The Cat Genie is one of the more revolutionary ways we’ve seen to fix the problem of having a litter box. It’s basically a cat toilet that has really tried to think of every single problem that a litter box represents and solve them one by one. But did they really think of everything, or is there a better solution than this?
One of the worst parts about owning a cat is having to coexist with their litter box. It’s pretty disgusting when you stop and think about it. You’re basically living with a pile of thinly veiled cat poop in the same vicinity. And unless you feel like cleaning out the litter box every single time they have to go, it can pile up and leave your home smelling bad. Even cleaning it up can be something of a health hazard, and at the very least it’s not a pleasant task.
The Cat Genie claims that it is the all-in-one solution to your cat’s litter box that reduces your interaction to a minimum, takes care of the smell, keeps everything sanitary, and makes it set-and-forget. They claim that you won’t have to empty a litter box, or clean it out, and that you won’t have to keep buying kitty litter because their system uses reusable litter and washes it after every use so your cat always has fresh granules that satisfy their instinct of digging out a spot and covering their waste.
How It Works
The system is set up so that it goes to work after your cat uses it. They liquids fall through the bottom of the tray and get sucked away, and the solids get scooped out automatically, and then sent to the SaniSolution where they get broken down and whisked away. After that it runs a cleaning solution through all of the messy litter, washing it and then drying it so that it’s ready for the next time. The result is that your cat never had it so good. That’s something that we don’t really consider too often, that it’s no fun for your cat either, trying to use a full litter box and find an open spot. With this they always have a good spot every time.
The Cat Genie ranges from $270 to $350 depending on which model you go with. To keep it running you’ll need to buy replacement cartridges that are $26 a piece. So yes, it’s kind of a big initial cost, but the maintenance isn’t too expensive, and the convenience factor is through the roof. It’s hard to have buyer’s remorse when you’re counting yourself lucky for not having to clean up cat feces any more.
The biggest draw to this kitty toilet is that you don’t really have to do anything once you set it up. In fact, once you get used to having it in your home you’ll wonder how you ever got by without it. The first few times you’ll wonder if your cat will really use it. Once you see that they do, you’ll start noticing it less and less, and eventually you’ll forget that it’s even there, and when you see it you’ll be reminded of how many times you don’t have to clean out the litter box.
The Cat Genie gets mostly positive reviews, and if you look closely at many of the negative reviews, they praise the product itself and their gripes are with something that are unrelated to its performance. Of course something this technologically advanced is not going to be able to please everyone every time. There will surely be defective units, and some that break down before too long. It’s just a part of manufacturing that there will be some that don’t work right. However, it is clear to see that if you get a working model, it works.
At this price point their customer service should be able to help you out with whatever problem you’re having. Also, some people don’t realize that you will need to be able to hook this up to an electrical outlet, as well as a cold water tap so that it can perform its flushing function. So yes, it does take a bit of set up, but once you have it all hooked up and running, it’s pretty much all you could ask for.
Final Cat Genie Review
The Cat Genie is a great concept, and you can see that they must have had a few brainstorming sessions to first figure out everything that’s wrong with a conventional litter box, and then another session figuring out how to fix all of those issues. The result works well, and happy owners say that they can return home from a day at work and not be greeted with a smelly full litter box and that makes all the difference.
You should definitely invest in one of these. The kitty litter savings alone will help defray the cost, or will at least be a breakeven when you buy the SaniSolution as needed. But the real win here is not having to get up close and personal with your cat’s mess any more. It takes away probably the biggest complaint people have about having a cat, next to all of the cat hair. But if you get a Furminator you are pretty much on your way to getting rid of all of the drawbacks to having a cat, so you can focus on all the fun parts of cat ownership.
25 Customer Reviews on “Does the Cat Genie Really Work?”
BEWARE OF CAT GENIE!! They scammed us out of several thousand dollars between their crappy products and our time. We spent over 10 HOURS ON THE PHONE WITH THEIR SUPPORT for TWO different boxes and they wont replace a box that was under warranty for a box we received that malfunctioned day 1!! Per their own advisors, the machines are “sensitive” and have to have PERFECT conditions to operate. They will make you take hundred of photos, send THOUSANDS OF EMAILS, videos, basically stand on your head, and on and on for hours to avoid replacing THEIR FAULTY EQUIPMENT. Its a ridiculous ploy to get you tired of dealing with them so they don’t have to fulfill their warranty. They basically do everything they can to make you get tired of trying to fix the box (like take photos of everything in and outside of the box, examples shown). DO NOT BUY FROM CAT GENIE UNLESS YOU LIKE HAVING YOUR TIME WASTED!!
