Our Editors Tried the Best Vacuums for Pet Hair—These Actually Stood Up to the Mess
We tried every type of pet vacuum we could find. These make the top of the list for best vacuums for pet hair.
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We love having pets in our home. But the pet stains and hair that accompany them? Not so much. Pet hair removal is an especially daunting task. Whether you have cats or dogs, their fur clings tightly to fabrics and gets stuck in hard-to-reach places—giving even the most dependable vacuum a challenge if it isn’t the best vacuum for pet hair. But don’t fret, there are pet vacuums designed specifically for picking up pesky pet hair!
We researched the best pet vacuums and put them to the test in our own hairy households, gauging whether their suction, maneuverability and special features could stand up to real-life pets (and kids). These are the standout models that lived up to our expectations.
Here are some vacuum deals that can be helpful if you’re looking for pocket-friendly options!
The best vacuums for pet hair, tested and reviewed
- Best overall: Dyson Outsize Plus Vacuum
- Best value: Eureka Powerspeed Turbo Spotlight
- Best budget: Fabuletta 6-in-1 Cordless Lightweight Vacuum for Pet Hair
- Best reviewed on Amazon: Bissell CleanView Swivel Pet Vacuum
- Best vacuum mop: Tineco iFloor 3 Cordless Wet Dry Vacuum
- Best vacuum mop runner-up: Bissell Crosswave X7 Cordless Pet Pro Multi-Surface Wet Dry Vacuum
- Best stick vacuum: Black+Decker Powerseries Extreme Cordless Stick Vacuum
- Best for furniture: Bissell MultiClean Allergen Lift-Off Pet Vacuum
- Best robot vacuum: Shark IQ Robot Vacuum
- Best handheld vacuum: Bissell Pet Hair Eraser
Dyson Outsize Plus Vacuum
Tested by Nancy Snyder, Senior Shopping Editor, Pets
It’s bad enough that my pit bull mix, Ernie, sheds a lot, but his fur actually weaves deep into carpet and upholstery as if it were part of the fabric. Most vacuums and pet hair removers simply don’t discern between the two. Until the Dyson Outsize Plus. There are pet hair vacuums and then there are pet hair vacuums.
While the initial unboxing of this cordless vacuum and all its parts had me overwhelmed, I quickly discovered that it came packaged with everything I needed (and better yet, didn’t even realize I needed) to completely de-fur my home. The Digital Motorbar XL head deep cleaned my carpets and hard surfaces while clearing wrapped pet hair from the brush as it went. I used it all over my hardwood floors and area rugs while quietly thanking Dyson for switching to an even larger canister bin than their previous models. And after clearing the floors of fur, the Laser Slim Fluffy Cleaner Head illuminated microscopic dust and debris with a—you guessed it—green laser beam, so no trace went undetected.
The vacuum features four additional attachments for convenient, effective cleaning of just about every surface of your home and car. My favorite attachment was the Hair Screw Tool, which strongly gripped the furriest of surfaces, such as my dog’s bed or dog car hammock, to completely rid it of stubborn fur.
While I don’t have carpet, my parents do, and they dog sit for me often. I tested the hair-suctioning power of the Digital Motorbar XL on a strip of carpet and was amazed and embarrassed (and ultimately wondering if I would need to find new dog sitters) after seeing how much pet hair was pulled into the bin.
The vacuum LCD screen allows you to choose between three power modes or auto, which automatically adjusts suctioning power based on floor type. It also displays remaining run time (a feature I love), which is extra long thanks to the additional battery pack. While the Dyson Outsize Plus is heavier than other cordless, stick vacuums, I feel it’s a fair trade off in exchange for a powerful, effective vacuum that picks up more hair and needs emptying less often!
