Self-cleaning cat litters are amazing in theory. You don’t have to bother cleaning the litter every day. Your fur balls get adjusted to them pretty quick.
No dust. No allergies. The litter box self-cleans and washes itself. Almost like having a robot that ticks off all the potential problems that come with normal litter boxes.
But, when it comes to performance, most of them have nothing to write home about.
Yeah, they plain suck. And before you know, you will be neck deep in malfunctioning machines or be burdened with repetitive expenses that you never knew about.
That’s why it’s crucial that you are selective about your purchase. Today, we take a look at two of the best automated cat litter boxes in the business. And it’s no surprise that both of them come from the same brand, Cat Genie.
Here we go.
Cat Genie Reviews: Self-Washing and Self-Flushing Cat Box
The Cat Genie Self-Washing cat box is a completely automated cat toilet. It collects your pet’s poop, conveniently disposes it into the sewer/drain and then self-washes the bowl completely removing any disease-causing bacteria.
That’s not all.
There is going to be no odor, no potential allergy-causing dust nor frequent cleaning associated with cat litter boxes.
The Cat Genie will automatically do everything that needs to be done.
Let’s take a closer look.
Compact, sturdy design
So, you’ll either need to place this in the basement or in the laundry room unless you have a large toilet at home.
Basically, any place with a water inlet and an electrical connection will suffice.
It is pretty easy to set up. Just attach the T-adaptor to the cold water inlet and the drain hose into the waste drain, plug it into an electrical outlet and you are set.
The construction is heavy duty plastic and it can easily sustain everyday abuse that comes with curious paws and random scratches.
Most importantly, cats seem to love it. We have spoken to numerous customers who claimed that their cats had no problems whatsoever adjusting to the Cat Genie litter box, coming from a normal, manual litter box.
It has a roomy litter base that gives them ample space to go about their business and caters to their feline instincts.
Programming it is equally simple.
Programming the Cat Genie
You can set automated wash and sleep cycles.
It’s called the ‘Cat Activation’ mode and you can program the Cat Genie to sleep for 10 hours and stay awake for 14 hours a day, or you can program it to stay active for all 24 hours (multi-cat households).
Usually, most cats will use their litter boxes within 20-30 minutes of having a meal. This takes the guesswork out of programming the Cat Genie.
Let’s say you have 4 cats at home which use the litter boxes at different times of the day. And all of them prefer a clean litter each time.
You can program the Cat Genie to auto-clean within a minute of your cat leaving the litter box. This gives the next kitten a clean, fresh and dry litter box. Even better, you can program it to wait for 10 minutes after the cat leaves, before it auto-cleans.
And what if the next cat barges in when the cat genie is being washed?
You have nothing to worry because there are built-in sensors that detect your cat and the cleaning cycle is not activated until the cat leaves the box.
Every time a new cat enters the cat genie, it resets any pre-programmed settings and waits for 10 minutes before continuing with it.
How the Cat Genie works
Once your cat enters the litter box, poops, does the usual canine burying thing and leaves, a manual genie hand scoops up the poop and flushes it deeper into the washable granules.
The washing cycle then gets activated and the SaniSolution, a completely safe and veterinarian recommended cleaning formula is released into the granules. It mixes with cold water and the granules are thoroughly scrubbed and cleaned of any urine or feces residue.
During this process, the solid waste gets converted into liquefied poop which is then flushed down along with the water.
There is a very fine mesh at the end of the drain hose attachment which prevents any solids from escaping into the drain. This prevents the granules from being flushed along with the nasties.
Each cleaning cycle lasts for about 30 minutes and it is silent. The only noise that you might notice is when the water is flushed down the drain after the cycle runs.
Cat Genie’s permanent granules vs. cat litter
Cat litter is non-biodegradable, is strip-mined, processed at 2000 degrees of heat and it is piling up in landfills at the rate of almost 8 billion lbs. a year.
Even if you have just one cat in your house, your contribution to that pile is almost 335 lbs. a year.
Cat Genie, on the other hand, uses permanent washable granules that’s a combination of natural and synthetic ingredients that are completely cat safe.
These granules are biodegradable, 100% septic safe and you’ll rarely have to replace them.
Even if your cat swallows the granules for some reason that only curious kittens do, it won’t hurt them. It will go right back into the genie when your cat poops the next time.
Easy cleaning using the SaniSolution
The SaniSolution is a 100% safe and effective cleaning solution that will completely eliminate germs from the litter base.
It also eliminates odor and keeps your room smelling fresh. A lot of pet parents were surprised at the lack of odor with the Cat Genie. The SaniSolution is to be thanked.
