The Best Sifting Litter Box

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The best sifting litter box for most people I’ve found is the Pet Mate Arm & Hammer Large Sifting Litter Pan – it’s simple, efficient, and priced well.

Best Overall
Pet Mate Arm & Hammer Large Sifting Litter Pan
8.8
  • Treated with antimicrobial Microban
  • Simple and efficient
  • Good size
  • Comes with spare main tray
  • Great price

But cats and owners are individuals, which is why in this article, I included great sifting litter boxes in a few different categories. You may have wrist issues that make repetitive scooping painful. At the end is a buyer’s guide.

Photo via Catza.net

These are the cat litter sifter boxes we are reviewing (not all shown):

Van Ness Enclosed Sifting Cat Pan
BEST COVERED

Van Ness Enclosed Sifting Cat Pan

  • Covered Type
  • Use with: Clay, Crystal Litter
  • Plastic Construction
  • 19.5" L x 15.25" W x 17.5" H
Purina Tidy Cats Breeze System Starter Kit
BEST FOR PINE PELLETS

Purina Tidy Cats Breeze System Starter Kit

  • Open Type
  • Use with: Non-Clumping Pellets Litter
  • Plastic Construction
  • 20.5" L x 15.8" W x 10.1" H
Van Ness Giant Enclosed Sifting Litter Box
BEST FOR LARGE CATS

Van Ness Giant Enclosed Sifting Litter Box

  • Enclosed Type
  • Use with: Clay, Crystal Litter
  • Plastic Construction
  • 21.5" L x 17.5" W x 19" H
SpeedySift Cat Litter Box
BEST WITH HIGH SIDES

SpeedySift Cat Litter Box

  • High Sided Type
  • Use with: Clay Litter
  • Corrugated Plastic Construction
  • 20" L x 17" W x 11" H
Van Ness CP5 Sifting Litter Box
FOR EASY ENTRY (LOW SIDES)

Van Ness CP5 Sifting Litter Box

  • Low Sided Type
  • Use with: Clay, Crystal Litter
  • Plastic Construction
  • 19'' L x 15.1" W x 8" H

Overall Best Sifting Litter Box

Pet Mate Arm & Hammer Large Sifting Litter Pan
8.25
  • Treated with antimicrobial Microban
  • Simple and efficient
  • Good size
  • Comes with spare main tray
  • Great price

This is my pick for the best sifting litter box when considering what most people need to keep things fresh and tidy for their cats. The Pet Mate Arm & Hammer Sifting Litter Box is simple, efficient, and priced well.

The cat litter sifter box includes two regular pans with a sifting pan with no need for a scoop in sight! This design is really effective at sifting both clumping clay litter and natural pellets.

The standout feature on this box is its antimicrobial protection that helps to keep a safer box for your kitty while nixing odor-causing bacteria and staining. I dig the reinforced bottom for handling heavier burdens.

Overall, the Arm and Hammer Sifting Litter Box is a really simple and fresh box for any cat that doesn’t have highly specific preferences. There’s no simpler method for separating fresh and soiled litter.

Rating Breakdown:

  • Size: 6/10
  • Performance: 9/10
  • Durability: 9/10
  • Price: 9/10
  • Overall Score: 8.25

What We Liked:

  • Treated with antimicrobial Microban
  • Simple and efficient
  • Good size
  • Comes with spare main tray
  • Great price

What We Didn’t Like:

  • Sides may be a little high

Best Sifting Litter Box with a Lid

Van Ness Enclosed Sifting Cat Pan
8.75
  • Covered Type
  • Use with: Clay, Crystal Litter
  • Plastic Construction
  • 19.5" L x 15.25" W x 17.5" H

For those who want the best sifting litter box with a lid, I highly recommend the Van Ness Sifting Enclosed Cat Litter Pan. Not only does it come with a hood, you also get 2 bottom pans and 1 sifting pan. That’s 4 pieces total.

Over 6000 users are happy with the odor control and litter containing abilities that this litter box offers. It provides easy access for your cat via a smooth flap door. Some reviewers remove the door.

