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Best Robot Vacuum Cleaners for Pet Hair

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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

Overall Best
Picked by 31 people today!

iRobot Roomba i7+

  • Automatically returns to base when full for self-emptying
  • Powerful suction lifts cat hair from multiple surfaces
  • Intelligent and reliable performance
$645.41 At Amazon
Runner Up
Picked by 31 people today!

Samsung POWERbot

  • Excellent navigational system
  • Self-cleaning brush prevents tangling and wrapping
  • Strong suction on a variety of surfaces
Best for Large Homes
Picked by 25 people today!

Neato Botvac Connected

  • Strong suction and large dustbin capacity
  • Excellent navigation system
  • Runs for up to 150 minutes on a single charge
Best Budget
Picked by 21 people today!

Ecovacs DEEBOT 500

  • Budget-friendly, priced under $200
  • Better app than some cheaper vacuums
  • Relatively powerful suction, decent performance
Best Mopping Vacuum
Picked by 18 people today!

bObsweep PetHair Plus

  • Large dustbin capacity of 500ml
  • Programmable without the use of an app
  • Excellent customer service reputation
Best Slim Vacuum
Picked by 18 people today!

Kyvol Cybovac E31

  • Slim design allows it to glide under furniture
  • Doubles as a vacuum and a mop
  • Generously sized dustbin, 600ml

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.

#1 Overall Best: iRobot Roomba i7+

My top pick for the best robot vacuum for pet hair is none other than the original robot vacuum – iRobot’s Roomba. This is a top-of-the-line vacuum that does pretty much everything well.

At roughly $800, this model is the priciest unit on my list, but it has a covetable variety of features and strengths that make it a wise choice for those willing to spend the money. It’s a particularly good choice for carpeted homes with serious pet hair issues.

What makes this model really stand out, however, is the fact that it is self-emptying. No other robot vacuum I tried offered this feature and it was a game-changer in terms of maintenance.

When the Roomba’s dustbin becomes full, the vacuum automatically returns to the charging dock to be emptied. The vacuum empties into a reusable bag that only needs to be emptied about every 60 days. This feature alone puts the Roomba at an advantage over other models on the market.

Another useful feature that puts the iRobot Roomba i7 at the top of my list is its smartphone app. The Roomba app enables you to set up specific rooms and block off no-go zones where you don’t want the vacuum to go. You can also create a custom cleaning schedule.

In terms of function, the iRobot Roomba i7 did a good job lifting cat hair from carpet. This model has a Spot Clean feature that runs the vacuum in circles around a specific area – this is a great feature to have if your cat tends to spend a lot of time in one area and for picking up litter around the litter box. IT also has a tangle-free rubber roller brush rather than a bristle brushroll.

Overall, there aren’t many downsides to this vacuum. Like most robot vacuums it didn’t pick up cat litter as well as pet hair, but it still offered strong performance. The main downside is the near-$800 price tag.

What We Liked:

  • Automatically returns to base when full for self-emptying
  • Powerful suction lifts cat hair from multiple surfaces
  • Intelligent and reliable performance
  • Control the device with a handy mobile app

What We Didn’t Like:

  • Very expensive, costs around $800
  • May not clean up litter as well as pet hair

#2 Runner Up: Samsung POWERbot

At price around $600, this isn’t one of the cheapest units on the market, but it has excellent suction and a great smartphone app.

According to Samsung, this model has 40x more powerful suction compared to other robot vacuums with circular designs. It separates dirt from air to keep the motor running strong. It has an automatic rubber blade that automatically extends to capture dirt along the edges of the wall and in corners.

An onboard camera and multiple sensors help the vacuum to create an effective cleaning route while avoiding obstacles. By looking at the coverage map on the smartphone app, you can see how much of the house the POWERbot has cleaned and which places it may have missed.

Because the bot is set up for WiFi connectivity, you can remotely control it from your smartphone app or use voice commands devices with smart devices like Bixby, Alexa, and Google Assistant. You can schedule automatic cleaning.

