LitterMaid Elite Mega Automatic Self-Cleaning Litter Box
List Price: $199.99
Our Price: $128.13
You Save: $71.86 (36%)
The Littermaida¡é Ultimate Edition Advanced Automatic Self-Cleaning Litter Box is a clean solution to your pets messy problem with litter. Ten minutes after your cat finishes her duties, the cleaning cycle begins. The rake clears all clumps towards the waste receptacles where they are carbon filtrated and sealed off. The waste receptacles contain all the waste great for easy safe disposal. The Littermaida¡é Ultimate Edition is great for large cats or multiple cat households. Exterior Dimensions: 28"L x 20"W x 8.5"H Interior Dimensions: 17"L x 14"W (litter area) No More ODORS! Built in Ionic air cleaner automatically cycles on and off to remove excess odors. Carbon filtration picks up waste receptacle odor.
No-touch self-cleaning litter box rakes waste automatically into sealable container
Powerful odor-absorbing carbon filters reduce waste smell by 50 percent
Ideal for households with large cat or more than 1 of any size
Easy to assemble and clean
Includes removable steel rake, ionic air cleaner, waste receptacles, AC power cord, and more
Wish I had 3.5 stars This is the first automatic litter box I have ever used and I must say that I was skeptical at first. I have now been using the Littermaid Ultimate box for about two weeks. I suppose I should say that my two cats have been using the box!!! Anyway if you are thinking that the the littermaid will relieve you of litterbox duty think again. There is still much work to be done, however, the littermaid does a nice job of lessening that chore considerably. In my manual box days, I would scoop once a day, and then clean the whole box out every two weeks or so. Currently, I am down to about every third or fourth day to scoop with the Littermaid, and this is scooping the small particles that the Maid could not get. I do think that is quite a savings compared to the fully manual box. I also find the odor control to be MUCH improved (thank you!).
However, the box is large, noisy, and not the easiest thing to set up. I just found out that it has no memory when there is a power failure, so settings are not saved. While this version of the Littermaid is full-featured (you can, for example, set the box to not go off for nine hours while you sleep - YES, it is that loud!), the features are difficult to use and program. The plastic waste receptacles are really pretty annoying, so flimsy and tough to work with when full. I would far rather a sturdy reusable plastic/metal waste receptacle that you could just dump every so often into the trash and then wash it out.
All in all, a good product. 3.5 stars....more info
If you're trying to deter your dog from "snacking" My dog Roscoe has a bad kitty litter habit......he looks for "treats" and I've been trying to find ways to stop this insanity. He's ignored a shock collar, nearly bit me when I "arrested" him and locked him in the bathroom, but recently he at least comes when called if I catch him just before he enters the cat box area (the floor of a linen closet). But I'm not always there to catch him.
My friend Crissy suggested the automatic cleaning cat box......
So, I broke down and bought one. I have a big cat, so I opted for the bigger one for $160.
I got it home on Saturday, thinking it would be simple - take it out of the box and plug it in. Nope - there's assembly required and the instructions are horrible. They don't show the whole picture - just a piece at a time, so it's hard to figure out. And one of the pieces that should "snap" in, required a hammer.
While I'm doing this, I'm not realizing that my burn from the beach that morning is developing, and before you know it, I'm not only frustrated with the contraption, but I'm also hot and bothered. Both the dog and cat are very interested in what I'm doing, too, so Gracie (the cat) is batting things around, trying to get into the empty box, then trying to knock over the empty box since it's too tall. Roscoe begins to steal parts on the floor, in an attempt to get my attention.
Finally, it's together, and it barely fits into the space, but it does fit. An hour or so later, Gracie uses it. They were both so freaked out when the raking motor started - they both very gingerly walked toward it (it's behind a curtain) and kept looking at each other, then the curtain, then each other. It stopped raking, and they went over to it and sniffed. This happened again the next day, so I figured we're good to go; Gracie is happy with her new box. Lucky for me, I was too lazy at that moment to throw away the box it came in and old cat box.
Yesterday morning, Roscoe had already figured out the 10 minute delay before the raking begins. He learned quickly he has to be more aware of the cat box activity; can't wait until later. I thought, oh well, at least I'll have a cleaner litter box, and I'll have to keep working on training Roscoe.
Last night, I heard Roscoe playing with something in the bedroom (I thought) - it sounded like a rawhide shoe of his, but he wasn't bringing into the living room like he normally does, so I went to investigate. He was in the new cat box and had hit pay dirt!! He figured out how to open the little waste tray, and was quite delighted that everything was there waiting for him! Yikes!!!
I got him out of it, I'm feeling sick just thinking about it again, and washed the surrounding rugs (he dropped little pieces), then went to the patio to retrieve the old cat box (which I had cleaned but left on the patio just in case Gracie didn't like the new box). I managed to somewhat take it apart and fit it back into the box with it sticking out. They told me I could return in 10 days, so I'll be returning it today.
So, good idea, but my dog is much too smart for it. Maybe a new shock collar.....
Plan on spending $$$ on replacement rakes We've had this unit for a couple of years. I'd give it four stars for performance (although you need to manually attend to the litterbox every couple of days), but the main complaint is that the small wheels on the "rake" (the comb that removes used litter clumps) breaks about every six months.
Littermaid used to be pretty good about acknowledging the weak point in the system and would periodically send us a new rake under warranty, but now they say "we haven't heard any reports of weak points" and want $24 for a new rake. $50/year to keep our Littermaid going.... ouch.
For some reason (I suspect they were purchased recently by Black & Decker), their customer service has turned sour to the consumer. Do you really want to purchase this product? ...more info
Much better than the older design! We've been using the LitterMaid boxes for over 5 years - and they truly are great. The older design had some flaws, and they only lasted a little over 2 years.
It looks like LitterMaid has found a better way with their new box - we bought it to replace our old one that finally quit working. This one shields the motor and electronics with a new rake path that is easily cleaned and follows a strait path using some clever engineering to lift the rake.
