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5 Best Top Entry Litter Box Choices for 2021 [Review]

After extensive research, the IRIS Top Entry Litter Box takes the prize for the best rated top entry litter box. Why? It’s got a magic combination of modern design and great value. With a space-saving footprint, it still provides plenty of room for your cat. The top entry has grooves to catch the litter. This keeps cat litter from tracking all over your floors. It also comes equipped with a litter scooper and holder. Also, check out our top 5 picks for the best dust free cat litter.

Read on for an in-depth review of the IRIS Top Entry Litter Box plus 4 stellar runners up.

Top 5 picks for the top entry litter box:

  1. IRIS Top Entry Litter Box
  2. Modkat Top Entry Litter Box
  3. AmazonBasics No-Mess Hooded Cat Litter Box
  4. Petmate Top Entry Litter Box
  5. PetSafe ScoopFree Ultra Automatic Self Cleaning Litter Box

The best top entry cat litter boxes

Through extensive research, we’ve found the best top entry cat litter box. We’ve also found 4 stellar alternatives.

1. IRIS Top Entry Litter Box

First on our list, and our winner, is a neat little top entry litter box from Iris. This stylish option is designed to provide your cat with lots of space and less clean up for you.

It features a smooth circular opening, which helps reduce the amount of litter ending up on the floor. Your kitty can kick and dig to their heart’s content.

The opening is roomy, measuring 10.5 by 9 inches. Large enough for most cats but not large enough for a small dog to get into and wreak havoc.

On top of the lid, grooves work as a mat to brush your cat’s paws before they walk on the floor. These grooves are great for reducing tracking and stray litter clean up.

The box has durable non-skid rubber feet that help keep it in place. On the side of the box is a handy holder for the included litter scoop.

The litter box is made from heavy-duty BPA-free plastic. It’s designed with smooth round edges, making it easier to clean. It measures 20.47 by 16.14 by 14.56 inches.


  • Neat round opening
  • Top grooves that clean cat paws
  • Keeps dogs from messing with the litter
  • Non-slip rubber feet
  • Round edges that are easier to clean


  • It doesn’t trap litter dust

2. Modkat Top Entry Litter Box

The Modkat Litter Box is an innovative design, working to make your cat comfortable and clean up duties quicker.

Modkat Litter Box, Top-Entry, Looks Great, Reduces Litter Tracking - White
  • PREVENTS LITTER TRACKING: The patented design of the Modkat top-entry litter box nearly eliminates litter tracking. The locking lid acts as a walk-off mat that keeps litter in the box and off of your floors.
  • SWIVEL LID = EASY CLEANING: Simply swivel and scoop. Any litter left on the lid will drop neatly inside when the lid is opened.
  • REUSABLE LINER: The Modkat Reusable Liners are tailored to fit neatly inside the Modkat Litter Box. They are rip-resistant and easy to clean. Liners can last up to 3 months.
  • LOOKS GREAT IN YOUR HOME: The award-winning, modern design looks great and complements any room.
  • ALL-IN-ONE SOLUTION: Comes with everything you need; a full height seamless base to prevent leaks, an easy open swivel lid, large hanging litter scoop, and a reusable tarp liner for effortless litter removal.

If we were scoring on looks, the Modkat litter box wins. The Modkat design reduces tracking by providing your kitty with a walk-off mat. This removes any dust and litter stuck to paws. The patented top lid features a locking mechanism, keeping it in place while your kitty dusts off its feet.

When it’s time for cleaning, the lid has a cool swivel function. This gives you full access to the inside of the box without having to remove the top lid. The Modkat litter box uses a reusable liner which makes cleaning effortless. The rip-resistant liner fits the box like a glove and lasts up to 3 months.

It measures 16 by 16 by 15 inches with a 9-inch in diameter opening. It’s durable too—the base is seamless and prevents leaks. Included is a large hanging litter scoop.


  • Attractive modern design
  • Built-in mat to reduce tracking
  • Lid features a swivel and lock mechanism
  • Includes a reusable liner
  • Comes with a large hanging scoop


  • The opening might be too small for some large cat breeds
Modkat Litter Box
Watch this video on YouTube.

3. AmazonBasics No-Mess Hooded Cat Litter Box

If you want a simple economical litter box, check out the AmazonBasics No-Mess Cat Litter Box with top entry. This is a very basic box, providing your feline friend with privacy when nature calls.

Amazon Basics No-Mess Hooded Cat Litter Box, 20 x 15 x 15 Inches, Top Entry
  • Enclosed cat litter box with top entry
  • High walls help prevent litter scatter and leaks
  • Textured roof helps capture stray litter as the cat exits
  • Prevents dogs from tampering with litter
  • Large opening for cats of all sizes

The AmazonBasics No-Mess Cat Litter box contains messes from litter scatters and spraying. It’s durable and made to be leak-proof. It’s ideal for multi-pet households and keeps curious dogs out.