When the robot starts to lose power, it automatically heads back to a docking station to recharge. Once it’s charged up, the POWERbot returns to work and finishes the job.

Unfortunately, the sensors in this robot vacuum aren’t perfect. Dark objects might trigger the cliff sensor or not be recognized by the sensor at all. One reviewer said that the bot blindly pushed their black bar stool across the room.

It’s a small bot with a dustbin capacity of about 300 ml, so it’s best for households with one or two cats and not a lot of long hair. In multi-pet households, you may find yourself emptying the bin frequently.

What We Liked:

  • Smart navigation system
  • Self-cleaning brush prevents tangling and wrapping
  • Strong suction on a variety of surfaces
  • Smartphone app, compatible with Alexa and Google Assistant

What We Didn’t Like:

  • Limited dustbin capacity, only about 300ml
  • Emptying the dustbin is a little tricky/messy
  • Sensors have trouble identifying dark objects

#3 Best for Large Homes: Neato Botvac Connected

Though I labeled this robotic vacuum cleaner the best for large homes, I had a hard time choosing between this model and the Samsung POWERbot for runner-up – they both offer strong performance and great features.

What sets this robot vacuum apart is that it has an atypical D-shape which allows it to get into corners where most vacuums can’t go. If you’ve seen how pet hair has a tendency to drift around and settle in corners, you know how valuable this quality it.

The Neato Botvac offers strong suction and it performed well in my fur test. It did the best of the vacuums I tested against cat litter as well.

Another feature I liked about this vacuum is its generous dustbin capacity. The dustbin has a 700ml capacity which enables you to go several days before having to empty it. Emptying the dustbin is pretty straightforward and it didn’t make as much of a mess as the POWERbot.

Overall, I was very impressed with the Neato Botvac. It performed well against both cat hair and cat litter and I didn’t find cat hair accumulating in the rollers very much, even after running it for 30 days.

This vacuum offers a long battery life around 150 minutes and it automatically returns to the base when it starts to run out of power so it can recharge itself.

Though this model is incredibly popular, some customers had concerns about connection issues. Connectivity issues are a problem with most robot vacuums on the market, but the Neato Botvac seemed to struggle in this area more than some models.

What We Liked:

  • Strong suction and large dustbin capacity
  • Excellent navigation system
  • Runs for up to 150 minutes on a single charge
  • Intuitive, highly-useful smartphone app

What We Didn’t Like:

  • Some customer complaints about connection issues

#4 Best Budget: Ecovacs DEEBOT 500

If you’re looking for a robot vacuum for pet hair but you’re not prepared to spend $500 or more, the Ecovacs DEEBOT 500 is a good option. This vacuum is priced under $200 but offers decent performance, a long run time of 110 minutes, and a smartphone app.

The Ecovacs app is intuitive and easy to use, and it offers most of the features I’d expect from a robot vacuum app. You aren’t able to create rooms or set up boundaries, but it still worked well. You can also use this model with Amazon Alexa, Google Assistant, remote control, or the smartphone app.

In terms of performance, the Ecovacs DEEBOT 500 did very well in testing on a variety of floor types, including high-pile rugs. This robot vacuum did a thorough job of removing cat hair, especially after the vacuum had taken a couple of passes at the area.

The primary downside of this model is that it has a traditional brush roller versus a rubber brush roller. As expected, this resulted in more hair wrapping around the brush than I noticed with other models, but it shouldn’t be a problem for a short-hair cat.

Another issue I noticed is that it tended to get stuck a little more often than some of the more expensive models. It would sometimes get stranded around the house or have an issue getting back to the base.

Though there are a few shortcomings to consider, the Ecovacs DEEBOT 500 has a generously sized 500ml dustbin and a 110-minute battery life. It’s also one of the quietest vacuums on my list.

