How To Stop Cat Litter Tracking Everywhere? (10 Easy Tips)

Every new cat owner wants to learn how to stop cat litter tracking. Of course, cleaning up tracked litter is one of those cat-parent jobs that doesn't seem to end — especially if you don't deal with it right in the roots!

So, our goal here is to teach you how to keep cat litter off the floor in the first place, eventually saving your time and effort in cleaning up the whole house. 

How to stop cat litter tracking everywhere

As cat owners ourselves, we've also juggled between various cat litter tracking hacks and found which ones are the most effective. It's about time to share them with you!

Cardboard Scratching Post

We always hear the question: how do I keep my cat from tracking litter everywhere? Well, we have listed eight (8) solutions here, the first one being a cardboard scratching post.

Actually, it looks like a "ramp" rather than an actual cylindrical "post." It has holes on its surface, which eventually work to capture the litter from your kitty's paws and legs as he's scratching on it. 

Using this cat scratcher can save you a lot of money — there's no need to buy a new litter box that includes a ramp!

Here is a quick list of everything you need for this trick:

  • A cardboard scratching ramp (either purchased or DIY)
  • Your kitty’s trusted litter box

For a DIY cardboard scratcher, you'll need:

  • Pieces of cardboard
  • A huge shoe box lid (still made of cardboard)
  • Cardboard cutter
  • Glue
  • Measuring tape

Check out this video tutorial for a more detailed illustration:

DIY Cardboard Cat Scratcher with Pudge (VIDEO TIPS)

Where to put it?

You can place a cardboard scratcher right beside or in front of your kitty's litter box — at the point of exit. If you want this trick to be more efficient, you can place several scratchers around your home — the living room, in the kitchen, and even in your bedroom.

Suggested products?

If you decide to purchase a ready-made cardboard cat scratcher, here are the top products I would like to suggest.

1. The Original Scratch Lounge - Worlds Best Cat Scratcher - Includes Catnip

2. GoPets Premium Cat Scratcher, Infinity Lounge Corrugated Cardboard

3. Petstages Cat Scratcher Cat Hammock Cat Scratching Post

4. MushroomCat Face Cute Modern Scratch Lounge Classic Ultimate Cat Scratcher Bed

5. Friends Forever Cat Cardboard Scratcher House Polygon Maze Cats Corner Play Toy Furniture Scratch Pad Post

DIY Cardboard Scratcher

On the other hand, you may also want to just have a DIY cardboard scratcher.

Step 1:

First of all, prepare all the materials: a used cardboard box (those boxes that come with your appliances or shoes will do!) or a new one — it doesn't matter — plus a huge sheet of cardboard, cardboard cutter, glue, and measuring tape.

Step 2:

Let's say you're using the shoebox lid as the "catcher." Measure the width and height of one lid's side. Mark the same measurements on the sheet of cardboard.

Step 3:

Cut out the cardboard sheet according to the width and height measurements. Make several cutouts — just enough to fill the shoebox lid if you stacked these cutouts vertically.

Step-3-DIY-Scratch-post

Step 4:

Glue the cut-outs together — making a stack of them. Place them in the shoebox lid and add more cardboard cut-outs until they fill the box.

Final-step-DIY-Scratch-Post

Price range (Cost range of this method)

If you're creating a cardboard scratcher by yourself using recycled materials, and if you already have those other tools I've listed, this method could cost you virtually nothing but sweat!

How does it work?

Try to observe the sides of a cardboard cut-out and you'll see the "waves" of curled boards in between two flat boards. If you flip these cardboard cut-outs vertically, the "waves" will serve as "holes."

Since this type of scratcher has "holes" in it, it immediately catches the granules of litter that jump out of your kitty's paws and legs as he scratches on the surface.

Also, instead of scratching on your carpet or your living room couch, your little feline would now stretch out those paws on the cardboard scratcher. In that sense, he would no longer leave traces of litter on your precious furniture!

TIPS:

If you create a DIY cardboard scratcher while your kitty observes, he can immediately be fond of it and use it as soon as it's done!

Instead of just making uniform cardboard cut-outs, you can modify their shape and height so that you'll have an ascending or descending cardboard scratching ramp. This way, you could even create a cardboard ramp trail that commences from your cat's litter box exit towards your living room!

Rate of Effectiveness (3/5)

Based on experience, I'd say this trick is as effective as the effort you would put on making it happen. In other words, it's not the most effective of all methods — but it totally helps if you'd follow my tips in the previous section.

A nicely built cardboard scratcher can last for years! Once the cardboard pieces look too worn out to cater to additional nail-and-paw attacks, you can just build a new one.