The air filter & other improvements are nice too! I expect this box will last 4-5 years at least, maybe longer....more info
Aside from it being somewhat loud, both my cats and myself are not put off by the murmur when the litter is being sifted clean. In fact my cats love the litter box so clean and fresh.
It does use LitterMaid litter and other more expensive brands of high clumping litter. The litter I'm currently using for this is Arm & Hammer Super Scoop, which is more than I pay for my regular litter, but since only half of my cats use this box, it lasts pretty well.
I recommend this to anyone needing or wanting a little break in cleaning their cats' litter box....more info
Underpowered! This product is not what it says it is. Over 50% of the time it will not have enough power to push the pooh into the container. So I have to do it. The containers are very expensive and will fill up in 2 days with one cat's business. You can not put a liner in the bottom of the box because the cleaning comb may get caught on it. So that makes cleaning the litter very hard and there is no real easy way to pour the litter out of the big bulky box. The seller will not take returns on any opened item. So how do you know if you like the product if you don't used it? You are stuck with a very expensive and half working product. Do not buy this product!...more info
Inefficient and Expensive This machine successfully transforms a simple chore into an painstakingly inefficient and time consuming ordeal. The process of cleaning the box is complicated: one must remove the top of the box (which includes the entire motor and rake) in order to change the litter. It is difficult to remove the waste container also. The process is almost impossible to complete without getting cat crap on your hands. The overall design of the "self-cleaning" box is very poor. The waste containers are expensive and you must continue to purchase them. If you own more than one cat, the containers are too small and fill too fast. Do not buy this product you will be sorry. ...more info
Great Product! I used the Littermaid 700 for 3 years with my cats and was happy. I just purchased this box and I am over the moon! It accommodates my very large cat, as well as works great in a multiple cat setting. My cats all share this one box with no issues. I find it to be more quiet than the 700, and although I can still hear it, I don't find it excessive, and it is a machine and some noise should be expected. Guests mention no odor from the box, and I love the ionic filter. I do line the waste receptacles as they get very expensive. This model allows for the rake to be easily removed for cleaning, and the whole unit took 10 minutes to assemble. Nothing beats a litter box that cleans itself!...more info
Makes kitty and ME happy This is the new improved model. I have the older one and was pleased overall with its performance. But Kitty wanted a bigger one. He is a little long in the body and he sometimes had a problem getting his whole body in but no problem with this gem.
Kitty is fussy and wants a clean box ALL the Time. That is easily solved with the Littermaid.
As for me, I like that the kleaning is sooooooo much easier and no mess.
One thing about have cats is when you have visitors, you really don't want a messy cat box somewhere in the house.. This saves the day. NO SMELL , NO MESS and NO unsightly dirty pan. The ion cleaner makes for a nice fresh area around the box for those of us that don't have access to set up the box in a garage or segregated area in the house.
The next improvement, I love as does Kitty is the cleaning ramp. This keeps more of the litter in the box and off my floor.
Now I have friends who bought a similar box and they complained about it. After talking with them they were not using the right heavy clumping litter..That is the trick that makes this work so well. I always buy either multiple cat litter or try one of the heavier clumping litter. Works like a charm.
Again Kitty and I are both HAPPY...with this item. ...more info
No more scooping! No more odors! No more scooping! No more odors!
Your cat will never have to pussyfoot through soiled litter again. This appliance makes litter box clean-up fast and easy for my family. The automatic, self-cleaning unit rakes away waste and leaves the litter box clean after each use. The ramp up to the unit also helps to catch litter as the kitty leaves which is a plus.
Once the cat leaves the unit it triggers the cleaning system and the rake clears your cat's clumps depositing them in the waste receptacle where it and odors are sealed away; allowing for a clean litter box each time your cat enters and eliminating the majority of odors for you! When the receptacle is full, just throw it away and replace with a fresh one.
There are a few small draw backs:
1. The blue light on the unit is very right and unnecessary. Our laundry room glows.
2. The disposable tray must be snapped under the lip of the unit or the little slips out on the sides -it can results in a real mess if not properly placed in and this is not somewhere you want to spend much time messing around!
3. This new unit is loader then the original.
All in all it is still the best unit on the market and I feel it is well worth the investment!
Difficult to set up, but my cat loves it. The setup required for this litter box is not for the faint of heart.
The instructions are confusing and poorly written, and the images are so small that it's difficult to tell what you're supposed to be doing. I can normally set up IKEA furniture quickly without even reading the instructions, but setting this thing up took my fianc¨¦ and I over 45 minutes. Then when we tried to run it the first time one of the wheels popped out of the track and I had to spend another 20 minutes taking everything apart and unscrewing the track parts so I could put it together correctly.
But despite the initial setup problems it works very well and our cat LOVES it.
Not only does she enjoy having a cleaner box, but every time the motor fires up she runs over to the box to watch it work its magic.
- Works perfectly with no maintinence when set up correctly.
- Significantly reduces unpleasant odors.
- Cat loves it!
While it's frustrating to have problems with a fairly expensive device like this, I think the pros outweigh the cons and My cat is so happy with the box that I think it's definitely worth it. ...more info
One for the Large Apartment Dwelling Cat With two cats, I had come to the decision (one that I have never regretted) to leave the litter box duties to technology. Or as much of those duties as non-humanly possible. That decision lead me to the LitterMaid LM700, not a perfect solution by any measure but still a useful convenience and a very good thing for peace of mind during short trips out of town.
Now, with four cats, one of them being, shall we say, extra large, perhaps some new version of the technology was in order. Enter the LitterMaid Elite Mega. If you're not already familiar with these contraptions, er, technological wonders, they work like this: you fill the box with clumping litter, the cat enters and breaks an invisible beam of light starting a timer that, in 10 minutes time, hopefully rakes the waste into a bin under a hinged lid. At least that's the plan.
New features of the Elite Mega compared to the LM700:
- Extra roomy litter box for larger cats
- Quiet timer to disable motorized scooping during the night; great for apartments
- Removable metal rake that easy to clean
- Automatic ionizer odor zapper
The LitterMaid Elite Mega actually looks rather sleek done in silver and gray. I was rather surprised the plastic was a softer variety - more like a simple litter pan than the hard plastic of the LM700. There's also a red glowing LED clock and some buttons for power and clock settings. The buttons are cheap-microwave style push buttons. The Elite Mega also has an easily removable METAL rake instead of the of plastic, a welcome improvement.