- Extra large head deep cleans pet hair and dirt from carpets and hardwood floors
- Features detangling vanes that prevent hair from catching on brush
- Cordless vacuum with docking station and two batteries for extended run time (up to 120 minutes)
- Extra large cannister means you empty the bin less often
- Laser-beam feature on Laser Slim Fluffy attachment highlights tiniest dust particles
- Multiple attachments for all cleaning needs and surfaces, including Hair Screw Tool and Crevice Tool
- Smart display shows remaining run time and allows you to select suctioning power mode (or auto mode changes based on floor type detected)
- Must continuously hold power button in order for vacuum to run
- Heavier than other cordless stick vacuums (specifically top heavy due to larger canister)
- Does not stand on its own when out of docking station (some reviewers complained of vacuum accidentally falling over between vacuuming breaks)
Best value vacuum for pet hair
Eureka PowerSpeed Turbo Spotlight
Tested by Caroline Lubinsky, Senior Shopping Editor
The Eureka PowerSpeed Turbo Spotlight is the inexpensive vacuum every pet owner needs. My lab/pit mix, Kobe, sheds like his life depends on it. If we don’t vacuum multiple times per week, the off-white living room rug turns into a dishwater gray speckled with Kobe hairs. However, I’m happy to report his fur was no match for this budget vacuum. I was impressed by the PowerSpeed’s ability to pick up embedded pet hair (I didn’t even need to use a carpet rake to agitate!). Once his bevvy of dog hair collects in the 2.6-liter dust pan, I simply press a button over our trash can and the canister empties.
Besides the handy LED headlights, this under-$100 vacuum comes with a crevice tool, a turbo pet brush and an upholstery tool. I was able to clean everything from couch cushions to Kobe’s bed in one swoop. Oh, and did I mention it’s light? At just 10 pounds, it’s easy to take from room to room or even up a staircase. You’ll be able to eradicate your home’s pet hair easily and on a budget. What could be better than that?
- Budget friendly without losing quality
- Powerful suction for picking up dog fur
- Lightweight and easy to maneuver
- Comes with upholstery and crevice tool attachments
- Works well on hardwood floor and thin carpet
- Retractable cord and bagless design
- LED headlights
- 2-year warranty
- Does not perform well on high-pile carpets
- Not cordless
Best budget vacuum
Fabuletta 6-in-1 Cordless Lightweight Vacuum
Tested by Nancy Snyder, Senior Shopping Editor, Pets
I have a pit bull mix that sheds all over my hardwood floors. I wanted a lightweight vacuum that was quick and easy to use on the regular, but didn’t take up too much space in the closet. As a dog mom, I also wanted something that wasn’t too loud (let’s be honest, keeping the dog from attacking the vacuum is sometimes half the battle of cleaning).
The Fabuletta 6-in-1 cordless lightweight vacuum checked all of the boxes, and did so at a fairly affordable price. Despite being ultra lightweight and fairly quiet, it powerfully sucked up hair and dirt from the floor. And the base features LED lights to illuminate dark corners and crevices, so you don’t miss a thing. I can even use it to give the dog bed an occasional cleaning! It comes equipped with a rechargeable battery, an optional wall-mount and two attachments—a dusting brush and crevice tool—for keeping my couch (and the hard-to-reach areas underneath it) hair free. An added bonus? It features a re-usable HEPA filter to clean and purify the air of pet dander while you vacuum.
- Budget friendly
- Lightweight, compact and fairly quiet (dog approved!)
- Works on multiple surfaces and fabrics
- Flexible swivel brush with LED lights for a more thorough cleaning
- Two additional attachments—dust brush and crevice tool
- Re-usable HEPA air filter (a vacuum and air filter in one)
- Easy, one-click dustbin release
- Re-chargeable battery runs for only up to 45 minutes, depending on setting (more than enough time for my needs, but larger areas may require more charging)
- Dustbin may need to be emptied frequently if using in multi-pet households or larger areas
Best reviewed on Amazon
Bissell Cleanview Swivel Pet Rewind
Tested by Reina Galhea, Deputy Shopping Editor
Not only does the Bissell Cleanview Swivel Pet Rewind tackle pet hair embedded in carpets, scattered across hardwood and woven into furniture upholstery, it features a simple fix for a universal problem with vacuums—having to wrap the power cord. No matter how many times I use it (and I’ve used it about once a week for a year and a half now), I never get tired of pressing the rewind button and watching the cord suck back into the vacuum base. The thirty seconds it saves me is almost as gratifying as how powerful of a cleaning tool this vacuum is.
