The 3 Best Vacuum Cleaners for Pet Hair That You Can’t Live Without

April 24, 2019

I love my cat! 

He brings me immense amounts of joy with his silly antics and odd behavioral quirks, but I am confident that there isn’t a pet owner on the planet that would proudly claim that they love their pets loose hair and the woes of constantly having to vacuum it up.

It is definitely something that I have to deal with on constant basis because I have a white cat that seems to have a never-ending supply of hair to shed.

It almost makes you wonder why some mad scientist hasn’t extracted the cat hair gene and attempted to end male pattern baldness.

I digress...

Having a pet that sheds hair is a serious problem if you like the idea of a clean house and don’t particularly enjoy having the bottom of your socks serving as Swiffers. I’ve found that it actually doesn’t have to be that big of a deal with some routine maintenance and the right products to clean up the pet hair.

What you need and why you need it

It is important to understand your unique needs. Not all houses are created equal and not all pets have the same habits. Some animals like to frequent a few areas that will collect a lot of hair and some animals like to roam like polar bears searching for food in the arctic wilderness.

Whatever you case, here is what I found to be the most helpful criteria in making your decision:

What surface or area are you cleaning?

Hardwood Floors & Tile

Carpet & Rugs



This typically doesn’t present a problem as hard surfaces don’t trap hair. Basically any vacuum or broom is going to be sufficient enough to collect the hair off hard surfaces.

Carpet is where deep cleaning is most needed. Depending on the height and pile of your carpet, you’ll want something with lots of deep bristles and great suction power that will allow you to get deep into the fibers and pull up the embedded hairs.

Furniture is where mobility is needed or accessories. Getting deep into furniture requires specific attachments, but ultimately mobility is the best option for quickly cleaning furniture.

Depending on where you live, you’ll likely want a fully mobile solution. Having to bring out extension cords for a full canister vacuum is literally a pain in the ass.

How often are you cleaning?

Taking care of pet hair is like any chore. If you don’t do it frequently, then it becomes significantly more difficult to deal with as you procrastinate and allow the hair to build up. Hair becomes trapped in the corners of your baseboard, it gets embedded into the fibers of your rugs and carpet. I found that the most successful method involved SOME sort of cleaning at least once a week if not a few times a week.

  • The Daily Cleaning

I needed to vacuum at least every other day in order to keep up with the hair that my pet would shed, but my random spot treatments would involve pulling out the large canister and using attachments to hit under random furniture and areas that my cat frequently likes to hide out under.

I decided to look at a few robotic vacuums. While I know that most robotic vacuums aren’t going to provide the thorough cleaning that you’d be able to get with a full power canister vac, I knew that having something affordable that would clean every single day would ultimate keep down on the bulk of the hair and potentially require less frequent full cleanings.

  • The Weekly Cleaning

One thing that I did find tedious about cleaning daily with a big canister vacuum is that I didn’t really need to do a deep clean when I was consistently using my automated vacuum. What I wanted was something smaller that I could quickly grab and hit a few of the more common areas that I noticed pet hair would collect.

  • The Bi-Weekly & Monthly Deep Cleaning

When it comes to it, nothing is really going to give you the versatility and options that a full canister vacuum provide. While they may be a bit larger and take more time to pull out of storage and wrap their cords back up, they ultimately provide the best option for getting a deep clean of multiple surfaces (and furniture) in your home.

The Best All Around Solution For Pet Hair


I Recommend the canister vacuum combined with a robotic vacuum.

This is the solution that will work for the vast majority of consumers. It’s also the solution that I currently use. The canister vacuum is absolutely the best option for when you need to clean a variety of surfaces and also need to do a deep clean. The automatic vacuum is also a great resource for daily cleaning that will keep most of the hair to a minimum. They excel at cleaning pet hair from hardwood floors.

Daily, Weekly, Bi-Weekly and Monthly

This is a great option for smaller spaces and larger homes. I find that the Roomba 690 comes with just enough features to be able to clean 1 or 2 decently sized rooms each day. While you can definitely invest in more feature-packed automatic vacuums, the reality is that the current technology just won’t be enough to vacuum up all the pet hair.

Dyson Animal V

You’ll find that the Roomba works best to keep a few rooms generally clean. Keeping the pet hair down on a consistent basis is what will ultimately make your job easier.

The Dyson Animal is the best vacuum on the market you can buy as a pet owner, in my opinion. It it’s great for the weekly or monthly deep clean that will inevitably be needed. 

Who it's for?

