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You can’t stop the shedding, but thankfully, you’ve got these powerful vacuums on your side. Whatever your budget, we’ve rounded up the best pet hair vacuums that work for real dog and cat owners.
Finding the best vacuum is a research process, to be sure. A good vacuum is one of the most important (and most expensive) pet tools you’ll purchase. Before taking the plunge, consider:
- How often you use a vacuum (for example: daily, once every other day, once a week)
- Your carpet type
- Floor surface mix
- Size and type of living area
- Ease of use
- Allergy concerns (allergy sufferers need a vacuum with a HEPA filter)
For instance: do you frequently find long hairs trapped in your ultra shaggy carpets? Or do you struggle to suck up the kitty litter on the linoleum? Do you need a crevice tool for couch cushions? Do you have to climb stairs? Look carefully at the features for your specific scenario so you can feel confident that you’re getting what you need.
Of course, budget is also a factor. If you can swing it, the pricier pet hair vacuums often make up for the initial cost in longevity. Take a look at warranty details, too.
These pet hair vacuums range from handheld to canister to a standard upright vacuum, and all of them have great reviews from dog people, online and in our Rover community.
To prevent shedding, be sure to groom your dog regularly (and if you can, brush them outside!) Even regular grooming, however, can’t prevent the pileup of dog hair from certain coat types. That’s where a daily vacuum works wonders. Here are some of the best on the market, some with our very own Rover-verified reviews.
Best Budget Upright: Hoover PowerDrive Pet Bagless Upright Vacuum (Verified Review)
For the price, the Hoover PowerDrive is a good deal thanks to a few key features, and in our verified test, we found that it’s a decent, budget option that does the job.
Our tester noted that the machine, which consists of five separate “pieces”—the main vacuum, a dusting brush attachment, crevice tool attachment, turbo nozzle attachment, and the wand—is easily assembled, user-friendly, and easy to operate, with a smooth, gliding motion over various surfaces such as area rugs and hardwood floors.
She also liked:
- Its uncomplicated, easy to clean, bagless design, featuring a large-capacity dirt cup emptied with the push of a button.
- Washable, reusable, air-cleaning HEPA filters that cut down on waste and the need to order additional accessories.
- Good suction in both upright mode and with the crevice tool and turbo brush that collected most pet hair on surfaces.
- Extra-long cord keeps the operator from having to re-plug as often when moving from room to room.
Alternately, some features stood out for being less-than-useful:
For owners with timid or easily frightened pets in the household, something to keep in mind that our reviewer noted is that the machine isn’t any less noisy than most. As our tester said, “our dogs weren’t traumatized by the new vacuum, but it certainly wasn’t their new favorite toy.”
Other less-than-desirable features:
- The weight of the machine, a bulky 7 kg, which made it inconvenient to move up and down the stairs, clean the car, and store without taking up too much room.
- A lot of unnecessary plastic packaging in addition to a fair amount of cardboard packaging.
All in all, the Hoover PowerDrive Pet Bagless Upright Vacuum will do a serviceable job vacuuming your pet hair-filled home. It’s bulky and on the loud side, but an affordable option for the task.Buy Now on Amazon
Best Handheld: Shark Rocket Corded Handheld Vacuum (Verified Review)
The Shark Rocket is one of the best values on this list. As a handheld vacuum cleaner, it’s not ideal for cleaning large rooms, but it’s extremely useful when it comes to furniture, stairs, and quick cleanup jobs. If you need it for the car, a vacuum attachment kit for car detailing is only about 6 kg more.
So, how does it work? With a long power cord and stretch hose, it’s easy to maneouvre. The dusting brush is designed for hard-to-reach surfaces and the foot-long crevice tool is great for furniture. The True Pet motorized brush is designed especially for pet hair, but it doesn’t quite have the necessary “oomph” for deep carpets. For shorter carpets, bare floors, and upholstery, it’s just fine.
As a smaller vacuum than others on the list, the dust cup needs to be emptied more often—simply do it over a trash can so that you don’t get the dust flying everywhere. For the price and versatility, this is a good deal in handheld vacuums, particularly for car cleanup.
