The Best Vacuum Cleaners for Pet Owners

Person vacuuming a couch while a cat stretches in the background
Kiwis/Shutterstock

When it comes to pet hair removal, you need a dedicated vacuum cleaner specifically designed with pet hair in mind. We’ve checked out the best vacuum cleaners for the job.

Pet hair, as any pet owner can tell you, gets into everything. Thin hairs, like cat hair, can weave right into many upholstery types. Dog and cat hair alike gets tangled up in carpet fibers. Getting all that hair out with a regular vacuum cleaner is a real chore with a plain old vacuum. Vacuums designed for pet owners feature beater bars and attachments designed to pull fur out of carpets and fabrics. And of course, all of these offer powerful suction too so they’ll suck up anything unpleasant in a speedy fashion.

Whether you want an upright solution, canister vacuum cleaner, or even a handheld option, we’ve got the right tool for the job here. It’s all too easy for your cat or dog to shed their fur around the house, leaving your home looking less pleasant than you’d like it to. Here’s our pick of the vacuum cleaners for pet owners.

Best Overall: Dyson Upright Vacuum Cleaner Ball Animal 2 ($499)

Dyson Upright Vacuum Cleaner Ball Animal 2
Dyson

Dyson vacuum cleaners are never cheap, but they are powerful and a great investment. The Dyson Upright Vacuum Cleaner Ball Animal 2 promises the strongest suction of any vacuum cleaner and, as the people on staff with pets and Dyson can attest, it’s great at tackling pet fur. It has a whole-machine HEPA filtration system that ensures allergens and bacteria are captured and trapped, which is ideal if you need to clean up after a stinky pet once in a while.

Additionally, its self-adjusting cleaner head seals in suction, whether you’re using it across carpet, wood, vinyl or tile floors. There’s a wand and long-reach hose release action too, so you can always sneak it under the sofa or clean corners of the ceiling without too much hassle.

Another pet hair focused feature is its turbine tool which easily removes pet hair from carpets and upholstery without tangling. It’s worth noting though that you can buy this accessory separately and slot it onto your existing Dyson vacuum cleaner. Now, we’re not saying it makes your regular Dyson as great as this specialist one, but it is substantially cheaper than buying a whole new unit. It’s certainly worth considering if there’s nothing wrong with your existing vacuum cleaner.

Best Lightweight Option: SharkNinja Rocket DeluxePro Ultra-Light Upright Corded Stick Vacuum ($215)

SharkNinja Rocket DeluxePro Ultra-Light Upright Corded Stick Vacuum
SharkNinja

A fundamental issue with more powerful vacuum cleaners is that typically they’re pretty heavy. If you have any mobility issues, this is a big problem. That’s where the SharkNinja Rocket DeluxePro Ultra-Light Upright Corded Stick Vacuum swoops in to solve things. It only weighs just under 9 lbs and is far less bulky to carry or push around than other vacuum cleaners. Despite its lightweight nature, it still packs a punch when it comes to suction power.

On hard floors, the vacuum cleaner easily picks up surface litter as well as stuck-on debris. It also has a pet multi-tool that works to pick up embedded pet hair on any surface you try it on. Alongside that is powerful LED lights so you can easily spot hidden debris while you’re cleaning up. It’s super easy to move around due to its swivel steering system too.

The only downside? Well, its capacity isn’t the greatest so expect to have to empty it often if you have a large house. Still, it means you don’t have to worry about carrying all that extra weight while you clean.

Best Budget Choice: Hoover T-Series WindTunnel Pet Rewind Bagless Corded Upright Vacuum ($90)

Not all vacuum cleaners for pet owners have to break the bank. The Hoover T-Series WindTunnel Pet Rewind Bagless Corded Upright Vacuum demonstrates that ably. At $90, it offers similar features to more expensive vacuum cleaners, albeit maybe not quite as powerfully done.

It has an air-powered pet hand tool for removing pet hair from floors, a pet upholstery tool for cleaning furniture, as well as a crevice tool and extension wand. There’s also 5 position carpet height adjustment so you can deal with pretty much any flooring type imaginable.

It’s not quite as powerful as the Dyson and it’s certainly heavy at 19lbs, but if every penny counts, this is a decent way of ensuring your floors remain pet hair free.

Best Canister Vacuum Cleaner: Dyson Ball MultiFloor Canister Vacuum ($280)

Dyson Ball MultiFloor Canister Vacuum
Dyson

An upright vacuum cleaner isn’t for everyone. A canister based one is particularly great for extensive bare floors due to maneuverability, plus it’s a little more flexible when it comes to things like dragging it out to the car to clean up there.

Whatever your reasoning for going with a canister vacuum cleaner, buy the Dyson Ball MultiFloor Canister Vacuum for the best pet hair removal. It has HEPA filtration like its upright counterpart, along with suction nearly as powerful as the Animal 2. Its maximum reach is an impressive 45 feet with a turbine head that’s controlled at the handle so you don’t have to keep bending down all the time. It’s simple yet super effective.

Best Handheld Cordless Vacuum Cleaner: Black + Decker Max Lithium Flex Vac ($109)

Black + Decker Max Lithium Flex Vac
Black + Decker

The Black + Decker Max Lithium Flex Vac is a bit of a magic little device for a low price. Long gone are the days where handheld cordless vacuum cleaners were weak and took forever to clean. This one has a strong suction power that means you can use it around the house to clean up obvious spills or even just vacuum the staircase rather than worry about moving a larger vacuum cleaner up and down it. It’s also great for using in the car.

Its pet hair brush attachment easily removes stubborn pet hair in all these places, with a 3 stage filtration system meaning none of it is going to escape any time soon. The bowl and filters are all easy to wash too. It’s 3lbs of surprising power.

Jennifer Allen Jennifer Allen
Jennifer is a freelance writer for ReviewGeek. In the past decade, she's also written for Wareable, TechRadar, Mashable, Eurogamer, Gamasutra, Playboy, and PCWorld. Read Full Bio »

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