How to Deodorize the Cat’s Litter Box with Baking Soda (2023)

Cute Cat

Cat got your nose?

Does the horrific smell emanating from the cat’s litter box make your head hurt?

Most brands of cat litter sand sold in pet stores are designed to absorb odor. But in case that’s not enough, you can use a little baking soda to keep the litter box fresher, and longer.

In this article, you’ll learn how to deodorize your cat’s litter box with baking soda.

Keep on reading.

Is it Safe to Put Baking Soda in the Cat Litter Box?

Yes, it is. Baking soda doesn’t contain any harmful chemicals that may cause harm to your cat. It’s non-toxic and should be harmless to our feline pals. But don’t let your cat ingest it, especially in large quantities.

Consult a vet if you suspect that your cat may be allergic to baking soda. Better safe than sorry.

Follow the steps below the next time you refill the sand in the litter box.

What you’ll need:

1-3 cups Baking Soda (Depending on the size of the litter box)

Soap and water


1. Wash your cat’s litter box. Throw away the old sand and give it a good wash with soap and water. Dry it afterward.

wash litter box

2. Sprinkle enough baking soda to cover the bottom of the litter box.

sprinkle a layer of baking soda

3. Pour sand on top of the baking soda. Make sure you use enough sand to cover the baking soda.

4. Sprinkle baking soda on top of the sand for extra deodorizing power.

sprinkle baking soda on top of sand

5. Top it all off with more sand until you’re satisfied with the depth.

finishes litter box with baking soda

Why Use Baking Soda to Deodorize Cat’s Litter Box? 

Baking soda is a natural and safe way to absorb odors, making it an effective deodorizer for cat litter boxes. It’s also readily available and affordable, making it a popular choice for cat owners.

What to Do If the Cat’s Litter Box Still Smells After Using Baking Soda 

If your cat’s litter box still smells after using baking soda, there could be other underlying issues that need to be addressed. This may include cleaning the litter box more frequently, changing the type of litter used, or seeking medical attention for your cat.

Other Natural Alternatives for Deodorizing Cat’s Litter Box 

In addition to baking soda, there are other natural alternatives for deodorizing cat litter boxes. Here are some you could try:

  1. Activated Charcoal – Activated charcoal is a natural odor-absorbing material that can be used to deodorize a cat’s litter box. It’s available in various forms, including powder and pellets. Simply sprinkle a layer of activated charcoal at the bottom of the litter box before adding the litter.
  2. White Vinegar – White vinegar is an effective natural cleaner and deodorizer. Mix equal parts of water and white vinegar in a spray bottle, and use it to spray the litter box. Let it sit for a few minutes, then rinse it with water.
  3. Cedar Chips – Cedar chips have a natural, pleasant smell and can be used as a natural litter deodorizer. Simply sprinkle a layer of cedar chips at the bottom of the litter box before adding the litter.

It’s important to note to do your research and choose safe options. Additionally, always introduce new materials and scents gradually to your cat to avoid upsetting their litter box routine.

How Often Should You Clean Your Cat’s Litter Box? 

It’s recommended to clean your cat’s litter box at least once a day, but the frequency may vary depending on the number of cats in your household, the type of litter used, and your cat’s habits.

8 Tips for Keeping Your Cat’s Litter Box Clean and Fresh 

  1. Scoop the litter box daily – Scoop out solid waste and clumps of urine from the litter box at least once a day. This will help prevent odors and make the litter box more comfortable for your cat.
  2. Replace litter regularly – Replace the litter in the box completely at least once a week. You can also add new litter to the box as needed throughout the week.
  3. Use high-quality litter – High-quality litter that is designed to absorb odors will help keep the litter box smelling fresh for longer. Look for litter made from natural materials like clay or wood chips.
  4. Use an appropriate litter box – Make sure the litter box is the right size for your cat and has enough space for them to move around comfortably. A covered litter box can help contain odors, but make sure there is enough ventilation.
  5. Clean the litter box regularly – Clean the litter box thoroughly at least once a month with soap and hot water. Rinse it well and dry it completely before refilling it with fresh litter.
  6. Keep the litter box in a well-ventilated area – A well-ventilated area will help reduce odors and make the litter box more pleasant for your cat.
  7. Provide multiple litter boxes – If you have multiple cats, provide each cat with its own litter box. This will help prevent litter box territorial disputes and make it easier to keep the litter boxes clean.
  8. Consider litter box additives – There are many products on the market, such as deodorizers and litter box liners, that can help keep the litter box clean and fresh. Just make sure to choose products that are safe for your cat.

By following these tips, you can help ensure that your cat’s litter box stays clean, fresh, and comfortable for your furry friend.

Common Mistakes to Avoid When Using Baking Soda in Cat’s Litter Box 

  1. Using too much baking soda – Using too much baking soda can actually be counterproductive and create a new source of odor in the litter box.
  2. Not mixing the baking soda with the litter – Simply sprinkling baking soda on top of the litter may not be as effective as mixing it in with the litter.
  3. Using scented baking soda – Some baking soda products are scented, which may be harmful to your cat’s respiratory system. Stick to plain, unscented baking soda.
  4. Not using enough litter – If there isn’t enough litter in the box, the baking soda may not be effective at controlling odor.
  5. Not cleaning the litter box regularly – Baking soda is not a substitute for regular cleaning of the litter box. Make sure to scoop the litter box daily and replace the litter regularly.
  6. Not consulting a vet if your cat has allergies – While baking soda is generally safe for cats, some cats may be allergic to it. If you suspect your cat may have an allergy to baking soda, consult your vet.