Setting up the LitterMaid Elite Mega was an easy process requiring no tools basically just sliding a few bits into slots and installing a plastic waste bin and plugging the power adapter in. It is recommended that you spray the litter pan with silicon or non-stick cooking spray beforehand. You will also want to install 8 AA batteries as a backup power source, to maintain the clock setting but, most importantly, to make sure the unit powers ON after a power outage. Yes, even if you have no use for the clock and quiet timer and even if you don't care about automatic scooping during a power outage, YOU MUST INSTALL 8 AA BATTERIES OTHERWISE THE UNIT WILL STAY OFF AFTER A POWER OUTAGE.
In operation, the Elite Mega more or less does the job. There are a few things which are a bit annoying about the device though. For one thing, the motor is very loud. I suspect its a bit underpowered hearing how much louder it gets when the rake meets the litter. The larger litter tray is also shallower which, even with a coating of silicon spray, seems to cause more clumps to stick to the tray than with the smaller, deeper models. Clumps also tend to push more dry litter into into the waste tray requiring emptying more often -- in my household with 4 cats (one outdoor), the LM700 waste tray needed emptying every 5-6 days while the Elite Mega lasts 4 days (other litter boxes available in both cases). Furthermore, an odd design feature allows some amount of litter behind the resting point of the rake and waste can sometimes work behind it. And the nice sleek silver and gray finish isn't so nice looking when coated with dust from litter. The most annoying feature is having to install 8 AA batteries otherwise you have to manually turn the units power ON after a power outage.
That may sound fairly damning but, still, the Elite Mega does the job if you don't mind checking it and maybe scooping once a day. What, you still have to scoop!? Yes, perhaps, but just some muddy stuff that gets stuck to the bottom. (Maybe I should have gone with the Pam cooking spray instead of silicon?) Even with these drawbacks, I believe the Elite would be perfect for an apartment dweller with a small to extra large cat or anyone else who needs the unit to stay off and quiet during the night. If you don't need the quiet timer, however, you might want to look at the less expensive LM700 model instead....more info
This is an upgrade? I bought this unit believing it would be a leap forward from the standard LitterMaid boxes. What a gross disappointment!!!
Even when using premium clumping litter, the wet lumps will stick to the bottom of the box. The unit doesn't have sufficient power to remove these clumps. The most important part of your unit will be the hand scoop; you will be using it a lot!!!
If your cat backs up to the rake and urinates in that area, it creates clumps there. When the unit cycles, the rake will bind against these and make a popping sound when it returns to its starting point.
On older LitterMaid units, the unit would automatically restart after a power failure. This unit does not do that and has to be manually restarted.
In the world of self-cleaning litter boxes, the "better mousetrap" has yet to be built. If it ever does happen, I doubt that LitterMaid will be the one to do it!
Overall average, needs some reengineering. Summary:
The littermaid does work but it has a way to go before being a perfected automated way of doing the litter. It handles pee much better than poop, but does so very noisily and messy. In many ways, it's much less effort to just having a traditional manual litter system. Operational costs are high as well.
Unboxing and setup:
The littermaid comes in a large regular box. It is largely unassembled for packaging reasons and so you got to put it together yourself. This is not an easy process as the directions are very confusing and poorly illustrated. A good setup instruction set often has pictograms showing what you should be doing. While the pictograms exist, they look nothing like the actual littermaid that you have in front of you. There is some force needed to snap together a few pieces and this is what worried me, since I didn't want to break anything putting it together. Yet, I had to "chance it" in a few places as sitting there for half an hour pondering the directions got me no where. Fortunately, nothing broke and all went well. Very frustrating experience.
The package comes with the DC electric plug, a few plastic litter trays and covers, charcoal packs, and a scooper. The device does allow the use of AA batteries to be used but this should ONLY be used for power backup purposes. I didn't realize this at first and put the batteries in hoping to avoid the need for a cord -- well needless to say, my fresh set of Energizers were depleted just after one day of use. Therefore, you must have a power outlet readily avaiable to where you wish to place the device.
I use Fresh Step litter in my device as it's the same type I buy in bulk for my home's other manual litter boxes (3 total for 3 cats; they don't necessarily "own" a box -- they share all three).
My cats had no problem getting adjusted to the new litter box. It was as if they didn't even notice the difference. The box is more than large enough for my 15 pound muscular beast who's an aggresive sand digger (note that although no tent cover comes with the device, you can buy that separately). The motor is VERY NOISY. It's like a loud can opener for the 60s -- you can hear it from far distances. There is no reason why any motor should have to be loud like this. This is a reflection of poor enginering in my opinion. In any event, the motor has a delay before it's activated and so this prevents any issue with a cat being shocked by the movement while still in the box.
I noticed was that pee collection went smoothly and nearly perfectly for the littermaid device. Everything was cleared out consistently. Poop, however, is another story. Sometimes it's cleared out, but often there is smearing at the lip of the litterbox right before it lifts into the collection tray. Small pieces of poop might also escape the motor's rake, and so that would be left in the box. The seal on the collection tray is not that good, so odors do escape. Some of the issue is that the poop acts as a glue to the sand and so bonds to where it should be sealing.
Now that I've used the device for a month I find myself manually picking up the poop whenever I can. I like the device for urine collection though. If only the cats could be trained to only urinate in this box! That would make my day.
The trays need to be dumped daily (or more) to prevent bad odors, which as I mentioned, is a big problem. These trays are expensive! A pack of 18 sells here anywhere from $15 to $20 depending on the time. That's nearly a buck each for a flimsy piece of plastic. I am not happy at the high expense of these trays. To make matters worse, they don't even include the charcoal filters -- you got to buy those seperately.
