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The 5 Best Vacuums for Cleaning Pet Hair

Assortment of vacuums against a blue background
  1. Dyson V11 Animal
  2. iRobot Roomba j7+
  3. ILIFE V3s Pro
  4. Kenmore BC4026 Pet-Friendly Pop-N-Go
  5. Dyson Ball Animal 2
  6. Buyer's Guide

Dogs and cats bring unconditional love and joy to their owners’ daily lives, giving snuggles and kisses through the good times and the bad. But despite how wonderful pets may be, every pet parent has come to terms with the fact that pet hair is now a permanent feature of their home, no matter how many times they may try to lint roll their clothes and furniture or use a deshedding tool. This stray hair can contribute to allergic reactions — including sneeziness, red eyes, itchiness, runny nose, and skin irritation — asthma, respiratory problems, poor indoor air quality, and housekeeping challenges.

The good news is that thanks to the best pet hair vacuums of 2023, your furry friends’ dander doesn’t have to be woven into the fibers of your clothing or upholstery anymore. This article will review the best vacuum innovations of the year for pet hair to make your purchase — and life — easier. Our team has evaluated the latest models from top brands in the industry to identify the best Dyson for pets, the best cordless stick vacuum for pet hair, the best lightweight pet vacuum, and so forth to help you find the right product for your needs. We consider various factors like suction power, filtration, maneuverability, and accessories in our review.

Whether you're dealing with light or heavy shedding, we've got you covered with options for every price range, home size, and floor type. Read on to find out which models made our list and which is best for your home and lifestyle.

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$$: 200-400
$$$: 600-800

Bestcovery’s Top Picks: Best Vacuums for Pet Hair

Dyson v11 Animal cordless vacuum in purple and gray

Dyson V11 Animal - Best Overall

The Dyson V11 Animal is a high-powered cordless vacuum designed to tackle pet hair and other debris with ease, thanks to its powerful motor that can generate up to 185 air watts of suction. This particular model might just be the best Dyson for pet hair. With several power settings and automatic adaptability to different floor types, this vacuum is highly effective at removing dirt and hair from carpets, hardwood floors, and upholstery. Dyson pet vacuums come with a range of accessories, including a mini motorized tool specifically designed for removing pet hair from upholstery and tight spaces. The V11 Animal also has a high-efficiency HEPA filter that captures 99.97% of particles as small as 0.3 microns, making it an excellent choice for people who deal with respiratory conditions or chronic allergic reactions. Users especially love that the V11 Animal has an intelligent LCD screen that displays real-time performance data, including battery life, filter maintenance reminders, and blockage alerts, making it easy to keep the vacuum running at peak performance. In sum, if you’re looking for the best cordless stick vacuum for pet hair, this is a powerful and versatile choice for homes with pets.

  • Swiveling floor head, fast suction of pet hair even on high-pile carpets
  • Crevice tool and mini motorized brush for cleaning upholstered furniture, pet beds, cat towers
  • Lightweight and maneuverable
  • 30-45 min run time with automatic/boost settings, long recharge time
  • Trigger-style power that must be held down during use
  • Upper-mid price range

Filter: Advanced, whole-machine filtration
Powerful Motor: 125,000 RPM
Strong Suction: Yes, 185 air watts
Powered/Motorized Brush Bar: Yes, spins 60 times per second
Can Use on Pet Hair Without Clogging: Yes
Type of Vacuum: Stick, handheld
Included Accessories: High-torque cleaner head, hair screw tool, combination tool, stubborn dirt brush, crevice tool, wand clip, docking station
Run Time: 60 minutes
Charge Time: 4 hours 30 minutes
Bin Volume: 0.2 gallons
Weight: 6.73 lbs
Special Features: LCD screen to show real-time performance reports

Price: $$$

iRobot Roomba J7+ robot vacuum with dock and smart phone

iRobot Roomba j7+ - Most Convenient

The Roomba j7+ Self-Emptying Robot Vacuum is one of the best cordless vacuums for pet hair, especially for busy people who would rather spend time with Fido at the dog park than vacuuming the house. It’s a high-end cleaning device designed to provide convenience and efficiency and includes a range of advanced features, including a self-emptying dustbin that can clean your home and dispose of debris without intervention. The vacuum uses advanced mapping technology to learn the layout of your home, so you can ensure minimal intrusion into your life by setting it to auto-clean while you’re away — and its Cliff Detect feature will keep it from ever falling down the stairs. The Roomba j7+ can also be controlled via a smartphone app or voice commands through Amazon Alexa or Google Assistant. If anyone in your household has pet allergies, rest assured the vacuum has a high-efficiency filter that captures 99% of allergens and pollutants, making it an excellent choice for homes with shedding animals — and the best cordless vacuum for hardwood floors and pet hair. Additionally, the vacuum is equipped with sensors that can detect and avoid pet waste, preventing the spread of bacteria and unpleasant odors. Overall, the Roomba j7+ self-emptying robot vacuum is a high-quality cleaning device that provides convenience and efficiency for busy households.