Cons

This solution might catch a significant amount of litter bits — but not all. Imagine your cat traveling from the litter box to the cardboard scratcher, and you'll have to expect some areas in between the litter box and the scratcher to still receive their share of the granules!


Tips #2 Use a Litter Mat

Litter-Mat

Is the area surrounding your cat's litter box as full of litter granules as the litter box itself? That could mean tons of sweat spent on vacuuming that part of the house alone! In this case, you'd probably have more rest if you used a litter mat just in front of your beloved feline's litter box.

Here is a quick list of everything you need for this anti-litter-tracking trick (you can try just one or a combination of the following):

  • Rubber mats with grooves
  • Sisal rugs
  • Regular throw rugs
  • A remnant piece of an old carpet
  • Shaggy bath mats
  • Specially-designed litter mats (we've listed a few suggested brands below)

How to use cat litter mat (VIDEO TIPS)

Where to put it?

The best place to put a litter mat is in front of the litter box — right at the entrance/exit. This way, the mat can easily catch any litter and prevent it from getting scattered any further. Thus, this placement makes it easier for you to clean up the floor area surrounding your kitty's litter box!

If you're someone who loves to go the extra mile for purposes of preventing any further problems, then you may want to use a huge litter mat and place the litter box right on top of it. This way, any particle getting kicked from the sides of the litter box can stay on the surrounding mat and not track on any part of your floor.

Suggested product

There are a number of mats that are specially-designed to catch bits of litter from your kitty's paws before he ever gets a chance to spread them around. So, I've listed for you three of the top litter mats that most cat owners recommend:

1. Gorilla Grip Original Premium Durable Cat Litter Mat

2. Pieviev Cat Litter Mat Litter Trapping Mat

3. WePet Cat Litter Mat, Kitty Litter Trapping Mat

Price range (Cost range of this method)

An effective litter mat can cost you as low as $17 for small ones and up to $40 for extra large mats. If you choose to use your old rugs or recycle an old carpet, it can cost you nothing but just the effort of cutting the right size!

How does it work?

A litter mat works quite simply — it just captures the tiny bits of litter that your feline happens to kick outside of his litter box, as well as those particles that stick to his paws. As long as the mat has deep grooves, it can trap the litter granules.

Some litter mats even have holes that can quickly catch the litter bits into the interior part of the mat, making it easy for you to collect these displaced litter particles and put them back into the litter box.

TIPS:

Take note that the mat needs to be larger than the size of the cat's litter box, else, this method becomes useless. The larger the mat, the more efficiently it works in catching any litter granule that your cat kicks or that happens to stick!

Some cats can be sensitive to certain litter mat textures. So, it helps for you to experiment and put a new mat in front of only one litter box, leaving the extra litter boxes mat-free. If your kitty is fine using the box with the mat in front, then your problem with litter tracking is already half-solved!

Rate of Effectiveness (4/5)

The effectiveness of litter mats depends on the kind of mat itself. Those with special grooves and holes — like the ones we mentioned above — are more effective, efficient, and convenient to use compared to our common household rugs or carpets

If you use the best litter mat, then we'd say this strategy could be the most effective trick on preventing litter tracking. You can even combine the use of litter mats with the other tools I've included in this article, just to maximize the benefits!

Cons

If you really want the best litter mat, it can cost you quite a bit, although I would say it's just a rewarding investment.

If, on the other hand, you would stick to recycling your old rugs, you could save a lot of money. The problem is that your kitties might play silly and surprisingly urinate on that carpet-turned-litter-mat! Needless to say, this can be gross, as that improvised mat doesn't have any anti-urine-odor properties, plus it's definitely not waterproof, and washing it can be another tedious job.


Tips #3 Trim the hair between your Cat’s toes

Trim The Hair between Your Cat’s Toes

If you've already tried all the mats and scratchers we've previously discussed here and still your cat gets litter everywhere, then we suspect you own a feline with quite a long hair. It's even possible that while you're regularly grooming your kitty, you're still missing an essential part — the hair between her toes. 

Take note that some litters — especially those clumping and clay ones — can easily stick to cat's paws. Hence, they track a lot around the house. Trimming helps reduce the litter sticking to cat's paws!

So, if this looks like your case, then you need to implement the trimming hack in order to effectively prevent litter tracking.

How to use cat litter mat (VIDEO TIPS)

Here is a quick list of everything you need for this trick:

  • A pair of scissors, or
  • An electric cat hair trimmer

TIPS:

Trimming the hair between your kitty's toes can either be straightforward or tricky — depending on how he behaves. 