I am unsure whether I will be using this littermaid box into the future. I do want to give it a real chance but am finding the expense of the trays and poor poop performance leaving me with a headache (literally at times, due to the screaming motor and stench of the poor seal). This device has potential but seriously needs to be reengineered. I would advise consumers to wait on purchasing this device until a new generation is released.
UPDATE: My unit has completely broken down. Something is wrong with the motor and rail system where it no longer will go all the way down, instead it will choke up in the middle then reverse itself. I tried everything I could to fix it but to no avail. II wish I could update the rating to zero stars because that's what this hunk of expensive junk is!
Pretty Good, but Not Perfect I've used these Littermaid boxes for several years. I have two fairly large cats, one that is older and urinates quite a bit. (Don't worry, she is checked by our vet regularly for kidney problems.) Overall, I'm pretty pleased with the Elite Mega Ultra Super Duper Deluxe model.
It's very large, so almost any cat should fit comfortably.
Compared to past models, it gets "stuck" less often while scooping. One cat makes it her life's work to figure out how to pee in areas that will freeze the scooping mechanism of these boxes. She gets it once in a while, but usually this box prevails. (Word of warning: NEVER EVER scrape the bottom of the box. Use the scoop supplied or take it apart and clean it outside with a hose or something. If you ever scratch the finish, urine clumps will stick like cement. This happened with an older box. It was ruined.)
A lot of folks complained about putting it together. I've done a few, and this one wasn't any harder. Figure 15-20 minutes with one person.
As to the cost of the waste containers, you should shop around. I usually pick up boxes of 18 for about $15 or so. I have never seen them as high as some people claimed. ($20 for 4? That's a scam.)
Volume: Yep. It's pretty loud. Put it far away from your sleeping area....more info
noisy but handy We have 3 cats, and usually use 2 extra-large sized cat pans (the equivalent of 4 of the regular sized ones). We replaced one of the pans with this LitterMaid. It's nice and handy but there are a few problems.
The good aspect is, of course, that it cleans itself and takes less maintenance. The canisters can actually be used for more than one day, so they're not horribly expensive (although I don't plan on using the carbon patches in them when I get refills). There is little or no smell. That may change in the summer, but right now it's fine. The rake hasn't been too hard to clean and the ramp is handy for getting litter off their paws. It doesn't use much litter so one big container of the clumping litter will last a very long time.
On to the problems: The assembly was quite irritating as the instructions were very unclear. There were 2 sets of instructions, one "quick set up" and one regular booklet, and you had to combine the information in both to get a vague idea of what to do. Some of the pieces seem a little flimsy as well.
The machine itself is very loud. It spooked the cats for several days, but they eventually got used to it. I'm afraid one has figured out the cause-and-effect issue, as he usually avoids the pan now, I presume so it doesn't go off and scare him 10 minutes later.
We also have one HUGE cat and he can't really use the pan effectively. Often this means we're spending plenty of time cleaning out the other pan that they like better and the LitterMaid just isn't saving us as much time as I thought it would.
It is pricey, but it is also handy and you can't beat not having to clean the pan yourself. ...more info
Good improvements over previous models I had an older LitterMaid, and this one is much better. The parts all fit tightly, the rake is sturdier (and, in my experience, no more likely to miss bits of used litter than the older models were), and the motor seems stronger (and is also louder). There is significantly less litter scatter with this one, because the tighter fit means litter doesn't sift out between the box and the used litter container, as it often did with the sloppy fit on the older model. This one also has an ionic air cleaner; frankly, I haven't noticed much difference, but the box is in a fairly remote area of the house.
Even though I've owned a previous model, putting this one together was a bit of a challenge. The instructions tend toward simply saying "attach this part to that part" without detailing how to do so. I, too, had the problem with the rake going back and forth constantly, but was able to reach customer support relatively quickly. It was both encouraging and discouraging that they knew immediately what was wrong (automatic sensors needed to be reset, a simple job) -- encouraging because the problem was resolved quickly, discouraging that apparently it's a well-known bug but they don't bother to address it in the users manual.
If you think getting a LitterMaid cat box means that you will never again get up close and personal with your cat's litter box, you're bound to be disappointed. You'll still be raking by hand occasionally, disposing of used litter, and sweeping the floor around it. However, if what you want is less mess with minimal hands-on effort, you'll probably like the LitterMaid. I've had indoor cats for many years and have owned several types of cat boxes, including some "easy-clean" models. I keep coming back to LitterMaid. It's not perfect, but it comes closer than most.
UPDATE: The "fix" for the nonstop-rake problem did not hold. Apparently, the first time I called customer service at just the right moment, as it has been difficult to reach them since (including recordings announcing they were "too busy" and I should call back at some other time). After many attempts and several sessions on the phone, they are now saying I have to remove the microchip and mail it (at my own expense, not that it will be substantial) so they can replace the faulty unit. Obviously, I'm completely dissatisfied with the litter box at this point, and less than impressed with their customer service, as well.
UPDATE #2: The box was replaced promptly and this one works well. However, it still has LitterMaid's very irritating problem of leaking litter between the box and the waste container, which is much more noticeable now that the box works all the time. It's hard to see how this could happen, since the fit appears solid, but there's a substantial pile of leaked litter on the floor under the box all the time, which contributes greatly to litter scatter throughout the room. I still like this LitterMaid better than a conventional litter box, but it's still not a perfect solution....more info
So close... I would have to say "save your money" on this. The concept and design are great. The scooping works well. There are multiple odor control mechanisms. I have never had the problems some of the older models have had with the motor coming on when the cat is in the box or running continuously.
Having said all that, the motor doesn't appear to be strong enough. It is really loud and sounds like it is going to die at any moment (to be fair it hasn't).
I need to use this in an area where there is no A/C power. It can also run on 8 AA batteries, but they have to be be seated just so or it won't come on. The power died in less than a week. I do not yet know if it just ran out of battery power or there is another problem (I tried re-seating the batteries). It works fine on A/C power still.
There are several problems with the installation instructions. Use the Quick Start guide, the manual, and the picture on the box in conjunction, and you can work your way through it.