The Importance of Cat Litter Box Hygiene for Your Cat’s Health 

Maintaining proper hygiene in your cat’s litter box is crucial for your cat’s health. Here are some reasons why:

  1. Preventing Urinary Tract Infections (UTIs): UTIs are a common health problem for cats, and poor litter box hygiene can increase the risk of developing UTIs. If the litter box is not cleaned regularly, bacteria can accumulate and cause infections.
  2. Preventing Feline Lower Urinary Tract Disease (FLUTD): FLUTD is a serious condition that affects the urinary tract of cats. Poor litter box hygiene can contribute to the development of FLUTD.
  3. Preventing Respiratory Problems: Ammonia, a byproduct of cat urine, can irritate your cat’s respiratory system if it builds up in the litter box. This can lead to coughing, sneezing, and other respiratory problems.
  4. Reducing Stress: Cats are clean animals, and a dirty litter box can be a source of stress and anxiety for them. Regular cleaning of the litter box can help reduce stress and make your cat more comfortable.
  5. Preventing Parasites and Diseases: Dirty litter boxes can attract flies, insects, and other pests, which can transmit parasites and diseases to your cat. Regular cleaning of the litter box can help prevent these problems.

To ensure your cat’s health and well-being, it’s important to maintain proper hygiene in the litter box. This includes scooping the litter box daily, washing it regularly with soap and water, and replacing the litter frequently. By doing so, you can help prevent a variety of health problems and keep your furry friend happy and healthy.


That’s how to deodorize your cat’s litter box with baking soda. It’s simple, safe, and effective.

No more cat pee and poop smell! Hooray for baking soda!

Now give your cat a high five. Or a high paw? High-toe beans? Watch out for the claws!

Are you still looking for more practical ways to use baking soda? Baking soda is also great for cleaning bathroom and kitchen tiles. See my article on how to wash your tiles with baking soda.

Thank you for reading, dear readers.

-Baking Soda Guy


Q: Can I use scented baking soda to deodorize the cat’s litter box? A: It’s best to avoid using scented baking soda for deodorizing the cat’s litter box. Some scented products might have fragrances that could be irritating to your cat’s respiratory system. Stick to plain, unscented baking soda to ensure your cat’s safety.

Q: How can I introduce baking soda to my cat’s litter box without alarming my cat? A: Cats can be sensitive to changes in their environment. To introduce baking soda, gradually mix it with the existing litter over a few days. This can help your cat get used to the new scent and texture without causing stress.

Q: Can I use baking powder instead of baking soda in the litter box? A: Baking powder and baking soda are not the same. Baking powder contains additional ingredients like acid and starch, which may not be suitable for use in a litter box. Stick to using baking soda for deodorizing purposes.

Q: Can I reuse the baking soda in the litter box for other cleaning purposes? A: It’s generally not recommended to reuse baking soda from the litter box for other cleaning purposes, especially in food preparation areas. The baking soda may have absorbed odors and residues from the litter box environment.

Q: How can I prevent my cat from kicking out the baking soda from the litter box? A: If your cat tends to kick out the baking soda, consider using a covered litter box. This can help keep the baking soda in place and prevent your cat from scattering it around.

Q: Can I mix baking soda with other odor-controlling products for the litter box? A: Mixing baking soda with other products, especially those not designed for pet use, might have unpredictable effects. It’s generally safer to use baking soda on its own.

Q: Is there a maximum amount of baking soda I can use in the litter box? A: Using excessive amounts of baking soda might be counterproductive and create a new source of odor. Follow the recommended amounts and observe how your cat reacts to ensure a comfortable environment.

Q: Can baking soda help with litter box clumping or tracking issues? A: While baking soda can help with odor control, it might not directly address clumping or tracking issues. Consider choosing a high-quality litter designed to address these concerns.

Q: How can I make the transition to using baking soda in the litter box smoother for my cat? A: Gradually mix baking soda with your cat’s existing litter to acclimate your cat to the new scent and texture. Observe your cat’s behavior during the transition to ensure they are comfortable.

Q: Can I use baking soda in an automatic or self-cleaning litter box? A: Using baking soda in an automatic or self-cleaning litter box depends on the manufacturer’s guidelines. Check the litter box’s instructions to ensure that baking soda won’t interfere with its mechanisms.

Q: Are there any risks associated with using baking soda in the litter box? A: Baking soda is generally safe for use in the litter box, but it’s important to observe your cat’s behavior for any signs of allergies or discomfort. If you have concerns, consult a veterinarian.

Q: How can I prevent my cat from ingesting baking soda from the litter box? A: To prevent ingestion, ensure that your cat’s litter box is properly filled with litter and that the baking soda is mixed in to prevent it from being consumed directly. If you suspect your cat is ingesting baking soda, consult a veterinarian.

Q: Can baking soda attract insects or pests to the litter box? A: Baking soda is not a strong attractant for insects or pests. However, maintaining proper hygiene by regularly cleaning the litter box is essential to prevent any potential issues.

Q: Can baking soda eliminate the ammonia smell from cat urine in the litter box? A: Baking soda can help absorb odors, including ammonia from cat urine. However, if the ammonia smell persists, it might indicate that the litter box needs cleaning more frequently or that a different type of litter is needed.

Q: Can baking soda cause any skin irritation for my cat? A: Baking soda is generally safe, but every cat is unique. If you notice any signs of skin irritation or discomfort in your cat after introducing baking soda, discontinue use and consult a veterinarian.


Top Photo by Amir Ghoorchiani from Pexels