If your cat is nice, gentle, and generally in a relaxed state, it's quite easy to use a pair of scissors for trimming his paw hair. 

If he is not, you can find an alternative position where he can feel more at ease. Try having him lie down, and give him a treat when he does. Also, every time he allows you to hold and lift his paws, reward him with a treat.

* Hold your kitty's leg gently and clip only the long fur — just to the level of the paw pads. You just don't want any excess of hair attracting a litter granule.

Take note that if your cat is being unreasonable while you're trying to trim, that could be because he feels rather ticklish. In that case, you need to be more considerate with your cat.

If you're using an electric hair trimmer, turn it on away from your cat. This way, your cat hears the trimmer's sound faintly at first, making him feel better prepared for the trimming session.

* For best results, trim regularly.

Rate of Effectiveness (2.5/5)

For long-haired cats prone to tracking problems, we would say this strategy is quite effective.

Still, we can't argue against the fact that some of the litter particles can still stick to your cat's furry body — especially if he is all fluffy and playful!

Cons

There's virtually no harm in trimming your long-haired cat's toe hair. You just have to be careful and also do it on a regular basis. So, the effort is on you.

This trick only applies to long-haired cats.

If your kitty is playful enough, she might still catch on some litter particles on her fur — and you can't just cut all that beautiful hair!


Tips #4 Top Entry Litter Box

Top Entry Litter Box

So, you've tried everything in your power to try the above hacks, but you still ask the question: how to stop a cat from kicking litter everywhere? What if your feline simply loves to kick and kick? If that's the case, it's probably high time to change the litter box he's using into either a top entry box or a covered one.

DIY Top Entry Cat Litter Box (VIDEO TIPS)

Crafting a DIY non-tracking cat litter box cover is possible, but if you're willing to pay for the easy solution, just buy an entirely new litter box. Here are a few of the products that have satisfied many cats and cat owners alike:

How does it work?

With a top entry litter box, your cat would have to enter and exit through the top opening, forcing him to jump through this "roof" just to get out after doing his business. By exiting this way, your cat would be able to shake off any litter that has initially stuck to his paws and legs. Plus, it would keep the litter from slipping through the sides of the box!

The best anti-tracking top entry litter box would include a trackpad on the top. With this kind of design, it would definitely help remove any litter off your cat before he gets out of the box.

Rate of Effectiveness (4.5/5)

If your kitty is fine with using the covered or top-entry litter box, then you have just decided a worthy solution to preventing litter tracking! In other words, it's quite effective.

Cons

If your cat doesn't seem to like a confined litter box even after a proper introduction, this method won't do as much help as the other tricks.


Tips #5 Covered Litter Box

Covered litter box with swinging door

It's natural for your kitty to accidentally scatter litter all over the surrounding areas of his box as he tries to bury his poop and pee. Once he steps out onto the floor, he would most likely track the litter all over. With a litter box that's fully enclosed, it becomes so much easier to contain the kicked litter.

If you ever choose a covered litter box, we recommend purchasing one with a swinging door. Having such a door will give an additional barrier that prevents the litter from sneaking out!

Do cats like Covered Litter Box? (VIDEO TIPS)


Tips #6 Storage Bench Litter Box

Suppose you don't have so much space in your home and you wish to confine any mess of litter inside a small space — well, you can make that possible by choosing to use a storage bench litter box.

Here is a quick list of everything you need for this trick:

  • A built-in storage bench litter box you can purchase in most pet stores
  • Your kitty's trusty litter box

Here's a picture of a Storage Bench Litter Box:

Storage Bench Litter Box
  • ​A storage bench litter box literally hides your cat's litter box along with its messes. The most effective ones can fit any type of litter box — even those extra-large automatic ones.
  • Once you have purchased the storage bench, you can position it in your house as a mini-table. Then, just place your cat's current litter tray inside, or you can use a new litter box to place inside the litter box furniture just for the sake of transition.
  • Some storage benches have compartments where you can place extra litter bags for a more convenient refilling process.

TIPS:

To make a litter box furniture even more effective in terms of minimizing litter tracks, you can place it on top of a litter mat.

​You can even step up the game of combining several tracking solutions and use a covered litter box, placing it inside the storage bench. This makes it easier for you to clean up the insides of the furniture.

Rate of Effectiveness (4/5)

For a cooperative feline, a litter box enclosure can keep litter off your floor to at least about 25% of what it used to be. So, this isn't the most effective trick — unless you combine it with other hacks as I've just mentioned above — but it still helps especially if you live in a small house.

Cons

If your kitty is playing badass, a significant amount of litter and urine can still end up being in the enclosure. So, you may reduce the litter tracks at home, but you'd also end up exerting some effort in cleaning the storage bench itself aside from just the litter box.