Works OK for a while. We are on our second one and it just crapped out. Don’t expect them to last much past the warranty. The unit beeps constantly (error messages) and nothing we could do fixes it. The drain hose has begun to leak and the design is so poor that it can’t be repaired or replaced. I won’t be buying another one.
This is a common occurrance and does happen when hooked up to toilet.
No, that’s a middle finger for the store equivalent to THEFT and hence an expense for all other consumers….
What about this: buy one of those outlet timers, the kind for having a lamp turn on off everyday. Plug cat genie into that so it doesn’t cycle constantly.
Would that work?
I think your magnet idea is pretty cool.
You mentioned 7 cats and only one box. I’m shocked. How do you not have constant cat poop or pee outside the litter box? My cats (2) use one box for #1, another for #2 and a third box for privacy or avoiding ambush. You said “The 10 hour sleep mode would mean that the machine wakes up to a pile of cat feces and urine every day.” Don’t you wake up w that anyway, having only one box??! Also I don’t think the sleep mode has to be 10 hours…
What about buying one, harvesting the CPU, swapping the old one into it, and returning that new one for a refund?
That’s a nice middle finger for them 😀
We have 4 cats and just bought set up the Catgenie yesterday. Set up wasn’t an issue having an engineer boyfriend and the cats immediately began using it. First day we woke up with it, though, our entire 3-story house reeked (worse than with any other litter box–and we used the Litter Robot for a couple years and before that the Petsafe crystal litter raking system). Problem with this is, we can’t set it to cat activation mode as that would mean it is always cycling (and yes, a 30-minute cycle is ridiculous). So we have to either keep it on manual or set it to run every few hours. Why you can’t set it to cycle at certain times is beyond me. In any event, the biggest problem we found this morning is that the thing is flushing out the actual granules because we see granules in the bottom of our toilet. I don’t think this is supposed to happen. Given the reviews re: warranty/return horror stories, we will be returning this very soon if things don’t get better.
I bought one of this used for $150 and it was the best thing I’ve done. I wish I had bought one years ago. If you compare the cost of the cat genie vs litter then it may not seem like such a great deal. But always having a clean litter box and not having to actually clean it is priceless. If this one died and I couldn’t find a used one I would gladly fork over the money for a new one. I’m not sure who is spoiled more by it, me or the cat.
In reading these reviews, I am thankful for the insights. I really hope the manufacturer actually reads these and makes changes. I was on the verge of creating my own version of this product when the wife found the Genie online. I figured it would take a lot less effort to buy one than to make one, IF there were no major issues.
Now, I have lots of cats (7). More than anybody else posting here. I also have a small home, a small bathroom, and no real utility room. That said, I started looking at the true cost of sticking with what I’m doing or finding an alternative.
Tried the Citty Kitty. 4-5 of the cats actually were using the toilet. With this many cats, I literally must have a basement toilet. The training process is very, very messy and highly inconvenient for the family. Even after attempting the training for about 6 months (no litter box option), I found that cat traffic on the seat left the seat fairly dirty. Understandably, imagine you and I walking around the house every day barefoot and then standing on the toilet to pee and poop. Went back to the cat box.
Incidentally, we have only one cat box. it’s a large one with a sifting screen at the bottom, but that makes more mess than scooping, which results in no time savings, so I use the scoop. Looking at the cost, I use the Tidy cat clumping that comes in the square bucket with the light blue lid. I use the buckets for storage of other stuff around the house and shed. With this many cats, I go through about 1 bucket a week. At $13 a bucket, it’s roughly $50 a month, or $650 a year plus tax ($725). The box itself was around $20.
Tried using the litter genie, which is the same concept as the diaper genie. It’s flimsy and cheap and for this many cats, completely ineffective. I resorted to using shopping bags, which I get as a side effect of shopping. So there is some non-recyclable waste from the bags.
Time has a price. I spend a minimum of 10 minutes, twice a day to clean the box. I am subject to the biohazard as well as intense ammonia concentrations, which I’m certain are not good for lungs or eyes or sinuses (Though I seem to have fewer cold/flu/infections than the rest of the family). Either way, it’s amazingly unpleasant and frustrating and is one reason why, after these beautiful creatures expire, I don’t want any more. Pretty sad reason really. Anyways, 20 minutes a day adds up to about 120 hours a year. How would you rather spend your time?
Cat Box: $725 and 120 hours a year, for 7 cats.
