11 best pet vacuum cleaners
Got a mucky, moulting mutt or moggie? These vacuum cleaners will help
Pets are lovely, but they are mucky creatures. If you have a pet that moults you probably wonder how it has a hair left on its body with the amount of fur that it spreads around your home.
Even those pets that are bred not to shed, will still lose a few hairs here and there. And it’s not just hair they drop everywhere. Mud, grass and leaves are also regularly bought indoors.
All of this means that you need a super powerful vacuum cleaner designed to scrape fur from everywhere that it clings to from carpets to cushions and pick up all that extra pet created dirt too. We’ve checked out the latest vacuum cleaners on the market to bring you the lightest, most flexible and efficient products at removing pet hair and pet-related debris.
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Vax Blade 2 MAX: £249, Vax
Dirt capacity: 0.6L
With a 45-minute run-time, this bagless, cordless vacuum cleaner has exceptional suction, meaning it swoops up hairs that cling on to carpets and upholstery and picks up dirt in the gaps between wall and skirting.
The headlight on the brush head is very useful for seeing into dark spaces and as it can go almost flat you can swing the vacuum head deep under furniture and take it along the tops of wardrobes.
In handheld form, it’s relatively light and can be swept easily across stair treads and pulled out quickly when a quick clear up is required. The dirt bin will only last one use, but it is easy to empty and the battery is fully recharged in three hours. This is an all singing all dancing, bagless cordless two-in-one, upright vacuum cleaner and handheld machine at a reasonable price point. For extra versatility, it’s worth also investing in the textile tool and tough dirt tool, which are sold separately.
Gtech Pro K9: £249.99, Gtech
Weight: 1.4kg in handheld mode, 2.5kg in floor cleaning mode
Dirt capacity: 1.5L
This is a very versatile cordless machine that is fully charged in four hours. The battery lasts 40 minutes in eco mode, and 20 minutes on max, which you need for that engrained pet hair that you tend to find on stair carpet and upholstery.
It can be used as a small handheld cleaner, which is great for quick clean ups, furniture and the stairs. It also has a nimble hose attachment for cleaning up high and in awkward spaces and a rigid stick attachment to use as you would a traditional upright vacuum cleaner.
It has a light at the brush end too, which is really useful for inside cupboards. It comes with refillable scented tabs that help to rid your home of pet odour, a floor head, hose and two different sized motorised brush heads and a crevice tool, which is great for skirting.
It’s not bagless, however, which will upset the environmentally friendly, but this means that you can empty it without releasing a cloud of hair and dust and the bags, which hold a lot of dirt, are carbon enriched to help trap odours. It’s supplied with five bags and ten replacements cost £10.99.
This is great flexible vacuum. It even removed the thick coating of hair from the dog’s bed, making it look like new again.
BISSELL Pet Hair Eraser Cordless Hand Vac: £69.99, BISSELL Direct
Dirt capacity: 1.5l
If you’re looking for a simple handheld cordless vacuum with the extra bite needed to shift pet hair and debris from sofas, stairs and other hard to reach places, this is the product for you. Using the detachable motorised brush and then the crevice and upholstery tools, it was whizzed around one very hairy car and gobbled up hairbrushes full of hair in minutes, leaving the footwells and seats hair free, something that has not been achieved before.
Easy to assemble and empty, it’s designed specifically for pet owners with a two-stage filtration system that should extend the life of the filter and provide easier cleaning. It has a battery life of 15 minutes, which is enough to do most of the small jobs it’s designed for, although the battery takes a while to fully charge, at around five hours. This is a great budget buy to use alongside a more traditional corded vacuum.
Dyson Cyclone V10 Animal: £399, AO.com
Dirt capacity: 0.76l
With its iconic Dyson style, this bagless cordless machine is one that you won’t mind leaving out on display. You can put it together intuitively and the dirt bin empties without you having to touch the lid, so there are no resulting dust clouds to choke you.
Fully charged in 3.5 hours and with a maximum 60-minute run time, this machine can pick up dog hair quicker than the test dog whose hair was being picked up can eat her dinner – and that’s fast.
With three levels of power, it is also adept at more gentle tasks too, such as lighter dusting. It transfers from an upright, which can reach far under furniture and up to curtain poles, to a handheld within seconds and it comes with a little mini motorised tool that will extract pet hair from sofas and stairs, as well as a crevice tool and dusting brush. It is pricey, but you do get a super powerful, adaptable piece of kit for your money.
iRobot Roomba 980: £899.99, iRobot
Dirt capacity: 0.6L
Sometimes to keep on top of the pet hair floating around your home you need to vacuum almost daily, which is a drag, unless you have a robot vacuum cleaner that just takes off and does it for you.
This little robot has what it takes to pick up entangled hair from carpet, and dig out dirt from the cracks in floorboards. Just set it off and it cleans an entire floor and it cleverly stops at the top of stairs. It can go for up to two hours and returns to base to recharge before resuming cleaning if the job’s not done.
It’s great at getting to those hard to reach areas under furniture, but can’t fit into awkward narrow areas, and if yours is a messy household where small toys, such as Lego, are routinely left on the floor, you will find that you’re constantly being asked by the machine to unclog its ‘debris extractors.’
You can programme it to clean at routine intervals and it can be controlled via an app, if you want to set if off when you’re not at home. Although expensive, regular use will keep on top of the pet hair problem without the effort on your part. Your pet could treat it as a toy to chase though.
