If you have a furry friend who sheds a lot, then the best vacuum for pet hair is going to be a must-have household device. Unlike a regular cleaner, pet vacuums are customized for fur functions. They boast more suction power, and their cleaning tools are less likely to get entangled with pet hair.
Even better, most of the best vacuums for pet hair in 2020 also remove pet dander and allergens that your 4-legged companions shed. This comes as a great relief for family members (and visitors) who may be suffering from pet allergies.
Whether you are eyeing an affordable or top-tier model, our reviews bring some of the top-rated vacuums this year!
Best on Hard Floors: Dyson Big Ball Animal 2
Probably the best bagless vacuum for pet hair for homeowners on a budget, the Dyson Big Ball Animal 2 is designed to be the main do-it-all vacuum for most medium to large homes.
- 600V motor
- Tangle-free Turbine tool
- Telescopic wand
- Excellent maneuverability
- HEPA filter
As you’d expect from Dyson, this relatively inexpensive HEPA model is a hit in terms of suction power. It is powered by a 600-watt motor that you can literally feel vibrating the carpet as you vacuum. A 262-inch power cord then complements this heavy-duty motor so you can clean your rooms without having to change ports so often.
What makes it the best vacuum for pet hair in 2020 is its suction power coupled with a unique tangle-free Turbine tool. Instead of the typical brush roll that we are used to, this Turbine tool uses a pair of rotors that spin in opposite directions. The significant difference that this cleaning device brings is that long pet hairs don’t get tangled on it easily compared to brush rolls.
In addition to the Turbine tool, you’ll also get a combination tool and a stair cleaning tool to enhance your vacuuming experience.
Dyson Big Ball Animal 2 reviews on Amazon appreciate that it is ideal for deep cleaning all floor types. Its main cleaning head has a self-adjusting mechanism that drives deep into your carpets and later retracts as required to protect your hard floors. Another standout feature in this Dyson Big Ball Animal 2 review is the onboard telescopic wand that offers an extended reach when cleaning the ceiling, window curtains, and furniture.
Best Canister: New Miele Complete C3 Cat & Dog Canister Vacuum Cleaner
Our next recommendation in these best vacuum for pet hair reviews has been German-engineered to combat cat and dog hair. Its price tag dictates that it’s not exactly meant for pet lovers on a budget. However, if you can save up for it, this could be the best investment for your furry companions.
- 1200V motor
- 6 speed settings
- 2 floor heads
- Low, medium, high pile carpets
- Smooth floors
This model’s 1200-watt motor (twice that of the Dyson Big Ball above) and a bevy of tools make it perfect for pretty much any household cleaning needs.
The Miele C3 Cat and Dog is a corded canister vacuum that comes with 2 floor cleaning tools. The first is the Electro Plus, which features a 5-height adjustment and an independently controlled motor. This head allows you to move flawlessly from smooth floors to medium and high pile carpets.
You’ll also get the SBB300-3 Parquet Twister head. This head is designed with smooth flooring in mind and it has 180-degree rotations for incredible agility.
Designed to be a do-it-all for homeowners who want the best vacuum for pet hair, the Miele C3 Cat and Dog also comes with an STB 101 Mini Turbo brush. This one is ideal for delicate upholstery, cut-pile carpets, and heavily trafficked carpets.
Other notable highlights in this Miele C3 Cat and Dog vacuum review include its 6-speed motor settings that allow you to customize the suction to your floors. Its Automatic Cord Rewind is a nice bonus too as it eliminates the hassle of bending to wind up the super-long 36-foot power cord.
Best Lightweight For Seniors: Dyson V11 Animal (Stick-style)
A cordless and lightweight vacuum cleaner for pets will always attract users who have back problems. It gets even better if it has tons of suction power. We were asked to recommend the best stick vacuum for pet hair, this model would click first.
- 3600mAh Li-ion battery
- 3 cleaning modes
- 12-60 minutes clean time
- Transforms to handheld
This relatively inexpensive cordless vacuum cleaner uses a pack of 7 Li-ion batteries to eliminate the inconveniences caused by cord restrictions. This battery pack will last you 12-70 minutes depending on the cleaning mode; eco, boost, and auto.