Now, for the cat genie. I read that one machine is recommended for a max of 3 cats, so that’s one strike right there. I don’t have space for 2 or 3 of these units, nor would I want 2-3 units to worry about and maintain. The 10 hour sleep mode would mean that the machine wakes up to a pile of cat feces and urine every day. The option of having this machine run at night in the room right next to my bedroom is not an option. So I’d worry about the machine being able to handle the ‘load’. incidentally, my cats sleep between 1am and 4am. And of course during the day when I have to be awake and functioning. So, machine noise and timing and durability are major issues for me. I’m a general contractor with years of handyman experience, so setting up the plumbing and electrical is not an issue. However, I would like to see actual energy and water usage numbers so I can account for the cost in my analysis. Assuming a 4 year lifespan, replacing the beads and cleaning solution seem to point at a monthly cost of about $25-30 or around $360 per year (including an estimate for utilities, solution, beads, and unit cost per year), for 3 cats. Double that for 7. Time is also part of this equation. Setup time will vary depending on location of utility hookups. Mine would be a few hours. Maintenance time is another big unknown. A few here have mentioned that the beads do track and that some are lost in the process of flushing, which means monitoring the bead level and sweeping up.
Some problems and questions: Beads too light, can they be replaced with something heavier that is not lost to the grinder and will not track, ever? Is there a better system that doesn’t involve using loose granules? Plastic coated steel granules that can be retained with a magnet? Anyways, one challenge is when the cat has liquid poop, or mostly liquid. It needs to be rinsed off quickly before it encases whatever granules are used.
Our toilets flush in seconds. A cycle time of 30 minutes is just way too long. It also implies a high water usage and high electrical usage.
After reading through the official manual, it would appear that maintenance is almost as involved as a cat box, it is simply trading something smelly but easy for something that could be smelly and is technical.
My final thoughts are that it’s a complex machine that would not likely save any money, might save a bunch of time, or it could cost more time and headache. The website specifically states that the cost of the solution matches the yearly cost of cat litter. It doesn’t take much to realize that when you add in the machine, the granules and the utilities, it WILL cost more than cat litter. It is also NOT maintenance free, not even close.
Might be time to design one of my own…
Are you sure you don’t have a 300 dollar toilet?
Also, enjoy scooping up those cat turds. You’re breathing in poop particles.
say what??? Ben… You knew she had this cat before you moved in. I’d even go so far as to say, you’d met this cat, and even knew about the litter box issue. You bought into the relationship, fully aware, my friend! Now, first off, it pisses me off to no end when pet parents ARE too damn lazy to take 3 lousy minutes out of their day to clean the damn litter box, EVERY DAY! It really should be scooped out a couple times a day if you use clumping litter, and who doesn’t these days, and that takes like a minute. Seriously. Cats give us so much, it’s literally the least we can do for them. Give them a clean toilet, for crying out loud. Their sense of smell is 1000 X stronger than ours, so if it bothers a human, imagine what they put up with!? The equivalent of a human having to use a really stinky, full, Porta Potty, at the end of a Rib Fest with a beer garden. Think about it… gross, lol. But I digress… BEN! If you don’t like it, then we women just love it when our guys jump in and clean stuff, especially when we don’t have to ask!!! If you both work outside the home, then of course, you share housework. If the litter upsets you, make it your duty, and she’ll love you for it! So will the cat!
It’s her cat living in their house! lol I agree with Ben.
FIRST – this site is rigged. It will NOT let me give a rating of 1 star.
In looking at the reviews, I’ve noticed something. There is no true benefit to owning this. Cost wise, you’re actually paying more than the traditional standard box.
After the expensive initial cost you pay for the unit, you still have to buy their replacement cartridges every month for more than the cost of cat litter that will last as long. You now have the added cost of electricity and water to operate the thing.
It will only last a few years. I have a nice plastic box that has lasted over 10 years. It cleans up quickly when it’s time and right back in use.
My plastic box is more trustworthy. It has never malfunctioned nor flooded, ever. I’ve never had to fight with it to make it work. So I’ve never had to deal with frustrating, inept ‘customer service.’
You live there now, too. Stop bitching and start cleaning up after your pets!!
If it’s out of warranty, they will deem the unit too old for repairs. My unit is identical to a new one, and there have obviously been no new models released since then. I even swapped my broken processing unit (the brains of the machine) with a friend’s new one, to see if they were incompatible. My CatGenie worked fine with the newer processing unit. I called/emailed several different employees, who could not explain what if anything had changed in the design that made my unit too old for repairs. They just suggested I buy a new one. Riiight… I decided to give up on repairs and ask for a replacement processing unit, since that’s obviously the broken part. They do not sell that part at all. IF THE CORE OF THE CAT GENIE BREAKS, I REPEAT, THEY WILL NOT SELL YOU A NEW ONE. They again suggested I buy a new unit, and said that I got tons of mileage out of my old one. It’s only been four years since I bought my first CatGenie!! Apparently Cat Genie’s are not meant to last for more than a few years. Ridiculous considering how expensive they are. This is a greedy company that suckers you into a subscription for their litter and cleaning solution, while also selling the machine at a super high price, with the promise it will save you time and money in the long run. If I have to keep replacing these $200+ units every couple of years, there’s no way that’s worth it.