Love LitterMaid, this model not as much I'll start out by saying that I love LitterMaid and over the years when one has broken I have bought a replacement immediately. It makes life a lot simpler, espeically when you have a couple of fat cats as I do.
This is by far the best looking and most advanced model out there. It has a timer and sleep settings and odor control ionizer. However, this is the first model that I can recall having to assemble. It feels a little flimsy compared to the other models as well. Also, it does not rake the waste quite as well as the 900 model. I have them running side by side right now and you can clearly see that difference. Usually there is no debris left at all in my 900 mega model.
So, I think when choosing your littermaid, you should decide which factors are most important to you. If it's features and appearance, choose this 9000 model. If it's easy out of the box usage, virtually no scooping at all, and sturdiness, I would choose the 900 model (it definitely feels like it is more durable and like it would last longer; the motor seems to be stronger as well). Know this, if you are sick of scooping all the time, you will quickly learn that having a littermaid becomes a necessity in your life.
UPDATE: Okay, I've been using this for a few months now and it just isn't nearly as good as the "lesser" model. It just doesn't scrape well enough and I find myself hoping the cats won't use this one as much as the older one because I don't want to scoop. I'm thinking of just putting this one away permanently....more info
Not perfect, but pretty good I was aware of some of the drawbacks to automated litter boxes before I purchased this one. My main concern was that the box would not retain enough litter to handle my two cats for more than a day or two. From my perspective, the advantage to having a self-cleaning litter box should be that you don't have to mess with it at all for several days at a time. I'd like to be able to go out of town for a few days and not have to pay someone to come change the litter box. (I also have a bad habit of forgetting to clean the box as regularly as I should.) So I bought this model because it's supposed to be good for multi-cat households. It is a nice big box, but it still has a low fill line for the litter, so I can't really let the box go unattended for more than a couple of days. In addition, the waste receptacle isn't any bigger than it is on other models, so that kind of negates the benefit of the bigger box - it won't hold a greater volume of "output" that you get from multiple kitties.
Two problems turned up right away. First, the motor housing wasn't securely put together - the glides that fit into the tracks on either side were not both in place. I was able to fix this myself, but it was annoying that I had to deal with that. The other problem is that one of my cats pushed a big pile of litter over to one side to cover his mess, as cats often do. When the litter level is too high, even just in one side of the box, the rake pushes some of the clean litter into the waste receptacle. If that happens often enough, it will reduce the length of time that the box can go without being replenished. [Note to LIttermaid: What would make these self-cleaning boxes really desirable is a mechanism that adds a little more litter each time the rake empties the waste!]
On the bright side, my cats had no problem accepting this new litter box. It's in a remote location so that they don't stay in the room with it and therefore aren't exposed to the motion or noise of the rake mechanism. I do like how easy it is to clean. I don't have to scoop anything or expose my hands to the waste. And I agree with other reviewers that you shouldn't have to dispose of the receptacles after one use. I usually just wipe it out after dumping the waste, and it's fine. The usual litter box smell is greatly reduced by the ionic air freshener and the filter in the receptacle. Overall, this is actually a remarkable gadget. I do like having it, even though it doesn't quite live up to all of my expectations.
***Update January 2009: The rake mechanism has become erratic. Sometimes it works, and sometimes it gets halfway and then spazzes out. I called Littermaid -- a typical ordeal to get through to a human, but they were pleasant to deal with. They gave me some very complicated instructions on how to do a reset. (Why this information is not in the users brochure is beyond me.) I reset it twice, but the mechanism is still only working sporadically. So I called Littermaid again, and they're going to send me a new box. Just an FYI -- they ask you to send the circuit board out of the old box. This disables the mechanism so the box can't work, and that saves you the trouble of having to pack up and mail back the entire box. They were going to charge me $10.50 to exchange the box -- this is after I'm paying postage to send them the circuit board -- and when I protested, they quickly waived the fee.
It's a litter box! No, it's a monster! No, it's a toy! I keep several old-fashioned litter boxes for our 3 cats (4, counting one we're catsitting for a couple months) and all the felines have their own preferences and styles. We have, with our guest cat, the requisite five boxes - one per cat plus 'one for the pot' as it were. Two cats, bless 'em, use pine litter in their boxes. The others get clumping Tidy Cat since it isn't gaggingly full of perfume and works fairly well.
And then came the LitterMaid LME9000MB Self Cleaning Elite Mega Ultimate Edition. The name scares me for some reason. Kind of sounds like the title of a Sci Fi Channel original horror movie or something.
I read the directions and eventually cobbled the box together correctly, then left it empty and went to buy Scoop Away, one of the 'hard clumping' brands they recommend you use.
While I was out, one of the cats peed in the empty box. A peculiar, but good sign. I mopped that up to keep my review fair, then added the Scoop Away. After the perfumy powder settled and I stopped coughing and swearing, we were good to go. Also in interest of reviewing, I set the box up in the foyer leading into the living room. We could not only watch TV, we could watch cats use their toilet. Wheee!
The noise and movement absolutely terrified Elliott -- he used it once, then returned to the 'normal' boxes in other rooms. Every time the box starts cleaning, depending on where he is, Elliott either climbs my husband's back, eliciting screams of pain that cover up the noise, or runs into the kitchen and cowers on top of the refrigerator. Elliott, seven, is a bit high strung. He gives the box negative-1 star.
Ricky, on the other hand, thinks the new box is great in every way. He's 11 years old and has always considered the Dust Buster to be the height of feline entertainment. Until now. With this box, he can not only use it, he can then sit and wait for it, head cocked like the old RCA Victrola dog, until it begins to growl and move. Then, watch out - Ricky's on the attack, completely wired, slapping and jumping and pyloerecting his tail like a kitten. Ricky would give the box 6 stars if he could type.
Youthful Japanese bobtail Billy, also loves the box. But his play methods involve flinging sand out of the box behind the tines as they move forward. He likes pine litter, but will occasionally use this box, too -- He never uses the regular Tidy Cat box, so I think he uses this one to set it off. So, he gives it 5 stars. He nicknamed the Mega Ultra Elite yada yada the "Poop and Play." Bobtails are wicked-smart.