In Boost, the battery will give you around 12 minutes of runtime, which is not so long. On the upside, you get an enormous suction performance, so you won’t need to make lots of passes to pick up pet hair tumbleweeds.
Auto mode is probably what you’ll be using most, though- judging from Dyson V11 Animal reviews from previous users. In Auto, you get a notably higher suction power compared to eco and up to 40 minutes of runtime.
What makes the Dyson V11 a standout in these best vacuum for pet hair reviews is its Nickel Torque Drive cleaning head. This is an advanced head engineered with Dyson’s Dynamic Load Sensor (DSL) technology.
Basically, this technology detects the amount of resistance on different types of floors to adjust motor speed accordingly.
The Dyson V11 Animal also has a mini-motorized tool that digs deep inside your carpets to detangle pet hairs embedded in the fibers.
Another noteworthy aspect of this Dyson V11 Animal review is its lightweight feel. At around 6.68 lbs, this is a model that most people can comfortably lift for some minutes when cleaning ceiling corners and curtains.
Lastly, a great feature that is commonly highlighted on Amazon is the ability to break down this stick vacuum into one of the best handheld vacuum for pet hair removal.
Best Hand Vacuum: Bissel Pet Hair Eraser 33A1
This Bissel Pet Hair Eraser 33A1 review brings one of the top-rated budget handheld vacuum cleaners on Amazon today. This is a tiny but unbelievably powerful model designed to get pet hair off your upholstery, area rugs, and furniture, among other soft and hard surfaces.
- 4 Amps motor
- 16ft power cord
- 2 dusting nozzles
- Cyclonic Cleaning system
One of the most affordable vacuums for pet hair, the Bissel 33A1, features a 4-amp motor, cyclonic technology, and a multi-layer filtration system.
This inexpensive handheld vacuum packs an incredible amount of suction power, especially at its price tag. It scores a lot of marks in terms of picking up hairs and debris without blowing it around. The manufacturer attributes this performance to the cyclonic assembly that spins dirt, dust, and debris towards the head where it is sucked in.
The Bissel Pet Hair Eraser uses 2 nozzles. The soft, rubber nozzle is flexible, and it helps in lifting pet hair, dust, and dirt from carpets and area rugs for sucking. The second nozzle is made of hard plastic and has a concentrated opening that helps in cleaning dry messes on hard surfaces, including tiles floors and hardwoods.
On the downside, this budget vacuum’s maneuverability is greatly affected by its corded design. However, if there is a powered socket nearby, its 16-foot power cord will still allow a good amount of coverage.
Best Robotic: Shark IQ R1001AE (Self Emptying Vacuum)
Most homeowners who don’t fancy vacuum cleaning are finding robotic vacuums quintessential. If you are among this population, or if you have a handful of kids and several pets at home, you’ll be glad to let the Shark IQ R1001AE do vacuuming for you.
- 90 minutes runtime per charge
- Wi-Fi connectivity
- Maps the surroundings
- Self-emptying bin
This was the best robotic pet hair vacuum at its price range last year, and we expect it to hold this title for quite some time. Also worth pointing out, this is one of the most inexpensive robot vacuums on Amazon today. So, if you’ve been searching for a budget totally hands-free vacuum for pet hair, this one could be it.
This is a low-profile robot vacuum with a diameter of around 12’’ and a height of 3.5’’. These measurements highly reduce the chances of the vacuum getting stuck under most of your furniture.
The Shark IQ robot has 2 buttons at the top; Clean and Dock. For maximum convenience, you can also operate it from the comfort of your phone via an App. The App also allows you to set up cleanup schedules, designate certain rooms, cycle between cleaning modes (Eco, Normal, and Max), and also view the cleaning history. You can also control it via voice commands using Alexa.
As any Shark IQ R1001AE review will reveal, this is one of the best vacuums for pet hair. It has an incredible amount of suction, and the brushrolls are self-cleaning too. This means that the issue of hair wrap or having to detangle trapped hair and fur manually is significantly reduced.
