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Friday, March 8, 2013

A Couple of Reviews

Disclosure:  This is an unsolicited and uncompensated review.  I purchased this product and chose to review it because I am happy with the Litter Genie's performance.  

 Litter Genie Demonstration

As you know, I have a new kitty.  He may have been a feral but he is very demanding regarding litter pan hygiene.  He wants all buried treasure removed immediately after he's buried it and he doesn't mean 'maybe'!  This required multiple plastic bags each day which meant that I ended up using all the plastic bags from bread, etc. that would normally have gone into the recycling bin.  I take my own reusable bags shopping and rarely get the plastic grocery bags.  Some days I found myself scrounging around for bags and even resorted to using some of my biobags that I use to line my compost scrap container.  Those bags are expensive and all the plastic bags started to seem really excessive so, I started looking for alternatives.  I saw a product called the Litter Genie and must admit that the name alone made me think it was some kind of gimmicky "As Seen On TV" kind of product.  I was wrong.  I read a lot of reviews, watched a video, and found a $5 printable coupon.  The coupon is the reason that I decided to give it a try.  I saved around 33% using that coupon.  I'm really glad that I did take the plunge and buy it.

Pros: 
  • fewer trips to the outdoor garbage can
  • fewer plastic bags used
  • no odor--I'm not kidding about this
  • makes very frequent scooping convenient
  • relatively inexpensive--especially if you use a coupon
  • doesn't take up a lot of room
  • easy to use
  • can go as long as 2 weeks before needing to be emptied in a single cat household--Randy is 8 months old and I didn't have to empty it for 3 weeks (their estimate of 2 weeks for a full-grown cat is probably spot on)
  • refill can last as long as 2 months in a single cat household--I'll let you know my experience in a follow-up to this review
  • widely available (some Bed Bath & Beyond stores carry it--use a 20% off coupon or use a printable $5 coupon and buy it at Target)
Cons:
  • uses proprietary refills
  • refill cartridge might be costly over the long-run
  • uses plastic--still not environmentally sound
  • opening at top is a bit too small for the scoop that's included
  • scoop is too large for the opening
  • like most scoops, the openings are a bit too large to catch all urine clump bits that have broken apart
  • not as convenient for multi-cat households--will not last as long or allow as much time between being emptied
I mentioned that I don't find the Litter Genie scoop particularly useful but that also goes for most plastic litter scoops--I'm not just singling out the Litter Genie scoop.  When I scoop Randy's litter pan, I like to see a pan completely devoid of clumps and that includes little clump bits that have broken apart from the larger clumps.  I also like a scoop that can be thoroughly cleaned and disinfected.  I don't think the plastic kind can be truly cleaned because I can't soak them in sudsy boiling water--I'm afraid that they'll melt or warp.  I read the reviews on some of the pricier stainless steel scoops and most of them weren't rated that highly and a significant number of reviews stated that they broke or came apart soon after being purchased.  What I wanted was a one piece, solid stainless steel scoop and I couldn't find one in the pet products.  I decided to go another route and I hit the kitchen department at my local Bed, Bath, & Beyond.  My husband spotted a large slotted spoon that was not only one piece in construction but also stainless steel.  The thing that sealed the deal was the price:  $3.99 on clearance!  Randy's new scoop outperforms any true litter pan scoop that I've ever used and is also correctly sized for the top opening on the Litter Genie--no messes.  It just goes to show that sometimes it pays to "think outside the box" when dealing with the litter box!

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