The 7 Best Vacuums for Pet Hair of 2023, Tested and Reviewed

Our top pick will make it easy to clean crevices and corners

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Dyson V15 Detect Vacuum

The Spruce Pets / Rachel Marek

If you share your home with a furry feline or cuddly canine, then chances are you need a vacuum that will effectively pick up pet hair. "Pets are wonderful companions, but sloppy roommates, as they tend to leave a trail of fur wherever they go," says Melissa Homer, cleaning expert and Chief Cleaning Officer at MaidPro.

She recommends focusing on three key features in a vacuum—powerful suction, a HEPA filter, and a rotating brush. "Strong suction ensures the flying fur tumbleweed on your floors actually gets sucked in instead of blown around, the HEPA manages pet dander so your human guests aren't constantly sneezing, and the rotating brushes will lift out even the longest most stubbornly tangled in pet hairs from carpet fibers and couches."

We've researched and tested hundreds of vacuums, scoring each one in multiple categories, including effectiveness, maneuverability, ease of emptying, portability, noise level, ease of setup, and overall value. Our testing space was equipped with surfaces commonly found in a home—tile, hardwood, upholstery, and carpet—and we doused each with crunchy kibble and real tufts of pet hair (donated by staffers who collected strands their pets no longer needed!) to come up with this ultimate list of pet-hair friendly vacuums.

Our Top Picks

Best Overall

Dyson Cyclone V10 Animal Cordless Stick Vacuum

Dyson Cyclone V10 Animal Cordless Stick Vacuum


What We Like
  • Canister is easy to empty

  • Lightweight, portable, and easy to maneuver with one hand

  • No need to purchase replacement bags

  • Designed for cleaning up after pets

  • Extremely effective suction power

What We Don't Like
  • Noise on some settings described as "annoying"

This Dyson vacuum has continued to impress us after multiple rounds of testing spanning over several months. From the conspicuous spots, like your dog's favorite couch cushion, to the perplexing places, like behind the refrigerator, the Dyson Cyclone V10 Animal is equipped to help you clean pet hair from every corner of your home. It's lightweight, incredibly efficient, and a breeze to use, thanks to its cordless stick design. Plus, with a canister that can hold 0.2 gallons of debris and a hearty battery that can last up to 60 minutes (not a typo!), you can zip through cleaning sessions without having to pause to empty or charge it.

This Dyson device also includes a crevice tool for getting around corners and into gaps, a combination tool to features a wide nozzle and brush, and a mini soft dusting brush for when you don't want to scrub quite so hard. A wall-mounted docking station also allows for streamlined storage and easy charging. While this model does not have a HEPA filter, it does have Dyson's whole-machine filtration that promises to capture 99.99% of particles as small as 0.3 microns. While many vacuums have features and accessories that sound fancy, this Dyson truly lives up to its promises. We found that the longer we used it and the more comfortable we got with this machine, the more we came to appreciate the design choices and the attachments.

A few other notable features include the tab mechanism found on the dust bin, so you can push dust and debris straight into the trash (instead of merely relying on gravity or worse, your hands), and the three levels of suction power. We also appreciate that you can convert it to a handheld vacuum, too (though, this feature isn't unique to this model or to Dyson). We were hard-pressed to come up with any suggestions for changes or improvements, and only found the sound to be a bit grating after some usage. If you're debating whether or not this machine is worth its price tag, rest assured that we think it's well worth the investment.

