Best Robot Vacuums for Pet Hair of 2023: Expert Tested & Reviewed

Updated November 2023
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BestReviews spends thousands of hours researching, analyzing, and testing products to recommend the best picks for most consumers. We only make money if you purchase a product through our links, and all opinions about the products are our own. Read more  
BestReviews spends thousands of hours researching, analyzing, and testing products to recommend the best picks for most consumers. We buy all products with our own funds, and we never accept free products from manufacturers.Read more 
Bottom line
Best of the Best
iRobot Roomba S9+
Roomba S9+
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Best robot vacuum for all floor types
Bottom Line

Its dual brush rollers resisted tangles from pet hair more effectively than the competition. Its suction power captures all sizes of debris on slick hardwood and high-pile carpets. The S9+ empties itself, delivers longer battery life and cleans around corners effectively.


It ran for over an hour and a half on a single battery charge. Its sophisticated mapping allows for cleaning specific rooms or areas. Testing revealed it transitions easily between hardwood and carpet. Its D-shape also fits easily into corners and along baseboards.


It can scatter heavier debris with its fan brush while cleaning hardwood. It is one of the most expensive models we tested.

Best Bang for the Buck
Shark IQ Robot
IQ Robot Self-Empty XL RV1001AE
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Best budget-friendly bagless robot vac
Bottom Line

This robot vacuum excelled on hardwood floors during testing but is considerably cheaper than models with similar performance and doesn't require disposal bag purchases, unlike traditional auto-empty robots.


Our testing found it removed nearly all debris on hardwood and carpet. It also cleaned well in corners and along baseboards. The app is easy to use for scheduling and troubleshooting. It has a bagless, self-emptying base for uninterrupted cleaning.


Its mapping function didn’t work as well as expected during testing. Small objects like pet toys sometimes got caught in it.

iRobot Roomba j7+
Roomba j7+
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Best for pet hair on carpet
Bottom Line

This robot vacuum offers impressive navigation and is equipped with dual rubber brushes for deep debris cleaning on carpets. It navigates in straight lines and dodges obstacles thanks to its onboard camera, preventing disruptions in cleaning. It includes an auto-empty base and absolutely annihilates pet hair.


Our testing found it removed nearly all debris including pet hair on hardwood and carpet. It also cleaned well in corners and along baseboards. The app is easy to use for scheduling and will remind you when it's time to maintain the vacuum. It has a self-emptying base for uninterrupted cleaning. This robot vac also avoided obstacles better than the competition.


Battery life isn't as strong as other vacuums. It needs to be in a well-lit room in order for it to operate and navigate correctly.

eufy by Anker Robo Vac X8
Eufy by Anker
Robo Vac X8
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Best for pet hair on wood floors
Bottom Line

One of the most powerful robot vacuums on the market thanks to its twin turbines which deliver two times the suction power as the competition to suck up the heaviest of pet debris including kibble, litter, and of course pet hair.


Comes with two interior turbines to deliver 4,000 pA total suction force, capable of deep cleaning carpet and fully removing pet hair in a single pass during testing. Laser-based navigation allows for precise maneuvering around furniture and obstacles. We like its feature-rich app and ability to start and stop cleaning with a smart speaker. Its battery can run for more than 3 hours of cleaning time.


Somewhat loud. Takes 4 hours to recharge its battery fully.

iRobot Roomba j7+ Combo
Roomba Combo j7+
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Best robot vacuum and mop for pet hair
Bottom Line

This hybrid robot vacuum removes dust and debris from all floor types and mops without wetting your carpets. It does a phenomenal job at navigating around objects and delivers an impressive runtime.


Its mopping pad flips up on top of the robot to avoid scrapping or oversaturating the floor. We found it had enough suction power to suck up all but a few grains of heavier debris. It can clean with water only. Its battery can run for over 2 hours before recharging.


It doesn’t have a mop-only setting. Due to its onboard water tank, its dust bin is smaller than competing robot vacuums.


We recommend these products based on an intensive research process that's designed to cut through the noise and find the top products in this space. Guided by experts, we spend hours looking into the factors that matter, to bring you these selections.

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Buying guide for best robot vacuum for pet hair

Pets provide plenty of fun and companionship, but cleaning up after them is a chore no one enjoys. If you have trouble keeping up with all of the hair from your dog or cat, a robot vacuum can take some of that work off your plate. The BestReviews Testing Lab considered 33 models and identified the five best robot vacuums for pet hair. 