The best feature of this box is the generous top opening that will let even large cats get in and out easily. The top is textured and helps to catch and remove stray litter from your cat’s paws as they exit.

Another feature we appreciate is the secure snap-on mechanism for the top. This allows the top to snap on and off for cleaning. On the inside, a litter liner holds the litter. It’s easy to remove and replace with a fresh one which reduces cleaning and odors.


  • Simple, neutral design
  • Keeps dogs out
  • Wide top opening
  • Textured top
  • Easy to maintain—comes with a removable liner


  • The interior isn’t as roomy as others

4. Petmate Top Entry Litter Box

The Petmate top entry cat litter box is perfect for large cats. It features high walls, providing both privacy and less chance of stray litter.

Petmate Top Entry Litter Pan Cat Litter Box Brushed Nickel/Pearl White
  • TOP ENTRY LITTER BOX: This enclosed kitty litter box features high walls for cats' privacy. The wide, top entry design easily accommodates larger cats & has a grated surface to collect litter from cats' paws.
  • LITTER-FREE FLOOR: The tall litter box allows cats to dig & cover waste without spilling litter onto the floor. The grated top collects litter from paws as cats exit the pan, allowing litter to fall into the pan below.
  • PET CLEAN UP: Swiftly clean up after your dog or cat while at home or on walks with a variety of waste management products. From waste bags, rakes, pans, trainings pads to poop scoopers, litter boxes & litter, we've got you & your pet covered.
  • Petmate: For over 50 years, we at Petmate are passionate about our dogs, cats & furry friends in general. Starting with the very first dog kennel, we've produced plenty of eco-friendly products that pets will love.
  • JUST FOR PETS: Petmate makes a variety of pet products for dogs, cats, chickens & other small furry friends! Check out our brands such as Aspen Pet, Arm & Hammer, Booda, Chuckit!, Jackson Galaxy & more!

The tall design lets your cat scratch and dig without getting litter on the floor. It makes cleaning up a lot easier and may save you on wasted litter. Furthermore, the top includes grates, collecting litter and dust from paws as they exit.

What we appreciate is the large opening. It’s plenty large for big kitties to enter. Sadly, though, it isn’t dog-proof, so your canine might still be able to get into the cat litter.

Another impressive factor is the material used for the box. Made of consumer recycled plastic, it’s a tad kinder to the environment.

Maintenance of the box is a breeze. It’s compatible with Petmate Top Entry Litter Liners that make it quick to remove litter without having to scrub the box vigorously.


  • Ideal for larger cats
  • Tall sides that contain messes
  • A grated top lid removes litter from paws
  • Made of recycled plastic


  • Not dog-proof
  • The lid is flimsy and prone to falling off
Petmate(R) Top Entry Litter Pan - product demo
Watch this video on YouTube.

5. PetSafe ScoopFree Ultra Automatic Self Cleaning Litter Box

The PetSafe ScoopFree UltraTwo is a high tech automatic litter box. It features both a health counter and motion sensors. These track your cat’s litter box routine, keeping track of how many times they go.

PetSafe ScoopFree Top-Entry Ultra Self-Cleaning Cat Litter Box – Automatic with Disposable Tray
  • Automatically removes waste: No scooping, cleaning or refilling your cat's litter box for weeks
  • Unbeatable odor control: Crystal litter removes smell by absorbing urine and dehydrating solid waste
  • Dust free: Low-tracking crystals are 99% dust free and don’t stick to your cat’s paws; A hooded cover helps keep kitty litter inside the box
  • Less mess: The top-entry hood has a large, grated surface to help eliminate most litter tracking; The plastic tray lining protects against leaking
  • Easy cleanup: Simply remove the tray and throw it away; Each tray includes a lid for quick disposal

The PetSafe ScoopFree Ultra top entry litter box needs no scooping or cleaning for up to several weeks. The litter box comes pre-filled with crystal litter, great for odor control.

The crystal litter traps smell by absorbing urine and dehydrating solid waste, keeping odor at bay for longer. It’s also dust-free and low-tracking. Crystal litter is rated to be up to 99% free of dust.

Another benefit of this litter is that it doesn’t stick to your kitty’s paws. This reduces litter tracking and unsightly evidence on the floor. The top has a grated surface, cleaning paws as your cat leaves.


  • Smart features that track your cat’s habits
  • Great odor control
  • Dust-free cat litter included
  • A grated lid to remove litter


  • The self-cleaning function isn’t as efficient as hoped
Give Your Cat a Privacy Hood - PetSafe® ScoopFree® Ultra Self-Cleaning Litter Box
Watch this video on YouTube.

Why use a top entry litter box?

