So you’ve successfully taught your cats to use your toilet, just like little furry humans. Congratulations! But you can’t quite teach the cat to pull the flush lever? You might want to automate it for them instead! (Editor’s note, 2019. Link seems to be dead. Try the Wayback Machine.)
[Joycelin & Dan] are in the final stages of teaching their cats to use the toilet. Unfortunately they had a snowboarding trip coming up, and were worried about the cats losing progress when they couldn’t flush the toilet for them. Rather than have a bit of a setback in their toilet training, they improvised — and automated the toilet.
There are commercial solutions available, but they cost several hundred dollars. You could strap a geared motor to the side of your toilet with a stick screwed to it like this guy did, but who wants to pay for the water bill of flushing your toilet every few minutes??
[Dan] ended up designing a 3D printed bracket that sits under the toilet reservoir lid to hold a fairly beefy stepper motor. The stepper motor pulls the flapper valve up, allowing the toilet to flush. It’s controlled by an Arduino and set to flush once or twice a day to keep the kitty excrement at bay.
If you’re still scooping litter, or have one of those fancy auto-cleaning litter boxes, check out this hack from yesteryear on disabling the CatGenie cartridge, to allow you to use it for longer without having to buy a new one!
[Thanks for the tip Keith!]