Price at time of publish: $450

Weight: 5.9 pounds | Power Source: Rechargeable battery with 60-minute run time | Bin Volume: 0.2 gallons or 25 ounces | Included Accessories: Hir screw tool, combination tool, dirt brush, crevice tool, mini soft dusting brush

Dyson Cyclone V10 Animal Stick Vacuum

The Spruce / Rachel Marek

Best Budget

Eureka PowerSpeed Turbo Pet Cord Rewind Vacuum

Eureka PowerSpeed Cord Rewind Upright Bagless Vacuum Cleaner

Home Depot

What We Like
  • Retractable cord

  • Four attachment accessories included and can be stored on machine

  • Strong suction power

What We Don't Like
  • Pulled at high-pile carpet fibers

  • Noticeable difference in performance from higher-priced models

We were quite taken by the performance of the Eureka PowerSpeed Bagless Upright Vacuum when we tested it in The Lab. We especially liked how easy it is to maneuver for an upright vacuum, and how well it did grabbing hair and kibble from carpeting. We had to accommodate a bit when it came to hair and kibble on hard flooring. Still, overall, this was a competitive machine that held its own next to some of the pricier models we tested.

It comes with four attachments to pinpoint your cleaning needs. A turbo brush tool to remove embedded pet hair and dirt, a dusting brush for—you guessed it—dusting, an upholstery tool for use on your favorite chair as well as your pet's bed, and a crevice tool to get in between couch cushions and car seats with ease. The 25-foot cord adds convenience because you won't have to change outlets to finish a room or hallway. You can also easily retract it with an automatic rewind button. The dust bin also has a single button mechanism that makes it easy to remove and empty with one hand.

On its own, this machine is a great value. Though, if you're used to robust, sleeker machines with more bells and whistles, you may find that it's not quite as smooth and powerful as certain higher-end brands. But, if you're looking to keep costs down, it's a solid choice that will work well for pet owners. Just be careful if your home has lots of high pile carpet because we did notice some pulling on that floor type in particular.

Price at time of publish: $100

Weight: 12.3 pounds | Power Source: 25-foot cord | Bin Volume: 2.1 liters or 71 ounces Included Accessories: Pet turbo brush, dusting brush, upholstery tool, crevice tool

Best Upright

Dyson Ball Animal 3 Extra

Dyson Ball Animal 3 Extra


What We Like
  • Extremely effective at removing pet hair

  • Versatile attachments

  • Maneuverable

What We Don't Like
  • Expensive

  • Heavy

With ‘Animal,’ in its name, it should come as no surprise that the Dyson Ball Animal 3 Extra is a top vacuum for not only pet hair, but anything you put in its path. This beast of a vacuum delivers superior suction, whole-machine filtration, and a variety of settings to help you conquer pet hair on everything from bare floors to plush carpets. There's even a pet grooming tool to help you maintain your furry friend's coat. It’s a pricey vacuum, but it backs up its cost with performance and durability, making it one of our favorites for pet-related (and really, any) messes. This vacuum went through general testing in our Lab (sans pet hair), but it we still saw firsthand that it handles fur and fuzz just fine, thanks to its performance in a home setting.

The Dyson Ball Animal 3 is designed to maneuver smoothly with its swiveling ball mechanism, 35-foot power cord, and cleaner head that automatically clears hair as it goes. At 17.3 pounds, it’s not a particularly lightweight vacuum cleaner, but we think it's a hardy cleaning machine you can rely on. It was a bit overwhelming at first with its hefty size and multiple attachments. But in our months-long testing process, the more we used it, the more we were impressed—and we think you will feel the same way.

Price at time of publish: $500

Weight: 17.3 pounds | Power Sources: 35-foot cord | Bin Volume: 1.7 liters or 57.5 ounces | Cord Length: 35 feet | Included Accessories: Turbine tool, combination tool, stair tool, pet groom tool

Best for Hardwood

Shark Wandvac Self-Empty System

Shark Wandvac Self-Empty System


What We Like
  • Self-empty canister

  • Thoughtful and efficiently designed brush roll

  • Slim design, easy to maneuver

  • HEPA filter

What We Don't Like
  • No light on the floor nozzle

  • Only one setting

This Shark device worked like a charm over multiple surfaces, including hardwood floors, tiles, and rugs of varying textures. We named it as a best pick for hardwood because our longterm testing gave us the chance to see firsthand how reliable and consistent it is on this type of flooring. Not only does it excel at picking up both long and short hair, as well as kibble and other small bits of debris, but it's also a breeze to use, feeling much lighter than it's near-14 pound weight. It also features a self-empty mechanism that really sets it apart from other vacuums. The canister empties directly into the charging base, and then you manually empty it once that secondary container fills, which proved simple and easy.

