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Litter Robot Open Air III: Our Choice For Automation

MeOW and welcome to an unService Cat Monday on Service Cat Monday. Which, due to technical difficulties beyond our control is wayyyyyyyy late. Now that was a mouthful wasn’t it? Anyways, fur mommy’s sanity and to furee up some time, Service Cat Monday question and answer and Training tips will resume in the new year. Altho’ mommy did say that our posty today could actually qualify as a Service Cat Monday posty. So, fur that reason, the followin’ will be in human English fur reader and translator ease. Actually, mommy will be doin’ most of this posty herself. But, you know Raena and me have to have our own meows ‘bout everythin’, so we’ll be includin’ our 2 cents too. Fur now, mommy, take it away.

 

 Dezi and Raena watch the Litter Robot Open Air Litter Box

 

 

 

 

Disclaimer: This is a Sponsored post. We received the Litter Robot Open Air III in exchange for our honest opinion. As always, we tell it like we see it and only bring products we feel would be of interest to you, our readers and friends.

 

 

     Thank you baby. As you all know this blog is all about the girls. And, as special as they are, there are still things they can’t do and require a human touch. Most of you know that I’m disabled and need help with a few things. Let me give you a little back story before we proceed. Dezi came to me as a very sick little girl at the age of 2 1/2 – 3 weeks old. She had one of the worst cases of tape worm I’d ever seen in a kitten her size. And, with all that baby fine fur, the diarrhea, and the worms exiting her little body were constantly getting stuck to her bloomers. My response was to clean the litter box and her every time she exited. I must say, it was definitely the right thing to do, but it had lasting consequences. Long after the worms and diarrhea were gone, Dezi expected me to clean the litter box the minute it got used. As far as she’s concerned, we could have 10 boxes and she would still want the one that was used to be cleaned.

 

 Dezi checks out litter robot from the inside

 

 

 

     When you think about it, it actually makes perfect sense. I mean, would you want to use a toilet that hadn’t been flushed after it’s last “visitor”? So, as much of a chore scooping might be, I didn’t really give it a second thought. But, c’mon now, all of us kitty parents know the litter box is probably our least favorite thing about being owned by cats. As I get older and my health declines, scooping at certain times of the day gets more difficult. And with the wheelchair broken, getting to the box first thing in the morning is almost impossible. That brings us to today’s topic, Automated Litter Boxes. If you missed our post about Litter Boxes, Litter and Feline Urinary habits, you can catch up by clicking here.

 

Raena sniffs the bag of SwheatsciipYep, that’s the right litter this time mommy.

     Automated litter boxes have been around for quite some time now. So, I began my search for the “purrfect” automated box that could meet all the needs the girls have and still work for me and my budget and ideals. Ideals being no clay litters. As a Vet Tech I’d seen too many kitties come in with blockages from clay litter, to be comfortable using it especially with long haired cats that get it stuck to their bloomers. That right there, made it almost impossible for us to use one of those automated raking systems. Not to mention the actual box size available for kitty to do their business. But, today’s not about the “bads” of certain boxes, but rather the good and bad of the automated litter box we chose.

 

     After much research, reading reviews, watching videos, and studying how and why the equipment works, we decided on the Litter Robot Open Air III. Now I’ll be honest, it wasn’t until I could actually see a video up close that I decided this was a good product. My initial thoughts were that the litter must end up in the top of the box since it rotates around to empty itself. With that thought, I couldn’t imagine why any cat would want to use it. After all, how would you feel if somebody pee’d or worse on your ceiling and you had to sit under that smell when you went to the bathroom? Thankfully, that’s not the case at all. you’ll see in the video below that the roof of the box stays free of dirty litter and smell. Before we get to the video, let me tell you what we were looking for in an automated litter box.

  1. Covered: Raena occasionally still tries to swat Dezi’s tail when she’s in the litter box, so we have to have a covered litter box for privacy issues.

  2. Size: Dezi is a large cat and Raena will be, so they need plenty of room to get in, turn around, stand, squat, dig and exit.

  3. Works with almost any Litter: I’m not changing my mind and using clay litter, so the box we choose must allow for the litter we currently use: Swheatscoop and/or Garfield.

  4. No Continued Expenses’ beyond electricity and inexpensive filters: Being on a fixed income means I can’t afford to by additional expensive boxes, special bags or trays.