As our tester noted in her verified review: When compared to other models such as the Bissell Pet Hair Remover, “the Shark Rocket is more versatile, achieves better suction, generates less fan air and noise, works better on different floor types and conditions, and is easier to operate and clean in general.”Buy Now on Amazon
Best High-End Model: Miele Complete C3 Cat & Dog Canister Vacuum Cleaner (Verified Review)
Okay, we’ll just come right out and say it. This vacuum is expensive. It is very expensive. It is an investment in every sense of the word—but if you can afford it, the Miele is an absolute BEAST. There’s a reason it’s known as one of the best vacuums for pet hair you can buy. One Rover employee with a high-shedding husky mix says that her Miele is “the best thing [she] ever bought, hands-down.” Plus, it is built to outlast cheaper models—the manufacturer claims it has a 20-year life span.
With an air-cleaned, sealed filtration system, the Miele actually tackles pet odor along with dog and cat hair, pet dander, and regular old dirt. The dusting brush, crevice tool, and upholstery tool get those hard to reach areas, while the “turbo brush” attachment goes to town on cat hair.
Other details help the Miele stand out from the pack, including a 3D bumper that protects the walls and furniture from scuff marks while you clean. Strong suction, a complete seal, a sturdy vacuum head, and the six-stage motor that you can adjust with a foot pedal combine to make this a premier option.
In general, canister vacuum cleaners have more suction, but the tradeoff is needing to lug the canister around behind you as you clean. Our reviewer, who is used to upright vacuum cleaners, noted this wasn’t as big of a deal as she thought it would be—”I thought it would be annoying to drag it around while vacuuming, but I really didn’t even notice it”—but a bigger drawback was that unlike with many upright machines, Miele filters can’t be washed and re-used, and the bags are disposable and not reusable, either. “I’d prefer not to have to buy more filters,” our reviewer noted, and “it just doesn’t feel good to throw-away bags, environmentally and fiscally speaking.”
On the plus side, the Miele is very quiet; so quiet in fact, our reviewer said her normally-scared-of-the-vacuum-cleaner chow mix stuck around to observe the machine in use.
“I love everything except the need for a vacuum bag and non-washable, reusable filter. I could really see this vacuum shining in a home with a lot of deep plush carpet. It did a great job vacuuming our hardwood floors and the two rugs we have and was fantastic on the car’s carpet. It feels very solid, well balanced and runs nicely, leading me to think it will hold up over the years.”Buy Now on Amazon
Best Basic Upright: Eureka PowerSpeed Pet Bagless Upright Vacuum Cleaner (Verified Review)
Check out those cool LED headlights! They’re not just for show; they light up pet hair and dirt underneath couches and counters. “I never knew a lamp there could be so useful!” our reviewed reported.
But of course, what matters most is how well this Eureka pet vacuum picks up dirt, dog hair, and cat hair, and during our in-home test our reviewer noted strong suction, “from both the rotating brush intake on the floor and the hose when disconnected, crucial to handling pet hair.”
With five height adjustment settings, it works on everything from linoleum to high-pile carpet. But pet hair and fur will easily clog the canister and reduce performance, our reviewer found, so it’s “important to clean the roller brushes, the foam filter, and the accessory tools regularly. Empty the canister with every use. Cat hair was immediately present and interwoven in all brushes and therefore they will be most effective when cleaned regularly (perhaps every other vacuuming).”
Other practical features included a lightweight body (6 kg), easy to clean dirt cup, and a convenient cord rewind.
Potential drawbacks include a hose extension attachment that’s not long enough to reach ceiling corners (for cobwebs, etc.) and an awkward handle feel.
Our overall take? “This is a low-budget, economical vacuum with a lot of suction and some great features. It’s lightweight but still solid, seems like it could take some coffee-table corner bangs without crumbling, and has a nice headlamp at the base. I love the ability to clean down to bare floors, which is especially useful before mopping or steaming. The positives strongly outweigh the negatives. Overall, the vacuum is very intuitive to assemble, use, and maintain.”Buy Now on Amazon
Best for Small Jobs Handheld: Bissell Pet Hair Eraser Corded Hand Vacuum (Verified Review)
While it won’t replace a large vacuum for bigger surfaces, Bissell’s little number is perfect for furniture, dog beds, cat stands, and small messes. It’s lightweight, handheld, and boasts a nozzle with rubber comb-like bristles to grab dog and cat hair.
Note: As our reviewer found over and over again, the Pet Hair Remover is really just for pet hair. It’s not as effective for sucking up regular old dirt (read our in-depth review of the Bissell here). Looking for other handheld options? See our guide on handheld pet hair vacuums.Buy Now on Amazon
Studies show a whopping 15% of the population is allergic to pets. One study showed that even if advised to give up their pet by their doctor, only one of five people did.