Another feature that impressed us was the smart design of the brush roll. Unlike the many bristled styles on the market, this Shark vac features a rubber brush with fins and a built-in comb that loosens hair as you vacuum, cutting down on the need for cleaning and maintenance of a dirty brush roll. Now, the pros definitely outweigh any cons with this vacuum, but if you were to twist our arm, we could admit that multiple suction settings would be nice, as well as a light for the floor head. All in all, the features of the Shark Wandvac work together for a smooth and practically seamless vacuuming experience, for a mid-range price.

Price at time of publish: $330

Weight: 13.85 pounds | Power Source: Charging base | Bin Volume: 0.13 quarts or 4.2 ounces | Included Accessories: Crevice tool, pet multi-tool, charging base

Best Canister

Kenmore Pet Friendly Pop-N-Go Bagged Canister Vacuum

Kenmore Pet Friendly Pop-N-Go Bagged Canister Vacuum


What We Like
  • 360 degrees hose swivel

  • HEPA filtration

  • Retractable power cord

  • Indicator on screen lets you know when the bag needs to be replaced

  • Telescoping wand for reaching ceiling fans and upper corners of rooms

What We Don't Like
  • Weighs over 20 pounds

  • Requires purchasing replacement bags

A convenient handle and wheels make the Kenmore Pet-Friendly Pop-N-Go Bagged Canister Vacuum easy to tote around while you clean up your space. This reasonably priced vacuum delivered an overall impressive performance in our lab testing, with extra conveniences and features that make it a standout choice. It's one of the few vacuums out of the hundreds we've tested to ever sail through our process and earn a perfect score across the board.

With four suction levels to choose from and a brush roller, this vacuum was able to pick up kibble from all of our test surfaces. As for pesky pet hair, the lowest suction level required two passes to fully capture strands from the carpet, and the highest level of suction, plus placement of the vacuum head directly over the pet hair, was needed on hard surfaces (tile and wood floors). We didn't dock any points, though, as an adjusted angle or an extra swipe here or there is reasonable in our eyes.

The power cord extends 26 feet and self-retracts back into the vacuum with the push of a button. There is an internal HEPA filter to remove pet dander and other dust particles from the air, and a disposable bag seals all of the contents the vacuum picks up. Along with it's larger size, the other potential downside we see is that bag replacements (Kenmore Type Q) are needed with repeated use to ensure the vacuum functions properly. In other words, if you prefer a lightweight or bagless vacuum, this wouldn't be for you. Still, for a tried and true pick that will perform well across multiple surfaces, it's a great option.

Price at time of publish: $320

Weight: 22.6 pounds | Power Source: 26-foot retractable cord | Bin Volume: Not listed, bagged | Included Accessories: Dusting brush, long crevice tool, and bare floor brush

Kenmore Friendly Pop n Go Vacuum

The Spruce Pets / Rachel Marek

Best Handheld

Shark UltraCyclone Pet Pro+ Cordless Handheld Vacuum

Shark UltraCyclone Pet Pro+ Cordless Handheld Vacuum


What We Like
  • Lightweight and cordless

  • Extremely efficient at hair removal from couch

  • Impressive battery life

What We Don't Like
  • One power setting

  • May overlap with settings of a full-size vacuum

It doesn't get much easier than a sleek and streamlined handheld vacuum, like this pick from Shark. If you find yourself with a small mess, such as scattered kitty litter or stray hairs, collected on the couch, it'll do the trick—and then some. During testing, we were reaching for it more than our regular full-size vacuum. It proved to be easy, efficient, and, thanks to the motorized Pet Power Brush attachment, an absolute game-changer when it comes to clearing fur off of upholstery. In fact, one member of our team noted that she'd never found anything better at getting cat fur off of her couch.

