March 16, 2016

20 Ways to Re-use Kitty Litter Buckets


When I grow up I might be a crazy cat lady. Or maybe not. I currently have two house cats plus Bullet who comes and goes as he pleases (I make him stay inside at night). I also have a couple of barn cats.


Having indoor cats means I use cat litter. Bucketfuls of cat litter. I like the brand that comes in the sturdy yellow buckets. But when the bucket is empty, you have to do something with it to make room for the next bucket. Fortunately they are easy to re-use for other purposes.

If you don't have house cats, I bet you know someone who does. You might even want to ask for their empty buckets or jugs so you can try some of these ideas.


Litter Buckets

1. Livestock triage kit - I keep a limited first aid kit in the horse barn which holds vet wrap, scissors, rolled cotton, a thermometer, and leg wraps. (I keep bottles and jars of liniment and wound care products in the house so the contents aren't exposed to freezing temperatures or extreme heat.)


2. Kidding kit - this bucket holds all the supplies I might need during kidding season.

3. Container for plants - I asked hubby to drill holes in the bottom of half a dozen buckets so I could plant large plants in them. With the lids removed, they make great tomato and pepper plant containers. He drilled the holes along the bottom edge of the sides of the buckets so the water could drain more easily.


4. I store extra potting soil in a bucket. I currently have another that is almost full of "hay seed". We had a round bale that was very nice quality hay but had a lot of seeds in it Every morning the wheelbarrow had a good quantity of seeds eft in the bottom so I collected them in a bucket and will broadcast them by hand in the next week or so in the hayfield. Why not?

5. Harvest time - I fill buckets with plums, apples, blackberries and veggies when it's time to harvest. The buckets have handles so it's easy to carry them around. For short term storage I put the filled buckets in our spare room with the air conditioning vent wide open. If we had a basement, I'd use that instead.

6. Seat - an upside down bucket is a good spot to sit while working in the garden. (They are sturdier if you sit on the bottom instead of the top.) I keep my garden tools and gloves in this bucket too.

7. Pet food storage - for dog or cat food.

8. Birdseed storage - I love feeding the songbirds and have two big feeders in the yard. Half a bag of birdseed will fill both feeders, but I don't like to store the rest of the birdseed in the bag where mice can get into it.

9. Goat minerals - I buy goat minerals by the bag, so I pour it all into a bucket for storage.

10. Water bucket - I keep a bucket filled with water in the yard for the dogs to drink.

11. Holding place for screws, bolts, tools, etc. - when we dismantled a big metal shed in return for the materials, we took two buckets with us to hold the screws and other hardware as we removed them. The buckets are much more convenient than the zipper bags we used to use. We also took one along when we bought a used swingset.

12. Projects - hubby uses them to carry and hold tools he's using on a current project.


13. Nest boxes in the chicken coop - this is one of my favorite uses. They are the perfect size and my hens love them. I take off the flap top but leave the edge to help keep the straw and shavings in the bucket. They're easy to clean when needed.

14. Miscellaneous storage - I have several buckets that hold the work gloves and rubber boots that our daughter and her husband use when they visit.

15. Winter wear - another bucket holds all of our scarves, mittens, winter work gloves, and so on that need to be stored over the summer.

16. Small toys such as Legos and blocks - when our youngest daughter was little she loved to play with Happy Meal® toys and Disney figures. She had quite a collection that outgrew every container we had until we gave them a bucket. The toys were lightweight and she could carry the bucket around by the handle.


Litter Jugs

17. I have several of these smaller litter containers hanging around too. I love these jugs for hauling water to the chickens, or for carrying hot water from the house to water troughs when needed in the winter.


18. Chick grower feed in a jug can be kept right next to the brooder.

19. Cutting the top off of the jugs yields a container for toys, necessities in the car, and more.

20. I use a jug to mix fly spray concentrate to refill the spray bottles for the horses. I keep it in the horse trailer and label it well for safety.


Painting Your Buckets

If you wish, you can paint the buckets with Krylon Fusion® spray paint for plastic, then decorate with acrylic paint. I used white paint on the buckets I used as plant containers and had to apply several coats to cover the logo, so a darker color might be a better choice. I've read that you can use methyl ethyl keytone (Butanone) to remove the printed label, but I haven't tried it. Actually I hadn't heard of the product before, so I looked it up - it's quite expensive in my opinion so painting is a better option for me.

