Incredibly simple and sanitary litter removal process
Covered design limits foul odors
High sides keep the litter inside
Comes with mat to prevent litter from being tracked throughout the house
Only works with clumping litter
Can become a huge mess if things go wrong
The Omega Paw Self-Cleaning Litter Box offers owners a quick and painless way to clean their cat’s box and it gives cats a large, private area to do their business.
4. Petphabet Litter Box with Lid
If you needed a litter box that fits 2 cats at the same time, this is the one for you. What sets this one apart from other covered boxes is that the top cover is clear, so light easily penetrates the box, but odors are still kept inside.
Petphabet Litter Box with Lid at a Glance:
- 25 x 19 x 16.5 inches (64 x 48 x 42 cm)
- Surface area: 475 sq. inches (3072 sq. cm)
- Volume: 7837 cubic inches (129,024 cubic cm)
- Made with durable materials
- Deep pan allows cats to dig and less frequent changes
- Clear cover gives cats privacy and light
- Non-stick sides that make scooping easy
With high sides that keep litter where it belongs and an open design that allows cats to feel like they’re outside, the Petphabet Litter Box with Lid is a huge litter box that could work for you.
- Hood fits loosely so it may come off easily
- Entire hood must be removed to clean box
3. KittyGoHere Senior Cat Litter Box
KittyGoHere Senior Cat Litter Box at a Glance:
- 24 x 20 x 5 inches (61 x 51 x 13 cm)
- Surface area: 480 sq. inches (3111 sq. cm)
- Volume: 2400 cubic inches (40,443 cubic cm)
- Extremely low entry works for all cats
- Works with all types of litter
- Large size is great for multiple-cat homes
- Reminds cats of going outside which can solve some litter box issues
Whether you have tiny kittens or elderly arthritic cats, the KittyGoHere Senior Cat Litter Box will help ensure that they’re able to go exactly where they need to go.
- Low sides make accidents more likely
- Open design may lead to odors
2. PetSafe ScoopFree Ultra Self-Cleaning Cat Litter Box
PetSafe ScoopFree Ultra Self-Cleaning Cat Litter Box at a Glance:
- Open or Enclosed
- 27.5 x 19 x 11.5 inches (70 x 48 x 29 cm)
- Surface area: 522.5 sq. inches (3360 sq. cm)
- Volume: 6009 cubic inches (97,440 cubic cm)
- Minimal maintenance requirements
- Covered design helps keep litter inside
- Effective odor control
- Can help identify cat health problems early with its built-in health counter
By counting how often your cat goes, the PetSafe ScoopFree Ultra Self-Cleaning Cat Litter Box can help alert you to health problems, making it great for anyone who wants to monitor their cat’s health closely.
- Clumps can get stuck in the raking mechanism
- Can only use clumping litters
1. Kattails Kat Kave Litter Box
The largest litter box on our list and possibly even the market, this is also the heaviest non-motorized litter box at a whopping 16 pounds when empty. It’s massive size with high sides provides the ideal place for your large cat to go when they need to go.
Kattails Kat Kave Litter Box at a Glance:
- 29 x 19 x 20 inches (74 x 48 x 51 cm)
- Surface area: 551 sq. inches (3552 sq. cm)
- Volume: 11,020 cubic inches (181,152 cubic cm)
- Heavy-duty plastic is extremely durable
- Seamless interior prevents litter from sticking
- Odor-eliminating design
- High, seamless sides stop even the tallest standing urinator from making a mess
For standers or squatters, the Kattails Kat Kave Litter Box will keep everything right where you want it. You’ll be sure to love its classy design and your kitty will love a new place to climb onto.
- Can be difficult to clean because of how deep it is
- High entry point can be difficult for older cats
The Largest Cat Litter Box - More than just size
Now that we've looked at the largest litterboxes in the market, you may be wondering if you should be ordering the very largest one possible for your cat.
So is that your next step?
Changing an existing litter box can be a big decision. Before you get rid of a box that works, consider adding a second box. Buy the largest litter box you can afford and place it next to the current box your cat uses. Now, give Kitty a few weeks and see if there's a preference.
Avoid sudden changes and don't remove a box before you know for sure your cat prefers the new one. Especially if it differs from the original in aspects other than size.
And remember, if you're not sure, you can always start a thread in the Cat Care Forum and let us know about your specific situation. Our members would be happy to share from their own experience and offer you advice and support.