We tested many features that are important to any robot vacuum, so we timed the setup process, battery life and charging time, as well as how long it took to clean an entire room. We also examined how the vacuums performed specifically with pet hair, testing their performance on both hard flooring and carpeting. We even evaluated the dustbin capacity to see how much pet hair a model could capture before it needed emptying and whether the brush roll became tangled with hair. 

Additionally, we observed how well the robot vacuums could handle other debris you might have with pets, such as kitty litter or dry pet food, to understand how they perform in a home with pets overall. After our extensive evaluation, we found that the iRobot Roomba s9+ is the best robot vacuum for pet hair. 

New releases

On September 11, iRobot released two new models ahead of the holiday season. Here's a look at what we know so far.

iRobot Roomba Combo j9+

Roomba Combo j9+on clean base next to woman sitting on sofa petting dog

Product specifications
Battery life: 120 minutes | Dimensions: 13.7” L x 13.7” W x 3.4” H | Weight: 8.98 lb | Mapping: Yes | Self-emptying: Yes | Voice commands: Alexa, Google Assistant, Siri Shortcuts | Scheduling: Yes

The Roomba Combo j9+ is a pet owner’s dream. It provides 100 times the suction power of Roomba i-series robots, so it can remove even deeply embedded pet hair from your carpeting and rugs. As a vacuum/mop combo, it also has a self-retracting mop pad that lifts up to the top of the robot when not on hard flooring, so your carpets and rugs don’t get wet. 

The Combo j9+ boasts advanced obstacle avoidance, too, preventing it from running over any pet poop if your pet has an accident on the floor. The new Dirt Detective feature even allows the robot to figure out where the dirtiest rooms are and prioritize them for cleaning, so spots where your pets hang out are always as clean as possible. 

BestReviews is currently testing this product; we will update our test picks when we're done.

iRobot Roomba j9+

Roomba j9+ cleans hard flooring next to person with dog

Product specifications
Battery life: 120 minutes | Dimensions: 13.3” L x 13.3” W x 3.4” H | Weight: 7.5 lb | Mapping: Yes | Self-emptying: Yes | Voice commands: Alexa, Google Assistant, Siri Shortcuts | Scheduling: Yes

Like the Combo j9+, the Roomba j9+ is one of the line’s most powerful robots, offering 100 times the suction power of the Roomba i series. That means it can pull all the pet hair from your carpets and rugs and remove it from corners where it collects. It also has dual rubber brushes that discourage hair from tangling around the roll and stalling the vacuum. 

It even comes with the new j-series Clean Base, which is the quietest self-emptying base that iRobot has ever made and is far less likely to startle nervous pets. Like the j7+, it also has advanced obstacle avoidance and is backed by the Pet Owner Official Promise (P.O.O.P.) to guarantee that your robot won’t run into solid pet waste — or iRobot will replace your vacuum for free. 

BestReviews is currently testing this product; we will update our test picks when we're done.

Our top picks: Which robot vacuum is best for pet hair?

iRobot Roomba s9+

Best robot vacuum for all floor types

Product specifications

Battery life: 107 minutes | Dimensions: 12.25" L x 12.25” W x 3.5” H | Dustbin capacity: 0.5 L | Weight: 8.15 lb | Mapping: Yes | Self-emptying: Yes | Voice commands: Alexa, Google Assistant and Siri | Scheduling: Yes

The iRobot Roomba s9+ isn’t just the best robot vacuum for pet hair — it earned the highest scores across all testing criteria, making it the most well-rounded model overall that can effectively clean on all floor types. And when it comes to pet hair, the s9+ proved exactly why it is such a premium vacuum. During our testing, it not only removed an entire wad of pet hair from smooth laminate flooring on a single pass; it also cleaned up a large clump from carpeting without leaving a single strand behind.

Additionally, when we sent it out for routine cleaning in an area that regularly houses two medium-to-large dogs, it captured all the pet hair in that space. Unlike the Shark IQ Robot, the Roomba j7+, the Eufy RoboVac X8, the Roomba j7+ Combo and many others, the s9+, which was released in 2019, isn’t round. It has more of a D shape, so it fits in corners and along baseboards more easily to remove all the pet hair in those areas, too. The rubber tangle-free brushes also ensured that hair didn’t get stuck on the roll — we only found a couple of pieces of hair on the brushes and had no trouble pulling them loose. 