Thanks to its three extra attachments (in addition to the standard tube and angled hose ends), I clean all kinds of different fabrics and surfaces with ease—floors, furniture, blankets, you name it. The TurboEraser®, a spinning hose attachment that functions like a handheld vacuum, is my go-to for cleaning the couch and the cat tree. And as for the “swivel” part of the name? This vacuum maneuvers around corners with a simple turn of my wrist, meaning I don’t have to rearrange the furniture just to get the carpets clean.
More than 20,000 Amazon reviewers agree that this vacuum is powerful, easy to use and affordable. Take it from five-star reviewer Laura, who asks, is loving a vacuum weird? “This thing is phenomenal,” she says. “Super easy to put together, maneuver, and then whoooaaaaa…does it do its job. I have one dog and 2 kids. I typically vacuum at least twice a week. This first time I used this vacuum I [was] equal parts horrified and fascinated by how much dog hair it pulled out of my rugs and furniture.”
- Cord rewind feature saves time (and your lower back!)
- Powerful suction that nabs pet hair across surfaces
- Three extra hose attachments that store conveniently on the vacuum
- Bagless design with a detachable dirt chamber and easy-empty latches
- Attachments not in use have a tendency to fall off the unit while vacuuming
Best vacuum mop combo
Tineco iFloor 3 Vacuum Mop
Tested by Megan Wood, Executive Editor, Shopping
I consider myself a clean freak. I’d confidently eat anything that dropped on the ground. After all, my floors were super clean, right? Right? Wrong. I tried the Tineco iFloor 3 Vacuum Mop, and the dirty water tank told a completely different story.
Unlike your regular mop, which pushes dirty water around your floor, this vacuum has two tanks: one for clean water and one for dirty water. The suction pulls up dirt, dog hair, dust and debris while the damp spongy roller washes the floors. I can usually suck up a pile of dog food and mop a muddy footprint away with just one gentle pass.
After my full review of the Tineco iFloor 3, I swear this mop changed my entire cleaning life. I’ve vacuum-mopped my floor about 100 times, and the water tank still comes out as black as a cup of coffee. I used to think I could get my floors to a perfectly clean state, but now I know I have to just keep on charging the iFloor 3.
I’ve now been using this vacuum for almost two years, and have since welcomed a second dog and a baby into my home. The iFloor 3 has held up to the extra dog hair, spit up and miscellaneous spills without missing a spot or needing any replacement parts.
- Cordless—no tripping on wires or having to plug and unplug
- Smart digital display alerts you when the vacuum is charged or if it’s blocked
- Docking station stores, cleans and charges the vacuum
- Quiet (I can watch TV while I vacuum!)
- Sometimes I’m ready to vacuum but the battery needs to charge
- You may have to refill the water tank mid-clean in larger homes (though the Tineco S5 has a larger water tank if you want to upgrade)
- Not for use on carpets or rugs
Best vacuum mop runner-up
Bissell CrossWave X7 Cordless Pet Pro Wet Dry Vacuum
Tested by Dawn Yanek, Senior Editor
I am always vacuuming and mopping my hardwood and tile floors, and honestly, who has time to do both of those things every day? Not me, which is why I was thrilled that the Bissell Crosswave X7 wet-dry vacuum lived up to its hype.
The CrossWave X7 boasts three settings—Hard Floors, Area Rugs and Turbo Pet—and comes with two containers of cleaning solution. A button starts the vacuum, and a trigger activates the mop, which has an LED light to illuminate the spot you’re working on. I particularly loved how easy it was to switch back and forth between these features, just in case I missed some crushed Cheerios next to the now-dried pet (or kid?) stain. I also have a lot of long hair that tends to get everywhere, and I was worried that it would get tangled in the plush roller brush. But nope—the suction funneled it right into the tank without a problem. Plus, this genius vacuum mop somehow made my old area rugs look brand-new in 60 seconds flat.
Just be aware that if you’re using this on a large space, you’ll have to frequently refill the tank with water and solution, and also empty the second tank full of dirty water and grime. That said, it’s a small price to pay for getting rid of all that grossness, which you won’t believe was actually on your floors before the X7 worked its magic. Once you do realize it, trust me—you’ll be using this brilliant little machine all. the. time.