The best way to use this cat litter box with a hood is not to follow the manufacturer’s instructions. Everyone says to sandwich the sifting layer between the two solid pans, then fill with litter on top!

That way, when doing the cleaning dance with trays, the sifting pan grates stays nice and clean.

Integrated replaceable carbon filters help out with ventilation. The hood locks into place and there is a convenient handle for moving the sifter litter box and cleaning underneath as well.

Rating Breakdown:

  • Size: 9/10
  • Performance: 8/10
  • Durability: 9/10
  • Price: 9/10
  • Overall Score: 8.75

What We Liked:

  • 4 piece design
  • Odor control
  • Contains litter and litter dust
  • Replaceable carbon filter
  • Price

What We Didn’t Like:

  • High entry door isn’t ideal for older cats with mobility issues

Best Jumbo Sifting Litter Box

Van Ness Giant Enclosed Sifting Litter Box
8.75
  • Enclosed Type
  • Use with: Clay, Crystal Litter
  • Plastic Construction
  • 21.5" L x 17.5" W x 19" H

For those with larger cats or bigger boned breeds like Maine Coons or Ragdolls, the other sifting cat litter pans may not be the best fit.

For cats 12 pounds and up, I recommend the USA-made Van Ness Sifting Litter Box in their extra large configuration. Yes, it’s just the above hooded litter box with the same benefits, just in a giant package!

I know what you’re thinking – you don’t want a covered litter box, just a larger sifting one. No problem, the this sifting cat box is perfectly functional without the cover.

You still get the nifty 3 pan system, non-toxic materials, and high sides that prevent litter spray. Again, this is just a great cat litter box with a hood and a sifter!

Rating Breakdown:

  • Size: 10/10
  • Performance: 9/10
  • Durability: 8/10
  • Price: 7/10
  • Overall Score: 8.5

What We Liked:

  • Jumbo size!
  • Works fine without the cover
  • Same as above

What We Didn’t Like:

  • Same as above

Best Sifting Litter Box for Pine Pellets

Purina Tidy Cats Breeze System Starter Kit
7.25
  • Open Type
  • Use with: Non-Clumping Pellets Litter
  • Plastic Construction
  • 20.5" L x 15.8" W x 10.1" H

The Breeze pellet litter box is a real winner when it comes to natural pellet litter. We know that pellet litter soaks up liquids and disintegrates into sawdust. Cleaning wood pellet cat litter via normal sifter litter boxes can be impossible.

But this pellet litter box system divides liquids from solids using a sliding lower sifting tray that you line with disposable pads. When it’s time to clean the box, simply scoop the solids away, and give the litter a mix or shake, to dissolve soiled pellets.

The dust falls through and lands on the pad. Slide out the sifting tray, change the pad a few times a week, and replenish pellets. You get ultra-easy removal and a dust-free experience. No more clay litter clouds from the best sifting litter box for pine pellets!

Don’t forget the non-clumping pellets used absorbs moisture to keep ammonia odors away.

This style of pellet litter box offers amazing odor prevention for an open system. All of the solids stay neatly on top to prevent the need for you to ever “dig.”

Protip: there is no need to refill with Purina brand pellets. Use all pine or whatever you want . This flexible product can act as a wood pellet litter box for any brand of pine or wood.

Rating Breakdown:

  • Size: 8/10
  • Performance: 8/10
  • Durability: 7/10
  • Price: 6/10
  • Overall Score: 7.25

What We Liked:

  • The perfect pellet litter box!
  • Pellets are made from a natural mineral called zeolite
  • Natural, eco-friendly and dust free
  • Works with any type of pellet litter

What We Didn’t Like:

  • Need to change pads
  • May not be big enough for jumbo cats

Best Cat Litter Sifter Box With High Sides

SpeedySift Cat Litter Box
7
  • High Sided Type
  • Use with: Clay Litter
  • Corrugated Plastic Construction
  • 20" L x 17" W x 11" H

The ultimate high sided sifting cat box is the SpeedySift Litter Box with Sifting Liners. At 11 inches high, these sides will prevent litter scatter as your cat digs, as if for gold!