During testing, the Roomba S9’s mapping and navigation features also proved helpful in a home with pets. It quickly and accurately mapped the testing space, so we could create Keep Out Zones to direct the robot away from areas with pet bowls and toys. It also remembered specific objects, which allowed us to direct it to clean around certain furniture, including beneath a dining table where the dogs in the testing area often eat their treats. Its object avoidance is solid, too, though it sometimes bumped into small items like stuffed pet toys or shoes before quickly swerving away. 

We were impressed by the Roomba S9+’s battery life, which allowed it to clean for an hour and 47 minutes without recharging. In an area with heavy pet hair, it also cleaned for 28 minutes before its dustbin was full. We didn’t find the S9+ to be particularly noisy, either. While vacuuming, the robot itself wasn’t loud enough to frighten pets. However, the emptying process in the Cleaning Base made enough noise to startle one of the dogs in the testing area. Overall, we score this Roomba a 10 out of 10 for its ease of use, ability to pick up pet hair on both hard floors and carpet and advanced mapping skills.

Read more: iRobot Roomba s9+

Shark IQ Robot Self-Empty XL 

Best budget-friendly bagless robot vacuum

Product specifications

Battery life: 97 minutes | Dimensions: 12.9" L x 12.6” W x 3.5” H | Dustbin capacity: 0.4 L | Weight: 5.87 lb | Mapping: Yes | Self-emptying: Yes | Voice commands: Alexa and Google Assistant | Scheduling: Yes

The Shark IQ Robot Self-Empty XL is ideal if you want a truly hands-off approach to pet hair cleanup. That’s because it has a self-emptying base that can hold up to 45 days’ worth of hair and debris — without requiring you to make the additional purchase of debris bags regularly. When the internal dustbin is full, the robot returns to the base and automatically empties it, so its vacuuming is never interrupted. It also has a self-cleaning brush roll made of rubber to prevent hair from wrapping around the brushes and getting stuck. 

During testing in an area with three small animals, we observed a noticeable difference in the amount of pet hair with just one vacuuming run. It performed especially well on hardwood flooring, removing all the visible pet hair and other debris. It also captured hair and debris nearly everywhere on carpeting, though it did have some trouble in the corners. Overall, we found it removed approximately 98% of debris on all surfaces. Testing also revealed that it can sometimes get caught on small items like dog toys, but we didn’t have any trouble removing them to get the robot vacuuming again. 

This Shark IQ Robot is extremely easy to use, even for those new to robot vacuums. We had no trouble connecting to the Shark app, which provided complete setup instructions. Scheduling was also simple, and we set up the robot to clean every day at the same time without issue. We give this vacuum an 8 out of 10 for its convenience, solid suction and nearly maintenance-free design. 

iRobot Roomba j7+

Best robot vacuum for pet hair on carpet

Product specifications

Battery life: 97 minutes | Dimensions: 13.3" L x 13.3” W x 3.4” H | Dustbin capacity: 0.4 L | Weight: 7.49 lb | Mapping: Yes | Self-emptying: Yes | Voice commands: Alexa, Google Assistant and Siri | Scheduling: Yes

The iRobot Roomba j7+ is designed with pet owners in mind, and our testing found that it does have many features that pet owners will appreciate. Most importantly, it has enough suction power to pull pet hair from any floor. The robot picked up an entire clump of pet hair on hard flooring without any issue and did the same when we placed pet hair on medium-pile carpeting. In both tests, there wasn’t a single strand left behind. After it was vacuumed, we didn’t find much pet hair or fibers wrapped around its tangle-free brush roll, either, which was particularly impressive because we tested it in a space containing two medium-to-large dogs. 

The Roomba j7+ is a self-emptying model, which means its internal dustbin capacity isn’t as important a feature as it is in other robots like the Eufy RoboVac X8 or the Eufy RoboVac G30. However, during testing, the j7+ ran for 48 minutes before its bin was full. It also has excellent navigation and mapping features like the Roomba s9+, but its obstacle-avoidance capabilities ranked at the top in our testing. It avoided a handbag, a stuffed dog and a shoe that were placed in its path, seeming to sense them and pivot away. iRobot guarantees it will also avoid pet accidents, but we couldn’t test this claim. Additionally, its top-notch navigation and well-sized dirt bin allowed it to clean efficiently, fully vacuuming a 320-square-foot space in just 53 minutes.

