DIY Sifting Litter Boxes: Kitty Litter Box Area for Ragdoll Cats

Last Updated on September 22, 2021 by Jenny

Often times, readers write me with something cool they have done for their cats in their home. I thought these DIY sifting litter boxes would be cool to share on the site.

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…

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DIY Pine Pellet Sifting Litter Box


Sifting litter box for pine pellets: 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.

DIY Sifting Litter Boxes

  1. 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.
  2. 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
  1. 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).
  2. 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

 

  1. 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
  1. 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.
  2. 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
  1. 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
  1. 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.


Homemade Cat Litter Box Wooden Enclosure

Another of my readers sent in this clever idea they had to give their cat some privacy and to help hide their cat’s litter box from high traffic areas. Thanks to Linda for sharing. Her first idea was their homemade cat litter box wooden enclosure, essentially a piece of cat litter box furniture.

It’s quite a simple trick – she’s simply bought an old end table from a thrift shop and removed the doors before turning it around. The litter tray sits inside, out of view of anyone in Linda’s sunroom – in her own words “no one even notices”. Her cat can then simply walk around to the hidden open side, clamber in and do his business in peace. This DIY litter box area is ideal.

Corner Litter Box Enclosure

Going a step further, Linda has given her cat Adam his own bathroom by adding a corner litter box to the back side of the doorway for her storage room.

To make it even easier for Adam to get in and out, she’s had a hole cut and framed leading into the storage room. It’s not a full kitty door – the wall would be too thick – but a constantly open hole that is nicely framed. Now one of her least used rooms has become a quiet bathroom where Adam can enjoy privacy without a lot of foot traffic through the house. The door can stay closed, while Adam has full access to the room including his own welcome mat.

Do you have a kitty DIY project that you’d like to share on the site to help other cat owners? Maybe you’ve made your own cat furniture as a way of creating a hidden litter box?

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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

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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20 thoughts on “DIY Sifting Litter Boxes: Kitty Litter Box Area for Ragdoll Cats

  1. Texas Nana says:

    Awesome Litter boxes. I foster kittens for local shelter and they also use pine or paper pellets as litter. The foster babies are so small we use metal steamer pans as litter box and dog potty traing pads in front of litter box. I am using a old cheweys box as partion at this time. Works well for kittens that we only have 5-8 weeks. I will try this with smaller plastic pans and dig out the drill.

    • Jennifer Dean says:

      thank you for sharing. how did you get involved with foster kittens? i have been wondering if i could do that.

      • Dawn M Boysen says:

        I have foster kittens also. Contact your local rescue. I filled out an application and I was approved. This year had a big kitten season also. I caught five in a junkyard and the rescue vetted them and now I am fostering them until they are neutered/spayed and then they will go into the adoption center.

  2. Godwin says:

    I know you said you don’t remember nor were they any visible markings on the container when you bought it, but would it be possible to measure the length, width, and height of one container so we can narrow the search down?

  3. Carole says:

    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.

    • Alissa says:

      I line mine with super XL sized puppy pads. Then after about a week- roll sawdust up inside the pad and discard and then replace with a new pad. I am not using storage bins though, I use an Arm and Hammer sifting pan inside a larger litter pan. Saw the idea on You Tube.

  4. Mallory says:

    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?

    • Cinde says:

      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. Mary says:

    What were the brand of the bins? Walmart’s bins only have like 1/2 or inch gaps when the totes are put together….

    • Cinde says:

      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.

  6. Vicky Mo says:

    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!

    • Cinde Shields says:

      Hi Vicky, I buy 40 pound bags of 100% pine pellets from my local farm supply store for only $5 a bag (the pellets are marketed as horse bedding). Best deal EVER!

      • Vicky Mo says:

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

    • Cinde Shields says:

      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!

  7. Martha says:

    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.

  8. Patti Johnson says:

    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

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