If you have ever owned a cat you will probably have had to install a cat litter tray. Litter trays are generally one of the worst things about cat ownership. They can be unhygienic and require regular attention. If you have an indoor cat they are indispensable and you must accept the tray as a necessary evil. To try to minimize and reduce hygiene issues we recommend you use a cat litter tray mat alongside your box.
Why you should get a cat litter mat?
If you have kept cats before you will have noticed the mess they make after they have used the litter tray. It is unavoidable really. The litter that they have done their business on and covered their tracks with, has an irritating tendency to become trapped between their toes and hung up on the fur in these areas. The thing is the litter isn’t trapped for long and soon shakes free. Problem is this litter shakes free usually in the first five foot of space surrounding the box or tray as they leave the scene.
As kitty departs you can usually see which direction was travelled by the litter trail. I am exaggerating – most litter shakes free in the immediate area beyond the tray. This is really quite unhygienic – the risk of spreading filth beyond the litter tray is definitely there. Additionally you have to clean this material up.
This is why you want a litter mat – to catch this residue litter so it does not go on your usual floor area, reduce chances of spreading germs around your home and to minimise the handling of potentially dirty litter.
What types of litter mat are available?
Generally speaking there are two types of litter mat available on the market – single and double skin mats.
Single skin are simply a single mat constructed from a material that encourages the litter to drop off kitty and remain trapped on the mat. Generally speaking you then have to vacuum the mat to remove the litter – but you have kept it in one place and hopefully off your floor where it might get trodden in.
Double layer mats are constructed in a sandwich type formation. As kitty steps onto the mat the top layer encourages the litter to drop off and traps the fallen litter from being spread further. Once you are ready to dispose of this fallen litter you can pick up the mat and the litter will fall through the top layer into an opening between the layers that acts as an envelope. You can then pour the litter that has been collected back into the tray or dispose via the refuse. The key point is that you don’t need to use a vacuum and you can avoid handling the litter.
These are the two most popular types of mat but there are others – you can get single skin mats that catch the litter and then can be folded allowing the litter caught to roll off the mat.
These days all the solutions available focus mainly on preventing disposal of used litter around your home and secondarily reduce manual handling of the used litter, something you can’t guarantee by just putting down a carpet offcut of a standard rug.
What to look out for
Mats come in various sizes and price ranges. Ideally you shouldn’t need to spend more than $40 on a top of the range mat but you can find good quality budget mats in the $15 range. 30 x 23 ins seems to be the standard size of mats but you can get bigger and you will have to assess whether a larger mat may be more suitable for you if you operate two litter boxes.
Is you mat going on a tiled or laminate floor? If so consider a non slip rubber backed mat. Do you need a waterproof mat? Not all mats are waterproof by default so check carefully if you have a cat that is prone to urinating beyond the litter box.
Blackhole Litter Mat
The Blackhole Litter Mat is a very popular double layer mat. Available in 4 colours, the top layer is a soft touch honeycomb pattern mat that catches litter and redirects the litter to the honeycomb. To empty you simply squeeze open the envelope and tip the used cat litter from either end.
The mat is waterproof and can be easily washed either by hosing down or by washing under a shower. The mat comes in a standard size of 30 x 23 inches. Price is at the higher end to many mats on the market but the design was groundbreaking. The mat is highly regarded by owners who claim the mat provides a very high litter capture rate.
Hard to find any users who have had issues with this mat.
Pawkin cat litter mat
The Pawkin car litter mat is a single layer mat. It is slightly larger than the Black Hole coming in at 35 x 23 inches. The single layer mat is a soft touch mesh mat that traps litter as kitty walks by. The mat comes in one colour option but could be considered a base level mat in terms of price.
The mat is cleaned by vacuuming at regular intervals, features a non slip backing but is not waterproof – however it can be washed by hose if necessary.
Highly rated by owners on price and performance – a good entry level mat that stops the spread of excess litter.
Iprimio large cat litter trapper mat
The Iprimio double layer cat litter mat is similar in design to the Black Hole mat. The significant differences are that it has a waterproof urine trapper layer, opens on three sides for easy emptying and is closer to a mid range price than the black hole mat.
Other than that they are generally very comparable. Both are 30 x 23 ins, both feature a honeycomb soft touch top layer, both come in more than one colour and have a non slip back.
This mat has a very high proportion of high ratings from owners who all comment that this mat is incredibly effective at trapping litter and is a good quality mat. Highly recommended.
Easyology Premium large cat litter mat
The Easyology Premium Cat Litter Mat is a single layer mat that comes in a range of seven colours. Featuring an anti slip rubber backing this 35 x 23 ins mat is very highly rated by numerous owners.
Perceived to be good quality and very effective at trapping litter, owners like the fact the mat is washable and really does do what it claims to do. The mat is not waterproof but at such a low price point this does not seem to bother too many owners.
The mat is cleaned by vacuum or can be shaken out to
Gorilla grip premium cat litter mat
The gorilla grip premium cat litter mat comes in four different sizes. For the purpose of this mini review we will just look at the standard 35 x 23 mat. These are available in 8 different colours and at this size is comparable in price with other budget priced mats.
The mat is a single layer anti slip mat with a soft mesh that captures the excess litter. Like most single layer mesh mats the mat is emptied by vacuum or shaking down. The mats main selling feature is it’s non slip properties although i like the size variation options available.
The mat is not waterproof so isn’t really suitable for cats with urinary issues but the mat is washable.
Owners who have purchased this mat really like the litter collecting ability of this mat. They also like the option of going for different sizes and not being stuck with one choice.
As is often the tendency with these mesh mats, if kitty drags muck over the mesh it can be difficult to remove without a good soaking.
Our preferred option is the iprimio double layer cat litter mat. It is not as expensive as the top priced mats but offers very similar benefits – if your cat has urinary issues it may even be the best choice with its waterproof urine trapping layer. It is easier to empty than most of the single layer mesh mats and is incredibly successful at collecting excess litter.
If i wanted a super large mat for several litter trays i would have to choose either a pair of iprimio mats or a single gorilla grip mat – it would probably come down to how tight my budget was.