The Roomba j7+ is also compatible with voice commands through home assistants, including Alexa, Siri and Google Assistant. We tested a range of commands like “Start vacuuming,” “Vacuum the living room” and “Return to home base” and found that the robot was responsive to all. We scored this robot a 9 out of 10 because it offers excellent performance with pet hair on carpeting, impressive obstacle avoidance and highly efficient cleaning. 

Read more: iRobot Roomba j7+

Eufy RoboVac X8 

Best robot vacuum for pet hair on wood floors

Product specifications

Battery life: 190 minutes | Dimensions: 13.58” L x 13.58" W x 3.85” H | Dustbin capacity: 0.6 L | Weight: 7.72 lb | Mapping: Yes | Self-emptying: No | Voice commands: Alexa and Google Assistant | Scheduling: Yes

With twin turbines, the Eufy RoboVac X8, provides improved suction to capture pet hair, dirt and dust from all floor types. During testing, we found that it performed extremely well on both carpet and hardwood, demonstrating superior power compared to other Eufy models like the RoboVac G30. We were especially impressed with its ability to remove pet hair from wood — it captured all the pet hair without leaving any strands.

While we had no issues with the short hair from a cat who sheds a moderate amount wrapping around the brushes, longer hair sometimes got tangled. Fortunately, the RoboVac X8 comes with a convenient cleaning tool to address the issue, and it was highly effective in removing hair that got caught. 

This robot vacuum was also extremely easy to set up, requiring just a few minutes to take it out of the box, plug it in and begin charging. We found the Eufy Home app user-friendly, too, so we could connect and add the robot in less than a minute. The app itself was simple to navigate and made it easy to access all the functions, like spot cleaning and scheduling. The mapping process took just 20 minutes to learn a 215-square-foot space with several pieces of furniture, so we could create no-go zones to keep the robot away from certain spots or send it out for zone cleaning. 

The RoboVac X8’s battery life is also impressive — it can run for up to 190 minutes on a single charge, so it can cover a lot of ground before it needs to head back to base. Overall, with its excellent suction on hard flooring, user-friendly operation and long run time, we gave it an 8 out of 10.

iRobot Roomba j7+ Combo

Best robot vacuum and mop for pet hair

Product specifications

Battery life: 128 minutes | Dimensions: 13.3” L x 13.3" W x 3.4” H | Dustbin capacity: 0.4 L | Water tank capacity: 0.48 L | Weight: 7.35 lb | Mapping: Yes | Self-emptying: Yes | Voice commands: Alexa, Google Assistant and Siri | Scheduling: Yes

Like the Roomba j7+, the iRobot Roomba j7+ Combo claims to be ideal for pet owners and offers many of the same pet-friendly features as the j7+ — with one notable addition: it also mops. This means it can handle wet, sticky messes on hard flooring. During testing, its performance with removing pet hair was excellent on all surfaces. We observed it remove a clump of hair in a single pass on laminate flooring, as well as on medium-pile carpet. After both tests, not a single strand of hair was left behind. We didn’t find much noticeable hair around the brushes afterward, either. 

The j7+ Combo has the same smart mapping and navigation features as the j7+. It accurately mapped the floor during a pre-cleaning run, so we could send it out to clean specific rooms like the kitchen or living room. During the mapping, it also identified the flooring surfaces, learning where it should vacuum and where it should mop. It cleaned spilled iced tea without spreading it around and removed the sticky residue from laminate flooring during routine cleaning. The mopping feature is particularly helpful in a home with pets because it can help capture stray hair stuck to hard flooring and clean up pet accidents or spilled food and water. 

We were also pleasantly surprised by the j7+ Combo’s battery life. It ran for 128 minutes without needing to be recharged. Its obstacle avoidance was excellent, too, so it swerved away from small objects like a stuffed dog toy and a shoe. We rated the robot a 9 out of 10 for its convenient mopping capabilities, excellent suction and advanced navigation.