Most Cat Genie models come with a number of cartridges that are prefilled with the solution.
Once you run out of these, you can buy replacement cartridges, which are pretty cheap by the way.
Certainly cheaper than replacing cat litter every now and then.
Why we love the Cat Genie
- Completely Automated: The Cat Genie is the dream cat-litter solution that you have always wanted. You can set it up, program it and just forget everything about it for the next three months or so until it runs out of the SaniSolution. It reduces so many hassles associated with normal litter boxes.
- Zero odor: There is no odor with the Cat Genie. If you dreaded cleaning cat litter due to odor problems, then here’s the solution.
- Self–washes, cleans and dries: The Cat Genie self-washes, cleans and dries the granules in every wash cycle. So, each time your cat uses the Genie, it has a completely fresh litter box.
- Hygienic: The SaniSolution used in the Cat Genie is formulated like the cleaning solution used by veterinarians to sanitize pet clinics. It completely removes all traces of germs and bacteria from the litter base.
- Cat-friendly design: Cats love the Genie. If you are upgrading to it from a normal litter box, your cat will get adjusted to it in no time. There’s plenty of room for the cat to go about its business.
- Cost effective: We have seen a lot of pet parents cringe at the upfront cost of the Cat Genie (which isn’t much, to be honest). But, if you think about recurrent expenses for litter vs. the hassles associated with it, the Cat Genie is a cost-effective solution. The only recurrent expense you will incur is that of the SaniSolution and the granules once every six months or so.
- Environment-friendly: The Cat Genie uses washable, permanent granules that are biodegradable and hence, are an environmentally friendly solution as opposed to toxic cat litter that piles up in landfills.
Potential problems with the Cat Genie
All said and done, there are a few design idiosyncrasies with the Cat Genie. But we provide you with easy workarounds for every one of them.
- Cats can track the granules: Yes, this does tend to happen because the granules are tinier than cat litter and it can easily get stuck to their feet. But, that’s far from a deal breaker. Buy a cheap trackpad and keep it next to the genie to prevent this from happening. That’s not rocket science. Just an easy workaround for a problem that’s being made to sound like asteroids crashing on earth by some overzealous customers. When you find granules on the trackpad just toss it back into the genie.
- The genie hand might miss some of the poop: This was a problem with one of the earlier iterations of the machine which has been fixed in the latest Cat Genie 120. The new, upgraded Genie Hand does not miss out on any of the poop irrespective of whether it’s in the center or a corner of the litter base. Everything shall be scooped! So, no cat poop gets baked.
- There might be some odor in the toilet: If you dump cat waste or rat waste or just about any waste in the toilet bowl, it will raise a stink. That’s precisely why Cat Genie comes with a 10 feet long waste disposal hose. You can conveniently connect it directly into your drainage system, avoiding the need to flush it down the toilet in the first place.
- Some of the granules will get flushed down: Yes, it will. Some of it will stick to solid poop and get flushed down the drain. But it will not clog your drain. The granules are very small and it will biodegrade in your drain in about 8-9 months. Depending on the number of cats you have at home, you might need to replace the granules once every 6-8 months.
As we said, none of these are more than minor grumbles with easy workarounds.
Who’s the Cat Genie for?
All said and done, you might be skeptical about buying the Genie, thinking whether it’s the right choice for you.
After all, it’s not as cheap as a litter box.
Are you busy? The Genie is for you: It is automatic, saves you tons of time and effort. If you are a busy pet parent who travels frequently, the genie might be a great purchase for you.
Do you hate odor? The Genie is for you: If you hate the nasty odor that emanates every time you scoop up cat litter, you’ll love the Cat Genie. There will be absolutely no odor.
Do you hate cleaning and replacing litter? The Genie is for you: The Cat Genie is completely automatic. You do not have to bother cleaning, replacing or drying litter anymore.
Are you allergic to cat litter? The Genie is for you: The Cat Genie uses safe, biodegradable granules that do not contain dust or cause allergies.
To sum it up
The Cat Genie is paws-down the best investment you will make for your cat and for yourself. And there are two different models for you to choose from.
#1 – Cat Genie 120 – This is the upgraded, newer model that has ironed out all the niggles in previous iterations. It includes 120 cartridges of the SaniSolution that will last for almost four to six months.
#2 – Cat Genie (Older Model) – This is about $50 cheaper than the Cat Genie 120. It’s essentially the same automatic cat litter box. Just cheaper.
You can pay a little extra and buy the newer Cat Genie or you can save yourself some money upfront and opt for the slightly older model that still works great!