The Best Vacuum For Pet Hair (Review & Buying Guide) in 2021
These vacuums for pet hair will really get your home clean.
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BY Heather Fishel / LAST UPDATED ON March 31, 2021
Pets are an absolute joy to have around the house — until you take a look at your floors. As much fun as it is to have furry family members, the messes they leave behind can be incredibly frustrating. Pet hair, in particular, tends to stick to every type of surface, gathering into clumps on hardwood and tile while covering carpet and rugs. You’ll even find pet hair on couches, chairs, and bedding.
If you’ve been struggling to pick up pet hair throughout your home, you need a powerful tool. You need a vacuum that’s specifically designed to suck up pet hair on any surface. So, if you’re tired of trying to tackle pet hair with ineffective cleaning tools, check out our picks for the best vacuums for pet hair.
A smart robotic vacuum that senses where to clean and is powerful enough for pet hair.
- Works on all types of flooring
- Loosens, lifts, and suctions
- Great for multiple pet households
- Seems to clean in random patterns
- May skip rooms or areas
A powerful handheld vacuum that’s paired with specialized pet tools.
- Long battery life
- Included tools can tackle stairs, crevices, upholstery, and more
- Impressive results
- Takes a long time to recharge
- Filter is expensive to replace
A powerful, deep-cleaning vacuum that offers good suction just for picking up pet hair.
- Great for deep cleaning on carpet
- Includes specialized tools for pet hair
- Works on all types of floors with the switch of a button
- Very heavy
- Bristles prone to fraying
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Our reviews are driven by a combination of hands-on testing, expert input, “wisdom of the crowd” assessments from actual buyers, and our own expertise. We always aim to offer genuine, accurate guides to help you find the best picks.
Benefits of Vacuums For Pet Hair
- Strong suction. Most vacuums offer solid suction, but vacuums for pet hair are even tougher and more powerful, meaning they can deliver stronger suction to suck up fur wherever it’s hiding, whether you’re cleaning corners or carpet fibers.
- Effective filters and dust cups. Vacuums for pet hair tend to feature more effective filters and large dust cups so they can trap and collect dust as well as all kinds of allergens. From loose fur to the allergens that pets can bring into the home, most of these more specialized vacuums are pros at filtering out contaminants, dirt, and more.
- Suitable for all floors and materials. Pet hair can get anywhere, and most vacuums for pet hair can offer excellent versatility. These vacuums can tackle all kinds of different floors and surfaces, including carpeting, hardwood, tile, upholstery, and more.
- Include special accessories and features. Vacuums that are specifically designed to tackle pet hair tend to have specialized attachments, tools, and bristles that help you eliminate fur on all types of surfaces. From crevice tools to brushes to rubber mixed in with vacuum bristles, these extras work harder.
Types of Vacuums For Pet Hair
An upright vacuum is one you’re likely very familiar with. These vacuums are the most common — they use a bag or cup to collect dirt and debris, and they’re easy to push around your home with tall handles and an upright, vertical design.
An upright vacuum is a solid choice for pet hair, as this type of vacuum is very effective both thick and thin carpets as well as bare floors. However, upright vacuums tend to be quite heavy, making them difficult to move around and lift.
Canister vacuums feature a canister, or container, and a vacuum wand. These vacuums are lighter than upright vacuums, and they tend to be more powerful. They’re very easy to clean with; instead of moving the vacuum itself, you simply move the wand to suck up dirt and debris.
Canister vacuums are also great for pet hair because they typically offer better suction and more cleaning attachments, like upholstery brushes and pet hair tools. However, canister vacuums can be a challenge when you need to move the actual canister around.
Handheld vacuums are the most portable and lightweight option. These vacuums are compact and are designed to be carried anywhere. They’re easy to maneuver and perfect for quick cleanups. And typically, handheld vacuums offer pretty good suction.
They are far smaller than your traditional vacuum cleaner, though, which means they have limited capacity. On average, a handheld vacuum holds just 15 ounces of debris. Additionally, there are no attachments—a handheld vacuum is really only a good choice for spot cleaning or vacuuming a small area.
Robot vacuums are a highly intelligent spin on the traditional vacuum. They’re designed to vacuum your home automatically when you signal or schedule them to do so, meaning you don’t have to spend time vacuuming yourself. They can roam around and vacuum — they can even be controlled remotely via smartphone apps.
However, robot vacuums are somewhat compact, and they can only hold about 20 ounces of dirt and debris. They may also struggle to navigate around your home and its obstacles.