  5. Night Light: Yes I Know it sounds silly, but something happened to Dezi when our apartment flooded and she won’t go to the litter box in the dark.

  6. Easy to Use: The girls must be able to enter and exit with ease. 

  7. Easy to Clean: Even the cleanest of kitties and “dustless” litter can eventually get any box a little dirty. But, due to my disabilities, handling and cleaning the size box the girls require must be easy.

  8. Safe: The girls can sometimes get a little dig crazy and curious, so I don’t want anything around that could hurt or cut them.

  9. Flexible Timer: Since Dezi will often pee and then need to poo almost immediately after, we need to be able to set a shorter timer than the traditional 15 minutes.  

    To watch on Youtube click here.

 

     The Litter Robot Open Air III meets all our needs. If I had to say something negative, it would be about the Control Panel. As most of you know, the girls are Service Cats, and as such they are trained to turn on and off certain equipment. And, as a lot of you may recall, Raena’s been turning on all the power toys since she was about 8 weeks old. So, if I could, I would probably have a small door of some kind covering the buttons on the Control Panel. The thing is, there probably aren’t many other cats out there pressing the cycle button besides Raena; so I can’t really fault the Litter Robot peeps for not thinking about that.

 

      They recently launched the Litter Robot Open Air Connect. If you already own a Litter Robot Open Air, you can purchase the upgrade equipment and install it yourself without voiding any warranty you may have or having to purchase a whole new system. The app connects your Litter Robot to your Apple iphone or ipad and allows you to monitor the waste drawer levels, usage and you could even trigger it to cycle if you have a kitty like Dezi that just peed and now needs to poo and can’t wait the 3 minutes.

 

Thumbs up emolji

 

 

 

 

     The Litter Robot Open Air III sells for $449.00, with the Connect upgrade it’s $499.00. Trust me, I realize that’s a lot of money. I don’t make this recommendation lightly. But, after all the research I’ve done, and after having the unit in our home, I must say, the Litter Robot is worth every penny. The company sells replacement parts for the entire unit, so that you can replace only what may break or wear out in the future. They do sell reconditioned parts and units as well, so that may be another avenue to consider. Yes, it’s an investment, but, aren’t your cats worth it? Aren’t you worth it? As cat owners, most of us scoop the litter box without even thinking about it, but it’s really nice not having too. I definitely give the Litter Robot Open Air III 2 thumbs up. I’ll let the girls tell you how they feel.

 

 Cat with paws up emoji

 

 

Fanks mommy. Me luvs PB. It’s pawsum to always have a clean pawtty no matter the time of day or what you might be doin’. It’s an all paws up from me. 

 

 Cat Paw animated emoji

 

 

 

          Is it mine’s turn now? Well it’s a bout time. I’s luvs, luvs, luvs PB the Litter Robot. I’s luvs to ride the rim sometimes. It’s so much fun. I’s still tryin’ to figger out how to make sissy go ‘round and ‘round like a ferris wheel. Fur some reason, it won’t cycle with her in it?. Other than that, I’s give it 4 paws up too.

 

 The Blessing Train

 

 

 

(Dezi shakes head.) That’s a safety feature Raena. Fankfully, PB has better sense than you do. Cuz guess who’d be getting’ the whacky paw ifin you did send me ‘round and ‘round?. Anyways, we sure are glad PB’s working in our house. Ifin ya’ have any questions, thoughts or comments, purrlease leave ‘em in the comments section. And, any purchases thru the links in our posty mean we make a few green papers. Our Blessin’ today fur the Blessing Train is Health. We have been blest with good health. Yeah Raena’s eyes might be a bit purroblematic, but overall she’s healthy and we’re both happy.

 

Till the next time……………………………………..Be Blest!!! 

 

Dezi: Vibrant Blue 

Raena: Navy Blue 

Mommy A: Black

 

 

 

Luv and Hugs and Kitty Kisses

 

Deztinee and RaenaBelle with

Mommy A

Service Cats: Internal Disputes

Welcome to another Service Cat Monday. We’re comin’ to da end of da questions we‘ve been asked, so ifin you have trainin’ questions, or questions ‘bout Service Cats in general, purrlease let us know. As with all our educational postys da followin’ will be written in human English. And ifin you’ve missed a post you can ketch up by clickin’ da links at da bottom of da posty. We have a busy day ahead, so without further adieu, let’s get to todays question. Shoko and Kali our Canadian Cats furiends asked, “Is there any fighting over who gets to perform a task?”

