How to Choose The Best Cat Litter Box for your Small Apartment

By Davis Wilkins •  Updated: 10/26/22 •  21 min read
The Best Cat Litter Box for a Small Apartment is the Iris Top Entry litter Box

“I’m considering getting a cat. You see, I live in a small apartment and don’t have a huge amount of space.”

This is an issue for one of my friends as he has two cats living with him. He was hunting around for the best cat litter boxes for a small apartment.

Now, finding one that fits your needs can be difficult, especially if you live in a small space.

When you’re living in a small apartment, it might feel like the space is too small to have a cat litter box. But that isn’t true.

Did you know that there are a lot of different factors that need to be taken into account when choosing the best litter box for small spaces?

For example, let’s say you want an automatic cat litter box. You could easily purchase one, but it may not fit in your living area, or it won’t work with your apartment’s size.

If you’re like me, then you don’t want it to be an eyesore in your living room.

Millions of pet owners live in small apartments or small houses and need to find a space-saving cat’s litter box that will fit in the limited area of the house. And we are here to help!

We’ve found the best designs for those who are looking for a litter box that doesn’t take up too much of their apartment.

On this blog, you will learn how to find the best litter boxes for small spaces, while still keeping your home clean and tidy.

The Best Cat Litter Box for Small Apartment Top Picks

If you are pressed for time, here are the top 5 picks for the best litter box solutions for small apartments that I recommend for your feline friends:

  1. Iris Top Entry Cat litter Box
  2. Petmate Top Entry Litter Pan
  3. Good Pet Stuff Hidden Cat Litter Planter
  4. Merry Products Cat Washroom Bench Decorative Litter Box Cover and Storage
  5. ScoopFree Ultra Automatic Cat Litter Box

Vital Considerations

Key issues that are of importance in having a litter box in your small apartment include:

  1. Learning how to reduce litter tracking
  2. Getting an affordable cat’s litter box
  3. Dealing with odor
  4. Getting a sizeable yet functional litter box

I’ll guide you’ll in learning exactly what’s needed when searching for that elusive litter box for narrow spaces. This doesn’t mean that the cat’s litter box has to be small and too narrow that it’s unsuitable for your pet. More on this later.

The Best Cat Litter Boxes for a Small Apartment

Top Entry Cat Litter Boxes:

1.      Iris Top Entry Cat litter Box


Privacy: Your cat gets to enjoy privacy and freedom while eliminating. In addition, it reduces the amount of time you have to spend cleaning the litter box due to its ample space.


Cons of Iris Top Entry Cat litter Box:

Is the top lid removable?

Yes, the top lid is removable for easy scooping. This makes it easy to clean too. Push the two big buttons on either side of the box to lift the lid off.

2.      Petmate Top Entry Litter Pan


This top entry litter box has a wide top opening that gives your cat easy access in and out of the box.

In addition, it comes with an in-built hook for hanging a litter scoop.

Eco-friendly: Made from 95% pre-consumer recyclable materials. It is an eco-friendly option when settling for a dog-proof cat litter box.

Key Benefits:

Cons of Petmate Top Entry Litter Pan:

Hidden Cat Litter Boxes for small apartments

1.      Good Pet Stuff Hidden Cat Litter Planter


It comprises a two-piece bottom that looks like a real clay pot. The plants and their parts are held between the top and bottom sections of the box.

Your pets can crawl into the hidden litter box and eliminate in privacy.

You can also line the planter base with bedding and use it as a pet bed.

Your visitors won’t even tell that you have a litter box in the room, as long as your cat doesn’t give it away.

Key Benefits:

Cons of Good Pet Stuff Hidden Litter Box:

2.      Merry Products Cat Washroom Bench Decorative Litter Box Cover and Storage


It comes with magnetized doors that open wide for easy access.

It also has pre-cut holes in the back for electronic litter box cables.

It also has a removable partition wall that you can use to keep cat essentials.

You can have the entrance to the cat litter box furniture on either side of the bench. This is based on the design of your room, for easy access by your kitty.

Key Benefits:

Cons of Merry Products Cat Washroom Bench Decorative Litter Box Cover and Storage:

Automatic Self-Cleaning Cat Litter Boxes

1.      ScoopFree Ultra Automatic Cat Litter Box:


The ScoopFree Ultra Automatic Cat Litter Boxes for small apartments have an amazing design that enables them to work automatically.