This is the ideal solution for all living spaces large and small. The Roombas cover the general areas between the deep cleanings and the Dyson functions as a one size fits all vacuum cleaner.

This is a great solution if budget is not a major concern and you don’t mind investing into a solution that will virtually eliminate all pet hair in your household.

A household with lots of small children may not be the best place to have automated vacuum cleaners. Interrupting the flow of them generally produces inconsistent results. For the most part, pets stay away or can be placed in other rooms while automated cleaning.

Dyson Ball Animal 2 Total Clean Upright Vacuum Cleaner, Blue
  • The Dyson Ball Animal 2 has the strongest suction of any vacuum.¹
  • Ball technology helps you navigate around obstacles with a simple turn of the wrist. For easy,...
  • Great at hair pickup
  • Great Suction
  • Lots of attachments
  • Great on multiple surfaces
  • Heavy - 17lbs
  • Short Cord
  • Larger investment
iRobot Roomba 690 Robot Vacuum-Wi-Fi Connectivity, Works with Alexa, Good for Pet Hair, Carpets, Hard Floors, Self-Charging
  • Sleek, premium design complements your home décor; Includes 1 dual mode virtual wall barrier for...
  • 3 stage cleaning system and dual multi surface brushes pick up everything from small particles to...
  • Great at tight spaces & furniture
  • Control via App
  • Strong vacuum power
  • Not good with cables
  • Rugs can be troublesome
  • Cleaning can take an hour

The Best Pet Hair Vacuum Solution For Small Spaces

When you are living in an apartment or home that is less than 900 sq-ft, you rarely find yourself needing a full canister vacuum. I thought the battery time of 25-30 minutes sounded small, but I’ve rarely found myself in a smaller space needing to vacuum for more than 10-15 minutes of actual vacuum time.

While I do agree that there are many times where I’ve forgotten to charge the battery and that is annoying, typically these options are going to give you the best of both worlds in terms of mobility and space saving.

Weekly, Bi-Weekly and Monthly

The cordless vacuum is a great option for the quick clean that you might be doing around the house on a weekly or bi-weekly basis. If you’re allowing the hair to build up on a monthly basis, then this might not be the best option for you. I’ve found that when you have a lot of carpet and nooks, you can find yourself running out of battery life before you’ve thoroughly cleaned most of the high traffic areas that your pet gets in to.

Ultimately, this options provides the best mobile solution for smaller living spaces where you don’t have a lot of room to store an upright vacuum. While upright canisters may not be as large as the days of the Kirby, they still take up a relatively decent footprint in a closet.

Do you remember the massive metal Kirby vacuums? Fun Fact. My mother actually purchased one of those from a door to door salesman. My grandfather made her return it when he talked some sense into her that a $2000 vacuum was completely unnecessary.

Lots of cordless vacuums have detachable batteries and they have the ability to be mounted to wall when or even put behind a door when you don’t have the closet or utility space to store a full size. The Tineco A10 is a perfect example of this as it has a removable battery pack which makes for a really convenient charging solution.

Who it's for

This is the ideal solution for the small living space and apartment dweller that needs a vacuum solution that will cover everything from general cleaning, vehicle cleaning and full home cleaning.

The cordless vacuum may have its limitations in battery life and needing to be charged, but where it falls in the arena of operating time, it shines in its mobility and ease of use. You will never have to worry about going from room to room and shifting cords around. You can switch out attachments with ease and quickly move from your apartment to your car  and vacuum up pet hair without so much as a sweat.

The mobility of these vacuums more than make up for the fact that they run on batteries.

If you’re the type of individual that needs to quickly grab a vacuum and clean in a smaller space, this is the ideal solution for you. These are some of the best cordless vacuum cleaners in the market that are specialized to deal with pet hair.

Dyson V10 Cordless Stick Vacuum Cleaner: 14 Cyclones, Fade-Free Power, Whole Machine Filtration, Hygienic Bin Emptying, Wall Mounted, Up to 60 Min Runtime, Purple
  • Powerful suction to deep clean everywhere. 55% more suction than the Dyson V7.
  • Dyson technology helps create a cleaner, healthier home - Our vacuums and purifiers are...
  • Great mobility & small footprint
  • Lots of attachments
  • Great at picking up hair
  • 6 minute battery life on high power
  • Long charging time (up to 2-3 hours)
Tineco A10 Hero Cordless Stick Vacuum Cleaner
  • High performance 350W motor provides powerful suction for deep, thorough, multi-surface cleaning
  • Lightweight, cordless design easily maneuvers through every room
  • Lightweight
  • LED lights to see under furniture
  • Removable battery pack for easy charging
  • 10 minute battery life on Max mode
  • Not the strongest suction
  • Canister is small and fills quickly

The Best Single Canister Vacuum Solution for Pet Hair

When it comes to the home with multiple floors and lots of square footage, nothing beats the upright canister vacuum. 