I love the idea, and at first thought it would be worth the expense, but one time out of town and the thing malfunctioned leaving the cats to not want to use it while it made noise! They opted for the area around the box which is as you know nasty to come home to! The next time I came home to a flood cause the plastic fitting leaked from my laundry room and flooded the area. The smell when it cleans has chased my guests from my home as it smells like pig sty! HELP cat genie!! What’s up with this?
So we (my wife and I) were given two of these for our new family members. We rescued two beautiful Bengals. I have always wanted a cat genie. But little did I know I’d need two! These things run for 30 mins per use. It’s only been a month and I really appreciate not visiting the box except for the few times it beeped all night long because it needed some sensor cleaned. I’m a little nervous about the added water and electric bills. But what is it really worth if it works? So far I’m pleased but we have two! Any less and who knows.
I had no idea that cats poop on the same schedule.
My daughter bought me the basic CatGenie for my four cats, and we love it! What a huge advantage over regular cat boxes. The litter in the CatGenie is biodegradable and won’t harm the plumbing. It took m cats no time at all to get used to it! Yes, a cartridge is about $26.00, but that last two months or more! Well worth the investment!
I too have commented on many of the cat products. I am no way paying $270 for a toilet for my cat. I change my cat box every other day. It is a part of my schedule. I buy the cat litter at Walmart for $2.89 and it is a 30 pound bag that last me several weeks. I am far from rich and I don’t even have a $300 toilet so why would I buy my cat one? Another thing is my cat box isn’t near any plumbing so how would I hook it up if I lost my mind and purchased this product? Great idea, but again I will keep my money.
As most of you might know I have commented on several cat products and felt that the cat genie needed a comment from me as well. While I find the cat genie to be a great concept it is outrageous to see it carry a price tag of 270 dollars for the basic model. For that amount of money I could buy a little more than a year’s supply of cat litter, and I mean the really good fresh step deodorizing carbon based cat litter. The price tag is only the first turn off, for me, that this product carries while the next is the fact that it needs to be hooked up to a source of water, the fact that it has to be plugged into a wall socket is a downside as well, but far less so than the water source. I would consider getting a cat genie, even with its other downsides, if its price was cut in half but for right now I will stick to manually cleaning out my cats’ litter box and be just fine.
This seems like a cat owner’s dream, but, like Mike said, I don’t think the price tag, and the fact that it has to be plugged in all day, makes it worth it. Also, I wonder how often you would need to buy the $26 cartridges. I used to have a pet cat and cleaning his litter box wasn’t all that tedious, so for me it wouldn’t be worth it. However, I can see how this would be great for a very busy person who’s out of the house all day, or a pregnant woman who doesn’t have anyone else who can clean the litter box for her.
I hate cleaning litter boxes, so I have been thinking about getting one of these for my home. I am so happy to see that you give it a positive review and recommend it, as there are so many similar self-cleaning litter boxes out there that receive really negative reviews and made me second-guess every option. While it is an expensive unit, I feel that if you are using expensive natural litter like I do, the savings will add up in no time. The only thing I need to do is figure out where in my home I can hook this up to a plumbing system.
If you have some disposable cash lying around and you hate the task of cleaning the litter box, perhaps the Cat Genie is for you. Basically, I can’t afford it. Even if, over the life of the product, it will outweigh the cost of continuously purchasing new litter, approximately $300 is a large chunk of change to spend on a box for a cat to pee and poop in. Also, it hooks up to the plumbing? And has to be plugged in all the time? Is it Energy Star certified? Finally, I know you can’t flush kitty litter down the toilet, as it’s bad for the plumbing and can pollute the water supply with the toxoplasma in cat urine, which can be fatal. The solution solves this problem? I’ll stick to the old methods and devices until I win the lotto.
Try living with a cat that’s not even yours and just looking at cat pictures will start giving you nightmares. Moving in with my girlfriend was by far the best and the worst thing I did this year and much has to do with her cat. Actually, let’s not fault the animal here. The real problem is my girlfriend’s laziness. I don’t like having a poop box in my house in the first place, but I really start to hate it when the owner doesn’t clean it every day. I gotta give this cat this star trek poop box and hope that this will be the end of my nightmare.