  • Self-emptying and auto-clean features
  • Accurately detects and avoids obstacles (yes, including pet waste)
  • High-performance cleaning
  • Complaints of noisy operation
  • Expensive
  • Must wait until after mapping is complete to set Keep Out Zones

Filter: Extra high-efficiency filter
Powerful Motor: Unspecified — “10x the power compared to Roomba 600 series”
Strong Suction: Yes
Powered/Motorized Brush Bar: Yes
Can Use on Pet Hair Without Clogging: Yes
Type of Vacuum: Robot vacuum
Included Accessories: 1 Clean Base® automatic dirt disposal, 2 dirt disposal bags, 1 North American line cord, 1 extra-high-efficiency filter, 1 extra corner brush (black)
Run Time: 85 minutes
Charge Time: ~1 hour 20 minutes
Bin Volume: Up to 60 days of debris or .42 gallons
Weight: 7.49 lbs
Special Features: Self-emptying, identifies obstacles like pet waste and cords, mapping system, 3-stage cleaning system, focuses on dirtiest areas with Dirt Detect technology, Edge-sweeping brush that gets walls and corners, dual multi-surface rubber brushes

Price: $$ - $$$

iLife v3s Pro robot vacuum in white

ILIFE V3s Pro - Budget Friendly

The ILIFE V3s Pro Robot Vacuum Cleaner is an excellent entry-level robotic vacuum designed to provide efficient and thorough cleaning for your home. If you're a pet owner, you'll love its tangle-free pet hair care technology, which prevents tangling in the suction opening in conjunction with the two high-performance filters that reduce the rate of clogging and maintain high suction. The vacuum itself measures a hair under 3 inches, allowing it to slip under small gaps under furniture to ensure no spot is missed. The oversized RoadRover wheels allow it to drive over obstacles without hanging up, and it can even avoid collisions with the help of its 10 sets of infrared sensors. Operating the V3s Pro is easy and hassle-free, thanks to its remote control or panel. There's also the option to pre-program a cleaning schedule, including the ability to set a daily cleaning routine. With up to 100 minutes of runtime, it can cover a decent chunk of your home before it finds its way back to its charging base.

  • Great first-timer robot vacuum
  • Low profile of 2.98 inches to reach under beds and couches
  • Glides easily across all floor types
  • Has to be reset any time there’s a power failure
  • Doesn’t always make its way back to the recharging dock
  • Needs to be emptied often

Filter: Two high-efficiency filters
Powerful Motor: Brushless DC motor offering 16,000 RPM
Strong Suction: 600 Pa suction system
Powered/Motorized Brush Bar: Brushless
Can Use on Pet Hair Without Clogging: Yes
Type of Vacuum: Robot
Included Accessories: LigRemote Control, Charging Dock, Side Brush, Power Adapter, Cleaning Tool, User Manual
Run Time: ~90 min
Charge Time: ~350 min
Dirt Capacity: 300ml
Weight: 4.85 lbs
Special Features: Auto-clean function and three other cleaning modes, auto recharge when power is low, scheduled cleaning capability, anti-drop function, infrared sensors to avoid obstacles, ultra-thin design

Price: $

Kenmore BC4026 Pet Friendly Pop-N-Go canister vacuum in blue

Kenmore BC4026 Pet-Friendly Pop-N-Go - Best Performance

Although the Kenmore BC4026 Pet-Friendly Pop-N-Go Bagged Canister Vacuum is heavy and corded, canister vacuums provide more powerful suction, better filtration, and deeper cleaning than many alternative styles. So if you have a heavy shedder in your house, consider this option! This pet-friendly vacuum cleaner has a detachable wand and several attachments for efficiently cleaning pet hair and debris from floors and furniture. Its electric floor sweeper brush is especially effective at pulling pet hair and dust from thick, high-pile carpets. The vacuum features a powerful 2-motor system that delivers strong suction for a thorough cleaning, and it uses HEPA-compliant disposable bags, which work in tandem with an exhaust filter to prevent the spread of allergens and simplify disposal of collected debris. Overall, we think the Kenmore BC4026 is an excellent option for pet owners who want a reliable and effective vacuum cleaner for maintaining a clean home.

