A residence with cats will need to have a space for litter so felines can comfortably answer nature's call. However, you may have questions about how to keep the litter scoop sanitary between sifting litter. We looked into methods to keep the litter scoop and box sparkling clean for furry friends.
Check out the following suggestions to keep a litter scoop clean.
- Rinse the scoop with hot water and wipe it down with a paper towel.
- Spray the scoop with a pet-safe, non-toxic cleaner, or a diluted bleach solution.
- Wipe down the scoop with a cleaning wipe before returning it to a container near the litter box.
Cats are fascinating, playful creatures that prefer a clean litter box to handle their business. However, maintaining a cleaner litter box and scoop is essential for pet and human health. Read on to learn helpful tips to keep the scoop clean!
Disclosure: We may get commissions for purchases made through links in this post.
How To Clean The Litter Scoop
There is more than one way to safely clean a litter scoop of dust from cat litter, stuck clumps, or traces of feces and urine. It is a good practice to scoop out the litter box every other day if you have one cat or more often if you have two or more felines.
Cats want to use a clean litter box that won't leave them with litter or fecal matter on their paws. If a cat is scratching outside of the litter box or using the litter box less frequently, check the cleanliness of the litter.
Use the following suggestions to keep a litter scoop clean, whether plastic or metal. Keep in mind metal scoops are easier to keep sanitary, not porous, and last longer than a plastic scoop.
1. Hot Water Treatment
One of the most economical cleaning methods is to run warm or hot water over a scoop for a few minutes. Running hot water can help loosen any stuck debris on a scoop, but you may want to wear gloves to clean the scoop in greater detail. If needed, use a bit of mild soap on the scoop and rinse it clean before putting it back in storage.
If needed, soak the scoop in hot water for 20 to 30 minutes to loosen anything stuck on the tool. Be careful using hot water on plastic scoops, or in combination with harsh, toxic cleaners.
2. Spray A Cleaning Solution
Make a homemade cleaning solution to spray on the litter scoop, or apply a natural cleaner that won't leave behind residue or harm pets or humans. If desired, you can use a smaller amount of litter box cleaner on your scoop or use diluted bleach, white vinegar, or a little bit of dish detergent.
3. Use Commercial Cleaning Wipes
If a scoop isn't terribly dirty and you want to clean it fast, grab a cleaning wipe to remove any stuck bits of litter or fecal matter. Give the scoop a pre-rinse with warm or hot water if desired, and wipe the scoop off last before returning it to storage.
Helpful Cleaning Tips
Keeping the litter scoop clean helps keep the litter box clean. A dirty scoop is likely to reintroduce clumps of wet litter soiled with urine or feces back into the litter box. Also, dust and particles of fecal matter may get released into the air when using a dirty scoop.
If you use a harsh cleaner like bleach, make sure to dilute it and wipe down any residue left on the scoop. You want to be careful about leaving behind residue from cleaners into the litter, cat box, and scoop. Don't forget to rinse a scoop clean with water and let it air dry after using a chemical cleaner.
In addition to often cleaning the scoop, it is helpful to keep the scoop in a separate container outside the litter box. Resist the urge to be lazy and leave a litter scoop inside a mound of litter, even if the cat box is large. If there is any fecal matter or wet litter stuck to the scoop, wear disposable gloves to remove it manually before returning it to its place.
How Do I Keep My Cats Litter From Sticking To The Scoop?
If cat litter keeps sticking to the scoop, try using a similar method to reduce litter sticking to the cat box. Apply a thin coat of non-stick spray on the scoop and dust it with a bit of baking soda.
Another idea is to use a metal scoop instead of a plastic scoop. Plastic is likely to develop dings and dents where bits of litter and fecal matter can get trapped. A smooth, metal scoop has a surface that is less likely to allow debris to stick.
Should I Clean My Litter Scoop?
The scoop should not be neglected and left to accumulate dust from litter and stuck bits of fecal matter. The litter scoop should be cleaned often, even if it is as simple as rinsing it clean with water or wiping it with a cleaning cloth.
A dirty scoop risks transferring bacteria back into the litter box, holding onto odors, and spreading pathogens around the home. If a scoop is kept in a container, the container should be cleaned out regularly as well.
How Often Should You Change Out All The Kitty Litter?
If a home only has one or two cats, you can get away with changing out the kitty litter once a month. Litter boxes that get moderate use may need changing every two to three weeks if the litter is scooped daily. Clay litter may need to get changed after one to two weeks.
One way to reduce the need to change out the kitty litter is to increase the frequency of scooping, and change the type of litter. Find a litter that makes clean-up less stressful and is well-liked by your cats.
Litter boxes that get cleaned regularly typically have reduced odors, and are more pleasant to use for cats and their humans. Homes with more than a few cats and heavily soiled litter boxes may need changing every week.
Don't forget to thoroughly clean the litter box each time you change the kitty litter to reduce ammonia, pathogens, and residue.
How Many Times A Day Should You Scoop Cat Litter?
Some cat owners hold themselves to a high standard and feel that the litter box should be scooped out every day. However, it may not always be possible to clean the litter box every day to this degree.
If a home has more than one cat, the litter box should get scooped daily to reduce odors, bacteria, and clumps. If a litter box isn't used often and doesn't need to be changed, you can safely scoop the litter box every other day.
Keep in mind the type of litter you use for the litter box and how you clean your box between litter changes. Try using clumping litter to help reduce odors and remove more waste. Coat the inside of a litter box with a bit of non-stick spray and add baking soda before filling the box with litter. Doing this may help reduce litter from sticking.
Implementing a simple and effective strategy is the best way to keep a litter scoop clean. Ideally, it is better to use a metal scoop over a plastic scoop because a metal scoop isn't porous, and doesn't easily get clumps of litter or gunk stuck on it. Plastic scoops may also have spaces where litter and debris may accumulate more often than a metal scoop.
After each use, use a pet-safe cleaner on a scoop to reduce the transfer and build-up of bacteria from cat urine and feces in litter. Store the scoop in a separate container or holder near the litter box, but not directly inside the litter box. If you have more than one cat, you may need to clean your scoop and litter box more often.
Before you go, do make time to read the following helpful articles.