This model doesn’t look like any litter box on the market, with its large pan base, innovative liners, litter, and plastic top lid.

Each liner essentially acts as a sieve. Once stacked, they create a base that keeps leakage and litter from falling to the bottom. Your cat goes like normal, then you simply remove the lid, and lift up 4 corners of the top liner.

All litter falls through, and waste ends up in the middle of the “trampoline” that you’re now holding. Dispose of as normal. It’s a great pick for neat cat owners not down to scoop or deal with litter in any way.

This box is made from lightweight, durable corrugated plastic. Basically, you never have to actually get in there to address litter at all. Definitely one of the best sifting cat litter boxes!

You can even purchase replacement side walls if you don’t want to deal with cleaning the sides after a period of use. Only downside is needing to purchase sifting litter box liners.

Rating Breakdown:

  • Size: 8/10
  • Performance: 7/10
  • Durability: 7/10
  • Price: 6/10
  • Overall Score: 7

What We Liked:

  • High sides
  • Innovative and effective
  • Very quick and easy to clean
  • Sturdy plastic material
  • Liners stay in place

What We Didn’t Like:

  • Need to buy and refill liners

Best Easy Entry Cat Litter Sifter Box

Van Ness CP5 Sifting Litter Box
7.75
  • Low Sided Type
  • Use with: Clay, Crystal Litter
  • Plastic Construction
  • 19'' L x 15.1" W x 8" H

For senior cats or cats with mobility issues, the Van Ness CP5 Sifting Litter Box is our top pick. This USA-made product is easy for cats to step right into!

It also earns point for being very easy to use with both clay and pellet litters. Lots of people use this with pine clumping litter with great results based on user reviews.

There is a low, easy entry at the front, and I like that the sides are a little higher to prevent spillage when your cat paws around.

Ultimately, this is a smart, simple design featuring two nesting pans with a sifting screen. You just stack the pans with the screen at the top before filling the system with your favorite clumping litter.

Your clumps will be left behind once you lift your sifting screen. Another one of the best sifting cat litter boxes, this model is also easy to clean.

There’s a little issue with the sifter getting clogged if you let waste pile up.

Rating Breakdown:

  • Size: 6/10
  • Performance: 7/10
  • Durability: 8/10
  • Price: 10/10
  • Overall Score: 7.75

What We Liked:

  • Easy entry
  • Slightly taller sides with a low front is a perfect combo for accessibility and neatness
  • 3 piece design
  • Great price

What We Didn’t Like:

  • Size may not fit large cats

Also Great Sifting Cat Litter Box

Frisco Sifting Cat Litter Box
8
  • Great price
  • Simple and functional
  • Large size

Dimensions: 22.4L x 16.9W x 6.5H (inches)

This one’s my bonus pick if none of the other sifting cat litter boxes work for you. It’s a larger than usual, ultra-simple 3 tray litter box design that’s very affordable. It also lets you skip the plastic liners entirely.

Made of BPA-free plastic, the Frisco Sifting Cat Litter Box simple to clean with soap and water. I consider it a no-fuss, low-maintenance option that’s cheaper in the long run because you’re not constantly replenishing liners.

Overall, this 3 tray litter box does the work for you. It’s perfect for a cat who likes open spaces. However, it still has a nicely elevated frame to prevent spillage over the top. You’re truly just “lifting and tossing” daily.

Rating Breakdown:

  • Size: 9/10
  • Performance: 7/10
  • Durability: 7/10
  • Price: 9/10
  • Overall Score: 8

What We Liked:

  • Great price
  • Simple and functional
  • Large size

What We Didn’t Like:

  • Sides may be a little low

Omega Paw Self Sifting Litter Box
7
  • It’s self sifting!
  • Not many moving parts, sustainable hardware
  • Takes just minutes to empty

The rolling Omega Paw Self-Cleaning Litter Box is a real crowd pleaser, with over 10,000 positive reviews in total across the product line.

This self sifting litter box cleans without any scooping via a unique grill that separates the clumped waste for you. On your end, you’re rolling the box over and back, then pulling out a tray to toss the waste that’s been deposited for you.