And then there's Henry. He's three and the cat Edgar Allen Poe warned you about. He thinks the box is pretty good -- he uses it, but he's a powerful beastie and still buries his leavings, sometimes with extreme prejudice -- that means he tosses sand all over the floor about half the time. He's doing it far more than usual though -- I think it's because the box is cleaner. Henry may have his faults, but he doesn't play with dirty sand. I think he gives it 4 stars.
Me? When the box starts cleaning, the TV volume is turned up. It's annoying, but then, it's no big deal. The box is also wonderful because things are whisked away, never to be smelled again. I mean, I've got this thing in sight of the living area and it's not causing us a problem except for the cats who like to throw sand, but the Dust Buster takes care of that and makes Ricky twice as happy.
Drawbacks - the cost of the refill bags. Will I keep using it? I'm going to move it out of the living area, back with a couple of other boxes, and we'll see how it goes. If they start using it more and more and I have less box-work to do, the cost may be worth it. Or not. I'm sticking with three stars for now since I'm not at all sure it can stand up to all the work it has to do - but if it does, I'll gleefully up the rating.
My relatives laugh, but this thing works! I've had lots of giggles and eye-rolls when I tell my family about my new electronic cat box, but when they see it in action, they stop the criticism. I've wanted one of these things forever, and I'm definitely not disappointed with it. I'm one of those people who hates litter boxes with a passion, so, since I recently needed one for my elderly cat who can't go outside as much now, this litter "maid" is just the ticket for me. The odor control is the most important feature that I like, as I have a fairly small house. The noise when it's in operation doesn't bother me that much, especially since I just have one cat, so I can live with it. Like another reviewer, I use a plastic bag to collect the waste, which helps cost wise. My cat was somewhat wary of the box at 1st, but he's actually curious and entertained by it now! However, he will not use the ramp and simply climbs in/out one side, which I expected, but maybe he'll get used to it. I'm not worried about him having problems with the raking mechanism right now because he still moves fairly well, but if and when he gets a lot slower, I'll have to re-evaluate. With the sensor, I really don't think it will be a problem.
Hope this lasts through multiple generations of cats!...more info
Auto kitty litter box This works great! I got it just before I needed to leave for a few days so I set it up right away. Easy to assemble. This is a large size and both my cats can actually be in it at the same time going. Both cats went right to it to see what was new. When I came home, it was clean of any potty the cats did. I have two cats and I swear they go 10 times a day each. There was no dirty litter smell when I walked into the house and easy to dump the container it goes into. So nice to not have any smell and not to have to sift out the bad stuff. Be sure not to put too much litter in it or it can drag and stop. I think maybe what the other person did that who gave this litter box a one star....more info
Needs refinement, but a definite improvement vs. regular boxes This unit requires daily maintenance and frequent cleaning of the surrounding area. It's about as much work as daily scooping.
What makes it worthwhile is that the work is different than manual scooping and a lot less unpleasant. We have multiple litter boxes, but this is the only one the kitties use, so they definitely like it. Our littlest kitty STOPPED peeing inappropriately once he got used to the Litter Maid. We had the other one (scoop away? scoop free?) that has its own proprietary litter and trays, but it was a disaster.
If the litter is deeper than about 1", it's almost guaranteed to jam. It handles "#2" great, but "#1" has a tendency to stick to the bottom and jam the rake. The deeper the litter the more likely this is to happen. Also, once the tray is full, #2's will get rejected and pile up by the ramp, which will also jam the rake.
It jams at least once a day. I either gently "assist" the rake to push it through the sticky spot, or I get the litter scoop and dislodge the sticky clump and then restart the rake. With two cats, the trays fill up about every two to three days. High quality cat food helps, since there is less undigestible bulk and therefore less poop.
With the right litter (Tidy Cat is working for us) performance is improved, smell is almost nonexistent (we no longer use the arm and hammer litter deodorant). However, it does spill litter and little bits of waste, so keeping the surrounding area tidy is as much work as a standard litter box.
It's a trade-off, but in my opinion a worthwhile one....more info
After 1 month of use... Ultimate Edition LitterMaid automatic litter box is definitely the right investment and became a must have for my 2 cats. Following the instructions, it was easy to assemble and set-up (about 10-15 minutes). The cats had no problem switching from the old cat litter box to the new one. It almost completely eliminates the odor (thanks to the Built-in Ionic Air Cleaner) and it is very easy to clean. It still requires some attention but cuts manual scooping to about 20% compared to regular litter boxes. The container (for all the excrements) fills up in about a week and it's easy to replace. I keep the litter box in the basement where I have enough space for it and I have set-up the sleep timer to minimize hearing the noise from moveable parts when the litter is operating. But the noise, which is equivalent to a printer, is a minor inconvenience comparing to all the other benefits. I definitely recommend this product for multiple cats. A must have!...more info
Great Cat Box A Little Noiser then older version My old Littermaid Cat Box finally broke so brought this new one. It is bigger which works for me cause I have 4 cats. Though it doesn't rake as good as the old ones and it is a little more noisier then the older version. But I would still reccomend it....more info
A good alternative to a yukky job I've always wondered about self cleaning litter boxes since we have several cats, but the cost made me hesitate to try one, so when I had the opportunity to test this one, I took advantage of the chance. After using it several days here's what I found:
First the pros:
The box feels sturdy and well made and is nice looking as litter boxes go. It does a good job of keeping the litter box clean except for a few little particles it sometimes leaves behind. It does a great job of keeping odors down. The size is great, about 15 x 18-1/2 inches of usable area, so it's good for big cats. And the best part, you don't have to clean the litter box several times a day, you only empty the receptacle every couple of days, depending of course on the number of cats and how often they use the box.
My cats seemed to use it right away without any problem and have continued to use it more than the regular litter box in the same room. The little ramp that's attached has a cleanable carpet-like covering that gets some of the tracked litter off their feet and they seem to be attracted to it. (Cats are always curious about new stuff.)