Using chalkboard paint would allow you to label the buckets; I just use duct tape instead. Contact paper is another good option for covering up the printing on the buckets if that's important to you.

What would you store in cat litter buckets?



This post has been shared at some of my favorite blog hops.


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30 comments:

  1. I have another cat for you. She's about 16 years old and is afraid of mice :) She's the most useless cat I've ever had; that's why she's lived so long. She must know she's useless because she's beautiful and tries to be exceedingly sweet to me. Funny how things like that work. The buckets are good though. Also, w/ the lid, they keep mice out if you want to store something in a shop/garage etc. Oh yea, you probably don't have to worry about mice w/ your cats around. Oops.

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    1. LOL! We do occasionally have a mouse in the kitchen, but the cats can't get to it inside the cabinets so we have to resort to traps. And of course we have mice in sheds where cats can't go, that's why I store birdseed, pet food, etc inside kitty litter buckets with lids. Here's hoping your next cat is a bit more useful. :-)

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  2. These are great Kathi! We have 2 cats and I'm so surprised about how much litter we go through with the addition of one more cat! We usually buy ours in boxes and bags but I'd love to have some of these bins. Thanks for the great ideas.

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    1. I'm glad this was helpful, Angela. Recently I've been buying litter in boxes and I miss having new buckets, but hubby says I have enough of them! Perhaps you can find the buckets cheaper or on sale and pick up a few.

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  3. Anonymous9:07 AM

    I'll be puting potting soil in mine after reading your post. So much better that trying to scoop out frm bag. Thanks. Gail

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    1. Its so much easier to work with, Gail.

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  4. Love those yellow containers, and use them for so many things! They are also just the right size for a laundry bucket that fits nicely in a child's closet. Just the right size for even a tot to lug into the laundry room!

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    1. That's a great idea, D. A child's laundry wouldn't be very heavy, and the buckets have those great handles.

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  5. I do all these things too! Never thought of spraypainting them tho- I just might!
    Came from the chicken chick

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    1. Don't you just love using something that's essentially free, Tami? Thank you for stopping by, I hope you'll come back again.

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  6. Now I wish I had some of those buckets! Thanks for sharing on the Homestead Blog Hop!

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    1. They're so handy, Jennifer!

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  7. These are some things we do with our 5 gallon buckets. Thank you for sharing these tips on the Art of Home-Making Mondays! :)

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    1. Thank you for hosting the hop, Jes. I always enjoy reading what others have linked up.

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  8. Good morning! This is just a little note to let you know that this post has been FEATURED today on the Art of Home-Making Mondays! Thank you for joining us and we would love to have you link up again this week. Love, JES

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  9. What a great sustainable living post, Kathi! Loved your ideas for re-using these sturdy buckets. Thank you for sharing with us at the Hearth and Soul Hop. Pinned!

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    1. Thank you for sharing the post, April!

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  10. This fantastic post is being featured on my blog as part of Tuesdays with a Twist blog hop: http://www.godsgrowinggarden.com/2016/03/time-to-link-up-tuesdays-with-twist-156.html
    Thank You
    Angie

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    1. Thank you very much, Angelique!

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  11. Great ideas. You almost all want me to let a cat in the house, so I can have a selection of buckets. Lol. Thanks for sharing your ideas on the Country Fair Blog Party this month!

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    1. Thank you, Nicole.

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    2. Thank you, Nicole.

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  12. THis post is right up my alley! I love repurposing! Thanks for sharing at country fair blog party!
    jan

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  13. Karin9:41 PM

    I use the kitty litter buckets for storing yarn and fabric, too! Plus the laundry detergent I use also comes in similar buckets. We are definitely a bucket-filled household! And we do have an indoor cat - he is a terror but we love him!

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    1. That's a great use for them, Karin. I love that they stack so well. Enjoy your kitty. :-)

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  14. These are such great ideas! I'm always looking for new ways to use mine. I use mine as a vermicomposter. It makes it super convenient to compost in small spaces.

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    1. That's an excellent use, Kayla. Thank you for sharing.

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  15. I love our kitty buckets for planters. I painted mine this year and added permanent vinyl quote. They're super cute. Thanks for linking up at #SustainableSundays

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    1. That does sound very cute, Danielle. Did you spray paint the buckets first? What color?

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