Yes, it can be a burden to carry a 10-15 lb vacuum down multiple flights of stairs and wrestle with a cord that never seems to be quite long enough for what you need it for.

Don’t you just hate that when you want to reach that one last space and the cord just won’t reach and you try to force it. The vacuum ends up unplugging and you have to go plug it in to another outlet which is what you should have just done in the first place.

Ultimately, this is the best solution if you’re not interested in investing in multiple vacuum options and just want a single use device that is going to cover all your bases.

My recommendation is to go with models that will include all extra attachments so that you never run into a situation that your vacuum can’t handle.

Weekly and Monthly

While you could use an upright canister vacuum on a daily basis, nothing is stopping you, I find that after a long day of work, the last thing I want to do is pull out a rather large vacuum. This is okay because the power of the vacuums will more than make up for the fact that you might only want to clean every other week or even on a monthly basis depending on how much hair your pet sheds.

Definitely an option for the pet owner that wants to vacuum pet hair up on a bi-weekly and monthly basis. The strength and size of these units will definitely keep your house free of pet hair from virtually all surfaces.

Bissell Pet Hair Eraser 1650A Upright Vacuum with Tangle Free Brushroll
  • Tangle-free brush roll, specialized pet tools - remove embedded pet hair everywhere
  • NEW pet turboeraser tool, new snap on handle- 2in1 pet brush, brush on/off for scatter free cleaning

Shark NV752 Rotator Powered Lift-Away TruePet Upright Vacuum with HEPA Filter, Large Dust Cup Capacity, LED Headlights, Upholstery Tool, Perfect Pet Power Brush & Crevice Tool, Bordeaux
  • 2-IN-1 POWERED LIFT-AWAY TECHNOLOGY: Allows you to lift the pod away to deep-clean hard-to-reach...
  • ADVANCED SWIVEL STEERING: Easily maneuver your vacuum to get in and out of tight spaces, in corners,...

Dyson Ball Animal 2 Total Clean Upright Vacuum Cleaner, Blue
  • The Dyson Ball Animal 2 has the strongest suction of any vacuum.¹
  • Ball technology helps you navigate around obstacles with a simple turn of the wrist. For easy,...

Other Solutions For Removing And Dealing With Pet Hair

Swiffer Dusters & Mops

These are absolutely amazing when it comes to a quick run down of the hard surfaces in your house. I find that my kitchen is often the most common area that I find lumps of hair collecting in corners. The Swiffer duster and dry floor mop takes care of a quick spot treatment when I don’t really need to bring out an entire vacuum.

Swiffer Duster
  • 18 Count Pack
  • Up to 95% Allergen Removal* *Common inanimate allergens from cat and dog dander and dust mite matter

I think having a surplus of these in had is never a bad option. Removing pet hair from shelves, baseboards, chairs, furniture, tables and other nooks are exactly what helps you to keep your home feeling clean and free of pet hair.

The Swiffer duster can basically handle all those corners and lower areas that pet hair seem to gravitate towards. The Swiffer floor mop will help you hit the tile, cement, and wood areas that our pets love to hang out on.

Scotch Brite Lint Roller

How many times have you had company over where you missed a spot that your pet frequently sits and they’ve gotten absolutely COVERED in pet hair?

No need to feel embarrassed that you’ve added another layer of fabric to your guests clothes. I have MULTIPLE scotch brite lint rollers stashed around the house and even a few in the car.

You never know when you’re going to need one of these so it’s best to buy them in bulk packs and make sure you keep them handy. You can never have enough lint rollers.

Scotch-Brite Lint Roller
  • Picks up lint, fur, fuzz, hair and debris for a crisp, clean look
  • Reliable Scotch Brand adhesive

I’ve tried a lot of different brands and generic ones, but the scotch brite are the only ones that seem to work effectively and also peel very easily when it’s time to use another one.

I’ve also used a lot of those blue rubbery sticky units and while they do work, the ease of use in tearing off a sheet and throwing it in the trash far outweighs the price saving of having to constantly clean a reusable one over and over and over again.

Stay away from the red velvet lint rollers. Scotch-Brite is the way to go.

Works great on:

  • Clothing
  • Curtains
  • Furniture
  • Bedding

Last update on 2023-04-30 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

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