I have one, and it happens to be the best garage sale find I’ve ever had (well, tying with the $8 bread machine, maybe). It was brand new–still sealed in the box–and I got it for $20. The woman selling it said it was a gift, and that her cats would be scared of it. Score one for me.
Now, as GND pointed out, sometimes stuff sticks. Fresh poop sticks, and so does some fresh urine–it doesn’t always clump hard enough in time to be properly scooped away. Still, this is a minor annoyance, nothing comparable to what I had before…BLECH! Last weekend I scooped by hand (er…used the hand scooper) to pick up little missed chunks, but that’s the first time I’ve done that with it and I’ve had it for over two months.
I will probably have to dump and clean out the thing in a little while, but it’s not too bad. I don’t know if I would’ve paid the $100-$150 retail for it, but it’s damn worth the $20 I shelled out for it.
Inigo (my cat) was a little flipped out by the thing at first. It has a timer that begins when the cat first enters the box; it scoops about 10 minutes later, when kitty’s long gone to another room. For the first week or two, as soon as the “Rrrrrr!” started, Inigo would run from wherever he was to stare at the magic crawling thing in his litterbox. Some higher strung cats may really freak and never set foot in the Littermaid again, but mellow Inigo wasn’t bothered and now barely twitches an ear in its direction when it does its thing.
As for the litter liners, I do have a fear that availability (and future incompatability) may be a problem. They are pricey–$17 or so for a dozen. BUT, they can be washed and reused–not as nasty as it sounds. I dump the liner, and really all that’s left is some litter sand. Plus, even if I have to buy new ones, I find I am spending a lot less money on cat litter and the liner bags. 12 of those liners will last about 3 months with one cat–so really, it isn’t so bad.
I used the 8 D batteries, too. The paperwork said they should last about 3 months; I’ve been using it for about 2 without a problem.
So far, so good. Key point: IT WORKS!
Neat find, eh?