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Can you use regular litter in an automatic litter box

Can You Use Regular Litter In An Automatic Litter Box?

Scooping and cleaning the litter box is by no means fun. Scooping must be done at least a couple times per day. It can get tiresome. If you are willing to spend the extra money for an automatic litter box, it can be worth it. When looking for a automatic litter box, you have a bunch of options to get something that works for you and your cat. If you are already the owner of one of these automatic litter boxes or are considering it, it is pretty crucial to understand the type of litter that you will be able to use with it. In this article, we will be covering just that.

The way that these self cleaning litter boxes function is by either scraping the clumped up litter to the deposit place or by sifting the clean litter separate from the clumps. Then, to keep the litter box working well, all you have to do is empty out the bin that collects the dirty litter.

What Litters Should be Used in an Automatic Litter Box?

Not every automatic litter box is the same. But, generally there are two kinds of litters that work. So, if you consider clumping clay litter and crystal cat litter to be regular litter, then yes, you can use regular litter in an automatic litter box.

Clumping Clay Litter

Clumping cat clitters is perhaps the best option for automatic litter boxes because there is a considerable difference between the clean litter and the litter that has been used. The used litter will clump up into little balls, which is easily split up from the clean litter. Clumping clay litter is by far the most common and widespread litter out there, so it will be easy to purchase litter for an automatic litter box. 

Silica Gel Litters

crystal cat littersSilica gel litters are also known as crystal cat litters. This kind of litter has clumping and non-clumping varieties. If the automatic litter box requires a clumping litter box to work with it, then there should be a crystal litter that will work with it. Some automatic litter boxes are designed to work specifically with non-clumping crystal cat litters. Crystal cat litter works by soaking up the urine and then soaking all of the moisture out of cat waste. Before deciding on what litter you are going with, make sure to check with the automatic litter box to see what works with it.


What litter can you use in an automatic litter box?

The two main kinds of litter that generally work with automatic litter boxes is clumping clay litter and crystal litter. Other litters can also be used if they are able to work with the sifting or raking function of the automatic litter boxes. The litter must be fine enough when it is clean to pass through the sifter, but when the litter gets used, it has to grow in size so that the sifter catches it. Then, the sifter is able to dispose of the litter that has been used. One kind of litter that almost never works is non-clumping litter. The best thing to do is to read the instructions for the automatic litter box before purchasing litter to see what kind of litter the company that made the litter box recommends. You wouldn’t want to spend money on a litter that won’t work with your automatic litter box.

Is an automatic litter box worth it?

The major factor that deters people from purchasing an automatic litter box is the high price point. But, nowadays, there are a lot of options that are affordable. Automatic litter boxes are worth it for the person who is willing to spend a little bit extra for less scooping. For a regular litter box, usually somebody must scoop once to twice everyday, so an automatic litter box get rid of this chore. With that being said, there is still some cleaning that needs to be done to the litter tray and disposal system pieces of the litter box to remain proper hygiene and to ensure your cat keeps using the litter box.

How do I transition to using an automatic litter box?

The key to introducing cats to automatic litter boxes is like with anything else. It takes persistence and small but progressive steps to reach the desired end result. Start by putting the automatic litter box near the litter box that they used to use. After a few days, fill it up with the litter that you intend on using with it, and keep it like this for a few days. There is no need to turn it on and get it running.  Simply allow your cat to use it while it is off. Make sure to take away the old litter box so your cat doesn’t return to that. Once your cat starts to use it while it is off all the time, you can turn it on, and by this point your cat should be okay with hearing noise coming from their litter box. It’s vital to be patient, and allow your cat time to become accustomed to the automatic litter box. Here is a good article from Petsafe that can help with this problem.


In many cases, clumping litter can work in an automatic litter box. However, it’s important to note that regular litter may compromise the functionality of the automated system. It may cause clogging, inaccurate waste detection, or damage to your device. For long-term cost-effectiveness and the best hygiene for your cat, it is recommended to invest in high-quality litter specifically designed for automatic litter boxes.