Even though cats are meticulous about grooming, they can make a mess in the litter department. They wouldn’t admit it, because most felines enjoy a clean litter box.
While that’s true, they are also known to fling litter everywhere as they dig around to bury their waste or tracking litter all over the house on their paws. A litter mat can resolve that issue. I’ve reviewed the best cat litter mats so that you can find the right one for you.
Our Top Picks.
Reasons to Buy a Cat Litter Mat
If a kitten grows up with its mother or an older cat, she will litter train the little guy. If you adopt a cat, it might take more time for you to get him to use the litter box consistently. Still, Fluffy usually learns quickly. Your biggest challenge will probably be keeping the area around the litter box clean.
Every time your cat exits the litter box, it deposits some litter from inside the tray to your floor. It gets worse if you use a litter with lots of dust.
Plus, you’ve probably noticed that sometimes your cat seems to be making sand castles in the litter. If you don’t have a covered tray, you might end up sweeping or vacuuming a significant amount of the sand every day. You may also notice that the litter rolls and gets tracked to other rooms in your house.
A litter mat goes under the litter box or at the entrance. As the cat walks over it, the pad removes the litter from the bottom of the cat’s paws. Instead of having to clean the area around the litter box more than once a day, you can usually do so every week or two if you have the right litter mat.
What Should You Look for in the Best Cat Litter Mat?
Price may be the first concern when you buy a cat litter mat. Fortunately, these accessories are fairly affordable. Also, I’ve provided reviews below so that you can get as much information about the product as possible before you shell out the cash for it.
Besides a workable cost, you might want to look for these other characteristics in a cat litter mat:
How Well Does it Work?
There’s no point in plunking down your credit card for something that doesn’t do the job. The cat litter mat that you choose should trap litter that spills over the side or entrance of the tray. It should also wipe off your kitty’s feet as she walks across it.
But if it doesn’t hold onto the granules, it might not be worth it. If a slight nudge sends all of the litter granules flying, you’ll end up more frustrated than if you didn’t have a mat at all.
Is it Water-Resistant?
Sometimes, cats have accidents. They may eliminate close to the edge of the litter box, leaving some waste on the floor.
Some covered litter boxes have seams at the height of your cat’s spray. If your furry friend urinates on these seams, the litter box may leak.
Therefore, the cat litter mat should be able to stand up to moisture without developing mold or odors. It will also need to withstand regular cleaning.
Is it Easy to Clean?
Speaking of washing, you need to clean the litter mat regularly. You can vacuum them periodically. However, you probably want to steer clear of those with edges that get sucked into the vacuum cleaner.
Alternatively, you can take them outside and shake them out, although that can leave litter granules in your yard to be tracked in by unsuspecting feet.
Rubber mats may seem ideal because you can hose them off. Rubber is a natural substance and is non-toxic. However, it does emit an odor that may encourage cats to urinate on it.
I’m not saying that you should avoid rubber litter mats. However, if you buy one and find that your cat is peeing on it, you might want to switch to a different material, such as silicone.
Is it Safe to Use?
A litter mat should have a non-skid surface so that members of your family don’t slip if they step on it by mistake. If the pad is soft or has fibers similar to those of a rug, it shouldn’t snag your cat’s claws.
The mat should be large enough to extend a few inches around the edges of the tray. However, it shouldn’t be so huge that people step on it regularly or it gets caught in doorjambs.
Where Will You Put it?
This sounds like an obvious question, but many cat owners have litter boxes in tight spaces. You need to make sure that the mat won’t interfere with doors opening and closing or trip anyone as they walk by.
One tip for using a cat litter mat is to place it in a corner. Buy one that’s large enough to lay under the litter box. Place the litter tray on top of the mat, with the opening toward the corner. As your cat exits, it won’t be able to sprint out and miss the pad. You’ll encourage your cat to walk across the surface, improving the chances that the mat will do its job.
Are There Any Downsides to Using a Cat Litter Mat?
Experts recommend having one litter box for every cat in the home as well as one extra for the household. If you live in a multi-level house, keep a litter box on each floor. If you find a cat litter mat helpful, put one by each litter box.
Some litter mats are textured, and cats don’t always like the way that they feel under their feet. If that’s the case, your cat might be hesitant to enter the litter box.