  • Deeper suction and cleaning of pet hair
  • Superior filtration for allergies
  • Indicates when bag is full
  • Less maneuverable and portable due to heavy construction and corded design
  • Disposable bags

Filter: HEPA filtration with HEPA cloth bag design
Powerful Motor: Powerful two-motor system
Strong Suction: Yes; suction level can be changed without altering brush speed to help remove pet hair without damaging fabric
Powered/Motorized Brush Bar: Yes
Can Use on Pet Hair Without Clogging: Yes
Type of Vacuum: Bagged, corded canister vacuum
Included Accessories: Crevice tool, Pet PowerMate, bare floor tool, dust/upholstery brush, extendable telescopic wand for 9.5’ of reach
Run Time: N/A
Charge Time: N/A
Bag Capacity: 4L
Weight: 25.4 lbs
Special Features: 26' retractable cord, “check bag” indicator, variable power control, brush roll on/off switch, four levels of height adjustment, 360-degree hose swivel

Price: $$

Dyson Ball Animal 2 upright vacuum

Dyson Ball Animal 2 - Also Consider

The Dyson Ball Animal 2 pet vacuum cleaner is a powerful upright vacuum cleaner that is specifically designed to tackle tough tasks such as deep cleaning carpets, removing animal hair, and picking up ground-in dirt. It features Dyson's unique Ball™ design that allows the vacuum to pivot, making it extremely maneuverable around furniture and other household obstacles. There's also a self-adjusting cleaning head with an active base plate, meaning you won't have to constantly bend down to adjust the brush height. The vacuum also comes with a tangle-free turbine tool that removes hair from carpets and upholstery, a stair tool for effective cleaning on stairs, and a combination tool for flexible cleaning in hard-to-reach areas. It uses advanced whole-machine filtration to trap 99.97% of fine dust as small as 0.3 microns and has a washable lifetime filter. With a weight of 17.5 lb, a cord length of 30 ft, and a maximum reach of 40 ft, the Dyson Ball Animal 2 is a versatile and powerful vacuum cleaner for pet owners and anyone looking for a thorough clean.

  • Powerful suction
  • Easy maneuverability
  • Large capacity for less-frequent emptying
  • Tethered to an outlet
  • Heavier than other options
  • Short cord (reach of 40 ft maximum)

Filter: Advanced whole-machine filtration with washable lifetime filter
Powerful Motor: 11-amp motor
Strong Suction: 227 AW (in Boost mode)
Powered/Motorized Brush Bar: Yes
Can Use on Pet Hair Without Clogging: Yes
Type of Vacuum: Corded upright vacuum
Included Accessories: Tangle-free turbine tool, combination tool, stair tool
Run Time: N/A
Charge Time: N/A
Dirt Capacity: 0.55-gallon bin
Weight: 17.5 lb
Special Features: Ball technology for easy navigation, self-adjusting cleaner head, instant-release high-reach wand, tangle-free turbine tool, one-click dirty emptying, whole-machine filtration

Price: $$

Buyer's Guide

How Do I Choose a Vacuum Cleaner for Pet Hair?

If you’re looking for a pet hair vacuum, you should consider several factors to select an effective and efficient model. In our review, we considered the type of vacuum, filtration system, motor power, suction strength, accessories, battery life (for cordless models), and overall maneuverability. As you weigh your options, here’s what you should think about that will lead you to the best vacuum cleaner for pet hair.

Determine Your Needs

Pet owners share a common problem of pet hair, but not everyone has the same number or types of dogs, size of the home, or floor type. These are important considerations, as long pet hair will require stronger suction and more specialized attachments, and hard floors will require a powerful motorized brush to pick up hair, for example. Additionally, carpeted rooms might call for a vacuum with adjustable height settings to tackle deeper cleaning. Those with more square footage should probably opt for a corded vacuum rather than one that will run out of battery in an hour. Consider what your unique cleaning needs are, and choose what is the best cordless vacuum for pet hair for you.

Choose a Vacuum That Fits

Performance isn’t the only factor that matters when it comes to pet hair vacuums. You also need something that fits — physically in your space, financially in your budget, and in your overall lifestyle.

Based on our reviews, the best cordless stick vacuum for pet hair in a small apartment or single-family home would be the cordless Dyson V11 Animal. It’s a substantial investment, but it will last and serve you well for years with its powerful suction, motorized brush roll, and slim design that is easy to store and maneuver in tight spaces.

