Adam holds a Bachelor's and a Master's degree in Linguistics, and creative writing has always been his greatest passion. For more than 25 years he's been working for several well-known automobile and travel magazines as an editor and expert consultant, but when Adam started his writing path here, at WisePick, it turned out that he's capable of writing practically anything about everything.
Initially being an engineering specialist, Tom has never stopped learning and acquiring other knowledge and skills. Now he’s involved in technical support for a well-known household appliances manufacturer, so no wonder he knows everything about almost everything you buy for your home.
Last updated: December 23, 2020
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If you live in a home with a furry friend, like a dog or a cat, then you know that a vacuum designed to pick up pet hair and cat litter is incredibly handy to have. But there are a variety of different types of vacuums that may be better suited for your needs and space. From handheld, robot, stick, and canister vacuums, a high-quality vacuum can make your life easier. In this review, we’ve collected a variety of different vacuum types to find the best vacuum for cat litter.
When reviewing the best vacuum for cat litter and pet hair, it’s important to look at the different features and understand why they’re important so you can decide what’s right for you and your home. The type of vacuum will let you know whether the unit will work with your flooring and the space of your home as well as your cleaning needs. The power will tell you if it has enough energy to do the cleaning job you’ll ask of it. Weight will let you know if it’s easy to use, while the capacity determines how much debris it can hold.
We spent many hours going over the specifications of various vacuums, comparing their product features and reading every customer review to help you pick the vacuum which will best fit your needs and space. We’ll break down our findings in a table with quick-to-find specifications as well as more detailed product reviews, followed by a buying guide for those ready to purchase their own best vacuum for cat litter.
The Dirt Devil Razor Pet UD70355B is an upright vacuum with swivel and swerve capabilities, making it easy to maneuver around furniture and spaces and get close to walls, and into corners other upright vacuums can’t manage. This vacuum has an automatic floor height adjustment, meaning it senses whether you’re cleaning on carpets with high or low pile, or on a hard surface like tile or hardwood, so you don’t have to change the setting every time you’re moving to a different floor type in your residence. It has a removable extension wand which reaches ten feet, making it easy to vacuum higher places in your home. It’s great for pet owners because it comes with the TURBOCLAW pet turbo tool, and an anti-hair wrap dirt cup, making it the best vacuum for cat litter and pet hair. It also comes with 2-in-1 dusting brush and crevice tool, making it an all-around great vacuum for a variety of cleaning needs.
The Dirt Devil Razor Pet UD70355B comes with the Endura filter, which is easy to access, and rinseable for cleaning purposes. It’s also odor-trapping, which is great for homes with a lot of pets or for cleaning up scattered litter. Not only that, but the filter fits into any Dirt Devil upright vacuum, making them transferable to different machines should you decide to change models in the future. It weighs 12 pounds, which is fairly lightweight for an upright vacuum, but not the lightest one available so that may be something to keep in mind if vacuum weight is important to you.
But users have stated that it’s quieter than other upright vacuums and the brush roll can be turned off, making this one of the best vacuum cleaners for cat litter.
Finally, it comes with a two-year limited warranty, which is important since some users stated that their machine broke fairly early on in the life of their vacuum.
The Shark Rocket TruePet Ultra-Light Vacuum gets our rating for the Best Stick Vacuum because it’s a powerful 2-in-1 vacuum, meaning it works equally well on carpet and hardwood floors. It comes with a collection of included attachments such as a motorized floor nozzle for floor cleaning, a wand for cleaning higher places in your residence, a duster crevice tool for reaching into tight corners or difficult-to-access spaces, and a Pet Multi-Tool, making it one of the best stick vacuums for cat litter.
It’s a corded model, but the cord is 30 feet in length, making it easy to maneuver around the house without having to unplug it and find a closer outlet to continue your cleaning. It’s super lightweight, at only 9.1 pounds, and because it’s a stick vacuum, it converts into a handheld model as well, making it a great choice for the person who wants the power of an upright vacuum with the convenience of a handheld unit all in one. However, it’s important to note that this vacuum does not stand on its own, like an upright vacuum would, and so if you’re pausing in your cleaning duties, you will need to lay it on the ground or lean it against something.