It has a timer that waits until 10 minutes after the cat has left the box before it starts the rake mechanism. It has a sensor bar that would detect if a cat got behind the rake during cleaning and if a cat were in front of it, the sensors in the box would detect the cat and the timer would reset itself. So you don't have to worry about the cat getting caught while it's cleaning, although I wouldn't use it for a kitten or very small or very elderly cat. The sensors are in about the middle of the box, lengthwise.
You can plug it in or it runs on batteries. It takes 8 AA batteries. I'm not sure how long the batteries would last since the motor seems pretty powerful.
The biggest problem with the box is it's size. Overall size with the ramp is about 37 inches long by 29 inches wide. If you remove the ramp it's still about 29 inches long. You could probably get by without the ramp although it wouldn't look as nice. It sits several inches off the floor, but once a cat is familiar with it that probably wouldn't be a problem.
The assembly instructions weren't as clear as they could have been. It wasn't really difficult to put together and didn't require any tools, the instructions were just confusing. What should have taken 5 minutes took 20. A picture of all parts with numbers or letters corresponding to those in the instructions would have been helpful.
The cleaning mechanism is really noisy. It sounds like our paper shredder when it's raking the litter. But it only takes a couple of minutes and it does have a sleep timer that "sleeps" it for 9 hours. (I wish this was adjustable for less than 9 hours.)
The receptacles that the litter empties into cost a little under $20 for 4 and they're very flimsy plastic. Wrapping a plastic grocery store bag around it is a good work-around. And you can empty it easily without touching any yukky stuff. The charcoal filter pads cost about $15 for four, but I'm not certain how much good they do anyway. The ionizer probably does more for the odor and goes on once an hour or 10 minutes after the cat uses the box.
The rake prongs are a little far apart and can leave small clumps, but they're pretty small and often get picked up the next time around. Or you can scoop them out with the little rake that's included.
None of the cons are really deal breakers for me except for the size. It's really big. We're still looking for a permanent place to keep it. Overall I'd say it would be a good investment if the motor is long lasting, and only time will determine that. It sure is nice having a nice clean litter box all the time with minimal work on our part.
LitterMaid Elite Mega This product broke within two days! Poorly designed, cheap plastic frame that hardly compares to the original version. Had our other LitterMaid Mega for 9-10 years with NO issues. ...more info
A good alternative, a little on the spendy side This was fairly easy to assemble, took my husband about 15 minutes. I thought it would freak my cat out, but it didn't. She was really curious at first and then went to work. What I like about it is there is less odor and less work to do. The ramp attached is easy to clean and leaves less mess on the floor around the box.
I subtracted a star due to the replacements you need there are ongoing costs to maintaining it. It's noisy in the cleaning mode. The waste receptacle is a little on the small side and the rake misses some of the smaller clumps.
But overall, I like the product. I wasn't expecting a miracle with it, I just wanted something to make the task less unpleasant and tedious and it does that job for me just fine....more info
LitterMaid Elite is Elite This cat box is great, best one we've used...and we've used many. Don't waste your money on the "cat genie"....more info
A mixed review from the cats We have three cats and four litter boxes--this one makes five--so I know a thing or two about scooping. I've been intrigued by the idea of these self-cleaning boxes for some time, especially since my significant other can't seem to clean the litter boxes with any regularity if I'm out of town. More recently, one cat's sudden penchant for peeing in inappropriate places for no apparent reason has inspired me to explore new approaches to the feline toilette. (And yes, she's been to the vet multiple times, and they can't find anything wrong.)
This is basically a good idea that could use some refinement. The unit was a little confusing to assemble, mainly because the instructions weren't great. But I eventually figured it out. It does perform mostly as advertised, but I have two main gripes with it. First, as other reviewers have noted, it makes a bloody racket when it's raking the detritus into the receptacle. The first few times, I thought someone was shredding a document, as it sounds almost exactly like a paper shredder, only the growling/whining noise goes on considerably longer. Fortunately, it's located clear across the house, but for people who keep the litter box in the bathroom near the bedroom, it's really a problem. Second, the unit is designed with thin disposable plastic receptacles and air cleaners that cost a fortune for what they are and don't hold very much. The box comes with four of each, and while I'll probably get some more because there's really no choice if I want to keep using the box, the pricing is outrageous. (I'm reminded of the old Gillette marketing strategy, where they were more focused on selling razor blades than razors. Same thing here, I fear.) A more minor issue is that the unit seems fairly flimsy, but only time will tell if that's actually a problem. Also, the rake mechanism speared a clump on one of the passes, and I'm not sure why, as the litter level seemed okay. Be forewarned that the tolerances for the litter levels are fairly narrow, and if you fill it too full, it sweeps perfectly good litter into the receptacle, wasting litter and precious space.
Of the three cats, only one seems to be using it. She is on medication for some digestive issues and drinks huge amounts of water, which then comes out the other end with more frequency than normal. So she's been generating a lot of clumps in the litter box, and these have nearly filled the receptacle in just one day. The other two cats have been freaked when the rake motor does its thing and have continued to use the other boxes. I don't know if they'll overcome their fear and start to use it or not.
We have also noticed a stronger than usual urine smell in the room where we keep the litter boxes, and this may be from the accumulation of clumps in the receptacle. I've emptied it, but it really smelled worse than if I'd just skipped a day of scooping all the litter boxes. So time will tell about that as well.
Before buying this, you should carefully check the dimensions because the whole unit takes up a lot of space, especially with the ramp. If I decide to keep using it, I may get the cover, as all our cats prefer covered litter boxes. I'm also hoping that just maybe it will cut down on the noise a bit.