Once you set the timer, it resets if the safety sensors detect that your cat has re-entered the cat box.

It’s equipped with a health counter that allows you to track the number of times your cat has used the self-cleaning litter box. As a result, you can quickly identify possible health issues.

It comes with a privacy hood that ensures the cat litter remains intact. This box comes with one tray of special crystal litter to kick start your journey.

This crystal litter has amazingly 5 times greater odor reduction properties than clay or clumping litter.

Key Benefits of the ScoopFree Ultra Automatic Cat Litter Box::

Cons of the ScoopFree Ultra Automatic Cat Litter Box:


84% of cat owners who have purchased this product recommend this specific product.

Couch in living room

Factors to consider when choosing the best cat litter box for your small space

Below are key pointers to take into consideration when choosing the best cat litter for your small apartment:

1.    Consider the size of your cat:

On the surface, a small cat will prefer a smaller litter box and a large cat will want a larger box.

Size involves ensuring there’s sufficient space within the box for the cat to wiggle freely, and dig around without leaving the litter box.

Parts of her rear end shouldn’t be hanging off the box too.

Would you like to leave the bathroom every time you want to turn around because it’s too narrow?

If your answer is no, then your cat won’t like this either. This will ensure the cat doesn’t take a dump over the edge.

There should be plenty of room for the cat to sit around as she handles her business. The litter box should be sizeable too, to ensure she doesn’t unearth previous deposits easily.

As a general rule, the size of your litter box should be the length of your cat, from the tip of its nose to the tip of its extended tail. The width too should be equivalent to the width of your cat without an extended tail.

If all these dimensions are still too hard to figure out, you can hack your way through it by getting a litter box that’s 1.5 times the length of your cat.

Pro tip:

Secondly, some small and large cats may have a preference on the size of litter box they use. A smaller cat may opt for a larger litter box.

2.    Check the height of the litter box:

All these are crucial factors to consider while picking the best cat litter for your cats. Most cats are comfortable with semi-high sides of their litter box but if your cat fits the profile above, consider getting a shorter litter box.

3.    Best Cat Litter Box for Odor Control:

When bringing in a litter box for your small apartment, odor control is a very critical factor to consider, for you don’t want to stink up your little abode.

The best way out of this is by getting a covered litter box since it will trap odor within the litter box. This enclosed litter box will in addition give your cat more privacy in the small apartment and also keep the litter contents hidden from plain view.

Litter box sprays to try and mask the odors can be too strong for your cats and they may repel your multiple cats from the litter box. Avoid using them.

To get rid of odors, simply clean the covered litter boxes more often to keep them smelling fresh. You can use this baking soda hack to keep odors at bay.

If you have a dog too, a dog-proof litter box will keep it from snacking on the cat poo.

Pro tip:

4.    Your budget:

Wouldn’t it be nice if we could all afford to get the best litter boxes for our beloved cats that are the most expensive?

While this may not be practical for various reasons, it doesn’t mean that we are left with no quality options.

After all, you don’t want to break a bank for something your cat uses to deposit her waste into.

5.    The Number of Cats You Own:

Did you know that a group of cats is called a clowder?

As a general rule, there should be no more than two cats per litter box. In a small apartment where space is everything, it may not be possible to have a box for each cat.

To hack this, you will need to settle for a larger-sized litter box for small spaces.

A small litter box will get soiled much faster and will require frequent cleaning which may be difficult to keep up with.

The cats may result to abandon the dirty litter and find a different spot in the apartment to relieve themselves.

6.    Litter Box Filter:

Most enclosed litter boxes and domed cat litter boxes come equipped with a charcoal filter.

They help in reducing the amount of smell during scooping and changing litter content.

They are cheap and so can be easily replaced every other month.

7.    Litter Box Furniture:

Litter box furniture is an ideal option for small apartments since it saves on space and you don’t have to deal with bulky litter boxes.

They are awesome furniture pieces and may include an end table or a faux dollhouse in which the litter pan is housed.

You will simply open the front of the end table, which has a door cut out for the cat to enter, and pull out the pan for cleaning.

Ensure you have your litter box or furniture set up before bringing in your cat, otherwise you might discover it has used the flower pot as its poop spot. Getting them to switch will be a tall order.