 Dezi laying in her harness

This question was meant to be specific to us, as there are 2 of us who can perform the same tasks. At least there will be 2 of us. Right now there are still things that Raena can’t do and hasn’t been trained to do. So for the purpose of this post we’ll go back and discuss mes’ recent past. We would also need to clarify the word fighting. Fighting can mean different things to different people. While mommy doesn’t like to see or hear us hiss or growl at each other, she doesn’t consider that fighting. Mommy says she’s been very blest and has never had 2 kitties who fought at any time. So a better question to ask is, “Have there ever been any disputes over who was to perform a task?” To which our answer would be…”Of Course.”

 

 

When a kitty begins training they are excited and eager. Me loved the telephone. Every time it rang me would run to answer it; even when it was inconvenient for mommy. Even tho’ me would answer the phone, me wouldn’t meow. Instead me would carry the phone to mommy, where ever she was. Mommy says it took less time to train me to use the phone than it did to train me to leave it alone unless there’s an actual emergency. We’ve been asked to give tips on 911 training, so tune in next week for that post. Anyways, mes point is that a training kitty gets very excited and wants to perform all the time.

 Dezi with phone calling pizza hut

 Guess who’s callin’ mommy.

 

 

Mommy says the only disputes have been over who massages where and who gets to drive and when. Sis Lexi had been mommys’ head, neck and shoulder massager since almost the beginning. So when me came to live here me’s massage duties were to be mommys arms, legs and lower back. That was all well and good when we would lay down to go to sleep at night, but sis Lexi liked to sleep between mommys’ legs and me slept up under her arm. So when we would wake up in the mornings me would naturally start to massage mommys’ shoulders and head. Of course that was sis Lexi’s job and she wanted to do it. So, she would give me the hiss of disapproval and try to push me off the bed. Being the good natured Ragdoll me is, me would gladly climb on mommys chest and stretch out to massage her arms and legs. Dispute over.

 

 

So what about driving the wheelchair? Well those disputes weren’t always settled so quickly. Me wasn’t the best driver in the beginning, but only mommy and sis Lexi know what she was like in the beginning. Anyways, when me was first learning, me thought it was a little scary. Me did run into more than one wall, dresser, chest of drawers and even off the sidewalk into that cold white stuff called snow. But mommy was so encouraging and it really was a lot of fun, so every morning, me would try to get into position before sis Lexi could. Oh sissy would often give me the hiss of disapproval, but me didn’t care. Me would put me’s paw on the power button and push before sissy could even get in the chair with mommy and me.

Lexi lays in wheelchair and looks up

Ifin me didn’t move when sis Lexi hissed, she wouldn’t even bother getting into the chair. Well at least in the beginning. Once me quit running into walls and furniture sissy finally joined me in mommys lap in the chair. And yes, on occasion she would try to push me off the joystick so she could drive. Of course once the novelty wore off, we would just take turns. Whoever got into place first would drive us to the bathroom and often the other would drive us to the kitchen while the other availed themselves of the litter boxes. We were pretty well coordinated when it came to most of our other tasks, and mommy hopes Raena and me will follow that pattern as well.

Dezi and Lexi in the wheelchairNow let me get this straight. You want me to put mes mouth on this

stick and push forward, right?

 

Mommy says based on Raena’s personality and things she’s seeing, she does expect a few hissy fits in the beginning. But, Raena is a quick learner, so mommy expects the novelty will wear off much earlier with her than it did with me. Raena appears to be very versatile and will massage wherever me isn’t, so we have very few disputes in that area. Altho’ she’s still too small to help me push mommy out of the shower after passing out, Raena is trying. She quickly joins me in the tub and gets under mommys arm. She just doesn’t have the strength to actually push, She does watch intently and stays by mommys side till she comes too.

 Raena lays on the pounce toy.

 Are ya’ talkin’ ’bout me?