What We Liked:

  • Budget-friendly, priced under $200
  • Better app than some cheaper vacuums
  • Relatively powerful suction, decent performance
  • One of the quietest robot vacuums tested

What We Didn’t Like:

  • Navigation system could be more efficient
  • Brush roller may accumulate hair

#5 Best Mopping Vacuum: bObsweep PetHair Plus

Specifically designed for use in homes with pets, the bObsweep PetHair Plus offers several features that set it apart from the competition. First, it doubles as a vacuum for carpet and a mop for hard floors. In addition to powerful suction on various surfaces, you can attach a wet pad to the bottom for use as a mop on hard surfaces.

This vacuum also operates differently than other vacuums I tried. This model doesn’t work with a smartphone app, but that could be a benefit for people who aren’t tech-savvy. There are still plenty of option for customizing the vacuum’s performance and you can use the BlOck Plus to block off areas.

I found the bObsweep PetHair Plus had the weakest function of the models I tested. It did a decent job cleaning up cat hair but in testing the unit against cat litter, it didn’t fare very well.
It’s also important to note that this model has a traditional roller brush which makes it more prone to tangling and wrapping, especially for long hair. You may need to detangle it by hand more often than you would with other models.

That being said, this robot vacuum does offer a large-capacity dustbin of 500ml. You won’t have to empty it as often as you would with smaller vacuums and emptying the bin is pretty easy.

All things considered, the bObsweep PetHair Plus is a versatile robot vacuum that can perform a variety of tasks without the use of a smartphone app. I’ve also heard bObsweep’s customer service is very strong. Unfortunately, it may not be the best option for users who was powerful suction and the convenience of a smartphone application.

What We Liked:

  • Doubles as a vacuum and a mop
  • Large dustbin capacity of 500ml
  • Programmable without the use of an app
  • Excellent customer service reputation

What We Didn’t Like:

  • Brush roller can become tangled with hair
  • Suction isn’t as strong as some models
  • Can’t connect to smart home appliances or smartphones

#6 Best Slim Vacuum: Kyvol Cybovac E31

The Kyvol Cybovac E31 does everything a robot vacuum needs to do and, like the bObsweep, it doubles as a mop. What I really liked about this model was its slim design.

This vacuum contains a refillable water tank and uses a washable mopping cloth to execute the mop function. The mopping function isn’t particularly impressive, but it could be a valuable feature if your home doesn’t have much carpeting.

The Kyvol Cybovac E31 is smaller than other robot vacuums which means it can glide under furniture and get into tight places where other robot vacuums might not. Though it has a slim profile, this model still has a large 600ml dustbin.

In terms of performance, this vacuum fell short of the standards set by some of the other models I’ve reviewed. Its navigation was a little messy and, while its suction was pretty good, it wasn’t perfect. It did a pretty good job picking up cat hair and litter in my test, in its day-to-day cleaning I noticed it pass over some areas of dirt several times before picking it up.

I also noticed that like the Ecovacs DEEBOT 500, this model tended to get stuck a little more often than some of the more expensive models. This option may be best if you don’t have a lot of things sitting on your floor like rugs or litter mats.

Another potential downfall of this model is that it utilizes a traditional bristle roller brush. Again, this means hair can become wrapped around the brush and you’ll need to detangle it once in a while.

Overall, the Kyvol Cybovac E31 may not be the strongest in performance, but it did have one of the largest dustbin capacities of any I tested, and it has an intuitive, easy to use app. It was also one of the quietest robot vacuum I tested.

What We Liked:

  • Slim design allows it to glide under furniture
  • Doubles as a vacuum and a mop
  • Relatively quiet performance
  • Generously sized dustbin, 600ml

What We Didn’t Like:

  • Suction could be more powerful
  • Hair may tangle around the bristle brush

Relevant Articles:

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.

About Mallory Crusta

Mallory is an NAVC-certified Pet Nutrition Coach. Having produced and managed multimedia content across several pet-related domains, Mallory is dedicated to ensuring that the information on Cats.com is accurate, clear, and engaging. When she’s not reviewing pet products or editing content, Mallory enjoys skiing, hiking, and trying out new recipes in the kitchen. She has two cats, Wessie and Forest.