What sets the IQ apart from other robot vacuum cleaners in its price range is the ability to map its environment and know where each room is. Again, it knows where it has cleaned to avoid making unnecessary repetitions. Also, the fact that this model is self-emptying means that you’ll be enjoying optimum robot vacuuming experience. The bin itself has a capacity of 0.5 gallons and will require emptying after every 10 cleaning sessions or so.
The battery offers close to 90 minutes of runtime on one charge. In case it runs out of juice mid-session, this inexpensive robot vacuum for pet hair will automatically return to the charging station and resume cleaning afterward.
Spotless Mag Verdict
We all have varying opinions regarding the best vacuum for pet hair. The main determining factors will be our budget and the type of surfaces in our homes. In our opinion, this title goes to the Dyson Big Ball Animal 2.
Among other things, we like that it can handle different types of surfaces, and it also has an extendable wand for ceilings and curtains. We also think that it’s relatively inexpensive for what it does.
What are the differences between a pet hair vacuum and a regular vacuum?
These 2 devices share a lot in terms of design. However, the difference is in the details and performance.
If you’ve tried picking up tons of pet hair using a budget regular vacuum, you’ll realize that it tends to gum up easily. What happens is that the strands of hair wrap around the rollers and also embed on the brushes. This makes it hard for the vacuum head to roll and could even cause the drive belt to snap. This is the problem that pet-specific vacuum cleaners come to solve.
Here are a few key differences between pet hair vacuum and regular vacuum cleaners:
One of the key strengths that pet hair vacuums offer is a considerably higher suction power compared to their similar size regular cleaners. Having more pulling power means that the vacuum can suck fur in a few passes. It also prevents most of the pet hair from getting entangled on the brushes- the biggest problem that plagues regular vacuums.
ii) Brush roll
Pet hair vacuum cleaners also come with a motorized brush roll that has been purposely engineered to deal with stubborn hair and fur.
These motorized brush rolls are designed to dig deep into the carpets to detangle pet hairs and agitate trapped dander for suction. Even better, most of them also offer a mechanism to adjust the height of the roller to suit the type of your carpet (low-pile or high-pile).
These motorized brush rolls are versatile to handle both carpeted and bare floors. When cleaning bare floors, there is an option to switch off the brush-roll motor. This makes it easy to suction hair without marring the floors or scattering the dirt.
iii) Special attachments
Another significant difference between pet hair vacuums and regular vacuums is that the former comes with a slightly different accessory package.
Actually, most manufacturers today simply endow a standard vacuum with specialized tools to make it a pet hair vacuum. The color may change slightly too. Some of the accessories that most pet vacuums come with include dust brush tools, crevice tools, and turbo nozzles.
Should I get a pet hair vacuum cleaner? Are they worth the hype?
Generally, pet vacuums tend to perform much better than standard versions as far as picking hairs is concerned.
You need to be careful when choosing one, though. Not all models sold as the best vacuum for pet hair live up to their name. Some are just regular cleaners with ‘pet’ in their name and a slightly higher price.
Also, the market has a few powerful regular cleaners that clean pet fur and hair quite well, although they are not marketed as so.
So, don’t be enticed by the name alone. Get into the specifics and see what features make your target vacuum the best pet vacuum for removing hair and fur.
What to Consider when Buying a Pet Hair Vacuum
1. Type of Vacuum Cleaner
Similar to regular vacuum cleaners, pet vacuums come in 5 variants; upright, canister, handheld, robot, and stick. Your ideal model will depend on the level of convenience desired and the type of floors that you’ll be dealing with.
These vacuums have, for long, been a favorite in most US and UK households and for a few solid reasons. Upright vacuums use a popular design where the suction head and motor assembly are built into one unit.
Thanks to this concept, there are no limitations as far as the size of the motor is concerned. This explains why they are standouts in terms of deep carpet cleaning. They also work on bare floors if you are keen to get a model that offers an option to switch off the roller motor.
If you have several area rugs of varying pile thicknesses, you’ll need to get an upright vacuum that allows height adjustment.
These models also make the best vacuum for pet hair for homeowners on a budget. They are powerful but relatively inexpensive compared to canisters.