Has your cat ever eliminated outside of the tray? It could be that you made a change to its bathroom environment. Cats have certain standards when it comes to their habits. If you don’t maintain those expectations, your kitty might “think outside the box.”
Therefore, the main downside to using a cat litter mat could be that your kitty doesn’t like it. You might not want to spend a lot of money on more than one mat until you’re sure that all of the felines in your house are on board.
Look for a cat litter mat that feels good when you touch it. Prickly or bumpy mats may irritate your kitty’s paws. Never use fake grass or mats with hard rubber bumps, or you might have to deal with some housebreaking disasters.
If you choose a rug-like cat litter mat, your cat might use it as a scratching post. This can send litter flying everywhere. You might not want to use this option if your cat enjoys scratching at textured rugs.
No cat litter mat is foolproof, though. You’ll probably still find a few granules from time to time in your kitchen, bedroom or living room.
The Best Cat Litter Mat Reviews
Now that you know what to look for in a cat litter mat, check out the following options. These have different pros and cons, but all of them work well, depending on your needs.
PetFusion Tough Grip Cat Litter Mat
Easy To Clean
The Pet Fusion Tough Grip cat litter mat is made of non-toxic, FDA-grade silicone. Plus, it comes in two sizes to accommodate different households’ needs.
The large mat is 30” x 23”, while the extra-large mat is 38” x 26”. You could easily center a smaller litter box on top of the mat. You might also place the mat at the entrance of a covered litter tray.
The mat is relatively flat. It has an outer lip, which is designed to contain granules. The interior of the mat is made up of soft, wavy ridges to keep the litter from falling on the floor.
Because you can see the litter, you can also clean it up easily. This is probably the easiest mat to clean.
You can use a sponge or paper towels to clean solid messes or vomit. A broom sweeps particles off of this mat quickly. You can also use a vacuum to suck up the pebbles. Because there are no hidden areas, you don’t have to worry about mildew growing in dark corners.
The underside of the mat features anti-slip traction to keep it in place. However, not much prevents the litter granules from scattering if the mat is shook. If your cat paws at it, litter might go everywhere. The same goes for if you kick it while walking past it.
Therefore, unless you’re cleaning it off frequently, you might end up with litter all over your floors again.
Although the mat is soft, the ridges may be uncomfortable for cats. Some human consumers say that they don’t like walking on this mat.
iPrimio Large Cat Litter Trapper Mat
This mat features two layers to effectively capture litter. Even if it’s knocked around, this mat will contain large and small litter granules. The top layer has small holes and acts like a sieve. The bottom layer keeps the litter in place until you’re ready to clean it.
If you have a cat with poor aim, you can add puppy pads between the layers of the mat to absorb moisture. In fact, this is a good practice because the edge of the mat is made of nylon fabric. Excessive wetness there can cause odors or mildew growth.
But the bottom is made with an exclusive plastic film that repels water. You shouldn’t have a moisture issue unless you have a really messy cat.
The mat is very soft. Even though it has holes on the top surface, it’s smooth and comfortable for your cat to walk on. It shouldn’t prevent your cat from using the litter box.
If your cat is a scratcher, though, it could pull up the top layer. The mat will settle back into place just fine. However, you may experience some litter scatter when your cat scratches. Still, most of the litter should stay trapped between the layers.
When it comes time to clean the mat, you can simply empty the litter back into the tray. You can also vacuum or wipe the bottom layer clean. It’s tough to vacuum the mat when it’s assembled because vacuums don’t usually have enough suction to pull litter fragments from the honeycomb design.
Mighty Monkey Premium Cat Litter Trapping Mat
Soft, Flexible & Lightweight
This cat litter mat looks like a rug. But it’s made with tightly coiled synthetic fibers that are waterproof and easy to clean.
The “furry” part of the rug is broken up by 1/3-inch deep grooves to help trap litter granules. The smaller particles will stay on the fibers, and the larger ones remain in the valleys.
If your cat likes to scratch at the mat, it can send some litter flying. However, the pieces that are trapped in the grooves won’t go anywhere.
This cat litter mat comes in two sizes. The large is 24” x 17”. The extra-large is 35” x 23”. Unless you have two boxes in the same location, this gives you plenty of versatility when setting up your cat’s bathroom area.
