Pet vacuum cleaners are very important pieces of household cleaning equipment since they can easily cut down the entire cleaning process in half. This is even more useful if you have pets in your home. As you may already know, dogs have this peculiar but natural tendency to shed their pet hair. Unfortunately, most of the time their shedding is just so severe that you’d get not strands, but balls of pet hair on your carpet and furnishings. Instead of individually picking these up, you might want to use a pet hair vacuum for that. However, it shouldn’t just be any vacuum. Only a device that’s especially designed for pet hairs will do and we’ll share with you the reason later on. First, you may want to check out these items and decide which among these, is the best vacuum for dog hair.

Dog and Pet Hair Vacuum Buying Guide

Picking the right hoover for dog hair is important in maintaining the cleanliness of your home. Not only that, you can also ensure the health of everyone in your family, especially those with known allergies. Having a proper pet vacuum cleaner is even more critical when you do the hair clipping at home. However, knowing how to buy a dog vacuum is just one aspect of managing pet hair in your home. Equally important is knowing and understanding the need for such cleaning devices and why an ordinary vacuum cleaner simply won’t cut it. Knowing the different types of pet vacuum cleaners is also crucial to gaining a better understanding of what you need to choose for your home. It is also important to consider the following factors before you eventually settle on a particular product.

For further products, also read our line up of the best dyson pet vacuum cleaners.

pet vacuums vs regular vacuums

Pet Vacuums vs. Regular Vacuums

A lot of folks actually don’t think it’s necessary to get a dedicated pet vacuum as long as you already have an existing standard vacuum cleaner. While a standard hoover can be used in certain circumstances, there are a few reasons why pet vacuums are a must. Here are some of them.

  • These gadgets are especially designed for sucking out and pulling out pet hairs and debris that may have interwoven into the fibers of your upholstery and carpets. This often means that they have a much more powerful vacuum. And if this is not the case, then they have specialty attachments that allow them to do so.
  • As explained above, the special attachments that are found in pet vacuums are what really set them apart from conventional vacuums. For example, conventional units come with a standard soft-hair brush and hose layout that simply agitates the dust particles before these are vacuumed by the hose. On the other hand, pet vacuums come with silicon brushes that allow for the more effective sucking up of dirt, debris, and pet hair.
  • Pet hair vacuums also have significantly enhanced filtration systems that are more efficient in the removal of pet dander from the air that has been expelled from the unit. Generally, this gives it better performance when it comes to keeping your room air relatively free from allergens and other contaminants. 

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What to Consider when Buying a Vacuum Cleaner for Pet Hair

Cleaning up your home of pet hair can be a very tedious task especially if the follicles have been embedded into the fabric of your upholstery or even carpet. That is why it is essential that you know how to buy the right pet vacuum for your home. Here are some of the things that you need to consider.

  • Size of your home 

This is one of the most important considerations you will ever need to think about. Larger homes will typically require larger devices with longer power cords to help speed up the cleaning process. Basically, an upright should be your top pick.

If you live in a smaller house, getting a large cleaner will take up a lot of space. Additionally, moving about in a cramped space with a large gadget is simply not the most convenient. So, get something that is smaller. Handheld units and ultra-portables should be excellent.

  • Type of floor that you have 

Cleaners are specifically designed for a specific type of surface. If you have relatively flat, smooth, and even surface such as hardwood, vinyl, and laminated floors, even a brushless unit would suffice. Just make sure it has a powerful suction to pull all those dirt. However, if you have mostly carpeted flooring, a unit with brush attachments coupled with powerful suction should make things a lot easier for you.

  • Other items that you may want to clean 

Also consider the other items that you may want to clean. For example, if you always bring your pet with you in your travels, getting a handheld cleaner can help you remove debris and dog hair from your car. You may also need to look at how you intend to remove follicles from your curtains and other similar objects. An extendable arm attachment should come in very handy.

  • Preferred type of pet vacuum cleaner 

Although we’ll have a separate section on this matter, it should suffice to say that your preference for the type of pet vacuum cleaner should also be a consideration when choosing the right pet vacuum. You may choose from an upright, a handheld, or even a canister.

  • Cordless or corded? 

Corded units provide you consistently powerful suction so you will be able to effectively remove any follicle, debris, and dust present in your home. The downside, unfortunately, is that it may have very limited reach because it will be entirely dependent on the location of your electrical outlets. You may choose a rather lengthy cord but you also run the risk of kinking or getting entangled with your pieces of furniture.

Cordless units are very portable. They can be used virtually anywhere since there are no cords to literally tie them down. Sadly, depending on the power of the battery, you may experience fluctuations in the power of the vacuum itself. That is why some would actually recommend getting both a corded and a cordless unit. Now, if you can get a hybrid – a corded upright with a detachable cordless handheld unit – then problem solved.

