A great robot vacuum intelligently glides around the house, safely navigating around your furniture. It suctions up pet hair, dust, and debris from carpet, hardwood floors, and tight corners with equal confidence.
It’s easy to use, requires minimal maintenance, and has the right price for your budget. If you’re lucky, it also makes a fun little transportation device for your cat.
I researched the market for robot vacuums and read dozens of reviews to create a shortlist of the best robot vacuums. From there, I tested some of the most popular models to bring you my top 6 picks for the best robot vacuum cleaners for pet hair.
At a Glance: Our Top Picks for Robot Vacuum Cleaners for Pet Hair
Top Picks Explained
Who Should Get a Robot Vacuum for Pet Hair?
If you dread pulling out the vacuum but feel equally annoyed by the pet hair building up around the baseboards in your home, if you’re exhausted by daily vacuuming, or if other responsibilities push vacuuming to the bottom of your to-do-list, a good robot vacuum is an investment in your time and sanity.
Robot vacuums are also a good choice if you have a disability that keeps you from carrying and pushing a manually-operated vacuum cleaner.
While robot vacuums aren’t as powerful as upright or canister vacuums, they make up for their lack of brute strength in intelligence and dedication.
A good hands-off vacuum can make a big difference in your workload by vacuuming when you’re not home, when you’re busy, and when you wouldn’t otherwise get around to cleaning the floor yourself.
Also Read: Best Vacuum Cleaners For Cat Litter
How To Find the Best Robot Vacuum for Pet Hair
1. Look for a Rubber Roller Brush
Traditional upright and canister vacuums are often designed with bristle roller brushes. The combination of strong suction and a bristle roller brush increases the vacuum’s cleaning power and helps remove dirt and dander from carpet and upholstery.
The trouble with bristle roller brushes is that they can easily become tangled with hair. If your cat has long hair – or if you have long hair yourself – it may become twisted around the bristle roller brush and might affect the vacuum’s performance.
Rubber roller brushes are less likely to become tangled with hair and other debris which saves you the hassle of having to stop and untangle the brush. It also reduces lifetime maintenance of the vacuum.
2. Choose a Vacuum With Strong Suction
No robot vacuum is going to be as powerful as your upright or canister vacuum, but yours should be strong enough to capture pet hair from your carpet.
Cat hair can be particularly tricky to remove from carpet because it tends to become embedded. Pet owners need a robot vacuum with strong enough suction power to pull the cat hair up out of the carpet and remove it entirely from your floor.
Generally speaking, the best vacuums for pet hair are also the best vacuums on the market. Any robot vacuum that works well for pet hair is likely to work well for other types of debris like dirt, dander, and other allergens.
3. Go With a Vacuum That Has a Large Capacity
One of the advantages of a robot vacuum is the fact that they’re small and lightweight, but this also means that they have a smaller dustbin than a traditional vacuum.
Robot vacuums typically contain less than a liter of pet hair and dirt. Depending how much your pet sheds and how many animals live in your home, this translates to dumping out the contents once every cleaning up to every couple of days.
To reduce the amount of time you need to spend handling the robot vacuum, choose the one with the largest capacity you can find. Don’t accept a robot vacuum with a capacity lower than 300 ml. This size might be large enough for pet-free apartments and small houses, but once you add fluff into the mix, such a small dustbin will be inadequate.
4. Look for a Robot Vacuum That Is Sensitive and Smart
Some vacuums are brutish and clumsy. They don’t know to avoid all your furniture and when they bump into it, they collide at full-force, leaving scuffs and scratches on the legs and bases of your belongings.
Good robot vacuums for pet hair, however, have relatively advanced “brains” with strong mapping technology. Their cliff sensors, bump sensors, wall sensors, optical encoders, and machine learning allow them to navigate your home without getting trapped or damaging your furniture.
5. Choose a Robot Vacuum That Operates Quietly
One of the benefits of robot vacuums is the fact that, when compared to a traditional upright vacuum or canister vacuum, they’re quiet. Most robot vacuums make about as much noise as a hand mixer, but the noise level varies. If possible, choose a quiet one that won’t disturb your pets.
Remember that long pet hair tends to wrap and tangle around roller brushes, so look for vacuums with features or designs that deal with this problem.
A little tangling is inevitable, but you should choose one with features that minimize the issue. Some vacuums have rubber fins instead of brushes, which are less inclined to create tangles. Others include a blade designed to cut hair that’s wrapped around the roller bar.
Top 6 Best Robot Vacuums for Pet Hair
Keeping the above criteria in mind, I’ve chosen the top 6 best robot vacuums for pet hair. All of these vacuums receive positive customer reviews, come from reputable brands, and have features that make them work well in a pet-inclusive household.
- The 5 Best Vacuum Cleaners for Pet Hair
- Best Vacuum Cleaners for Cat Litter
- Best Pet Stain and Odor Removers
Frequently Asked Questions
Do robot vacuums work with pet hair?
Yes, depending on the model. Robot vacuums with rubber roller brushes, strong suction, and generously sized dustbins tend to work best in homes with pets.
Are robotic vacuums worth it?
Robot vacuums have limitations, but they make up for it in time-saving potential. They may not work as well on high-pile carpeting and they may be more expensive than some traditional vacuums, but they are very convenient and can reduce your weekly cleaning workload.
How often do you have to empty a robot vacuum?
The frequency with which you need to empty a robot vacuum’s dustbin depends on its size. Most models need to be emptied every 3 to 4 days, depending how many pets you have in your home and how much they shed.