Shark has also increased the cup capacity over older models, up to 0.18 gallons, so you have the empty the cup less frequently when cleaning, though some users stated that the dust cup still needs to be emptied pretty frequently, especially if you’re using it as your primary residence vacuum. It has advanced swivel steering which makes it easy to use to clean houses with odd-shaped rooms or a lot of corners or furniture, and the Pet Multi-Tool is great for picking up pet hair. It also has LED headlights on the motorized floor nozzle for darker spaces, and the filters and canister, as well as the attachments, are washable with tap water. And some users stated that the vacuum is surprisingly quiet as well.
The Eureka NEU188A is designed specifically for pet owners in mind, especially because of its powerful turbo brush. It’s an upright vacuum that has five different height settings, making it perfect if your residence has more than one flooring type, from carpet to rugs, tile to hardwood. Because of the ease in which it can adapt to different flooring types this vacuum should be considered the best vacuum for cat litter on carpet, though some users stated that it’s not great for cat litter on tile because the brush roll continues to spin, sending cat litter flying on hard surfaces. It also has LED headlights, making it especially useful for vacuuming under furniture, or in darker spaces such as a closet or bathroom where the litter box is kept.
The vacuum only weighs around 12 pounds, which is light for an upright vacuum, making it a good choice for someone with mobility issues or for more elderly consumers. It also ships with a collection of accessories: a pet turbo brush for pet hair cleanup, a 2-in-1 upholstery tool for cleaning couches and other furniture, a flexible, telescoping crevice tool for greater reach into even harder to reach crevices, and a detachable handle that’s a quick release, to help owners remove pet hair and other harder to clean substances.
The Eureka NEU188A has a transparent brush cover so you will always have clear visibility of it in case you ever run over a string or something else that might wrap around the brush roll. It also has an easy-to-empty Dust Cup and washable filter that doesn’t require any special cleaning chemicals, saving you time and money on bags and one-time use filters.
It’s a corded vacuum, as most uprights are, but its cord is 25 feet, making it easy to find an outlet and get to work, though some users complained that it’s a louder vacuum so that may be something to consider if you have easy-to-startle pets or napping children.
Finally, because it has the quick release handle, you can change from floor cleaning to high cleaning just by releasing the handle and attaching the correct tool.
The Bissell Pet Hair Eraser 33A1 is a handheld vacuum that is also our Budget Pick due to its low cost and different capabilities.
It’s specifically designed for picking up pet hair because of its specialized rubber nozzles which attract hair, especially from spaces like upholstery and car interiors, or harder to reach areas like taller cat towers that have collected pet hair. However, some users stated that it doesn’t work well on textured fabric or on pet fur that is really ground into carpet or upholstery.
It also comes with an attachable suction nozzle, which works great for picking up cat litter, especially on hard surfaces, making this the best vacuum for cat litter on tile. It’s lightweight, at only 4.2 pounds, but still a touch heavier than other handheld vacuums so that may be something to keep in mind if you’re someone who doesn’t have much arm strength. Also, this handheld vacuum is corded, which comes with pros and cons. A corded handheld vacuum means it has a limited range of vacuuming: you have to be near enough for an outlet for it to work, so if your car is parked outside, this may not be the best choice for you since the cord is only 16 feet long. But a corded vacuum means you can clean as long as you need: no need to worry about a battery dying after a few minutes of use and then needing to recharge for hours.
It has an easy to empty bagless canister and a washable, reusable filter, saving you money on bags and new filters. Finally, some users stated that this is not a great vacuum for other messes around the house because the blowers blow the dirt away before the vacuum can suck it up.
Robot vacuums are great for people who would like to pass on the chore of vacuuming. Robots have a set-it-and-forget-it mentality when it comes to vacuuming. And bonus! If your cat rides on the vacuum, it could be an internet sensation, making this vacuum the best cordless vacuum for cat litter.
The Roborock E35 is equipped with 13 types of sensors to help it maneuver around a space and prevent it from falling downstairs and from colliding with furniture or pets. Its large battery offers 2.5 hours of continuous cleaning before it will automatically dock itself and recharge. And not only is the Roborock E35 a vacuum, it is also a mop! It will vacuum and mop simultaneously and suck up water so it won’t leave puddles behind. It also comes with an app, which allows you to customize its cleaning routine, and schedule, start, or stop from your smartphone, though in-home wi-fi is required to use the app, and some users stated the app won’t work if your wi-fi is too advanced and that the company’s customer service isn’t that helpful. This robot vacuum, though, has route planning, which means it cleans up to 30% faster than other robot vacuums and its powerful suction is great at picking up cat litter or pet hair. It also has spot cleaning capabilities for spills or pet accidents, and the filter is washable, extending the life of the filter before it needs to be replaced, though like all robot vacuums it can become entangled in cords and cables or long drapes and some users stated that it’s fairly loud for a robot vacuum.