As impressive as this vacuum is on its own, it may not make sense for some buyers because so many full-size vacuums offer handheld settings these days. While that's not necessarily this machine's fault per se, if you find yourself with limited storage space or on a tight budget, you could find a machine with more settings and features than what's offered by this one. But if you're confident that you want a handheld vacuum, we think it's one of the best out there.

Price at time of publish: $100

Weight: 2.8 pounds | Power Source: Rechargeable battery | Bin Volume: 0.11 gallons or 14.1 ounces | Included Accessories: Charger, Crevice tool, Dusting Brush, Turbo Brush

Best Robot

iRobot Roomba j7+ Self-Emptying Robot Vacuum

iRobot Roomba j7+ Self-Emptying Robot Vacuum


What We Like
  • Self-emptying option

  • Intuitive to setup

  • Extremely convenient

What We Don't Like
  • Expensive

  • Additional bags cost extra

If you feel like cleaning up after your furry friend is a never-ending chore, then you might want to sit down for this one. In our testing experience, the Roomba j7+ offers impressive suction and hair-grabbing capabilities, an intuitive app, and advanced mapping and navigational abilities. In other words, with the press of a button, you can clean hard floors, rugs, and carpets alike. Impressively, even with the round design, the edge-sweeping brushes managed to reach right up against walls, and it navigates well under furniture, too. It avoids obstacles—even unexpected ones like pet accidents—with ease.

This Roomba is fairly quiet too, but if you happen to decide that you don't want to deal with the noise at all, you can schedule it to run at convenient times for you (though, that's not a unique feature for this type of vacuum). At full charge, it runs about 75 minutes, which felt sufficient for the homes where it was tested. We were also pleased with the self-empty option. Not only does the machine steer itself back to the charging base when its dustbin is full, but it'll also empty itself into the base, and resume cleaning afterward. Now, you can opt for the vacuum without the base, but based on our experience, the added perk is significant.

While this is one of the priciest options we're featuring on this list, after testing it and experiencing its overall efficiency and convenience, we have to admit that the value is definitely there. If you're looking to invest in a robot vacuum that will make your life easier, you'll want to give it a (very!) close look.

Price at time of publish: $799

Battery Life: 75 minutes | Cleaning Path Width: 7 inches | Mapping: Yes | Filter Type: Replaceable | Brush Type: Rubber | Smart Capabilities: Yes

Final Verdict

We love the Dyson Cyclone V10 Animal Vacuum, our best overall pick. It's powered by a rechargeable battery with a run time of 60 minutes, maintains powerful suction across household surfaces, and comes equipped with a variety of attachments to help you reach all areas of a home. If you're looking for a more affordable vacuum, the Eureka PowerSpeed Turbo Pet Cord Rewind boasts strong suction, a convenient retractable cord, and four helpful attachments.

Other Options We Tested

Dyson Outsize+ Cordless Vacuum: This is a great vacuum, don't get us wrong. Thanks to its exceptional performance, smart design, and efficient transition over multiple surfaces, it was a serious contender for a best splurge pick. Ultimately, we opted not to feature it because there are some equally impressive choices that come at a lower price point, and because we found that the size felt uncomfortably heavy for some users. One of our team members even joked that it would make a good "Best For People Who Regularly Do Arm Day" pick.

How We Tested

We've tested hundreds of vacuums in The Lab and in home settings, setting up each and then running them through several tests to rate and compare features and functionality. Our methodology guided testers through multiple scores while also gathering subjective impressions along the way.

We replicated common household surfaces—carpet, tile, hardwood, and upholstery—and sprinkled specific amounts of pet kibble and tufts of pet hair on each to challenge claims made by manufacturers. Our testers scored each vacuum in multiple categories, including effectiveness, maneuverability, ease of emptying, portability, noise level, ease of setup, and overall value. They were also asked if they would recommend the vacuum they tested. Certain models also were sent to homes so we could continue assessing how they perform in real-life houses and apartments.

