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Cat Genie Automatic Litterbox

Reviewing: Cat Genie  |  Rating:
katwalker By katwalker on
Badge: Author | Level: 3 | Pets Expertise:
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All cat owners want to make cat waste disposal easier. Does the Cat Genie do this? Well... depends on your definition of "easy." The Cat Genie is designed to be hooked up to your toilet or washer water input and output valves. It washes the reusable litter granuales; scoops out any feces, grinds it up, and flushes out the waste water and, uh, waste; and then dries the granuales. When it works as it should, the Cat Genie eliminates the need to scoop out clumps (there are none) and feces, replace litter, and wash out the litter box. Note I said, "When it works"...

PetNovations, the company behind the Cat Genie, certainly has its hands full. This design is radically different from other automatic litterboxes out there, and, as such, are constantly having to trouble-shoot problems in design and usage. However, customer service is, by most accounts, quite helpful and quick in sending out replacement parts. It also offers a long return period in case the Cat Genie just doesn't work for you.

So what are Cat Genie's problems? First, despite PetNovations insistence that it was tested with long-haired cats, many people find their cats hair is constantly causing clogs. Also common is the "hard poo" phenomenon where poo that is, well, too hard causes the impeller to stop because it cannot chop it up. PetNovations have put out a better version of the impeller (offered free of charge to people who already own the Cat Genie), though some still complain of impeller problems. Problems have also been noted with the solution cartridges and the scooper not always getting all of feces out before starting the cleaning cycle.

But you can research on your own to find out more about the Cat Genie and its problems. The question I wish to address in the remainder of this review is "Is the Cat Genie right for me?" First, you MUST have space available for the Cat Genie near a water source. Please note that the Cat Genie is much larger than typical litterboxes. Although designed to work with a toilet or washer connection, some have hooked it up to sinks with some minor tinkering. Just as importantly, though, is to ask yourself why you want an automatic litterbox. Know that any automatic litterbox is going to have malfunctions that require you to fiddle with to get it working again. Also, there are several very good automatic litterboxes out there that serve different purposes. If you hate scooping feces; buying, hauling home, and dumping out litter; and cleaning out the litterbox with soap and water, then the Cat Genie might be for you. If you want a litterbox that will run a cleaning cycle soon after the cat leaves the area, if controlling odor is of the highest priority, if you have more than a few cats, or if you have limited space, the Cat Genie may not be for you. However, if you don't want to mess with anything related to a typical litterbox, are willing to fiddle with the occasional mechanical problem, and have the patience to train your cat that, really, this box is better than that old one! - then the Cat Genie might be worth a try.

One last note: Not all cats will use the Cat Genie, even after an adjustment period. It's just a picky cat thing. This problem haunts every kind of litterbox and litter out there. Thus, I highly recommend buying the Cat Genie from someplace that has the 90-day (or longer) return policy.