Do Cats Like Top Entry Litter Boxes?

Do Cats Like Top Entry Litter Boxes?

Cats may be sociable and affectionate animals but they also need privacy especially when doing their thing at the litter box. It is essential to provide them with a spacious and clean litter box that is located in a quiet and secluded area of your home. Do cats have a special preferences when it comes to the type of their litter box? Read on to find out.  

Do cats like top entry litter boxes?

Cats like top entry litter boxes just as well as they like uncovered ones as long as the boxes are clean and odor-free. 

Having said that, some cat experts believe that cats generally prefer clean, large and uncovered litter boxes as opposed to closed and top entry ones.  They believe that cats prefer those with no cover since they can see any possible threat in the environment and if so, they can easily escape from the box.  However, a study made at the Ross University School of Veterinary Medicine has surprising findings. 

Based on the results, at least 70% of the cats showed no preference when it comes to the litter box and most cats were content to use both the covered and uncovered ones. The study also found out that cats do not care whether it is an uncovered or a top entry litter box. Thus, it is safe to say that based on the said study, cats seem to be neutral when it comes to litter box preference. 

While some cats prefer open ones, there are also those that like top entry litter boxes where they have privacy and security. What seems to be more important for cats is cleanliness and they are willing to use a covered or uncovered litter box as long as it is clean.  Also, cats each have unique personalities and litter box preference may vary from one cat to another.  You may also check out an earlier article on how do cats know to use the litter box for more details.

Pros and cons of top entry litter boxes


Here are the advantages of a top entry litter box:

  1. Your cat will have privacy while going through her business. 
  2. It does not take up much space making it the preferred litter box type for people living in small apartments or condos. 
  3. It cuts down litter tracking in your home. 
  4. It confines foul odors in the box and so they will not spread to the entire house.
  5. It keeps cat poop and pee away from plain sight. 
  6. It keeps children away from the box and prevents them from getting near the litter which may pose health risks.
  7. Scratching noises are minimized since you can place more litter in the box. 


These are the disadvantages of a top entry litter box:

  1. It only provides one means of escape and cats may not feel secure especially since they are at their most vulnerable when they are inside the litter box. 
  2. Since it is an enclosed litter box, odors may remain inside and your cat may not like using the box because of her sensitive sense of smell.
  3. Your cat may feel cramped inside the box because of the enclosed and small space. 
  4. Litter may take a longer time to dry due to the poor air circulation inside the enclosed litter box.
  5. Senior and arthritic cats may have a hard time getting in and out of the top entry litter box. 

Recommended Top Entry Litter Boxes

Here are our choices for top entry litter boxes:

1. Petmate Top Entry Litter Pan 

Color: gray

Material: blend

Dimension: 20.29 x 15.07 x 15.2 inches 

This brand is one of the popular choices because it is budget-friendly and easy to clean. Simply pop the lid off and wash with soap and water. It has a smaller opening compared to other brands but the difference is not that noticeable. It is safe, durable and cat-friendly, too. 

2. Clevercat Top Entry Litter Box 

Color: off-white

Material:  plastic 

Dimension:  20 x 15 x 15 inches 

This brand has a top-entry design that eliminates tracking and with a built-in tracking mat. It has a zigzagged top so that litter and dust fall quickly back to the box. It is one of the popular brands because of the simple but durable design, it is easy to clean and has a solid molded plastic bottom. 

3. Iris Top Entry Litter Box 

Color: white and other colors

Material:  BPA-free plastic 

Dimension:   20.75 x 16.13 x 14.63 inches 

This stylish brand’s main attraction is its grooved lid that is easy for cats to walk on. It comes in various colors that match your home’s decor. It has a larger opening compared to other brands which makes it ideal for larger cats.  It has rounded inside walls that are easy to clean and the lid keeps dust and litter off from other areas. 


Cats treasure their “me time” and they relish their privacy and security while they pee or poop. They like top entry litter boxes just as they prefer side entry and open-type ones. Based on research and general observation, cats will willingly use a litter box as long as it is clean, accessible, odor-free and situated in a quiet area at home. 

Image: / Lightspruch