Reader DIY Litter Box Area: Kitty Potty Project for Ragdoll Cats

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Update: Tools Needed
Some readers have been asking for specifics about the boxes and drill bits. Here is what you will need for the project.

Rectangular Storage Boxes that sit 2 inches when stacked. Or these alternatives

Here are the other items that you’ll need:

After yesterday’s fun DIY Kitty Project from Cinde, How a Reader Built a Cat Power Tower from Scratch, I wanted to share her DIY Kitty Potty Project.  Thank you to Cinde for letting me share both projects with the readership!

In May 2017, Cinde sent me this email about their “kitty potty project”, lol…

DIY Pine Pellet Sifting Litter Box


I wanted to use 100% pine pellets but was not loving the idea of tediously sorting the pellets from the sawdust with the scooper multiple times a day, however, if this wasn’t done regularly the sawdust would build up in the box and get tracked through the house (no thanks!). I searched online but found only 1 sifting type litter box (designed specifically for use with pine pellets) sold by the company that makes Feline Pine cat litter, but the box dimensions were too small for Ragdoll cats in my opinion.

So, I decided to make my own roomy pine pellet sifting boxes using large rectangular storage tubs and an electric drill.

 

  • Storage Boxes – The key was finding tubs that were the right diameter and height, that also had about a two-inch gap between them when stacked, to allow room for the sifted sawdust in the lower bin.

 

  • Electric Drill and ¼ Drill Bit – My husband drilled tons of holes in the bottom of one bin using a 1/4 drill bit, which allows the sawdust to pass through when shaken, but keeps the unused pellets on the top where they belong. There is no odor because the “used” sawdust is trapped in the lower box (plus pine is a natural deodorizer). 
Reader DIY Litter Box Area Kitty Potty Project 6
View of some of the holes we drilled on the entirety of the base of the top box for sifting sawdust
  • Sifting – All I have to do is shake the box back and forth after they pee and the pellets have broken down – the sawdust magically disappears (solid waste is scooped out and discarded in a bag).
  • Pine Pellet Tip – Also… a tip for people considering this type of setup… buy 100% pine pellet HORSE bedding from your local feed supply store – it is only $4.95 for a FORTY POUND BAG and is the same exact thing as the cat pine pellets. It is far more expensive when marketed as cat litter! Also, you use WAY less than with traditional litter, so a 40-pound bag will last a long time!

 

Now part two of our “potty project”

Hiding the Sifting Litter Boxes…

I am not a fan of litter boxes in high traffic areas. I have a formal dining room, which we only use a few times a year for holiday meals, and thought the large unused corner of the room would be a quiet location for the boxes. However, there were two things holding me back from using this location: 1) the area I had in mind is one of the first things you see if you are standing at my front door and my entry hallway – 2) when we do use that room for formal holiday meals I didn’t want anyone to see the boxes.

Solution…

Building a Nook

 

  • I had hubby build me a litter box partition that was architecturally compatible with my dining room. We designed an “L” shaped partition out of the same wood wainscoting and moldings found in the rest of the home. 

Reader DIY Litter Box Area Kitty Potty Project 2

  • We painted the wainscoting the same color as the surrounding walls, and the wood trim the same color as the surrounding wood trim in the room. 
  • We lined the inside of the partition with sheets of semi-solid plastic for ease of cleaning since it was right next to the litter boxes. 
Reader DIY Litter Box Area Kitty Potty Project 5
Another cats eye view of the entry
  • We lined the floor and baseboards with re-usable machine washable medical absorbent bed liners instead of traditional litter mats. This protects our hardwood floors from accidents, are pleasing to the kitty’s paws and are easy to wash. 
Reader DIY Litter Box Area Kitty Potty Project 10
Soft absorbent machine washable bed liner as litter mat & floor/baseboard protector
  • The partition itself can be easily pulled away from the walls when necessary; it is not attached to anything.

No one would ever guess there were litter boxes behind our partition, and it blends beautifully with the surroundings. The best part? No litter box in the bathroom!
Sorry, this is so long, but I am just so happy with the outcome of our potty system project… I don’t know many people who would appreciate this as much as you might.
Here are some pics showing the components of our creations…

This first pic is the view of our potty partition area from our front door/entryway… no one would ever guess there were litter boxes behind it!

Reader DIY Litter Box Area Kitty Potty Project 3
Ariel view if “hovering” over it

 

Reader DIY Litter Box Area Kitty Potty Project 4
Cats eye view of entry

 

Reader DIY Litter Box Area Kitty Potty Project 5
Another cats eye view of entry

 

Reader DIY Litter Box Area Kitty Potty Project 6
View of some of the holes we drilled on the entirety of the base of the top box for sifting sawdust

 

Reader DIY Litter Box Area Kitty Potty Project 7
Two layers of boxes separated to show contents
Reader DIY Litter Box Area Kitty Potty Project 8
Example of 2″ gap between top & bottom box to allow room for sawdust

 

Reader DIY Litter Box Area Kitty Potty Project 9
Soft absorbent machine washable bed liner as litter mat & floor/baseboard protector
Reader DIY Litter Box Area Kitty Potty Project 10
Underside of pad

August 2017 Update

They have not had one potty accident in the 3+ months we have had them – I like to think this has something to do with their approval of our litter system. It is a breeze to maintain, non-toxic and tracking is not an issue! An added bonus is how easy it is on the budget… no more costly cat litter! I wish I had discovered this method years ago.

