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Let’s face it: hair is part of the bargain when you decide to become a pet owner. While you can try to cut down on shedding by feeding your pup a high-quality food and brushing him or her more often, it’s still no substitute for a good, quality vacuum cleaner to keep the mess contained. However, not all vacuums are created equal, and part of keeping clean means choosing a device that’s up to the task. So what is the best vacuum for pet hair? We’ve taken a look a some of the best picker-uppers in the business and share our top three favorites in this article.
Our Choices For Best Pet Hair Vacuums
- Canister – Eureka 3684F Mighty Mile
- Upright – Shark Rotator Professional Lift Away
- Stick – Bissell 1954 Bolt Lithium Ion Pet
- Canister (Honorable Mention) – Dyson Cinetic Big Ball Animal + Allergy
- Stick (Honorable Mention) – Electrolux Ergorapido Power Ion
Pet Vacuums vs. Regular Vacuums
You may be asking yourself why you need a vacuum specifically for pet hair. While regular and pet vacuums look and have many, if not all, of the same outward features, pet hair vacuums boast certain enhanced attributes that make them more capable of handling a higher volume of hair and dander. Three things that make them more suited for handling your household are:
- Enhanced suction.
- Tailored tools and accessories.
- High-performing filtration systems.
What to Consider When Choosing a Pet Hair Vacuum
Before choosing a pet hair vacuum, think about what type of vacuum would work best for your home and needs. Just like regular vacuums, there are different sizes, styles, and performing powers for pet hair picker-uppers. The three main types of vacuums you’ll encounter are upright, canister, and stick vacuums. The style you choose will depend on the size of your space, how much hair and dander you’re dealing with, and what you’re willing and able to pay.
For large carpeted areas, the upright typically wins for easy use and maneuverability. It’s more compact than a canister vac, yet less so than a stick. So it falls right in the middle when you’re considering storage. Until recent years, uprights were less productive on multiple surfaces (i.e. tile, hardwoods, etc.) but with increased attachments and suction capabilities, they are now a top option for vacuum shoppers.
For overall cleaning of various surfaces — from carpet to hardwoods — canister vacuums are typically the best choice. On many, you can turn on and off suction cycles depending on the type of floor you’re covering. The largest and most bulky of the three options, canister vacs definitely need more storage space and can be a little more of a pain to drag around, especially up and down stairs.But their overall cleaning power and ability to access tight spaces make them a great option.
If you have a large home and multiple pets, a stick is probably not the best choice, yet for small spaces and small messes, a stick vacuum can be a lifesaver. These slim, upright vacs take up very little space and are often battery charged (no cords!). So while you may only get a certain number of minutes vacuuming time on one charge, you don’t have to deal with dragging around a pesky cord. Many stick vacuums also have a built-in hand-held vac that detaches from the main vacuum to make even the smallest messes easy to access and clean.
Bag Vs Bagless Vacs
Within each of these three main types of vacuums, you also need to consider whether you want a vacuum that requires a bag, or one that is bagless. While bag vacs contain the dirt, hair, and dander more efficiently, they also add an increased expense and aggravation to the cleaning process. A few pros of most bagless vacuums include:
- Saving money: With bagless options here are no bags to buy.
- Eco-friendly: Bagless vacs are easier on the environment as they don’t put another unnecessary bag in the landfill.
- Easy to empty: Today’s canisters are so easy to empty that you won’t even miss the bag.
- Transparency: You’ll know when your vacuum isn’t doing its job because you can see what it’s picking up (or not capturing at all).
The Eureka 3684F canister vacuum has a powerful brush roll to help deep clean your carpets and get every strand of pet hair (or almost – we are not prepared to make a guarantee about all those pesky, wiry hairs 😉 ). A set of tools is provided as well for places like stairs and upholstery. It’s great for cleaning your home and the inside of your car (if you take your pet on car trips often this can be handy!). It is also reasonably priced with the vacuum currently retailing at $78.00.
This upright is actually not designed as a pet-specific vacuum, yet its features put it right up there with some of the best for the hairiest jobs as well as the “normal” messes. Portable, lightweight, and affordable, this vac is a serious contender for your pet-cleaning needs. The biggest complaints with this machine are mainly construction-based; when it comes to the Shark Rotator’s performance, however, the results are unquestionable. For a pet vacuum that delivers on both price — it retails for around $200 — and performance, you can’t go wrong with the Shark Rotator Professional Lift-Away.
This vacuum does a great job of sucking things up that normally you can only get with a broom and dustpan. And, like other stick vacs, this little guy is a grab and go convenient picker upper! The vacuum includes attachments and even separates into a hand-vac option. The structure bends in the middle to make it easy to vacuum in between tables and chairs, and it currently retails at $149.99.
This Dyson vacuum not only helps with pet hair but is also great for those of you with allergies. It has a strong suction, and there is no filter to wash or replace. It has many adjustments to get pet hair out of corners and other difficult to reach places. The downside? The price is pretty hefty, $594.99, which is why it is our honorable mention.
The Electrolux Ergorapido Power Ion is another one of the top vacuums for pet hair. This sleek, slim vac is both an upright and a hand-held, depending on how you choose to use it. Also, it packs quite a punch for its size and is cordless so you can use it anywhere. All while retailing around $220. Overall, this stick model is a steal for the price and performance. Just be prepared to replace the batteries sooner rather than later.
The Best Way To Vacuum
Did you know there was a proper way to vacuum? Watch this video to learn how to get your floors even cleaner, especially if you pair these tips with a new pet hair cleaning machine like those recommended above.
You Have Options With Pet Vacuums
It’s recommended that if you have a pet, you should vacuum in high traffic areas daily. As with most gadget options, there is not a one size fits all solution for pet fur vacuums! We hope this guide helps you get on the right track so you can enjoy a hair-free home with you furry friend!
Does your dog shed a lot year round or just seasonally?