Better than a normal litter box, not quite what I was hoping. I have had this unit for about 6 months now. I have only 1 medium sized siamese cat. I was somewhat dissapointed with the unit once I (or rather my cat) started using it. As advised in the manual (which I read carefully) I only use premium clumping cat litter and do not fill past the red fill line marked in the tray. Even still, the unit frequently jams up and fails to scoop away even just one potty. The metal comb just gets stuck as soon as it hits the clump and makes clicking noises. i think this is mainly because the tray seems extremely shallow. From the bottom of the pan to the "max fill line" you only have about a half an inch of litter in this thing. It seems like the liquid waste clumps and then sticks to the bottom of the tray. If you add more litter though, it gets stuck more often (and risks burning up your motor) because you have added too much. I would say it handles about 70% of the cats messes automatically. The other 30% I still have to scoop away by hand. The unit was worth the cost to me, however barely. If 120 dollar investment is worth getting rid of about 70% of your cat messes automatically, this unit is for you.
As far as the waste recepticle is concerned, I do what I believe many other people do. I put plastic grocery bags inside the waste tray so that when it fills up, I can simply pull up the handles, tie it up and be done. It seems completely wasteful and illogical to me to buy new trays every time. My unit came with 3 disposable waste trays and I am still using the first one. I don't expect to ever have to buy any from the manufacturer so if I were you I wouldn't worry about the replacement cost of these. The only recurring costs I have on this unit is the litter and electricity. regarding the litter, I only do a full litter change about every 3 months. I mainly just add more litter and take away the waste. This does seem to help save a lot of money on litter. The large plastic tub of litter lasts me about 3 months.
The one super positve thing I can say about it is that the waste receptacle seals the smells pretty well when it closes. The smell has never been an issue unless I am in the room WHILE the cat is going potty. Other than that, no one has ever been able to tell (with their nose) that I have a cat or a litter box. That was my A #1 concern.
As I said initially I was dissapointed when I got it because (perhaps Naively) I thought that this thing would scoop away every single clump and I would basically just have to refil it and empty the waste. I was dissapointed to find out it still requires some manual scooping. In conclusion it does still handle a lot more waste than I do so it is better than having to scoop away every clump manually. Hopefully they will make a stronger, deeper one some day. ...more info
The model five years ago was better I am extremely disappointed with this litter box. I had the second generation Littermaid, with the plastic rake, about 4 or 5 years ago and would have given that one at least 3 or 4 stars. This one has too many curves so every time the rake goes through a cycle, litter gets everywhere. Also, because the rake is detachable, litter rests behind it. If urine is sprayed in that direction, it solidifies behind the rake. It is actually more work than a regular box. I am using the very expensive, recommended premium clumping litter as well. I had to the return the first one shipped because it was DOA. This one at least "works" but is a horrible design. I will be returning this one as well, and trying an option not made by Littermaid....more info
Great Pet Care Product and Also Economically Friendly I was amazed My 3 boys would even touch this. Course I helped them a bit I took a small amount outta the old litter box and put it in with the fresh litter in this newbox to get their scent in it. They have all used it, and have no quarms about it. What I like is the ionic air clearner It keeps the air fresh around it. I must say It looks as though it can save on the litter usage during these tough economic times while the price of the litterbox isn't too economically friendly and having to buy the different things like recepticals;however it saves on litter usages .It seems to do a good job It doesn't always get everything It seems to work and I was amazed I thought well I seen the tv ads informercial stuff usually I try to avoid those things cause sometimes they seem gimmicky. Well in this case this Device actually works and saves money. Its not repulsive to have to clean like the older methods . One of my cons though was the setup process it was a royal pain in the neck. It isn't easy set up but not really hard but can be a bit frustrating and the clean up process to totally take it apart again put it all back together outta be a royal pain also. However it is a nice device and can prove to be beneficial and more sanitary around the house as compared to the older box. We still keep the older box around too seeing we got 3 cats. I will probably pick up the accessory kit someday with the tent and mat for under neath specially cause sometimes the sweeper pushes a bit of stuff underneath and misses. It is a device however kind of pricey in my eyes for a POOP HOUSE so to speak lol but its a nice pet care product really is and in a way lol kind of worth its weight in gold so to speak. Honestly would I buy one someday if this one breaks down probably It seems now i like this over the older methods. Scraping cat boxes was never my favorite activity anyhow.This device makes cat ownership more fun now that we got it. I just wouldn't recommend ferret owners let them use that. I had a ferret years ago and their kind of playful and tend to roll in dusty things sometimes so this wouldn't be in my eyes recommended to a household with ferrets even though ferrets do use litter boxes to poo in . just wouldn't be to safe for them. Overall I like it only four stars cause of having to buy all those accessories diff times .I will try the bag method though in the receptacles that is a good idea to save on them. IT does eliminate stink though which is the nicest part of it.
This is all I want to say about this. I would recommend it to people with a multiple cat home like our own...more info
Even better than the Elite I am a busy med student so anything that makes my days simpler I love and I love self scooping litter boxes, even with all the little gremlins they seem to have. I have two cats that are of normal healthy weight and they are indoor only. The first cat is such a queen that the box has to be clean or she'll leave me a reminder to clean it. The second one is male and he doesn't bury his deposits like he should, which can cause some problems with the self scoopers but good litter takes care of that.
I have owned several self scooping litter boxes. The first one was some off brand thing that spun and the rake would eventually lift out the debris. That one couldn't handle one cat let alone my second kitten. It eventually died a horrible spinning death. I then tried the littermaid brand because I've seen it around for years. My littermaid elite lasted me for about 3 years and it did pretty good for the two cats. This new one has me astonished!! It is far quieter than the elite, and both of my cats can fit in it at the same time. Also within the first 20 minutes of set up they had used it 3 times and when the 10 minute timer had run down it scooped with out any problems. The motor showed now sign of stress or slowing down. The elite would probably had to take a couple goes at it before it could clear the waste.
I know there are a lot of complaints about the noise but as far as self scoopers go this one is pretty quiet. Also I read a lot of complaints about it not getting everything and that's true self scoopers won't get it all, but once every other day just check the litter box and scoop what little is there. Also be very gentile with the bottom, one reviewer was right in saying that if you scratch it the waste will stick to it!
But the biggest piece of advice I can offer is spend the extra cash for the good litter, you use so little of it that the extra cost it worth it! Also don't fill it up to the fill line, about half way between the full and the add litter marks will keep the machine from working too hard and your cats won't feel the urge to dig too deep....more info