Top entry litter boxes are great for several reasons. The main one is cat litter containment. They might look weird but cats love the privacy they offer. Here are the 5 reasons having a top entry litter box is awesome:

top entry litter box

Contains the mess

After pooping and peeing in the litter box, cats bury the evidence. In traditional cat litter boxes that have a large opening or shallow walls, this leads to cat litter scattered all over the floor.

Stray cat litter is annoying and gross. Especially when it gets under your bare feet. If you have a regular side-entry litter box, chances are you’re vacuuming up litter as often as your scooping the box.

With a top entry litter box, your cat enters and exits through, you guessed it, the top of the box. Once inside, they can go crazy kicking litter at the sides of the box without any getting out onto the floor. Because the entry point is from above, top entry boxes can have taller sides that trap cat litter.

Another way this style of litter box contains messes is by reducing tracking. After your cat has done its business, litter sticks to its paws. As they walk out, they’ll leave a trail of dust and grains behind them.

The grated lid of the top entry litter box works like a doormat. When your kitty exits, the grates remove some of the dust and litter from their paws.

It holds more litter

Because top entry litter boxes have taller sides and 4 versus 3 sides, they hold significantly more litter. More litter gives your cat more spots to hide their poop.

BUT, don’t take this as a reason to slack off on litter duty. Try your best to remove solid clumps often. Cats are naturally clean animals and won’t use a dirty litter box. A cat litter disposal system is handy to help with clean up frequency.

Better odor control

Although it’s hard to outperform a covered litter box in terms of odor control, top entry types come close. Even though the top is open, smells are less likely to accumulate.

One of the reasons for this is that you’re able to have more litter in the box. This lets your cat better cover up their waste which reduces odors. Still, if smells are a significant issue in your home, try a different type of cat litter (1). We recommend using clumping cat litter.

Smaller footprint

A top entry cat litter box has a smaller footprint and uses a lot less space than a traditional litter box. Your cat can get into their litter box even if it’s placed up against the wall or furniture.

Better looking

This might not be a determining factor for everyone, but top entry litter boxes generally look better than regular ones.

top entry litter box privacy

Do all cats like top entry litter boxes?

When it comes to cats, it’s hard to predict what they’ll like and what they won’t. The reason why lots of cats prefer this type of litter box is because of privacy. Mother nature programmed cats to be wary of their surroundings when in vulnerable situations, like pooping out in the open.

An enclosed space provides your kitty with the privacy that they need (2). They’re covered from all angles, giving them time to discretely finish their business.

But not all cats like top entry litter boxes.

Some kitties feel intimidated about going inside the box. For others, like kittens and senior cats, it could be too challenging for them to climb inside. Older felines are prone to arthritis, which makes their joints stiff (3).

How to get your cat to use a top entry litter box

If your kitty doesn’t seem interested at first, they might just need some encouragement. Here are some tips on how to get your cat to use a top entry litter box:

  • Place the new litter box in the same location as the old one. This may make it easier for your cat to discover their new toilet.
  • Show them the new box. Allow them to sniff and investigate it on their terms (4). Don’t force them into it. This could scare them off from using it.
  • Use the same litter. Although the box is different, at least the cat litter is familiar.
  • Take the lid off until your cat understands how to use a box with taller sides. This will help them get used to it (5).
  • Last, remove the old litter box altogether. Giving your cat the option to choose for too long could leave the new one unused.

top entry litter box size for kittens

Things to consider before buying a top entry litter box

Before we get to our reviews, these are the guidelines we used for our search criteria:

Litter box size

Litter box size is one of the most important factors to consider. You don’t want your cat to feel cramped. A large cat litter box has plenty of space for cats to dig, kick, and squat without feeling confined.

Consider your cat’s size, from nose to tail, and aim for a box that will accommodate these measurements.


Top entry litter boxes are taller than regular cat litter boxes. However, some are higher than others. If your kitty is small, old, or disabled, you need to consider if they can jump up high enough to get in.

If your cat sprays or tends to kick litter out of the box, high sides are best. This way, they can’t do damage outside the litter box.


Whether you have a large cat like a Maine Coon cat or a tiny little kitten, your litter box should be made of durable materials. Generally, heavy-duty BPA-free plastic works best.

Final thoughts

Stray litter is never fun. Especially when it’s scattered around the floor near the litter box. The best top entry litter box, however, works to contain messes and odors while providing your cat with the privacy they need.


  1. https://pets.webmd.com/cats/controlling-cat-litter-box-odor#1
  2. https://www.petmd.com/blogs/thedailyvet/lhuston/2013/may/five-common-litter-box-mistakes-30297
  3. https://pets.webmd.com/cats/cat-arthritis-symptoms-pain-relief
  4. https://catsinternational.org/the-amazing-sense-of-smell/
  5. https://www.aspca.org/pet-care/cat-care/common-cat-behavior-issues/litter-box-problems

Last update on 2021-03-30 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

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