 

 

Well, me hopes dat answers your question. Mommy doesn’t really allow fighting, and so long as we can settle our disputes amicably, she lets us try. The only time mommy would take charge of a dispute is if she needed to get to the human potty and we couldn’t agree on who was driving. Anyways, gotta go now and get ready for the a/c repairman. We do want to fank our furiends who donated money to get our bootyful furiend Foxy back home to her daddy. We were goin’ to share the fundraiser today, but they have already raised the money for the pet deposit at their new apartment. It won’t be long now and Foxy and her daddy will be reunited. Don’t furget to leave any questions you might have in da comments below.

 

 

Are there disputes in your house?

How are disputes settled in your house?  

Till da next time………………………………….Be Blest!!!

 

 

 

 

Luv and Hugs and Kitty Kisses

Deztinee and RaenaBelle

 

 

https://dezizworld.wordpress.com/2016/06/20/service-cat-what-to-look-for/

https://dezizworld.wordpress.com/2016/06/27/service-cat-training-foundation/

https://dezizworld.wordpress.com/2016/07/06/service-cats-how-to-train-kitty-to-massage-without-claws/

https://dezizworld.wordpress.com/2016/07/11/service-cats-smelling-disease/

https://dezizworld.wordpress.com/2016/07/18/service-cats-do-you-need-one/

https://dezizworld.wordpress.com/2016/07/25/service-cats-who-bears-the-cost/

https://dezizworld.wordpress.com/2016/08/01/service-cats-housing-laws-and-exceptions/

https://dezizworld.wordpress.com/2016/08/08/service-cats-accommodations-and-common-sense/

https://dezizworld.wordpress.com/2016/08/15/service-cats-what-happens-when-the-handler-dies/

https://dezizworld.wordpress.com/2016/08/22/service-cats-proper-training-methods/

https://dezizworld.wordpress.com/2016/08/29/service-cats-proper-training-methods-part-2/

https://dezizworld.wordpress.com/2016/09/05/service-cats-whats-the-easiest-task-to-train/

https://dezizworld.wordpress.com/2016/09/12/service-cats-getting-kitty-ready-for-an-outing/

https://dezizworld.wordpress.com/2016/09/26/service-cats-discipline-stop-countersurfing-kitty/       

Service Cats: What Happens When the Handler Dies

Here we are, another Miserable Monday. Dat means it’s time fur one of our educational Service Cat postys. As always, da followin’ will be written in human English so everypawdy includin’ google translate can read it. Our doggy brofur furiend Easy, really is on top of his game. He asked another great question last week dat we’re gonna try to answer this week. As always, ifin ya’ have any questions, or somethin’ specific you’d like us to cover, purrlease leave it in da comments, or send us an email. Ifin you’ve missed any of da posty’s in this series, you can ketch up by clickin’ da linkys below.

 

Dezi in her work harness on cat ledge

Service Cats: What to Look For 

Service Cats: Training Foundations 

Service Cats: How to Train Kitty to Massage without Claws

Service Cats: Smelling Disease 

Service Cats: Do You Need One

Service Cats: Who Bears the Cost 

Service Cats: Housing Laws and Exceptions 

Service Cats: Accommodations and Common Sense 

     Now that you’re all caught up, let’s get to today’s topics. So what did Easy ask, right? Well here it is, “What happens to a Service Animal when their disabled handler no longer needs them?” 

       We need to remind you that our answers are only as it applies in the U.S., if you live in another Country, the laws/rules may be different. So please check your local regulations.  

Raena reaching out from the perch to alert mommy

Raena Alerting to Syncope incident

So, your first question is probably why would they no longer need the Service Animal? In the event of death or admittance to a nursing home a person would no longer require the assistance of a Service Animal. You must remember as well, that these animals are purchased and under current laws, animals are considered property. For the purpose of this part of the explanation, we will discuss the Service Dogs that the ADA does recognize. Most of these animals are trained by individuals living across the States, belonging to one of a few different groups. Depending on the age of the animal and it’s specific training (ie: guide dog only) and the amount of time spent with the handler, they may opt to take the animal back and re-sell it to another disabled person. They will not refund your payment or pay you any fees for the animal. The family of the disabled handler may choose to keep the animal and let it live out it’s days as the family pet. Some breeds do better at this than others. Remember, these animals are working animals and not pets. They don’t understand retirement.