After a few years of testing, I’m happy to report this trusty little vacuum mop is still hands-down the best cleaning product I own. I love that it allows me to multitask easily, not just switching between vacuuming and mopping with the press of a button, but also between hardwood, tile and carpeted floors with another. The only issue that has popped up is that it occasionally gets a little glitchy and shuts off shortly after I turn it on. According to Bissell’s website, this may be the result of excess hair getting tangled in the brush, though fixing the issue doesn’t always seem to be quite so cut and dry. That said, I’ve managed to get it working again every time, and I think the key here is running the self-cleaning cycle a little more regularly.
- Switches between vacuuming and mopping by pressing a trigger
- Effectively at eliminating both hair and stains
- Works on both hard floors and area rugs
- The vacuum doesn’t pick up larger, elevated items (like popcorn)
- You’ll need to refill and empty the tanks frequently if you’re working on a big space
- May get glitchy after some use (which may be prevented with regular maintenance)
Best stick vacuum
Black+Decker Powerseries Extreme Cordless Stick Vacuum
Tested by Anne Fritz, Deputy Editor
With two elementary school-age kids and one medium-size rescue dog in the house, I’m sweeping and vacuuming on a daily basis. I have a robot vacuum that I run regularly in my bedroom, but I find it cumbersome to lug up and down the stairs so it can access all areas of my house. Besides, I typically find a few errant Legos or hair ties on the bottom floor of my house—not ideal for a robot vac to suck up.
The Black+Decker stick vac appealed to me because it’s lightweight and cordless. At 10.5 pounds, it’s easy to move around and maneuver, with no cord in the way. I love the LED floorhead light that literally shines a light on dog hair, crumbs and other dirt that I otherwise might not have seen. When fully charged, it runs for 55 minutes—ample time for me to vacuum the areas I want to without it running out of charge.
My initial thoughts upon testing: The vacuum does an excellent job on the hardwood floors, even sucking up debris from the crevices. I found it to be about 80% effective when it came to picking up dog hairs from carpet and upholstery (but, to be fair, I’ve yet to find a vacuum that picks up 100% of pet hair). To really get it out, I use the ChomChom roller.
After a few years of consistently using this vacuum, I’m happy to report it has held up really well! (I can’t speak as highly about the Lego situation.)
- Useful as a stick vac or handheld vacuum—ideal for stairs or your car
- LED floorhead light ensures no dirt is left behind
- Not 100% effective at removing pet hair
- The clips for the battery and different vacuum heads are difficult to get on and off (I assume they’ll loosen over time)
- When I emptied the canister, some debris got stuck in the crevices and I had to work it out with a pen or other tool
Best for furniture
Bissell MultiClean Allergen Lift-Off Pet Pro
Tested by Kelly Kuehn, Associate Editor
The Bissell MultiClean is a must-have for pet parents. Upon initial testing, I was baffled by how much of my dog’s hair this lightweight vacuum sucked up within the first five minutes of use—it nabbed so much hair and dirt and thoroughly cleaned my carpet.
Now, a year later, I can’t believe I didn’t make this game-changing vacuum a cleaning staple in my home sooner! The vacuum is still going strong, sucking up a plethora of hidden dog hairs and dirt each day. My favorite part continues to be the TurboEraser® eraser attachment, which rids the furniture of my pup’s stubborn (and, I swear, endless) hair with ease. I actually look forward to vacuuming now, since it does such a good job. Can’t wait to see how it holds up in year two.
- Attachments make it easy to clean every nook and cranny of the house (including furniture)
- Lightweight and easy to move
- Lift-off feature makes it even easier to maneuver
- Picks up a lot of pet hair quickly
- TurboEraser® attachment is a bit loud when in use
- Suction is better on carpet compared to bare floors (but it still does a great job on my kitchen floor)
Best robot vacuum
Shark IQ Robot Vacuum with Self-Empty Base
Tested by Marisa Hillman, Shopping Writer
If you cringe at having to vacuum your floors, let a robot vacuum do it for you. That’s what I did. With the Shark IQ Robot Vacuum, I don’t have to think about vacuuming for up to 45 days. That’s because once the vacuum mapped my home, I scheduled whole-home cleanings (or specific rooms when things needed to be cleaned ASAP) using the SharkClean app. It also works with voice control via Amazon Alexa or Google Assistant. When the robot gets full, it takes itself back to its self-emptying base. Once it empties itself, it resumes cleaning wherever it left off.