I think this can be a lifestyle changing litter box. And don’t forget this is a covered litter box with all its odor and litter dust prevention properties!

Litter stays in the box, even while rolling, which is kind of amazing, in my book.

There’s just a little bit of a learning curve when it comes to rolling this box over completely. You may have to pound on the box to free everything that might be stuck to the bottoms or sides.

Other than that, this is pretty wonderful and reviewers totally wondered why they didn’t get one earlier.

Rating Breakdown:

  • Size: 8/10
  • Performance: 6/10
  • Durability: 7/10
  • Price: 7/10
  • Overall Score: 7

What We Liked:

  • It’s self sifting!
  • Not many moving parts, sustainable hardware
  • Takes just minutes to empty

What We Didn’t Like:

  • While the unit is large, the interior might feel tight for some cats
  • Learning curve to operate at first

The Sifting Litter Box Basics

How Do Sifting Cat Litter Boxes Work?

A cat litter sifter box, on its most basic level, is a system that uses sifting and pouring to get at the waste, instead of manually scooping.

With simple systems, you assemble a couple of trays, maybe it’s a 2 or 3 tray litter box, and pour in litter like normal. Hooded sifting litter boxes have an extra piece, so a 4 piece system is not unheard of.

After Fluffy finished their shift at the office, you can either (and this part depends on how how layered the trays and boxes)

  • lift your slatted sifting pan to remove clumps directly
  • pour the entire top tray into second sifter tray, which collects clumps and lets unused litter fall through

Many designs come with a spare main pan, which is for your convenience while you clean things and move around trays.

Sifting Mechanism

There isn’t just 1 way to sift! Some brands offer two trays, some three. There might be handle to pull or button to press that does the dirty work.

And besides manual sifting with trays and widgets, you can find more complex self sifting litter boxes with mechanical, automated features.

While these self sifting litter boxes may seem convenient to you, they may not be for your cat. It’s always good to go with what your cat knows and is familiar with, otherwise they might not use the litter box at all.

If you’re wanting to switch to a sifting litter box, it’s probably best to start with a non-motorized one. It’s more affordable to start, and isn’t that much different of an experience to your cat.

Types of Cat Litter and Sifter Litter Boxes

Sifting cat litter boxes are mostly meant for use with clay or clumping litter.

Clay clumping litter that forms tight, solid clumps works best with these cat litter sifter boxes. You’ll barely do any work if you have good clumping action.

Pellet litters and non-clumping litters have their own sifting pellet litter boxes.

It’s best not use sifter litter boxes that aren’t designed for pine pellets as a wood pellet litter box. They just don’t have grates that are the right size. A result, this box won’t properly separate your pine pellets from your sawdust.

Cleaning Your Sifting Cat Litter Box

Many people think cleaning is easier because the “clean” litter is preserved away from the soiled litter. The big draw is that you’re not raking through the litter to try to separate clumps because you have pre-separated clumps.

Most come with a spare main tray to allow you to dump your preserved litter into a new spot to start fresh after you remove the sifting part.

The toughest part to clean is the sifting tray. A little soap and warm water should be fine. You can also spray it with natural cleaner.

When you’re doing a deep cleaning, you can submerge the sifting tray in warm water.


Sifter Litter Boxes and Cat Preference

“Yeah, it’s all about my preference!”

Thinking about making the switch but worried about how Fluffy (who’s always hesitant to change) will accept the new contraption?

No worries because they come in very familiar configurations. From a sifting litter box with a lid, to jumbo sifting litter boxes, or automated self sifting litter boxes, there is a type right for every cat.

We want to make sure they’re comfortable The best sifting litter box for him is the one they happily use!

  • Shy cat? Try to find her a sifting cat litter box with a hood
  • Cat that kicks up litter to make a dusty mess? Focus on a high-sided sifting tray.
  • Cat with some mobility issues? Get a low-sided sifting box to help her get in and out easily.
  • Is she used to natural or non clumping litter? Perfect opportunity to use a wood pellet litter box.