Read more: iRobot Roomba j7+ Combo

Eufy RoboVac G30 

Best robot vacuum for pet hair for the money

Product specifications

Battery life: 105 minutes | Dimensions: 12.8” L x 12.8" W x 2.85” H | Dustbin capacity: 0.6 L | Weight: 5.29 lb | Mapping: Yes | Self-emptying: No | Voice commands: Alexa and Google Assistant | Scheduling: Yes

Although the Eufy RoboVac G30 may not have as many bells and whistles as higher-end models like the Eufy RoboVac X8 or the iRobot Roomba s9+, it's an excellent budget robot vacuum that delivers well on what matters most: cleaning performance and stellar ease of use. Testing found that its suction isn’t as powerful as the RoboVac X8, but it still effectively removed pet hair from hard flooring. It also worked well on carpeting, though it left some hair behind on a medium-pile carpet that required a couple of passes to fully remove it. However, its battery lasted for 105 minutes before it needed recharging, so it had plenty of time to fully clean the testing area. The BoostIQ feature also detected when the robot traveled from one surface to another and automatically increased or decreased suction as necessary to make cleaning even more efficient. 

We were pleasantly surprised by how quiet the G30 was while vacuuming. It registered at about 56 decibels, or quieter than most conversations, so it may be a good option for homes with anxious pets. Testing also revealed that its mapping process is quick and efficient — the robot built the map as it went, and we could even watch the map being created in real time through the app. Once the G30 had accurately mapped a room, we were impressed with how quickly it could clean the space.

The G30 also proved easy to set up and operate through the connected app. We tested features like auto-return-to-charge and scheduling and found them highly convenient. Overall, we scored it a 7 out of 10 for its affordability, solid suction power and quiet performance. 

iRobot Roomba i8+

Best robot vacuum for pet hair in multilevel homes

Product specifications

Battery life: 89 minutes | Dimensions: 13.3" L x 13.3” W x 3.6” H | Dustbin capacity: 0.4 L | Weight: 7.44 lb | Mapping: Yes | Self-emptying: Yes | Voice commands: Alexa, Google Assistant and Siri | Scheduling: Yes

Like the Roomba s9+, j7+ and j7+ Combo, the iRobot Roomba i8+ features smart mapping technology that allows you to create up to 10 smart maps, so you can have one for each level of your home. This technology also lets you clean specific areas when it’s needed, so you can target any mess your pet makes as soon as it happens.

Our testing found that pet hair isn’t a challenge for the i8+, either. It could pick up an entire clump of pet hair, whether it was on hard flooring or medium-pile carpeting. In both cases, it removed the hair in a single pass without leaving any behind. We were also impressed by how efficiently it cleaned overall, vacuuming 250 square feet in just 27 minutes. 

In our testing, the i8+ offered plenty of battery life, allowing it to clean for about 90 minutes before recharging. The internal dustbin was large enough to hold plenty of pet hair, too — it cleaned for 43 minutes before the bin was full. We noticed no pet hair around the brush roll and wheels after the i8+ finished vacuuming and were pleased with how simple the cleaning process was. 

The included virtual wall barrier is designed to keep the robot out of certain areas, so we used it to keep the vacuum out of a cramped, cluttered space where we thought it might get stuck. During testing, the i8+ stayed out of the room on every vacuuming run once we set up the barrier. We gave it an 8 out of 10 for its efficient cleaning, smart navigation and effective suction. 

How we test

Setup tests

Our testing began with setting up the robot vacuums to see how long the process took and how easy it was. If the robot had an app, we also set it up and connected the vacuum to evaluate how user-friendly the app was and how effectively it provided access to the vacuum’s features. 

Battery life and cleaning time

Next, we ran the robots to see how long their batteries lasted before recharging. We then timed how long they took to recharge and how long they could run before their dustbins were full. Our testing also considered how long it took for the robots to clean an entire room, as well as the square footage of the space. We explored the mapping process, too, evaluating how long it took, how accurate it was and how it affected navigation. 

Cleaning performance tests

To get a more concrete idea of the vacuums’ performance, we tested the vacuums with specific types of debris. Pet hair was our major concern, but we also observed how well they performed when picking up kitty litter, cereal and small-to-medium-sized particles like kosher salt on both hard flooring and carpeting. 

Finally, we cleaned the robots after they vacuumed. We noted how much pet hair was around the brush roll, whether any was stuck or tangled on the brushes and how easy it was to remove the brushes, wheels and other components for cleaning.