Miele Blizzard CX1 Cat & Dog Bagless Vacuum Cleaner: £299, Currys
Dust capacity: 2L
This traditional cylinder-style vacuum cleaner is a powerful sucker. In addition to a standard floor head, it comes with a Turbobrush, which is excellent at picking up entangled pet hair and its filtration system offers extra protection against household allergies. It has a substantial dirt collection box, which should be sufficient to clean a whole house and it even self cleans its filter.
It needs to be plugged into a power socket, but this means that, as is often the case with cordless equivalent in a large home, it won’t require recharging mid-clean. It has a 7.5m cord and comes with a crevice nozzle, upholstery nozzle, and dusting brush, so as well as floors it effectively cleans furniture, tight spaces and up high.
A great vacuum cleaner that like everything Miele makes is built to last.
Hoover Optimum Power Allergy & Pets OP30ALG Cylinder Vacuum: £94.99, Hoover
Dust capacity: 1.8L
Being corded, this vacuum cleaner is not quite as flexible as a cordless model, but as there is no battery charging time required it’s all ways at the ready. It has good suction and with the pets turbo brush in place, it gobbles up hair in a jiffy.
The long hose means you can use it in hard to reach areas up high and down low, although the 5m cable will limit your working radius. It comes with a crevice tool and dusting brush, which can be stowed on board when not in use so that they are always to hand.
If you’re looking for a reasonably light weight, budget, bagless corded cylinder vacuum cleaner that is designed for homes with pets, this is the one to go for.
Black + Decker Multipower Pet 2-in-1 Cordless Vacuum Cleaner: £199, AO.com
Dust capacity: 1L
One of the easiest vacuum cleaners to assemble, this machine is a nippy and light cordless, bagless upright and handheld in one. It has LED headlights to illuminate dark spaces and its compact bin is easy to empty and refix to the base.
It has an impressive 60 minute run time, and the battery recharges in six hours. It has a ‘pet beater bar’ which is specially designed to pick up entangled pet hair and it certainly delivers on this.
You could have made another dog with the amount of fur collected in one whizz around our lounge. In lift-out hand held vac mode we didn’t find it quite as flexible as other makes, but it will let you get to hard to reach places and under furniture easily. This is a lovely light, mid-priced machine that will take up minimal space in your store cupboard.
Sebo Automatic X7 Pet ePower: £399.90, Sebo
Dust capacity: 5.3l
This is an old school, pretty heavy upright vacuum cleaner at its very best. It’s only when you try it with the handheld cleaning hose that you realise just how powerful its suction is. It comes with a variety of useful tools too.
There is a stair and upholstery turbo brush, a long hose extender, a dusting brush, upholstery nozzle and crevice nozzle. It’s corded with a super long 10m cable, so it’s always at the ready, but there is no internal store for the cable when not in use, however, which is inconvenient. It requires a bag, but these hold a lot of dirt so there will be a while between changes; and, it has replaceable filters and fragrance capsules.
If you’re not an eco-warrior and you want to avoid dust clouds at bin disposal time and you want those animal odours to be removed and covered up, this is worth the additional running costs.
Kobold VK200: £749, Vorwerk Kobold
Weight: 3kg without accessories
Dust capacity 2.2L
With its huge array of accessories that are sold separately this is an all-singing, all dancing vacuum cleaner. We only tested the standard pack, however, that includes the main body of the machine and the EB400 automatic electric brush and together they create a powerful and dexterous upright machine.
With its long lead it glides under furniture, and cleverly employs automatic floor-detection technology to adapt to different surfaces. It perfumes the room as it goes and it’s energy efficient too, with an A+-rated energy label.
It’s the additional accessories, however, are what makes this stand apart from the rest. You can buy a head for it that you attach a wet wipe to that turns it into floor mop, there is a carpet freshener attachment which gives it a dry clean and various hoses and nozzles for up high cleaning and dusting and upholstery cleaning.
With all these add ons, it’s the Rolls-Royce of vacuum cleaners, but it comes at a price. It comes with a few bags and once these have been used a six of premium filter bags costs £18.
Shark DuoClean Cordless Upright Vacuum Cleaner with Powered Lift-Away and TruePet IC160UKT: £379.99, Shark
Dust capacity: 0.6l
This` is a great multi-tasking flexible cordless bagless vacuum with up to 50 minutes run time and a battery that can be fully charged in three and a half hours. The motorised TruePet tool used in handheld mode is very effective at removing even the most entangled fur from carpet and upholstery.
In upright mode, the dust canister sits near the base of the machine so that it doesn’t topple over when unsupported and the DuoClean floor head has two motorised brush rolls for extra pick up and it can be used on carpets and hard floors.
It can be swung deep under furniture, when the LED headlights come in useful, and used in conjunction with the crevice tool dusting brush or upholstery tool, it can clean all sorts of awkward and up-high areas too. This is a fantastic all-in-one vacuum tool for pet owners, it is expensive though.
The Verdict: Best pet vacuum cleaners
All of these vacuum cleaners are high-quality pet hair and debris suckers, so choosing between them all was tricky.
Once you’ve tried a cordless vacuum it’s difficult to go back to corded. They can be whipped out and used in a jiffy, they are light and versatile and most transform into little handheld devices great for stairs and cars.
You are restricted by their battery life, but you will soon find that that’s a sacrifice worth making, unless you have a huge home.
Taking into account battery time, price and weight we chose the VAX Blade 2 MAX as our all round winner. The lighter GTech Pro K9 came a very close second, but it requires bags, which are an additional expense and aren’t great for the environment.
If you do have a large home and don’t want to rely on battery power and want a machine that won’t need emptying after every use the Sebo Automatic X7 Pet ePower was our favourite in the corded category.
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