What makes a person allergic? A secreted protein released by dander and saliva is to blame—these allergens are sticky, clinging to pet fur but also clothing, mattresses, drapes, or bedding for long periods of time. They also stay suspended in the air for several hours.
To deal with your allergies, invest in a great vacuum. Vacuuming frequently can keep allergens from piling up. The single most important key to vacuuming frequently is to use a vacuum with a HEPA filter, which removes 99.97% of all tiny particles.
Even more important is a vacuum that can trap allergens instead of redistributing them through the air. The vacuum must be properly sealed or dirty air can bypass the filter, sending allergens right back into the home.
Once you have the right vacuum, make sure you empty it outside in your outdoor garbage can to prevent spreading the trapped allergens in your home.
Shark has several models of pet vacuums. So, what sets the APEX apart? It’s the biggest and most powerful one, with 1350 watts of sucking power. Some reviewers say it’s a bit heavy, but others don’t mind because of how strong it is. Plus, the canister detaches to become a handheld, portable vacuum to use on stairs. Whatever function you’re using, the APEX’s Complete Seal, anti-allergen HEPA filtration system removes allergens and pet odors. And, it has built-in noise reduction to protect your ears—and your pets’ ears—from that scary vacuum cleaner sound.
The APEX has one more super-cool feature: a self-cleaning brush roll that removes pet hair as it’s picked up, directing it straight into the canister. No more stuck rollers or picking and unwrapping long hair from the roller brush with your fingers!Buy Now on Amazon
This vacuum is expensive, but according to the hundreds of people who’ve left reviews about this “dream come true for pet owners,” the Dyson Ball Animal Upright is worth the investment. If you’re ready to do some deep cleaning, this vacuum is here for you.
Beyond having the best in basically every category from suction to filtration, this vacuum is designed specifically for homes with pets, with a tangle-free turbine tool that removes hair. This vacuum doesn’t use filters but rather, features whole machine HEPA filtration. That’s why it’s both asthma- and allergy-friendly. The cleaner head adjusts automatically for the type of surface, which means you don’t have to push any buttons when switching from hard floors to carpets.
There are two downsides. One is that if you’re dealing with a lot of pet hair, this vacuum can get clogged—specifically the internal fine mesh screen. It’s relatively easy to clean it out, but you’ll have to take apart the vacuum to do so and get that suction back.
Lastly, some reviewers complain of its weight, so if you have trouble with lifting, this may not be the vacuum for you.Buy Now on Amazon
Black + Decker does full-size vacuum cleaners, too. This 2-in-1 anti-allergen vacuum has a high-performance filter that captures over 99% of allergens, and it can run for up to an hour on a single charge. Plus, you can go from floors to ceilings with the extension wand and four-foot hose. Extra features include touchpad controls, adjustable suction speed, and LED lights.Buy Now on Amazon
Kenmore makes old-school workhorse vacuums that have stood the test of time. This upright bagged beltless model has a fast-spinning roller brush that picks up dander, pet hair, and dirt from floors, furniture, and stairs. Plus, the HEPA filter system keeps 99.97% of allergens “in the bag.” It’s even certified by the Asthma and Allergy Foundation of America (AAFA). The included Pet Handi-Mate tool cleans hard-to-reach places.Buy Now on Amazon
I know what you’re thinking: a bagged vacuum? Who can be bothered? But there are benefits to the bag. For one thing, they contain all that sucked-up dirt and pet hair in one disposable receptacle, which means you don’t have to vacuum the vacuum cleaner itself.
The Eureka Pet Lovers canister vacuum is ideal for pet people with allergies because all that dander and dust goes straight into the bag with less risk of it re-entering the air. In fact, its built-in HEPA filtration system captures over 99.7% of the dust.
Reviewers like how compact this unit is, making it handy for vacuuming multilevel homes. And as a bonus, it comes in several bright colors.Buy Now on Amazon
Some of us like to set our vacuums free and forget about ’em, and to that, we say, more (suction) power to ya. Robot vacuums for the win! This alternative to the Roomba was designed specifically for pet owners, with features aimed at picking up hair and dust.
Though it’s pricier than others on the list, the convenience may just be worth it for you. See more robot vacuums for pet owners.
Pro tip: you can find older versions at half the cost.Buy Now on Amazon
If you’ve got your eye on a Dyson vacuum but also want something flexible and lightweight, this cordless stick vacuum might be for you. The upgraded Dyson V11 is very popular with pet owners thanks to its efficient motor, which makes it much more powerful than other stick vacuums on the market.