Considerations when buying a robot vacuum for pet hair

Floor type

The types of flooring you have in your home should be a major factor when choosing a robot vacuum to clean up after your pets. Robot vacuums typically have an easier time on hard flooring, such as hardwood or laminate, because it's flat and smooth. These surfaces usually don’t have cracks or gaps for dirt, pet hair and other debris to settle into, so even a robot vacuum with moderate suction can effectively remove pet hair from them.

However, carpeting and rugs present a challenge for many robot vacuums. Dirt and other debris often become embedded in carpet fibers, so it’s more difficult for battery-powered robot vacuums to pull it out. Removing pet hair from high-pile carpeting is especially tough for robot vacuums because it’s easy for the hair to get trapped between the higher fibers. If your home is heavily carpeted, you want a robot vacuum with superior suction like the iRobot Roomba s9+. Its suctions power is 40 times greater than standard Roomba models, so it easily handles pet hair. 

Our testing showed that the Roomba s9+’s suction was strong enough to remove pet hair from both hard flooring and medium-pile carpeting. On the other hand, entry-level models like the Eufy RoboVac G30 had enough suction to remove pet hair from hard flooring but sometimes struggled on carpeting, requiring a couple of passes over carpeting to fully capture the hair. 

Noise level

The noise associated with standard vacuums can make many pets anxious, so you’ll want to consider how loud a robot vacuum is if you’ll use it to pick up after your pets. Most robot models produce between 45 and 70 decibels of noise. Regular conversation typically registers at about 60 to 70 decibels, so a robot vacuum is about that noisy. 

During testing, we definitely found that the robot vacuums seemed quieter than standard vacuums. However, it’s important to note that the noise level varies from model to model. Eufy and Roomba stood out, as the iRobot Roomba j7+ and the Eufy RoboVac X8 were the quietest robot vacuums of those we tested, ranging from 50 to 65 decibels depending on the power setting and type of flooring. On the other hand, the iRobot Roomba s9+ was the loudest on our list, topping out at over 74 decibels. 

However, keep in mind that noisier vacuums tend to offer the strongest suction power. To deal with pet hair, you may need a slightly louder model to ensure it’s powerful enough to pull all the hair out of your carpeting and off your hard flooring. 


Pet hair often collects beneath the couch and other furniture, so you want a robot vacuum to fit under your furniture and capture any debris. The size of a robot vacuum can also affect how easy it is to store in your home, which can be even more challenging if you live in a smaller space. 

If you want to ensure that a robot will fit under most of your furniture, a model with a low profile is your best bet. The iRobot Roomba j7+ offers the lowest profile of the models we tested, coming in at just 3.4 inches high. During testing, we found that this height allowed it to easily navigate beneath most furniture, including a coffee table that was fairly low to the ground. On the other hand, the Eufy RoboVac X8 is the largest robot, measuring 3.65 inches in height, which may be too tall to fit beneath some furniture. 

It’s important to note that larger robots generally have larger dustbins. That means they can hold more pet hair than smaller models, so you aren’t constantly having to empty the bin during vacuuming. 

Which robot vacuum features are ideal for pet hair cleanup?

Tangle-free brushes

You should choose a robot vacuum with tangle-free brushes for a home with lots of pet hair. Traditional vacuum brushes usually have rigid bristles that make it easy for hair and fibers to wrap around them. On the other hand, some models like the Roomba s9+, Roomba  j7+ and Shark iQ Robot feature brushes made of rubber. These rubber brushes have some flexibility, which prevents pet hair from wrapping around the brushes as easily. However, tangle-free brushes still effectively lift pet hair from your flooring, so your home is clean and allergen-free. This feature can be essential when cleaning pet hair from carpeting because the robot vacuum may pull large amounts of hair from the carpet fibers that can get tangled on lower-quality brushes. 

During testing, we discovered that tangle-free brushes made a big difference in how much hair we had to clean from the brushes after vacuuming. For example, we didn’t find much hair or fibers on the Roomba s9+ or j7+ that we had to remove. These models never stalled during cleaning, either. 

A robot vacuum with tangle-free rubber brushes is also a good choice for cleaning pet hair from hardwood. Not only does it prevent pet hair from getting tangled, but the rubber bristles are also less likely to scratch the wood. 

