5 Best Top Entry Litter Box for Cats: 2021 Ultimate Guide
Admit it or not, cats are irresistible. With their almond-shaped eyes, small nose and paws, soft and fluffy fur, little purr noises they make for attention, and unique personalities, how can you resist their charm? But despite all the cuteness, our feline friends can sometimes be, well, obnoxious.
One second they’re adorable then, out of nowhere, they make a mess that can be frustrating on so many levels.
Let’s talk about cat litter, in particular. Do your cats love to dig and kick litter everywhere around your house?
Lucky you, there’s an easy, non-complicated solution to that: top entry litter box. Most cat owners turn to the best top entry litter box to solve their mess dilemma, and we're here to give you an in-depth review of the best ones on the market today.
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- Best Top Entry Litter Boxes
- Top-Entry Litter Boxes Explained
- Do top entry litter boxes work?
- Can a kitten use a top entry litter box?
- Do cats know to use the litter box?
- Do cats prefer open or closed litter boxes?
Best Top Entry Litter Boxes
Clevercat Top Entry Litter Box
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Petmate Top Entry Litter Pan
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IRIS Top Entry Cat Litter Box
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Modkat Top Entry Litter Box
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AmazonBasics Hooded Cat Litter Box
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Now that you’re looking for options to see which is the best out there, maybe our comprehensive list below could help you find a box that’s perfect for your cat (or cats?). We’ve looked around and summarized the top-rated and best seller litter boxes with a top entrance.
Clever cat litter box tops the list (don’t worry, we’ll explain below why), but there are more options to choose from to see which brand suits you and your cat best. Below is the list of the products reviewed on this post:
- Clevercat Top Entry Litter Box
- Petmate Top Entry Litter Pan
- IRIS Top Entry Cat Litter Box
- Modkat Top Entry Litter Box
- AmazonBasics Hooded Cat Litter Box
1. Clevercat Top Entry Litter Box
The Clevercat top entry litter box may look like any other storage bin, but it's a lot more than that. Perhaps the most popular top entry cat litter box in the business, it has gained triple awards for its simplicity and functionality.
This best-selling product is easy to use, too. No need to train your cats – just insert optional liner if desired, then add 2 to 4 inches cat litter, and it's good to go! You can add a small amount of your cat's urine or feces to encourage your cat to use it for the first time.
Ideally, use it without the lid on the first day and put the lid back on the next day. Doing so will help your cat quickly adjust to its new toilet.
The Clevercat top entry litter box features a no-mess, top-entry design that accommodates kittens to large or even extra-large cats. It is available in a single size only, measuring 20″L x 15″W x 15″H with 9″ diameter opening.
Why You’ll Love It
- It has a simple top entry design that reduces litter odor.
- The top-entrance design gives your cat more headroom and privacy.
- Perfect when you have both cats and dogs at home since it keeps most dogs out.
- The zig-zag pattern on the lid helps keep the litter and dust off your cat’s paws and from falling out of the box.
- The side seams are tall enough to avoid urine leakage.
- It can hold a larger quantity of litter.
- Each Clevercat top entry litter box comes with a built-in tracking mat.
- It is easy to clean and move.
- Some cats, especially disabled, elderly, or extremely large ones, find it challenging to use because of the top entrance structure.
2. Petmate Top Entry Litter Pan
Another frontrunner and perhaps the closest competitor of Clevercat Top Entry Litter Box is the Petmate Litter Pan from pet products brand Petmate.
This top entry litter box has the same size and design as the Clevercat ones, but with a few differences. The lid features a grated texture (as opposed to the zigzag-textured Clevercat top entry litter box) that allows the loose litter to fall into the box.
It also features enclosed high walls, which give our furry friends the privacy they need, and a wide top-entry design that easily accommodates cats of all sizes.
Why You’ll Love It
- The lid of this top entry bin flips open and can be removed completely.
- It is budget-friendly and cheaper than most top entry litter boxes.
- It is easy to clean.
- This top entry litter box comes with a built-in hook for hanging litter scoop when not in use.
- The simple design of this top opening litter box suits most home interiors.
- The opening of this top loading litter box is slightly smaller than its competitors, though not much of a noticeable difference.
3. IRIS Top Entry Cat Litter Box with Cat Litter Scoop
Next on the list is the IRIS Top Entry Cat Litter Box with Cat Litter Scoop. Perfect for those looking for a balance between design and value for money, this litter box from IRIS USA, Inc. features a rounded design with a large top opening that gives cats easy access. Litter scoop is also included, which hangs right outside the box for quick and no-fuss cleaning.
Sleek and beautiful (as users often describe it), product offers a multitude of color options and two different sizes. It comes in black/gray, gray/white, white/beige, and white/seafoam, and in medium or large sizes. The medium IRIS litter box measures 17.32″L x 13.39″W x 12.20″H with an opening diameter of 8 x 9”, while the large variation measures 16.14″L x 20.47″W x 14.56″H.
Why You’ll Love It
- While most top entry litter bins look like a typical box, this product features a sleek rounded design.