  • Filters 

As much as possible, get one that has an integrated HEPA filter because this helps remove microscopic particles from the vacuumed debris. Different manufacturers may provide different filtration systems, however. So, you may have to check each one out and choose a unit that can best give you cleaner air.

  • Attachments 

There are a variety of attachments that typically come with modern pet vacuums. However, the most important should be the pet brush mechanism. You can look at it as similar to your hand rake which is a lot better at really pulling out pet hair embedded into your carpets and other upholstery. Other attachments you might want to consider include a crevice tool, an extension tool, a dusting tool, an upholstery tool, a mattress tool, a blind or ceiling fan tool, and various brushes.

Types of Vacuum Cleaners for Pet Hair

One of the considerations you will need to make when buying a pet vacuum cleaner is the type of device that you would like to get. As we have already shared in the preceding section, this can depend on a variety of things, but most especially the size of your abode and the surfaces or objects that you may need to clean. To help you decide, here are some of the more common types of vacuum cleaners.

  • Uprights – These are usually the mainstays in many commercial establishments and large homes for the simple fact that they provide ample coverage in less time. These are also excellent for those with back problems. Uprights are considered to be the most powerful among the different types of vacuum cleaners. They are quite heavy, though.
  • Canisters – These types of pet vacuums are variations of the upright. The different is that the cleaning nozzle is attached to a wand which is then connected to the vacuum unit. These are more portable than uprights and allow for greater maneuverability since you only have the wand to move about. Unfortunately, dragging the vacuum unit can be particularly frustrating for some folks.
  • Sticks – Sticks are uprights suffering from severe anorexia. These are taller and slimmer than conventional uprights and are design to address the heavy weight of the upright. Unfortunately, because of its significantly smaller size, it may not be powerful enough.
  • Handhelds – These are highly portable units that either come corded or cordless. These are perfect for quick and light surface cleaning, although some models can come with powerful motors as well. However, it still pales in comparison to an upright.robotic vacuum
  • Robotic – More and more homes are using these types of cleaners. Simply turn them on and it does the job by itself. Sadly, it still cannot really provide you with the deep-cleaning properties of uprights or even canisters.

There are many ways in which you can manage your dog’s shedding. However, cleaning it with the best vacuum for dog hair remains one of the most effective ways of ensuring you don’t compromise on your own health and safety or that of your family. Understanding the need for such devices is crucial to determining the best and most appropriate type of dog hair vacuum for your household.


Q:  How often should I vacuum my home?

A:  When it comes to maintaining the cleanliness of your home, vacuuming is a very important task as ordinary sweeping with a broom or even mopping will not really remove all the dust, dirt, and particles that may be in your house. While everyone knows the importance of vacuuming your home, the more important question is usually related to the frequency of cleaning.

Sadly, there are no hard and fast answers to this as everything actually depends on a variety of factors. For instance, if you have a home that is virtually protected from outside elements – the doors and windows are always closed or the air conditioning is always on – and you actually live alone, then vacuuming might not really that very frequent. A once-a-week cleaning should suffice, with daily dusting, of course.

If you have open doors and windows and your house is located in an area where dust is known to collect over time, then vacuuming every day is a must. This is whether or not you live alone or with kids and pets.

Other factors you have to consider will be whether you have family members that require protection from dust, pollen, or any other allergen. If you have pets, dander can be a potential problem especially if you have someone who is allergic to it. Using a pet hair vacuum should help you get rid of these allergens off of your surfaces.

If you have a home that is frequented by other family members, guests, visitors, or simply your kids you might want to pay attention to high foot-traffic areas such as hallways, walkways, dining rooms, living rooms, and even playrooms. Daily vacuuming is needed in these areas. If there’s not a lot of foot traffic, then once weekly cleaning is enough.

Always remember, though, that if you have pets around the frequency of vacuuming is generally increased. This should not be a problem if you use a vacuum for pet hair.

Q:  How long does a cordless unit take to completely recharge?

A:  The good thing about cordless vacuums is that you can use them almost anywhere, even in places where an electrical outlet is not available. However, the only issue with cordless units is that your cleaning activities are severely limited by the capacities of their batteries as well as the power requirements of their motor. Generally, the more electrical energy your motor requires, the greater is its need for a really large-capacity battery.

So, how long do you need to recharge? That actually depends on the design and capacity of the battery. There are batteries that have low capacities, yet take several hours to recharge completely. There are also units that come with high-capacity batteries, yet only require about 60 to 90 minutes or so of recharging. Everything is dependent on the kind of battery technology employed as well as the charging mechanism that’s integrated into the design of the cordless unit.

Q:  Do cordless models come with a docking station?