Plus, the underside is extremely skid-resistant. You don’t have to worry about falls, and your cat won’t cause the mat to shift every time he runs across it.
This mat is easy to clean with a vacuum. You can go over it just as you would on a rug or bare floor. You might still want to shake it out periodically to remove as many litter fragments as possible, though.
If you have to clean off unpleasant messes such as diarrhea or vomit, you can soap the mat up and hose it down. Keep in mind that clay litter absorbs water, though. It can get stuck deep inside the pile, especially if it gets wet. This is not the easiest cat litter mat to wipe with a sponge or spot clean.
It’s also comfortable to walk on. This is beneficial for human feet that trample the mat. It should not prevent your cat from using the litter box.
Because this mat is so soft, flexible and lightweight, it’s easy to remove for cleaning. However, it’s not always heavy enough to lie flat. You might experience ruffling or wrinkling if it doesn’t sit flush against the floor.
Petlinks Purr-FECT Paws Cat Litter Mat
If you want to try out a cat litter mat to get Fluffy used to the idea, you could start with the Petlinks Purr-FECT Paws. This mat is one of the least expensive options out there, especially if you choose the smallest size. Because it comes in three sizes, it can fit in small or large spaces within your home.
The medium size measures 23.25” x 14.9”, the large measures 30” x 24”, and the extra-large measures 36” x 27”. The extra-large size is ideal for placing underneath the entire litter tray.
The one-layer mat contains circular indentations that catch the litter. If you knock into the mat, the litter can shake out of it. However, it captures granules better than the PetFusion Tough Grip.
Still, the particles don’t stick to the mat. That’s helpful when it comes to cleaning. You can just pick up the mat, fold it slightly, and dump the litter into the garbage. Vacuuming removes dry particles easily.
If mess gets caked on to the mat, you might have trouble wiping it up with sponge or paper towel. Anything that gets caked into the holes will require deeper cleaning. You can always hose this off outside or scrub it with a brush.
It’s completely waterproof. Some consumers say that they’ve thrown it in their washing machine.
Even so, you might want to avoid this mat if you have an oversprayer. Urine can pool up in the divots and stink if you don’t get to it right away.
The manufacturer claims that the mat is designed to separate cats’ paw pads as they walk across it, allowing as much litter as possible to come off. It may even give kitty’s feet a subtle massage.
Pawkin Cat Litter Mat
If aesthetics are important to you, you may prefer a mat that looks more like a rug than a rubber pad. The Pawkin cat litter mat is designed to mimic the fibers of a carpet. However, like the Mighty Monkey, it is made of PVC fibers that trap and lock litter.
The mat is certified phthalate-free so that your feline isn’t exposed to these carcinogens. It’s also water resistant.
The color and design camouflage litter particles. Because the fibers aren’t too compact, they let larger granules fall to the bottom, where they remain out of sight.
The mat comes in three different colors to complement your décor. The Cougar Pup color is two-toned and excellent at hiding litter that doesn’t sink to the base.
You can easily vacuum the mat or hit it with a hose. If your cat urinates on it, though, some clay litter can adhere to the fibers. It might start to smell if your cat misses the litter box frequently and you don’t wash the mat every day.
While there are many mats available with this type of look, the manufacturer claims that this one is softer. If your kitty is picky about where she walks, you might want to try this.
It’s also an ample size. At 35” x 23”, it can capture lots of kicked litter.
If you’re hoping for a miracle solution that will prevent you from seeing a speck of litter anywhere on your floor, you might want to get a dog instead of a cat. But if you love your feline friend and just want to make your life easier and keep your home more hygienic, you could try using a cat litter mat.
My favorite is the iPrimio Large Cat Litter Trapper Mat. There’s just something about the fact that it physically traps the litter that makes me feel like it works the most efficiently.
However, other mats may work better if you have issues beyond some scattered granules. For example, if your cat goes potty outside the litter box regularly, you might want to try the PetFusion Tough Grip Cat Litter Mat because it’s the easiest one to clean. If you want the mat to look great in your home, the Pawkin Cat Litter Mat might be a better option. Cat owners who need an extremely large or compact mat may want to try the Petlinks Purr-FECT Paws Cat Litter Mat.
All of these mats get the job done. It’s tough to tell which one is perfect for you without trying it out, though. Your cat obviously has to have a say in the matter.