Hidden Litter Boxes - A Vet's Advice on a Hidden Litter Box
A hidden litter box is any type of litter designed to conceal the box from plain view. This can be special furniture built to enclose the litter box all the way to boxes which are artistically styled themselves. One popular design resembles a planter and actually includes an artificial plant in the top. Other hidden litter box styles look like end tables and can sit next to a sofa or chair.
It is easy to see why a hidden litter box would be appealing in a home. After all, we love our cats but no one likes to smell or see the litter box.
However, is this appealing to a cat?
The answer is generally no.
There are three problems with most hidden litter boxes: the size, the noise, and the amount of enclosure.
Most planter-looking litter boxes are small - actually too small to be comfortable and appealing to most cats. Some cats will indeed use them but some cats won't, or will do so only when their other boxes are full.
A major problem with the idea of hidden boxes is that they are frequently kept in noisy areas such as living rooms where cats are hesitant to go to the bathroom in the first place. When placed to hide the opening, the cat is unable to see around them and feel very vulnerable.
Cats require a certain amount of visibility when they eliminate to feel safe, and hidden boxes don't offer very much of that. If a cat cannot see their surroundings they feel unprotected and defensive-which often means that they won't use their box.
When looking at a litter box and deciding on its location, the MOST important thing is to make sure your cat will use it.
The ideal litter box should be in a quiet, private area where cats can clearly see around them. A clear box with an entry door cut out is best. We love clear storage containers as litter boxes for several reasons. They are inexpensive, large, and cats love them. They also have high sides, which is appealing to cats that like to urinate near the edges of the box. The high sides prevent urine from going over the edge.
I hope this gives you more information about hidden litter boxes, and whether a hidden litter box is good for your cat.