If your cat isn’t picky, the default is an open box. This style is affordable, easy to find and quick to care for.


Benefits of a Sifting Litter Box

WIth so many box types out there, why should you choose a litter box with a sifter? Below a few things you’ll enjoy as you live your best scoop free life.

No Scooping

Oh yeah, this has to be mentioned! Probably the main reason people look up sifting boxes and consider purchasing one.

Many paw-rents consider scooping a litter box the worst part of cat ownership. Maybe it repulses you, or you have wrist pain. Either way, with a litter box sifter, you just lift, shake, and pour. 

Saves Time

Litter box maintenance can be a chore that people trudge through. For others, it is an ordeal! Using a sift to clean up means it is only 1 motion, and all solids and clumps are exposed for easy disposal.

To make this part extra easy, I recommend a cat litter disposal system, they have a big entrance that accommodates easy depositing from the grate.

If you’re thinking of dumping the waste in a trash can or a small baggie, that sounds rough without a scoop! What if you miss the bag?

Saves Money and No Wasted Litter

When scooping and tossing clumps, it’s easy to throw away unsoiled litter in the process.

Using a litter box with a sifter’s fine grates ensure clean litter falls through the grates, and this increases the time in between litter changes. You also save a bit of litter, and over time, it can add up!

More Sanitary

Any cat owner knows the struggle of discovering dried, caked on clumps firmly stuck to the bottom of the litter pan lie barnacles while doing a deep clean.

With a sifting litter box, you sort through the whole box regularly, and catch anything hidden deep within. The entire litter box is simply cleaner, which equates to less offensive odors and hardcore excavation work on the bottom of litter pan!


Choosing the Best Sifting Litter Box

You’re ready purchase a sifting box, what now? Here’s what to look for as you assess different models on the market to ensure you find the best one for Fluffy.

Size

A proper litter box for a cat should be approximately 1.5 times the length of your cat, at the least. They need to be able to enter, do their business neatly, and have ample room to turn around a few times in the process before finally covering it with litter.

The right sized sifting litter box is comfortable for your cat to use and more sanitary as they are less likely to step in their waste. Finally, a large litter box prevents too much litter scatter from reaching your floors.

Covered or Uncovered

Are you concerned with odors, litter dust, and just seeing the open litter pan? Yes, in this section are referring to your wishes, and not only Mitten’s preferences.

If so, consider a sifting litter box with a lid, or at least one that is covered, and that obfuscates the litter area. Whenever mentioning this option though, I need to always highlight that not seeing the litter should not be an excuse for not cleaning it everyday.

Build Quality

Quality construction is always a concern with litter boxes as they are high traffic and take a lot of abuse. And of course, it’s a disaster if they somehow crack and the contents spilled out.

With sifting litter boxes, the materials and build are even of more important, since you will be actually lifting and moving the trays and pans regularly. Check grips, edges, and handles for strength and signs of easy future wear and tear.


Can You Do a DIY Sifting Cat Litter Box?

Yes, I have come across some people who prefer to DIY litter box sifters. Honestly, it can be as easy as getting two plastic bins that are good for drilling some holes if you don’t mind a large, bulky litter box for your cat.

Here is a great DIY sifting cat litter box project from Empress of Dirt.


Frequently Asked Questions About Sifting Trays

Do sifting litter boxes work?

Yes, a well-designed sifting box will eliminate the need for scooping because it has a built-in level that allows you to separate your clumps from the rest of the litter. Try the Pet Mate Arm & Hammer Sifting Litter Box and test it for your self!

How often should you sift cat litter?

While some people say twice a week, others recommend every other day. Your frequency will depend on how many cats are using one litter box.

Do you need a sifting litter box for pine litter?

Yes, pine litter does require sifting. Ideally, you’ll be using a special pellet litter box for pine that allows you to remove all of the dust from the box with the smallest hassle possible. I recommend Purina’s Breeze system as a great pine litter box.

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From Our #1 Ranked Online Pet Store

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  • Discounts on new customers, Autoship, 1-3 day delivery & more!