Introduction: DIY Cat Box Cabinet (IKEA Hack)
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 when we built this 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.
Step 1: Choose Your Base Cabinet and Door
We chose a two-compartment 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 our cat (Mochi) could get in and out.
Step 2: Install Door
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.
Then we took it out onto our balcony (in the middle of the night... sorry for the bad lighting, lol) and cut out the shape with our jigsaw. We used a drill to get a starting hole and went from there.
Next we spray painted the door black so that it blended in better with the Besta.
Please forgive us, at the time we didn’t know we’d be sharing this tutorial online 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.
Step 3: Add Pathway for Cat Inside
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.
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.
Step 4: Accessorize and Enjoy!
After that, we just popped in her litter 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).
Close the cabinets and drawer and you have an inconspicuous cat box cabinet/good place to set your keys.
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! She's been using this for 4 years now!
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