The first limitation to uprights is that they are generally bulky to take up and down the stairs. Secondly, although they offer an incredible edge-to-edge cleaning performance, they are a tad hard to use in corners and tight areas. Some of the recent models, including the Dyson Big Ball Animal 2 now come with a hose for this purpose, though.
A canister vacuum has the cleaning head attached to a wand, which connects to the vacuum unit via a hose.
Canister vacuums are powerful suckers versatile enough to clean and dust pretty much anything. These models come with a bevy of tools to clean carpets, bare floors, and even stairs. Their long hoses also make them ideal for spiffing up cobwebs on ceiling corners, curtains, walls, and furniture.
On the downside, canister vacuums are relatively pricier than uprights. Again, dragging the canister up and down a flight of stairs might be a nuisance for some users.
Handheld vacuums offer an inexpensive, compact, and lighter alternative to full-size pet hair vacuum cleaners. Although the weight varies from one brand to the other and with the type of attachment in use, these budget models are generally lightweight and weigh the utmost 5 pounds.
Their small size design makes them ideal for grab-and-go during quick cleanups. It also makes them perfect for use in RVs and boats and pretty much anywhere else where a compact vacuum can go. The benefits are endless, especially if you are eyeing a cordless model.
Although the size of the motor greatly reduces suction power, the market has several powerful handhelds with an incredible performance in removing pet hair. At a very minimum, a 4-volt handheld vacuum should be able to pick up what your pets leave behind without the need for multiple passes.
Stick vacuums are a blend of uprights and handhelds. They offer the cleaning power of the former, coupled with the maneuverability of the latter.
Most of them are cordless and can, therefore, access areas that the heavy and bulky upright vacuums won’t. Some of them also break down into a handheld unit for use in tighter spaces, including in your vehicle.
Robotic vacuum cleaners are the latest addition in the world of vacuum cleaners, and they have taken most households by storm. These cool devices will dutifully clean your rooms without a lot of help from you. You only need to pick any clutter like toys and socks and then give it the green light.
Robot vacuum cleaners are far from replacing your upright or canister vacuum. However, they have proved reliable in maintaining the floors between in-depth cleaning sessions using your main vacuum.
Are robot vacuum cleaners suitable for pet hair? Well, just like regular vacuums, some robots will do a great job picking pet hairs on the floor while others don’t suffice. Keep in mind: these don’t climb stairs. Also, they won’t clean your furniture.
2. Types of Filters
Other than hairs and furs, pets also shed a lot of dander. Pet dander is made up of tiny (sometimes microscopic) flecks of dead skin, which get airborne and eventually land on your carpet, furniture, and bedding.
If you are allergic to the dander, then you want a vacuum that removes it from your surfaces for good. The best vacuums for pet allergies utilize a closed system that prevents micro-pollutants from leaking back into the room. They also use an advanced filtration system, such as High-Efficiency Particulate Air (HEPA to ensure that at least 99% of the dander stays inside the vacuum.
Frequently Asked Questions
How do you get pet hair out of the carpet?
If your vacuum cleaner isn’t doing a satisfactory job suctioning all the hairs embedded on your carpet;
- Add a spoonful of liquid fabric softener in a spray bottle.
- Fill it up with water and mix.
- Spray it on your carpet and let it sit for 5 minutes and then vacuum.
How do you remove pet hair from clothes?
There are 3 tested and proven ways of removing pet hair from clothes;
i) Using a lint roller
This is the easiest and most effective way of getting pet hair off your clothes. You only need to run the sticky side of the lint roller over your clothes several times and all the hairs and fur will stick on it. The Scotch-Brite is one of the best lint rollers on Amazon today. See it here.
ii) Using a tape
If you don’t have a lint roller yet, a sticky tape works in a similar manner, only that it’s not as fast. To remove pet hair from your clothes using tape, wrap the tape over the palm of your hand with the sticky side out. Next, pat the tape over your fur-laden cloth. Replace the strip of tape as soon as it loses its stickiness.
iii) Using a dryer
You can also remove pet hair from your clothes using a dryer;
- Set the dryer on cool and throw your affected clothes in.