Pro tip:

8.    Presence of Small Children:

Do you have small children in the house who love to crawl into things and openings?

If yes, you will need to get a closed cat litter box that they can’t enter or destroy easily.

children playing

9.    Ease of Cleaning the Cat Litter Box:

You want an easy-to-clean litter box. There are two types of litter boxes to consider, that is, self-cleaning litter boxes and those that require manual cleaning.

The best litter boxes need to be scooped daily and the clumped litter discarded. This process may be unpleasant to some and if this is you, I recommend a self-cleaning box.

If however, this isn’t a problem, just get yourself a manual cleaning litter box. This will also help you spot any health changes in your cat from the color to the texture of its poop.

Every couple of weeks, you will need to fully change the litter and dispose of the used cat litter. A self-cleaning litter box can save you this hustle. Heads up though, an automatic litter box may spook your cat due to the sound it produces. This may take a long training curve for your cat to get used to. It may also require expensive litter too.


10. The durability of the litter Box Material:

Durable material for your litter box ideally should be heavy and durable plastic.

This will serve the cat for a long and cleaning it is easy. Avoid going for material that’s weak and easily broken down.

You will save yourself frequent replacements and costs and cleaning will be a nightmare.

11. Choose the best cat litter for small spaces:

Different cat litter has different textures, properties, and benefits as outlined below.

As a general rule, pick a litter that’s unscented, absorbent, and as dust-free as possible. This will help avoid potential respiratory problems for your cats upon inhaling the dust as they dig.

Pro tip:

Clumping litter is better when it comes to removing the waste, both solid and liquid. This also helps in monitoring the health of your cats by looking at the consistency of their output.

It forms a scoopable solid mass with moisture contact. You should replace it at least monthly.

Crystal litter on the other hand is highly absorbent upon contact with moisture. It’s made from absorbent silica gel and absorbs and controls odors perfectly.

Frequently Asked Questions:

Where should I keep my litter box in a small apartment?

The best place to keep the cat litter box in your small apartment would be in the bathroom since it’s already a room dedicated to such activities. Based on its size or position relative to the other rooms, consider if this is the best place.

Check out the size of the room where you would like the litter box to be placed and determine how big the litter box should be before making that purchase.

If this kind of litter box placement isn’t viable for you, you can use an empty bedroom closet.

However, please don’t do this if your closet has clothes or linen unless you are trying to invent cat poop perfume.

Where you place your litter box will be guided by the availability of space, convenience, and practicality.

As a result, if your small apartment is squeezed for space, it goes without saying that you won’t pick the largest litter box on display.

Is it bad to have a litter box in your bedroom?

The last thing you want for your lungs is to inhale litter dust while you sleep.

I understand that a small apartment has limited space and this may seem like a viable option to you, but I strongly discourage it.

Cat litter odors and litter dust in your bedroom are enough reasons to transfer it to a more suitable location such as:

How do you deal with cat litter in an apartment?

If you live in an apartment, you know how hard it is to get away from smells.

The good news is there are several ways to make your cat litter box less smelly. Here are seven great ways to keep your house smelling nice when you have a cat:

How many litter boxes do I need for a small apartment?

The general rule of thumb is one litter box per cat.

That doesn’t mean that you have to have a separate litter box for every single cat, but it does mean that you should have enough litter boxes so that every cat has access to at least one wherever they are in the apartment.


The best cat litter boxes for a small apartment are the ones that keep your cat happy and give you peace of mind.

Unfortunately, there isn’t a one-size-fits-all solution for every apartment.

All these litter boxes for small spaces are great picks, but your final decision will depend on your needs and the space in which you live.

There are lots of small cats litter boxes out there, available in a variety of shapes, sizes, materials, and with a host of different features.

Finding the right one that suits your needs can seem overwhelming at first. But if you’re patient, don’t rush into a purchase, and follow this guide, you should be able to settle on the right one that works best for you.

Davis Wilkins

Davis Wilkins is a dedicated cat lover, with three cats under his care. He grew up in a cat-loving family, nurturing these feline friends. As a result, he purposed to share his cat knowledge with the universe. Wilkins has been writing professionally for over four years, specializing in feline care with a keen interest in litter box care and handling. He hopes to help other feline lovers achieve their pet care goals.