A:  Some cordless vacuum cleaners like pet hair vacuum do come with docking stations. These provide one of the easiest ways to recharge a cordless unit as it is as simple as docking it into place, make sure that the pins are aligned correctly, and you’re good to go. Some models even come with wireless connectivity that utilizes a dedicated app in your smartphone to tell you if it’s done recharging. Others come with automatic shutoff features that help to cut power to the charging base, saving your unit from possible overcharging.

vacuum cleaners for pet hair

In many ways, cordless vacuum cleaners that come with docking stations or charging bases give you a base upon which to display or mount your unit. It does serve as a nifty organizer.

Q:  Is the HEPA filter washable?

A:  High Efficiency Particular Air or HEPA filter is specially designed with randomly and loosely interlaced fibers that were never really designed to stand up to any form of stress beyond what it is designed to do – filter particulate matter that are at least 0.2 microns in diameter. This allows it to remove an incredibly large number of air particulates with some studies saying it can actually remove up to 99.9% of impurities in the air, although a more acceptable figure would be somewhere in the range of 99.7 to 99.8 percent.

However, its ability to remove particulates including bacteria, fungi, parasites, and certain viruses in the air is if it is able to maintain its integrity. The only way this can be maintained is if no significant changes in the way HEPA filter has been designed occurs.

Washing HEPA filters is generally considered a big no-no since mechanical forces can change the delicate structure of the fibers of the filter itself. If such structural changes occur at the microscopic level, there is a good chance that larger gaps or holes can be produced in the filter. It is through these large holes that air particulates may pass through instead of being filtered out and sent into the collection chamber. It’s like having a fishing net that is designed to catch bigger fish so that smaller and younger fishes will still be able to go through the holes. Sadly, because larger holes have been created, larger fish also tend to escape. That’s the same thing with HEPA filters that have been damaged. They get larger holes which render them ineffective in trapping particles that can bring harm to you and your family.

The good news is that there are now HEPA filters that are designed to be washable. Sadly, there are no empirical studies that can confirm whether these so-called washable HEPA filters are able to retain their full functionality after washing. Also there are no studies to show just how many washes these new filters can stand before they eventually start losing their filtration capabilities.

If the manufacturer of your vacuum cleaner says you can wash the HEPA filter, then perhaps you can. However, a more important question would be how you should wash it and up to what extent can you keep on washing it to retain its full functionality.

Q:  How often should I replace my vacuum belt?

A:  The frequency of replacing your vacuum cleaner belt actually depends on a host of variables. For example, if you’re using it very often across really dirty surfaces, you can expect to change your vacuum belt more frequently, say every month. Otherwise, you can replace it every 3 to 6 months. It also depends on the construction of the vacuum belt as there are those that are easily worn and some lasting up to a few years without replacing.

Technically, there are a few signs you can look for that will tell you it’s time for a new vacuum belt.

First, you’ve got a really noisy vacuum. While pet hair vacuum systems are generally less noisy than standard domestic or even commercial-grade vacuums, you will still be able to notice a difference in the way the motor sounds. That is why it is always best to familiarize yourself with everything about your unit so you’ll be in a much better position to identify if there’s a change in its performance over the course of time.

Second, you notice that your vacuum for pet hair and other particles are simply not picking up what they were able to previously. This is almost always an obvious sign that you may have to replace the vacuum belt real soon.

Q:  If a vacuum cleaner has a more powerful motor, does that mean it has more suction power?

A:  There is this notion that a more powerful motor equates to more suction power. Unfortunately, the power of a vacuum motor is just one of several variables that can have an impact on the ability of the vacuum to clean a variety of surfaces.

When one talks about power in a motor, most folks think about its horsepower. Sadly, this rating is largely for marketing purposes only. It doesn’t really have an impact on the performance of the vacuum cleaner in the real world.

dog with the vacuum cleaner

If you think of motor power in terms of wattage, then you are only referring to the overall electric consumption of your vacuum cleaner within a given unit of time. For instance, if a vacuum is rated 1000-watts, it only means you will be using 1,000 watts every hour.

The same is true with amperes or amps. This rating basically relates to the maximum amount of energy or electric current that is utilized by the electrical components of the vacuum cleaner during operation. As such, it clearly doesn’t point to suction power.

So how do you know that you’ve got the right motor? Well, you will need to look at two very important parameters or ratings: water lift and airflow. These two ratings are very critical as they give you an idea of just how powerful the suction mechanism of a vacuum cleaner is. Water lift is the ability of the vacuum cleaner to pick up debris from a surface while airflow refers to the ability of the vacuum to move the ‘lifted’ debris into the dust bag. Together, they form the most crucial parameters to determine suction power in a vacuum cleaner.

Let Us Know What You Think

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So happy i stumbled upon this review. Some excellent product recommendations for powerful vacuums and a really useful site. Excellent work Olivia!

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  1. Are HEPA Air Purifier Filters Washable and Reusable?, DoItYourself
  2. How to Know If the Vacuum Belt Needs to Be Replaced, GoVacuum
  3. Understanding Vacuum Cleaner Specifications, BestVacuum


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