- Let the machine run for 5-10 minutes. Most of the hair will fall off and be trapped in the lint trap.
- If there’s still some visible pet hair on your clothes after this cycle, you can throw in a dryer sheet or a dryer ball into the load. Both of these will help in pulling more hair off your clothes.
How to get pet hair off sheets?
With the sheet spread on your bed, try to remove as much hair and fur as possible. You can run a peel-away lint roller on it, or wipe it down using a damp cloth, sponge, or cloth.
Hang the sheets over a clothesline and whack them using a large wooden spoon, a new, clean broom, tennis racket or anything else that comes close to these. Remember to do this outdoors, so the pet hair won’t fall on your floors and carpets.
Later on, throw the sheets in your dryer and add a few dryer sheets. Let them tumble at low heat for around 10 minutes. The hair should attach to the dryer sheets or get trapped in your dryer’s lint trap.
Keep in mind, depending on the amount of hair, you might want to run the dryer for a few more minutes. Again, remember to empty the lint trap to prevent the hair from getting loose and building up in your dryer.
How do you remove pet hair from a fleece blanket?
Method 1: Using a lint roller
- Give your fleece blanket a good shake outside to remove most of the loose pet hair, fur, and dust.
- Spread it on a flat surface.
- Run the lint roller back and forth across the blanket to get as much hair on the adhesive as possible.
- Peel off the sticky strip whenever it’s full and repeat until all hair is removed.
Method 2: Using rubber gloves
- Wear a rubber glove and damp it in water (rubber gloves with nubs offer the best friction).
- Wipe it across your fleece following one direction.
- For stubborn spots, dip the glove in water and repeat several times.
- You can rinse the glove in water or wipe it down using a towel or rag to prevent spreading it on your fleece again.
Use dry or dampened nubbed rubber gloves or a slightly wet sponge. Running either of these on the couch will attract pet hair like a magnet. You can rinse the gloves or sponge if necessary and repeat the process.
A cordless handheld vacuum is the easiest and the most convenient solution. You can also use dry or dampened rubber gloves by running them from top to bottom and in one direction. Gloves that are nubbed on the palm side offer the best results.
A handheld vacuum cleaner will offer the best solution here, especially when fitted with a crevice tool. If you don’t have one, using your regular vacuum’s hose attachment will help a great deal too.
Another option is to scoot a rubber squeegee across the couch. You can also wear a damp glove and wipe it down the furniture. Both the squeegee and damp glove collect the pet hair into a ball that you can easily pick and dispose of.
Before throwing your affected items in the washing machine, remove as much hair as possible from the fabric using either a lint roller or a scotch tape. Running a lightly damp glove across the fabric works great too.
Once you’ve removed most of the hair, throw the affected laundry and 2 dryer sheets in the machine set at low or no heat. Let the load tumble for 5-10 minutes. The toppling action and the anti-static properties of the dryer sheets will help loosen the hairs trapped on your laundry where they are caught in your machine’s lint trap.
This function isn’t standard in most vacuums. However, some models are fitted with odor-eliminating technologies and filters to freshen your air during the cleaning process.
Yes, these units require to be tuned every once in a while. More often than not, you’ll only need to empty the canister or bin when necessary and replace the filters. It’s also essential to check whether the brush rolls are entangled in hairs after every couple of uses.
Tips to Get the Most out of Your Pet Vacuum
- Always consider going twice over an area and in different directions. This will increase your chances of dislodging pet hair and dander embedded on the floors and carpets.
- After vacuuming, consider spraying some home freshener on the roller to eliminate any odors.
- Be sure to get a vacuum that best fits your type of floor. Luckily, most models work well on multiple surfaces. These can either adjust the cleaner head automatically or allow you to switch heads.
- When deep cleaning, move the furniture to ensure that no hair is trapped underneath.
- For furniture surfaces that are best cleaned without using a vacuum, for instance, wooden, suede, or microfiber surfaces, use a dampened cloth and run it in one direction. The dampness will attract the hairs and prevent them from falling to the ground.