However, the Dyson Ball Animal 2 may be a better option for larger homes with more carpeted areas due to its unlimited runtime and powerful suction technology. It’s bulky, but you’ll have plenty of space to store it in a large home. Alternatively, if you have a bigger budget, a large house, and limited time, the iRobot Roomba j7+ could be a lifesaver and put time back into your daily routine.

Frequently Asked Questions About the Best Cordless Pet Vacuums

Are bagless or bagged vacuums better for allergies?

Both styles of vacuums can be great for removing allergens from your carpet upholstery, but they work differently. Bagged vacuums use disposable bags to collect dirt and pet hair, trapping them so they can’t escape into the air while you vacuum. In the end, you don’t have to expose yourself to the dander again — just throw the bag away. Bagless vacuums collect dirt and hair in a dustbin that you’ll empty directly into the trash, which may release dander back into the air upon disposal.

No matter what style of vacuum you go with, make sure to opt for one with a HEPA (high-efficiency particulate air) filter, which is designed to trap tiny allergen particles — and be sure to vacuum regularly in areas where your pets spend the most time, so you never end up with excessive buildup.

Are HEPA filter vacuums worth it?

Although vacuums with HEPA filters are more expensive, they are worth the investment for people with allergies or breathing problems. HEPA filters can capture particles as small as 0.3 microns with 99.97% efficiency, which means they can remove everything from pollen and dust mites to pet dander and mold spores from the air. So, to improve indoor air quality and reduce your risk of allergy or respiratory flare-ups, look for a vacuum with a true HEPA filter. This means the vacuum meets the HEPA filtration standard, unlike alternative models with filters labeled "HEPA-like" or "HEPA-type," which may not meet the same high standards.

What’s the best cordless pet hair vacuum for the car?

Many vacuums can be great for removing pet hair from your car. Here are a few factors that make a vacuum good for the job. Ultimately, the best cordless pet vacuum for your car will be the one that meets as many of these criteria as possible within your budget.

Portability: A lightweight and easy-to-maneuver vacuum is important when cleaning a car, as it allows you to move around the car easily and reach tight spaces.

Cordless: A cordless vacuum can be more convenient, eliminating the need to plug and unplug the vacuum as you move around the car.

Suction power: A vacuum with strong suction power is essential for picking up pet hair from upholstery and carpets.

Attachments: Attachments designed specifically to remove pet hair can easily clean various surfaces and tight spaces in the car. Look for vacuums with a crevice tool, upholstery tool, or motorized brush roll.

Filtration: A vacuum with good filtration can capture pet hair, dander, and other allergens, preventing them from recirculating into the air.

Noise level: If your pets get anxious or scared around loud noises, look for a vacuum with a lower noise level to minimize stress.

What’s the best vacuum for upholstery?

When it comes to cleaning upholstery, you need a vacuum that is powerful and effective enough to remove stubborn pet hair yet gentle enough not to damage delicate fabric surfaces. Look for a vacuum with a motorized brush roll that can agitate dirt and debris from upholstery and other soft surfaces, making it easier to pick up. Handheld and stick vacuums are generally the best styles to use because they have strong suction power and are portable and lightweight, making them easier to maneuver around furniture and in tight spaces. They also often come with specialized attachments, such as an upholstery or crevice tool, which can pick up pet hair, dirt, and debris effectively from upholstery and other soft surfaces.

What’s the best automatic vacuum for pet hair?

Automatic vacuums, like the iRobot Roomba j7+, can save pet owners much time and effort cleaning pet hair and other debris from their floors. These vacuums work autonomously, navigating around obstacles and cleaning under furniture without the need for manual intervention. This frees up time for you to spend with your four-legged friends and take care of other chores.

Automatic vacuums also tend to have specialized pet hair tools and features, such as tangle-free brush rolls and high-efficiency filters, for removing pet hair and allergens from floors and other surfaces. This can benefit pet owners who suffer from allergies or have multiple pets.

What’s the best vacuum for pet hair on a carpet?

Upright and canister vacuums are typically the best styles for pet hair on carpets. Upright vacuums have a powerful suction that can pull up pet hair and dirt deep within carpet fibers. They also have a brush roll that agitates the carpet and helps to loosen pet hair for easier removal. Canister vacuums also have strong suction power and often come with specialized pet hair tools, such as a motorized brush or a crevice tool to reach tighter spaces. Both vacuums also typically have a high-quality filtration system, essential for capturing pet dander and allergens.

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