Self-emptying bin

A robotic vacuum can pull a lot of hair from the carpet fibers or the surface of hard floors, which can quickly fill up its internal dustbin. If the bin is full, the robot will stop cleaning until you empty the debris. 

However, some models have a self-emptying base, so the robot automatically returns to the base when the bin is full and empties the hair and dirt into a larger bag in the top of the base. That prevents the robot from stopping in the middle of cleaning if you’re unaware that the bin is full. 

While the self-emptying process can be pretty loud, it makes vacuuming much more efficient. Models with a self-emptying base like the Shark IQ Robot, Roomba s9+, and Roomba j7+ can also hold between 45 and 60 days’ worth of dirt and hair in the base’s dust bag, so you can go an entire month without having to empty your robot of pet hair. 

No-go zones and obstacle avoidance

Many robot vacuums have mapping technology that allows them to learn the layout of your home to clean more efficiently. However, some models like the Roomba s9+, Eufy RoboVac X8 and Roomba j7+ offer more sophisticated mapping than others because they have advanced sensors or cameras to aid in their navigation. You can then send your robot out to clean specific rooms where your pets spend time and hair may accumulate. But you can also set up no-clean zones, so the robot will avoid certain areas, such as where your pet’s food and water bowls are located. 

In addition to learning your home’s rooms and zones, some models, like the Roomba j7+ and j7+ Combo, are smart enough to detect and avoid obstacles in their path. This can include items like shoes, pet toys and even pet poop. Many pet owners are frustrated when a robot vacuum runs over a pet's accident and spreads it all over the floors. With an advanced obstacle avoidance feature, you never have to worry about coming home to find your pet’s mistake smeared everywhere. 


In addition to vacuuming, some robot vacuums like the Roomba j7+ Combo offer mopping capabilities. They vacuum and mop simultaneously based on the flooring type, so every surface in your home is as clean as can be. These vacuums map your home’s layout to identify carpeted areas and rooms with hard flooring to ensure that it cleans every space properly. The mopping pad can then conveniently swing out of the way when the robot approaches carpeting or rugs to avoid wetting the fibers. 

With pets in the house, a mopping feature can be very helpful. It can clean up food and water spills, residue from pet accidents and even help remove hair trapped in the corners or along the baseboards on hard flooring. 

The best of the best robotic vacuum for cleaning up pet hair.

Robot vacuum prices

Robot vacuums can be pretty expensive, so knowing your budget is essential before you start shopping. Generally, you’ll spend between $300 and $1,000 for a robot vacuum for pet hair. 

Entry-level models like the Shark IQ Robot usually provide enough suction to help with pet hair removal when paired with a traditional vacuum, but they offer features like tangle-free rollers and basic mapping capabilities. They typically cost $300 to $400.

For a robot vacuum with enough suction power to handle most of the pet hair removal in your home and more advanced navigation capabilities for no-clean zones, a mid-tier model like the Roomba i7+ or i8+ is your best bet. These models usually cost $575 to $800.

If you want a robot vacuum with sophisticated mapping, obstacle avoidance and enough suction to handle all pet hair removal in your home, you’ll need a higher-end model, such as the Roomba j7+ or s9+. Expect to pay $800 to $1,000.

How to clean pet hair out of a robot vacuum

Ideally, a robot vacuum will suck up most of your home’s pet hair into the dustbin for easy disposal in the trash. However, hair sometimes finds its way around the brushes before it’s sucked inside. The best robot vacuums for pet hair have tangle-free brushes that prevent the hair from getting wrapped around the roll. These models may sometimes have the occasional hair on the brushes, but you usually don’t need to remove the brushes to clean them.

If hair does become stuck around your robot vacuum’s brush roll, it can affect the vacuum’s airflow and suction, so it’s important to remove it as soon as you see it. Fortunately, some models like Eufy RoboVac X8 come with a cleaning tool that easily removes any hair stuck around the brushes. You’ll need to remove the brushes first, usually by pressing down on a tab on the bottom of the robot that releases them. The tool then allows you to remove the wrapped hair without damaging the brushes. 

For models that don’t include a cleaning tool like the Roomba s9+, Roomba j7+ or Shark IQ Robot, you can use scissors or a kitchen knife to cut the hair and gently pull it loose. If the hair is tightly wound around the roll, take your time to avoid accidentally cutting yourself.