Bissell has been a leader in floor cleaning products since 1876. With an array of vacuums that meet just about every need out there, Bissell offers something for absolutely everyone, including carpet cleaners, steam cleaners, air purifiers, and cleaning formulas.
Since 1907, Hoover has been all about home cleaning products. Hoover’s lineup of strong, capable vacuum cleaners will cover every kind of cleaning you need. But it’s the vacuums for pet hair created by Hoover that are serious standouts. Vacuums like the Hoover MaxLife Pro Pet Swivel Vacuum Cleaner give you the flexibility and power you need for tough pet hair.
iRobot is a newcomer in the vacuum world. First founded in 1990, iRobot created the world’s first smart robotic vacuum — and vacuums have never been the same since. Today, iRobot offers several different robotic vacuums that provide connectivity and the ability to clean remotely, including sucking up pet hair.
Vacuums For Pet Hair Pricing
- Under $100: You can find a small selection of pet hair vacuums priced at under $100. These are primarily handheld vacuums with more limited features and compact sizing, but they’re great for small areas or quick cleanups.
- $100 to $300: In this price range, you’ll be able to choose from a wide selection of different pet hair vacuums. From upright models to hi-tech robotic vacuums, most quality options fall in this price range.
- $300 and up: The priciest pet hair vacuums will cost you $300 or more. These vacuums may be bigger, but they may also include extras, like additional tools, high-powered functions, and special smart technology.
Having strong suction is the most important feature of a pet vacuum. You want to choose a vacuum that’s strong enough to pick up the most stubborn pet hair fibers hiding in your carpet, upholstery, or flooring. Look for a vacuum that features the highest level of suction so you can have confidence in its ability to collect even the smallest particles.
Ease of Movement
Vacuuming with a heavy, awkward, and large device is difficult, and it only makes your job harder. Lighter weight, slimmer design, and the addition of features like hoses and far-reaching attachments are all factors that add to a vacuum cleaner’s ease of movement. You should also consider whether you can maneuver the vacuum easily around obstacles like furniture — or even under the seats of your car if you’re opting for a handheld vacuum.
Tools and Attachments
All of the extras, or the tools and attachments, that a vacuum includes are especially important for tackling pet hair. You want specialized attachments that’ll help you clean more easily or more efficiently, like upholstery tools, crevice head, and specialty brushes. The more attachments you have to choose from, the better you’ll be equipped to pick up pet hair in even the oddest of spaces.
- Canister Vacuums Are Best for Stairs. If you have stairs in your home, you might want to opt for a canister vacuum. These are the best cleaning machines for getting pet hair off each stair, and they offer you more reach and flexibility than your basic upright vacuum.
- For a Lot of Shedding, Consider Automating Your Vacuum. If you have multiple pets or are dealing with a lot of shedding, it’s hard to keep up unless you’re following your pet around with a vacuum. In this case, consider a robot vacuum that can automate the job. You can have your vacuum clean every day, trailing after your pets and getting into small spaces without much physical effort.
Best Vacuum For Pet Hair Reviews & Recommendations 2021
- If you have a lot of hairy pets or pets with longer fur, you might want to skip vacuums that use bags, as all that fur can fill up bags quickly, which can ultimately cost you more money.
- Tangle-resistant brush rolls are a good choice for pet owners. This can prevent all of the hair and fur you pick up from getting stuck and causing problems. It’s especially handy if you have long-haired cats or dogs.
- Slim stick vacuum cleaners are an option, but keep in mind that they don’t have the same strong suction or the debris collection capacity of an upright, canister, or robot vacuum. These vacuums are better for light cleaning and light dirt.
Q: Are pet vacuums worth it?
If you’re having trouble picking up pet hair with a regular vacuum, then it’s well worth upgrading to a vacuum specifically designed for pet hair. This can give you increased suction, better tools, and less hassle each time you vacuum, all of which can lead to a cleaner space.
Q: Does a vacuum cleaner remove dog hair?
Pet hair vacuum cleaners can absolutely remove dog hair. Suction is critical, so make sure you’re looking for a vacuum that’s tough enough for the kind of dog hair you’re dealing with.
Q: What is the best automatic vacuum for pet hair?
Our top pick, the iRobot Roomba 675 Robot Vacuum, is a fantastic automated vacuum that’ll make easy work of pet hair.
The iRobot Roomba 675 Robot Vacuum is our favorite vacuum for pet hair — and this robotic model makes cleaning super easy. If you need a more affordable yet equally effective vacuum, the Bissell Pet Hair Eraser Cordless Hand Vacuum is a great value pick.