Equipped with this first-hand information, we ranked and categorized our top picks to simplify your search for the right vacuum for cleaning up pet hair in your home.

What to Consider in a Vacuum for Pet Hair

Style and Weight

You can find upright, canister, handheld, and stick vacuums that can tackle pet-related messes, but each type offers its own set of advantages. Upright vacuums, like the Dyson Ball Animal 3 Extra, are often good for homes with carpeting, while canister and stick vacuums (examples are the Kenmore Pet Friendly Pop-N-Go Canister Vacuum, and the Dyson Cyclone V10 Animal Lightweight Cordless Stick Vacuum, respectively) can be better for smaller homes with a wide variety of floor surfaces. If weight and portability are important for you, you might also want to consider a handheld vacuum, like the Shark UltraCyclone Pet Pro+ Cordless Handheld Vacuum. When shopping for a vacuum to address pet hair in your home, keep your home's cleaning needs and your own personal preferences in mind.

Beyond which model you choose, you should also consider whether a bagged or bagless vacuum will be a better fit for you. A bagged option, like the Kenmore Pet Friendly Pop-N-Go Canister Vacuum, efficiently seals away any hair and dander that gets sucked up, with less potential mess associated with emptying the vacuum. However, you will have to put up with an additional expense in replacement bags, so if that's a deterrent, you can opt for a bagless vacuum.

Air Filtering Abilities

You may want to keep an eye out for vacuums with air filters that keep dander and dust locked into the bag or canister. Top-of-the-line models may have HEPA filters, which according the Environmental Protection Agency can remove at least 99.97% of dust, pollen, mold, bacteria, and any airborne particles with a size of 0.3 microns. The Shark Wandvac Self-Empty System is a great example of a convenient and efficient vacuum with a HEPA filter.

Easy to Clean Brushes

Just like human hair, pet hair can tangle around a vacuum's beater brush and make it less effective at picking up dirt. Some vacuums are made with bars that are designed to keep hair from getting tangled, others have special attachments to vacuum areas with lots of fur, and some just have brushes that are easy to remove and clean when fur does get tangled. While we did our best to only include models on this list that managed hair and hair wrap well, the Shark Wandvac Self-Empty System was especially impressive in this way.

  • How often should I vacuum?

    Pet owners should aim to vacuum once or twice a week. Your exact frequency will depend on how many pets you have, how heavily they shed, and how often they're going in and out of the house.

  • Will vacuuming remove pet odors?

    Vacuuming, especially in areas where pet hair and dander tends to get embedded and trapped, will certainly help reduce any lingering pet odors in your home. But, if you want to get as close to eliminating your furry friends' smells as possible, you should also invest in an air purifier and carpet cleaner or shampoo. The former will help filter out odors that are hanging in the air and the latter will clean smelly spots more thoroughly than a vacuum.

  • How can I maintain my the suction power of my vacuum?

    A vacuum with strong, reliable suction is key to keeping a home with pets clean. You can tell your model of choice has the kind of suction you're looking for if it features efficient airflow, a cleaner head with rotating brushes, and even multiple fans and motors. To ensure its performance, make sure to empty its dust cup or bag regularly, ideally before it reaches maximum capacity. Check regularly for internal clogs as well as hair wrap around any external brushes.

Why Trust The Spruce?

This roundup was revamped by Dena Ogden, Commerce Writer for The Spruce. She’s been writing professionally since 2016 and with The Spruce since August 2022. Her family's dog, Griz, maintains a healthy and respectful distance from any and all noisy cleaning machines.

A previous version of this piece was crafted by Anna Mejorada, a writer for The Spruce, who shares her home with a happy pomeranian named Gidget who politely refuses to be in the same room as any vacuum. Contributions were also made by Erica Puisis, a contributor to The Spruce who covers home, and Sara Coughlin, The Spruce’s small appliances expert.