It works well on both carpet and hardwood floors and comes with all the typical attachments, including a crevice tool for sucking up hair, crumbs, and dirt from between couch cushions and under furniture.
Like other Dyson vacuums, the filtration system is excellent—and while yes, it’s battery-operated, the battery life is surprisingly good. The charging time is between 3.5 – 4.5 hours, which does mean you’ve got to take a breather between heavy cleaning sessions (if they’re going to last longer than 60 minutes at a time.)
We especially like that this pet vacuum converts to a handheld vacuum, which makes it a great upholstery tool or stair vacuum.Buy Now on Amazon
The Shark Rotator Powered Lift-Away TruePet is a high-quality alternative to the Dyson that many pet parents swear by. Beyond great suction, commenters love how lightweight, maneuverable, and easy to handle it is. Shark offers a variety of vacuums; this one is their pet-specific model.
The TruePet converts from an upright vacuum cleaner to a handheld one when you’re working with stairs and furniture, though it is heavy, so vacuuming stairs can get awkward if you have several to do. Some reviewers also note that the suction is not as good on very thick carpets. That said, this is definitely one of the best pet hair vacuums in this price range.
A lower-priced alternative from Shark is the Shark Navigator LiftAway, which features the same anti-allergen seal technology but doesn’t have all the bells and whistles of the Rotator.Buy Now on Amazon
The Electrolux vacuum is particularly beloved for its ability to suck up long pet hairs from plush or extra-soft carpets. Reviewers point out that its suction power and brush rolls easily handle deep carpet without getting clogged. In fact, the brush rolls have a self-cleaning feature to prevent tangles. Adjust the height for use on a variety of surfaces.
Some users complain about hard-to-reach customer service for this brand, however.Buy Now on Amazon
The Bissell Cleanview is notable for its swivel steering, which makes it fast and easy to maneuver around your floors. Reviewers love how versatile it is; it can go from wood floors to tiles to carpet with no problem. And the specialized pet tools for cleaning mini-blinds, corners, and upholstery store right onboard, so you can switch out tools in a jiffy.
Another great feature of this vacuum: its retractable cord. Just press the “Rewind” button to wrap up the cord and store it away for the next time you need to clean up pet hair.Buy Now on Amazon
This lightweight, bagless pet vacuum cleaner is a bargain buy. It may not have all the bells and whistles of some of the pricier vacuums available, but its SpinPro roller brush and strong suction help lift and remove pet hair and dirt. It even comes with a detachable cleaning wand and “Turboclaw” pet tool to easily vacuum couches and crevices.
Reviewers praise the strong, long-lasting suction. Overall, the Dirt Devil Razor is a great choice for pet people on a budget.Buy Now on Amazon
Here’s another hands-free robot vacuum that does the work so you can put up your feet and relax with your dog. At under 3″ tall, the eufy BoostIQ fits under low furniture to suck up all that dust, dirt, and pet hair. And reviewers love how quiet it is, with powerful suction that’s no louder than a microwave.Buy Now on Amazon
One of the most unique-looking vacuums we’ve ever seen, the Bissell Air Ram is also uniquely good at cleaning up pet hair. With a 22V lithium-ion battery, it delivers up to 40 minutes of powerful suction with no pesky cords underfoot. Speaking of feet, use yours to push the large on/off foot pedal without bending down. Purchasers say the Air Ram is incredibly lightweight, making it easy to maneuver around furniture.Buy Now on Amazon
The FloorRover Upright Vacuum looks shiny and modern, and according to reviewers, cleans a lot better than old-fashioned vacuums. With an ergonomic handle, easy-glide wheels, and swivel steering, it’s comfortable to steer around the whole house.
The attached pet turbo brush will spin its turbo blades to grab pet hair and dander. And once you’re done vacuuming, just rinse off the filters under a faucet.Buy Now on Amazon
This powerful handheld vacuum is cordless, lightweight, and STRONG. It’s also ultra-compact and portable, making it perfect for everything from vacuuming the car to sucking up furballs from floors. The included pet hair brush even removes pet hair from upholstery.
Reviewers love how portable and flexible the Flex Vac is, saying it’s great for everything from sucking up cat litter to cleaning the interior of an RV.Buy Now on Amazon
The right pet hair vacuum is out there. Do your research to get the right fit, then sit back and enjoy the benefits of less pet hair and dander in your home.