November 2017 Update

As the cats have grown bigger, so has their urine output. Now there is more sawdust formed after they pee. I find it easier to scoop as much of the fluffy loose sawdust into a bag prior to using the scoop to rake the remaining sawdust into the holes. Finally, I shake the box back & forth a few times and any remaining sawdust then disappears into the holes. The whole process is very quick & easy.

Reader DIY Litter Box Area Kitty Potty Project 2

Reader DIY Litter Box Area Kitty Potty Project

Happy to report that we are STILL potty accident-free since bringing them home nearly 7 months ago – that’s right, not ONE single accident! Also, my house STILL doesn’t smell like a litter box. I love this system!

That’s about it. I have never taken any photos of them doing their business at the litter box – even a cat needs their privacy! 😂

Some readers have reported that they can also use pine pellets and Breeze litter box for the same effect.

Have you tried to make a DIY sifting litter box? Do you have any suggestions to share, I’m sure others could benefit from your work so drop them in the comments below.


Do you have a kitty DIY project that you’d like to share on the site to help other cat owners?  We’d love to feature it!  Please contact us.

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You have to try these genius litter box hacks | Litter Box Ideas | Litter Box Essentials | Litter Box Solutions | Litter Box Enclosure DIY | Litter Box Smell | Litter Box Ideas Hidden | Kitty Litter Box Ideas Small Spaces | Kitty Litter Box Ideas Smell | Kitty Litter Hacks | Cat Litter Box Furniture | DIY Kitty Litter Box Ideas House | Kitty Litter Smell Solutions | Kitty Litter Smell Tips | Kitty Litter Smell Hacks | How to Keep Kitty Litter From Smelling
You have to try these genius litter box hacks | Litter Box Ideas | Litter Box Essentials | Litter Box Solutions | Litter Box Enclosure DIY | Litter Box Smell | Litter Box Ideas Hidden | Kitty Litter Box Ideas Small Spaces | Kitty Litter Box Ideas Smell | Kitty Litter Hacks | Cat Litter Box Furniture | DIY Kitty Litter Box Ideas House | Kitty Litter Smell Solutions | Kitty Litter Smell Tips | Kitty Litter Smell Hacks | How to Keep Kitty Litter From Smelling
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Comments (14)

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  1. WOW! WOW! WOW! Another great DIY project post from Cinde & her hubby!!! Thank you so much for sharing this with all of us, Jenny (and Cinde!)!!! 🙂 <3

    What a brilliant design and set-up!!! Whoa! Cinde and her hubby really did another great job!!! Tessa & Mitzi are VERY LUCKY kitties to have such creative and talented parents!!!! I really think this litterbox system is very cool!!! 🙂 <3

    Big hugs & lots of love!

    Patti & Miss Pink Sugarbelle 🙂 <3

  2. Thank you for sharing. Cinde’s Cat Power Tower from Scratch is awesome. Loved the idea of partition, which I may consider doing.
    I myself use what I think are considered cement mixing trays (they are rectangular and quite large and just the right height for the cats to step into), which I purchased at a Home Depot some time ago. Makes a perfect litter pan for Ragdolls; plenty of room for the cats to move around. I switched from wheat litter to granulated corn; lasts much longer and the clumping varieties clump better.

  3. This is awesome! Thank you for sharing! I’ve been trying to figure out a way to have a pine litter sitting system for the Ragdoll large size. I’m currently using the Purina’s breeze system with pine pellets but need a bigger one for when she grows up. What brand of container did you (she) use? That would be so helpful!! Thank you again for sharing!

      1. Wow Cinde I’m jealous! We don’t have one here. Where did you get your clear plastic containers? Is that Steralite?

    1. Hi Vicky,
      I’m sorry there is no brand name visible on the boxes. It’s been a few years since I purchased them so I don’t recall the brand. I’m sure you’ll find the perfect size!

    1. Hi Mary,
      I’m sorry, but there is no brand name printed on the bins so I don’t know what brand they are. It’s been 3 years since I purchased them, but I do remember having to go to several stores until I found bins that were ideal. Best of luck in your search – it’s worth it in the end.

  4. Hey! I love this! i have been using the pine litter and rubermaid container for years and they are such a life saver. (I bult a wire cage in the garage to put them in with a dog door into the house) However the thing i struggle with is how to separate the bins with the 2in gap and what size holes to drill in the bottom. Can you elaborate on the boxes?

    1. Hi Mallory, The bins I bought are stackable – they naturally create the 2 inch gap in between themselves when stacked. The drill bit size we used was 1/4 inch. The holes are drilled an inch apart. Hope this helps! 🙂

  5. Hi! I know this is an old post but I just started with pellet litter and made this double box system yesterday. Thanks!!
    My question is – what is a useful or green way to get rid of the sawdust. I don’t want to seal it in a garbage bag and toss if it can be used outside somehow.

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