Tips #7 Place your Cat’s litter box inside of another litter box

If purchasing a storage bench litter box furniture sounds costly, you could opt for a DIY version instead. It can be as simple as placing your cat's current litter box inside of another — but bigger — litter box.

Here is a quick list of everything you need for this trick:

  • Your cat's current litter box
  • A bigger litter box — something that could contain your kitty's current litter box
  • Ensure the outer box is at least 5 cm larger than the inner box for convenience.
DIY cat litter box
  • If your external box happens to be a DIY, let it have a front-entry with a swinging door. If it does not have a swinging door, then cut an entry/exit door for your cat.
  • ​Also, ensure the litter box sits at the extreme of the litter box away and facing the exit/entry door. This will help to remove any tracking litter from the cat's paw.

The picture below should not be practiced because it is not effective

Cat litter box wrong way

Warning: From the picture above the litter box is almost the same size as the inside litter box. Of course, this is almost the same as having one litter box since there's no room or space created to dispel the litters of the cat's paw.

DIY Storage Bench Litter Box (VIDEO TIPS)

Cons

After getting out of the smaller litter box, the surface of the larger tray may not suffice to absorb any remaining litter particles in your cat's paws. In other words, a larger tray could be a good catcher, but won't completely solve a tracking problem unless combined with a litter-absorbing mat.

Also, it would take so much of the precious space in many small homes.


Tips #8 Switch to a different type of litter

Instead of just blaming your cat's behavior for litter tracking, try to reconsider the type of litter he's using, too. It could be that the main culprit for heavy tracking around your home is — you guessed it right — the litter itself. The solution? Choose the least messy cat litter!

Here is a quick list of everything you need for this trick:

  • A new non-tracking litter (or at least a low tracking litter)
  • A second litter box to help with transitioning your cat to the new litter

How does it work?

Non-tracking cat litters solve tracking problems by virtue of their inherent characteristics. In other words, the best litter to prevent tracking will have the ideal weight, granule size, and ma

Weight

Weight

Lightweight litters track more easily than heavier ones. So, if your kitty is quite a digger and kicker, he'll find it harder to displace heavier litter particles out of his box — and this is exactly why heavier litter pellets are usually non-tracking. Keeping this in mind, you should choose heavier litter types to prevent litter tracking.

Material

Type of kitten litter safest

Type of kitten litter safest

Also, both corn-based litter and newspaper or any recycled paper litter don't track as much as clay litters do. And why is that? It's because they're both less dusty and doesn't stick to cat's paw. So, go ahead and transition your feline to these no mess cat litter types.

Granuales size

Choose a cat litter that doesn't stick to paws. Litters that don't stick also don't track — and these are usually litters with larger pellets or particles. Use these types of large-particle litters so that even a deep digger won't bring with his legs any particle after getting out of the box.

Cons

Changing from one litter type to another may not always be an easy job to accomplish, especially if your kitty is quite picky. Again, for most felines, a gradual introduction is the key to any successful change.


Tips #9 Change or customize your cat litter box

Instead of just blaming your cat's behavior for litter tracking, try to reconsider the type of litter he's using, too. It could be that the main culprit for heavy tracking around your home is — you guessed it right — the litter itself. The solution? Choose the least messy cat litter!

What you need to do is to figure out the problem why your cat refused the litter box or why the litter box tends to track more, you also should know how deep should cat litter be, so you can add more or less. Once you discover the problem, then fix it.

Make sure you customize the litter box to be able to handle the problem.


Tips #10 Consider toilet training your cat

Cat-Toilet-Training

Our final anti-tracking hack here is quite a funny choice. If you would only toilet-train your cat, i.e., let him use your toilet like a human would — there won't be any litter to track in the first place! So, this trick sounds like it can put the question on how to stop litter tracking to a full stop — that is if you turn out to be successful in toilet training your furry friend!

How to potty train your cat (VIDEO TIPS)


Our Verdict

So, these are currently the best and efficient ways on how to stop cat litter tracking. They are very easy and straightforward to implement. We'd recommend you try out the method you think could work best for your cat as every cat has their preference.

But if we must recommend the best method, then our most effective tip is to go with the Storage Bench litter box due to its effectiveness, convenience, and simplicity.

 Merry Products Cat Washroom Bench, White

This method allows you to use the combination of three hacks together to prevent cat litter tracking. That is, you will have to combine the use of a litter max, a high walled storage bench and cat litter box inside a hidden distance in the box.

All these add up to ensure your house is free from litter tracking.

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