Before we get to the second part of Easy’s queston, let’s discuss the other Service Animals not yet recognized by the ADA, like cats. We have met a few people who have learned that their cats are alerting them to seizures, etc. that haven’t been trained. Altho’ the Cat/animal is performing a task, it doesn’t meet the current requirements of the ADA since it wasn’t specifically trained. For the purposes of this article, these cats/animals are not included in this topic as they are essentially still pets. So let’s get to those non traditional Service Animals (Cats)

    

Firstly, there are very few trainers for cats and other animals because they’re not recognized by the ADA , so there’s no money in it. And until recently, cats weren’t necessarily seen as trainable. So like us, the disabled handler often trains the animal themselves. Cats are a different species with different needs and bonding abilities. Unlike dogs, cats don’t feel the need to love everybody or make friends with every human they meet. Because of this, re-homing a Service Cat to work for another disabled person is nearly impossible. Altho’ mommy’s never seen or heard of it, we won’t say completely impossible, as it may be done in the future. We will say, we don’t recommend it, as the cat may not perform. Because of the bond that must be formed between a disabled handler and the cat, the services provided will only be for that one specific person for the lifetime of that cat.

 Dezi in stroller

Remember, these cats are working animals and not pets. It is possible for them to continue to live with any family they currently lived with. They will mourn and be confused but with the proper love and attention, it is possible for them to live out their lives peacefully. If there is no family however, what then? Depending on the age and training of the cat, they may or may not be able to rehome as pets. A young kitten, only starting training for example, may be rehomed as a pet or to another who needs similar tasks. Typically by the first year, a Service cat is so bonded with their handler they cannot be separated and thus cannot be rehomed. Keep in mind, these cats and their handlers are together 24/7/365. We don’t want to offend anyone, but no matter how bonded you think you are with your pet, it doesn’t match the bond between a Service Animal and it’s handler. The handler literally relies on the Service Animal for life and vice versa. In this instance humane euthanasia when the handler dies is the best outcome for the animal.

The last part of Easy’s question, was, “Do Service Animals end up in shelters like other animals?”  The idea of a shelter makes us sad for any animal, but the hard truth is, Yes Easy, it is possible for a Service Animal to end up in the shelter. These animals are often put to sleep because they have traits seen as undesireable by adopters, because adopters don’t understand what the animal is doing. A family of the deceased handler who doesn’t know, care or want to take on the animal may take it to the shelter. A working animal will always be a working animal. This speaks to the reason people need to understand a little about breeds before adopting a pet. A herding dog will herd, whether it’s children, sheep or cows. the Service animal will continue to try to perform tasks, and may be considered problematic.

 Raena sits pose

There aren’t currently any rescues specifically for Service Animals to go to live out their lives. However most of those types of places do want a donation or money left in a trust or will. There’s nothing wrong with that, but again, Service Animals are generally owned by people who are on fixed incomes. And again, Service Animals are working animals. They are not pets. Adjusting to life after the loss of their handler is easier for some species and breeds.

This is definitely something to take into consideration when deciding if you need a Service Animal and what kind. Altho’ most people with fixed incomes and considered poor do not leave wills as there’s nothing to leave; if you have a Service Animal we recommend you have a will or directive and someone specified to take care of your Service Animal in the event of your death. Please make sure your Service Animal doesn’t end up in the shelter. For that matter, if you have pets, please make sure you have a plan for them in the event of your death. And the, my ____________ will take care of them isn’t a good enough plan.

 Dezi looking around on the cat tree

Well this has been a really deep post, so we’re gonna wrap it up for now. We do hope we’ve answered your question, and given others something to think about. Again, please leave your questions, thoughts, or topics you’d like us to cover in the comments. 

Do you have a will or designated person to care for your pets in the event of your death? 

Have you discussed alternative solutions with your family and/or Vet? 

Till da next time………………………………….Be Blest!!!

Luv and Hugs and Kitty Kisses

Deztinee and RaenaBelle    

Meezer's Mews & Terrieristical Woofs

I'm Dalton, a Rat terrier mix and I came here in Sept, 2017, I was rescued from Hurricane Harvey. My birthday is 8-20-2016. My Gotcha Day is 8-27-2017. And I'm Pipo, I'm a Siamese, my birthday is 12-26-2004; my Gotcha Day is 2-14-2005. We also have Angel MrJackFreckles, (2-5-2018); and also we have Angel Minko, (6-18-2017). There are also Angels Groucho, Simba, Suki, & Toki. We meezers used to be known as WeBeesSiameezers. We'e all from Michigan, Dalton came here from Texas.

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