DIY Cat Box Cabinet

In our last laundry room post, I mentioned a DIY project Evan and I tackled back when we were still in the apartment. This project was all about hiding poop. Cat poop. And litter and stuff. The scourge of the clean freak cat owner.

Being in an apartment meant we had no good place to hide Mochi’s litter box. Our laundry room/pantry only had a couple square feet of floor space, and shoving it into the corner of our only bathroom where guests would see it was not ideal either. Especially because Mochi, bless her little crazy heart, spazzes out after each time she goes potty and bursts out her litter box in a mad dash trailing a flurry of litter-bits behind her like pebbly cat star dust. This meant litter was EVERYWHERE. All. The. Time.

We weren’t sure what to do about our little Pooper. But then we saw this

DIY Cat Box Cabinet- evanandkatelyn.com

Ikea + jigsaw + kitty door = a cat box cabinet! We immediately scoured the internet and found all sorts of tutorials. In addition to the one above, we got inspiration from here, here, and here. We sort of took what we liked from each and created our own kitty litter containment center. Here it is in all it’s glory! (hanging out in it’s old home in the apartment)

DIY Cat Box Cabinet- evanandkatelyn.com

We chose a Besta unit at Ikea as our base since it’s our cabinet of choice (we used it for our media center and wanted everything to be cohesive). We discarded the extra shelves that came with it and bought a full-height cabinet door for the left side, and a drawer and shorter cabinet door for the right side. We also ordered this kitty door to add to one side so Mochi could get in and out.

Before putting the unit together, we grabbed the side piece we wanted to put the door into and traced an outline to give us a where-to-cut guide.

DIY Cat Box Cabinet- evanandkatelyn.com

Then we took it out onto our balcony (in the middle of the night it seems!) and cut out the shape with our jigsaw.

DIY Cat Box Cabinet- evanandkatelyn.com

Next we spray painted the door black so that it blended in better with the Besta.

DIY Cat Box Cabinet- evanandkatelyn.com

Please forgive us, at the time we didn’t know we’d be sharing this tutorial on a blog so we didn’t take pictures of the next steps. After the door dried, we popped it into the hole we cut like the instructions say to do. We took off the magnet that makes the door snap shut because Momo couldnt figure out that she had to push a little harder to get through and she kept accidentally “locking” herself inside the box. Oh Momo.

DIY Cat Box Cabinet- evanandkatelyn.com

The next step, which we also did not take a picture of at the time, is to use the jigsaw to cut a doorway through the middle panel of the Besta. I’ll show you what I mean in the picture below.

DIY Cat Box Cabinet- evanandkatelyn.com

See the part marked “doorway”? I outlined it in white so you could see it better, but basically before assembling the Besta we traced a Mochi-sized opening in the middle panel to connect the two compartments of the cabinet and cut it with our jigsaw. The edges were raw, so we were super classy and finished them off with duct tape (see that gray inside part of the “door frame”?).

Once our doorway and kitty door were made, we assembled the Besta and added some weather stripping along the bottom of the inside of the cabinets to keep litter from coming out the cabinet doors.

After that, we just popped in her box on the left, a litter mat on the right, and filled the drawer with all her stuff (minus her toys, which she hides in secret places around the house).

DIY Cat Box Cabinet- evanandkatelyn.com

Close the cabinets and drawer and you have an inconspicuous cat box cabinet/good place to set your keys.

DIY Cat Box Cabinet- evanandkatelyn.com

This cabinet is AWESOME. No ugly litter boxes. MUCH less litter out on your floors (there’s still a little but not bucketfulls like before). No stinky-ness. Good place to store cat stuff. Win win win win! Plus it was easy- just make sure you find a box that fits, that was the only challenge! The best part is Mochi likes it, and a happy cat means happy hoomans!

DIY Cat Box Cabinet- evanandkatelyn.com

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17 Responses to “DIY Cat Box Cabinet”

  1. Maria May 23, 2013 at 8:28 am #

    This is brilliant. So nice looking and clever! I know nothing about cats except that I’m allergic to them, but how does she know that’s where her litter box is? I had a dog growing up who we both outside- and pad-trained, and his pads have been in the same location for 15 years because (well, at this point he is also senile, poor old doggie) he wouldn’t be able to adjust to a new place, so I was just curious!

  2. Katelyn Shibley May 23, 2013 at 8:38 am #

    Thanks! We just showed her and she remembered, though adjusting to having to go through a door to get to her box took a few days so for the first few days we taped it open so she could just walk in

  3. kay July 28, 2014 at 7:10 am #

    Hi, Which litter box do you use? I am looking to make his myself and was wondering which one would fit into the cabinet.

    Thanks in advance
    Kay

  4. Katelyn Shibley July 30, 2014 at 6:22 am #

    I wish I remembered! We had to search a bit because it is narrower than most. Ours doesn’t have any brand name or anything on it (weird), so I’m afraid I’m not much help. Sorry!

    • kay July 30, 2014 at 6:34 am #

      Hi Katelyn,
      Thanks for getting back to me and no worries. I’m actually looking for one too as I made this for a cat I recently adopted.

      I guess the search continues haha! Hope your cat is doing well :)

      • Katelyn Shibley July 30, 2014 at 6:37 am #

        Good luck! I think we found ours at either Petsmart or Target… so maybe check out those places? Hope your new kitty loves it!

  5. Emily August 7, 2014 at 11:41 pm #

    Where did you get the cabinets doors from? Ikea as well? Can you send links to those!

    • Katelyn Shibley August 8, 2014 at 6:50 am #

      Yep those are also from Ikea! We got one of the short ones (for the side with the drawer) and one of the tall ones. Here are the link to both (you can see the different sizes in the drop down menu):

      http://www.ikea.com/us/en/catalog/products/60103477/

      • Emily August 8, 2014 at 7:17 am #

        The link doesn’t work! Send again please :)

        • Katelyn Shibley August 8, 2014 at 9:44 am #

          Hmmm that’s weird, it works for me. That’s exactly how it copy and pastes. You can also find the cabinet doors by searching for Besta Doors and choosing the solid cheaper ones (no glass). Hope this helps!

      • Emily August 8, 2014 at 9:36 pm #

        Found it! I couldn’t open the link on my iphone but the desktop worked. So excited to make this. We are going to make a two sided litter box since we are getting a new kitten. Instead of the drawer. Thanks for the links. It looks great!

        • Katelyn Shibley August 9, 2014 at 5:44 am #

          Yay glad it worked! Ooooo that sounds like a good variation on the design, love it! Good luck with everything :)

  6. Emily August 14, 2014 at 8:55 am #

    One last question! Where did you get the weather strips from?

    • Katelyn Shibley August 14, 2014 at 6:21 pm #

      You can find it at Home Depot in a little roll :)

  7. kay August 14, 2014 at 1:32 pm #

    I just made this for a cat I recently adopted.

    I added a battery powered motion sensing light on the cabinet wall by the kitten door so that when she steps in she has some light in there.
    I placed it adjacent to the kitten door as it sheds some light into the ‘poop zone’ while not being overly bright in there.

    One light works in this case as I’m using an open litter pan. If you are using an enclosed litter pan an additional motion sensing light might come in handy in the ‘poop zone’ cabinet.

    I used Mr. Beams MB723 Battery-Powered Motion-Sensing LED Stick-Anywhere Nightlight. I got it off Amazon and also comes in a 3 too which works out cheaper.

    • kay August 14, 2014 at 1:41 pm #

      * comes in a 3 pack which works out cheaper

      • Katelyn Shibley August 14, 2014 at 6:22 pm #

        That is a super cool tip! A great way to add a little light for kitty :)

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