- The rounded walls make it easier to wipe down and keep clean.
- It comes in different colors and size options.
- The plastics used are BPA-free and safe for your kitty.
- The top lid features small holes, which act as a built-in mat that helps put the litter from your cat’s paws back into the litter and keep it from scattering to the floor.
- It allows hanging the scoop right out of the box, which is an excellent addition.
- This product has a wide opening but a more narrow base. It tends to topple over when a cat jumps up to the top to get into it. One solution to this is to fill it with enough amount of litter.
4. Modkat Top Entry Litter Box
Also included in our list is the award-winning Modkat top entry litter box. A highly recommended product, it features not only a modern and stylish look but also a well-thought-out design that virtually eliminates litter tracking.
This Modkat product has a top-entry locking lid that functions as a built-in, walk-off mat to keep litter off your floors. The box measures 16” x 16” x 15” with an entry diameter of approximately 9”. This product from Modkat also comes with a reusable liner that measures 16” x 16” x 10”.
Like its other competitors, this Modkat litter box provides cat the privacy while using it. It can comfortably accommodate even large cats with its roomy interior.
Why You’ll Love It
- Perfect for fur babies who like peeing to the sides since its seamless base prevents urine from leaking.
- Multiple colors are available. It comes in red, black, and white.
- The modern design looks great in any home interior.
- It features an easy-open swivel lid. Any litter left on the cover or the lid will drop into the box when the lid is opened.
- It comes with a rip-resistant reusable liner that fits neatly inside the box. It is easy to use and lasts for three months.
- It includes an ergonomic litter scoop that can easily be stored on the sides.
- It is more expensive than most products from other brands, but users note that it is worth every penny.
- It requires the use of Modkat liners to maximize its performance.
- It is only available in one color, which is white.
5. AmazonBasics Hooded Cat Litter Box
This one from AmazonBasics is another top choice of many cat owners. The enclosed cat litter box with top entry measures 20.1” x 15.4” x 15”, which is big enough to accommodate large cats.
It has high walls and a textured lid that both helps keep stray litters off the floor from your cat’s paws. Like other litter boxes of this kind, it prevents dogs from tampering the litter. Even more convenient is its snap-top lid that can be easily popped back or detached for cleaning.
Why You’ll Love It
- Many users highlight that it is easy to assemble.
- It is budget-friendly and cheaper than other leading products in the market.
- The grooved lid is detachable, which makes it easier to clean the entire box.
- The durable, enclosed, and leak-proof design gives your furry friend enough privacy while using it.
- The back panel design of this litter box, which has two crevices in the walls, makes it difficult to clean.
- It is only available in one color, which is gray.
Top-Entry Litter Boxes Explained
Now that you have an idea about the best top entry litter boxes out there, you’re probably thinking if it is worth a try getting one for your cat. Here are some useful things about these litter boxes that could help you decide and know more about this type of product.
What is a top-entry litter box?
Describing what it is shouldn't be complicated. It is, in fact, pretty straightforward: A top entry litter box is a litter box for cats with a top entrance.
Top-entry litter boxes vary depending on the manufacturer, but they have general features that set them apart from other types of litter boxes for cats.
For one, this type of cat litter box flaunts an enclosed design that, most of the time, fits even large cats. Some follow a box-like model, while others have a rounded shape or a much modern and innovative form.
Regardless of the shape, all top loading litter boxes have a top entrance through a lid with a wide entry and exit point for cats. Often, the lid is detachable or a snap-on type for easy cleaning. Further, the top part is usually textured with patterns, and not just for aesthetic reasons. This design serves a function, which is to help wipe off any litter stuck to a cat's paws.
Is a top-entry litter box better?
There is perhaps no definitive answer as to which type of cat tray is better than the other since it all boils down to how cats respond to their new box. While some cats easily find a new top-loading box their go-to place to do their business, others think the exact opposite.
And we can't blame them – they probably have valid reasons. Plus, they are cats! Part of the challenges of “potty training” your kitty is finding the “right” and “perfect” litter box.
To give you an idea of why a top-loading litter box could be the best option out there, we've enumerated some of its countless benefits below.
Benefits of a top-entry cat litter box
As mentioned above, top-loading cat boxes may not be everyone's cup of tea, but they offer tons of perks that many users find helpful and impressive. Here are some of the best reasons why pet parents highly recommend this type of product:
- Prevents mess from getting out of the box: These boxes have high walls. So no matter how much your cat dig or paw through the litter, it will keep any mess off your floor.
- Dog-proof. It helps keep out curious dogs out of the box, so it’s perfect for multi-pet households.
- Gives security and privacy: Most cats prefer ultimate privacy when doing their business. Litter boxes with a top entrance are the most convenient option for such cats since the enclosed box helps keep them secured and relaxed.
- Keeps odor minimal: Since this type of box is enclosed with a lid cover, any bad odor remains contained in the box. However, make sure to scoop the dirt from the box daily to avoid any bad smell from lingering into your house.
- Hides litter mess: Let's admit it. No one likes seeing a litter box full of waste, and these kinds of boxes are the perfect solution to that. They are covered enough to hide such unattractive contents.