I have been using this system every day for almost three years, and considering that I have four children and a lab that sheds like crazy, this vacuum is almost always running! There’s no denying that this robot has incredibly powerful suction, and I love how easily it goes from hardwood to carpet and back again. Plus, its self-cleaning brush roll prevents both human and pet hair from becoming wrapped around it, so I never have to break out the scissors.
- Allows for completely hands-off vacuuming
- High-efficiency filter that traps 99% of dust, dander and pet allergens down to 1 micron
- Compatible with Amazon Alexa and Google Assistant
- Requires a smart phone or virtual assistant to access all features
Best handheld vacuum
Bissell Pet Hair Eraser
Tested by Reina Galhea, Deputy Shopping Editor
The delightful part about having a ginger tabby is that his orange fur shows up on both dark and light surfaces, meaning my vacuum is permanently glued to my hand. And while I love my Bissell CleanView Swivel Rewind for bigger pet messes, it’s a pain to plug in from room to room when I’m spot cleaning. Enter: the Bissell Pet Hair Eraser.
The newest version of the Pet Hair Eraser comes with three suction attachments: a motorized brush, an upholstery tool and a crevice nozzle. Though the upholstery attachment didn’t seem to improve the vacuum’s function during my testing, the motorized brush was a wonder for removing fur from my couch, velvet office chair and cat bed (all of the fur baby’s highly-trafficked areas). I gave the crevice tool the ultimate test—the cat tree. I’m pleased to report it sucked up all the hair, claws fragments, stray litter and shredded rope from the tree itself, where Big Red gives himself a daily manicure. (It’s the only piece of furniture this cat is allowed to scratch.)
Though it doesn’t compare to the suction power of an upright vacuum, the Pet Hair Eraser is perfect for those trickier areas that a larger vacuum couldn’t reach. Even after a year, I find myself reaching for the Pet Hair Eraser on a daily basis to spot clean around the house. I’ve found that it works better for one-off messes (like vacuuming up the remnants of a carpet stain I treated with Angry Orange) than for continuous cleaning because of the long charge time, but it’s such a handy tool for keeping things tidy when I don’t want to break out the upright vacuum. And for a pet parent, it’s invaluable. See my full review of the Pet Hair Eraser here.
- Reaches nooks and crannies most other vacuums miss
- Works on various fabrics, including blankets, hard surfaces, carpet and furniture
- Relatively quiet
- Requires eight hours to charge
- Not the best choice for large areas
What to look for in a vacuum for pet hair
When looking for the best vacuum for pet hair, the two most important features for pet owners are suction power and filtration. According to Dyson Design Manager Josh Mutlow, “It’s vital that your machine has strong suction power across all floor types to ensure high performance, as carpets require much more suction power to deliver a proper clean than hard floors.”
And when it comes to a good filtration system, Mutlow says, “Most people who own vacuums don’t know there’s a filter in their vacuum, let alone how well it performs, so having a high-quality filtration system when you have a pet is very important.” As Mutlow points out, pet hair also means dander, which can cause allergies. He recommends a vacuum that features advanced, whole-machine filtration that only expels clean air.
After suction and filtration, pay attention to technology and features. Mutlow suggests looking for attachments and cleaner heads that contain brush bars, providing agitation on surfaces for optimal hair pickup. Attachments that include anti-tangle technology are also key. Not only do they help pick up hair, dirt and debris that are ground into the floor, they also help capture dander, pollen and other microscopic bacteria that might have made their way in from outside.
Looking for other ways to get your floors squeaky clean? Learn how to mop floors the right way, or check out the best mops and robot mops on the market. Or consider a vacuum mop. We’ve also got you covered when it comes to other types of pet messes, like getting rid of cat pee smell or cleaning dog poop from carpet.
How we tested the best vacuums for pet hair
There are tons of vacuums on the market that claim to be designed for pet owners. However, they’re not all created equal. In order to compile our list of the best vacuums for pet hair, we tried the top models in our own homes on real pet (and kid) messes. We considered features such as suction, maneuverability, cord length, weight and special features such as lights. We also took expert recommendations into consideration and sifted through thousands of reviews to see what other users had to say. The end result? We found 10 vacuums in a wide range of price points that all excel at cleaning stubborn pet hair. Read on to find the best one for your home.
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