- Accommodates more quantity of litter: Because of their big sizes, litter boxes with a top entrance can take in more amount of litter. More litter only means that there will be a lot more for cats to use. Besides, if your feline friend covers his or her business up after every use, there will be less smell coming from the box. More cat litter also means less frequent cleaning.
- Reduces noise: I don’t know about you, but all those constant scratching and scrapings at the bottom of the litter pans can really be annoying. With a top-entry type that fits in more litter, you can now say bye-bye to that kind of annoyance.
- Stylish and often look better than other types: Most of these products offer a wide array of color options. So if you are a little concerned about a litter box not matching your home decor, then a top-loading kind could give you lots of options.
- Easy to clean: These type of litter boxes make it a lot easier to clean than side-entry types. Just tilt the top lid up, scoop the mess, and you are done.
- Requires less space: Since kitties go in and out through the top entrance, you can place conveniently use it even if you live in a small area.
- No mat required: You can forget about cat catch-mats for now and still not worry about the mess on your kitchen floor since most of the dispersed litter stays on the top part or falls back into the box.
- Easy to move around: With a lightweight design and no clamps, moving these boxes around is as easy as pie. Also, you don't have to fret anymore about spilling debris when moving them.
Can a kitten use a top-entrance litter box?
Generally, yes. As long as kittens can easily hop in and out of a top-entrance litter bin, then they can use one. But if they are too small, it is advisable to use one with side entry or open tray first before transitioning to a top entry type.
How do I train my cat to use it?
Getting a new box for your cats can be fun yet frustrating at the same time. Sometimes no matter how much effort we put in getting the right tray for our fur babies, they still dare to refuse using it for whatever reason. Check out these tips to help your cat use a top-entry litter bin.
- Put the new bin in the same spot as the old bin or tray. Doing so will help your cat recognize that it is his new “toilet.”
- Make sure to use the new box with the same litter that your cat is used to. It would further help to pour some of the used (but cleaned) ones from the old box into the new box. Doing so would help your cat make a smooth and quick transition.
- Hide the old litter boxes. Move them somewhere out of sight so that your cat won’t have the option of using it again instead of the new box.
- Show the new litter bin and make sure to let your cat know that it’s safe.
- Help your cats become familiar with their new box by placing them on the lid and letting them jump off or out themselves.
- If your cat is still reluctant, you can take off the cover entirely until your cat gets used to it.
With lots of options for litter boxes out there, one type that truly stands out for most cat owners is the top-entry kind. Yes, they may have tried using other kinds like an open litter tray or a side-entry litter bin. Still, most of them find the top-entry type as the best one yet because of their overall functionality, excellent aesthetics, and other advantages they offer.
While cats could be a little suspicious of a top-entry box at first because it looks different from the usual litter trays, they can quickly become accustomed to using it. There are no-fuss and straightforward techniques for cat owners to help multiple cats get used to top entry litter boxes.
Litter boxes of this type typically help keep your house cleaner and free of the usual litter mess (litter tracking or excess litter left on your cat’s paw). Compared to regular open litter trays, top-entry type prevents the litter from getting out of the box. These enclosed trays further result in less smell because the box mostly contains the pee and poo odor.
Another advantage of these litter boxes is the privacy and security they give to cats. Regardless of brand, the overall design and structure allow cats to do their “business” more comfortably.
Size is also not an issue since litter boxes with a top entrance can typically fit any cat size, including large cats. While some manufacturers limit their product to only one size, there are a few who give multiple size options that could fit multiple cats in a single box.
These kind of litter boxes also fit the bill when it comes to design. Many cat owners like how top-entry cat litter boxes fuse function and style. Some even come with multiple color options so users can pick one that suits their home decor.
We love our feline friends, and we only want what's best for them. With summarized information about the five best litter boxes with a top-cover entrance above, you now have a better understanding if a top entrance box for cat litter is worth trying.
Do top entry litter boxes work?
Top entry litter boxes are fantastic because they offer a cheap solution to covering up litter and reducing the mess your cat makes. In most cases, you can even do away with an unsightly litter mat. They work firstly by enclosing the litter so that it cant be kicked out of the box and all over the floor.
Can a kitten use a top entry litter box?
Your cat will probably do just fine with a top entry litter box. If he or she can smell the old litter, it's almost certain that he or she will figure out how to get into the box. After all, cats are experts at getting themselves into little spaces, and hiding away in places we don't expect them to in the first place. Just be sure that your kitty is big enough to jump out!
Do cats know to use the litter box?
The answer is that cats don't know how to use the litter box. They do it by instinct. Cats always prefer to bury their waste, so the litter box feels like the only place in your house – hopefully – where they can do that. That includes hiding their smell, so burying their waste is one of their survival instincts.
Do cats prefer open or closed litter boxes?
The problem is that people's personal beliefs when it comes to keeping cats vary. For instance, some pet owners believe that cats prefer open litter boxes. And thus are less likely to use closed, covered, enclosed or hooded litter boxes. Self-cleaning litter box models tend to be covered.