The BLACK+DECKER HHVI315JO42 is our choice for the best handheld vacuum, not because of its ease of use but also because of its capabilities. This little vacuum is specifically designed and perfectly suited for collecting debris and dirt from your everyday life, making it a great choice for the best handheld vacuum for cat litter.
This machine has a bowl capacity of 31.8 ounces, which means it requires less frequent emptying, making for more continuous cleaning experience. On top of that the bowl and filter are washable which lets you easily clean the vacuum before you next use it to clean your home and pet spaces. And the dirt bowl is translucent, making it easy to see how much dirt and debris it has collected and when it’s full so you know when and how often to empty it.
The BLACK+DECKER HHVI315JO42 comes with a crevice tool, making it great at cleaning hard-to-reach areas or tight corners regular vacuums or brooms can’t tackle. It also comes with a brush attachment, so you can use this machine to clean and dust upholstery like couches and other furniture, a necessity if you have pets.
The vacuum comes with a wall mount, making it easy to store and keep out of the way when you’re not using it. It only weighs 2.11 pounds and is, therefore, a great choice for almost anyone who’s worried about the weight of a handheld vacuum being too much for them to handle. It’s also cordless, meaning it recharges its lithium battery while plugged into the wall mount, and therefore makes it easy to carry around the house, or even to your car if needed, though when first using the vacuum it will need 16 hours to charge. After that, it can require up to nine hours to fully recharge. And it’s important to note that the vacuum won’t charge in the wall mount if it’s power switch is left in the “on” position. Finally, some users stated that the battery charge would only hold for a solid ten minutes of use, so if you’re looking to vacuum something that takes longer than ten minutes, you may want to look at the other models on our list.
The eufy BoostIQ RoboVac 11S was named the best robot vacuum of 2018 by Digital Trends. This vacuum was designed to be quiet and to provide for up to 100 minutes of hardwood floor cleaning and constant, powerful suction, making it the best robot vacuum for cat litter. When it’s done cleaning it automatically recharges itself so it’s always ready for the next vacuuming cycle.
The vacuum comes with a 0.6 L dustbin to limit the amount of emptying that needs to be done in between cleaning cycles, and it can be used to clean almost any floor type, though it should be avoided if you have high pile carpets or dark flooring, and like other robot vacuums cords and cables should be moved out of the way so it doesn’t get entangled. It’s less than two inches tall which means that it can easily clean under low surfaces, like tables, couches, and beds and its triple filter technology system helps keep your house clean and free from allergens, making it great for limiting pet dander.
This vacuum ships with everything you need to start using it, including an AC power adapter, remote, charging station, an extra set of filters, and a welcome guide.
Its slender profile and anti-scratch tempered glass-top keep the vacuum looking classy in your home, and its infrared sensors and drop-sensing technology help navigate it around objects and items as well as avoid falls downstairs, though some users said that it would get stuck on certain furniture items.
The eufy BoostIQ RoboVac 11S comes with a one-year warranty, and while some users had issues with their vacuums breaking relatively quickly, many said eufy had wonderful customer service.
What we liked:
100 minutes of hardwood cleaning
Great customer service
What could be better:
Not for high pile carpets or dark flooring
Sometimes gets stuck on furniture
Things to Сonsider
If you live in a home, chances are you’ll need to clean the floor at some point or another, especially if you’re a pet owner and deal with pet hair and litter. Nowadays vacuums are not just for carpet, so whether you have tile, hardwood, or a thick pile carpet, knowing which vacuum will work best in your home is really important. If you’re considering the best vacuum for cat hair and litter, the following guides can help you in your decision.
Features to consider while choosing a vacuum for cat litter
The best vacuum for cat hair and litter is one that meets all your needs, including type, power, capacity, runtime, noise level, dimensions and weight, warranty, and any extra features. The below qualities will help you choose the best vacuum cleaner for your home.
The type of vacuum can make a huge difference in your cleaning, whether upright, cordless hand-held, stick, or robotic. Upright will work in most homes, though they require the most manual work, whereas robotic have a set-it-and-leave-it mentality, which is great for those who don’t want to spend a lot of time on vacuuming.
If you’re looking for spot cleaning of cat litter, a handheld may be the best way to go. For great convenience, try the Shark Rocket TruePet Ultra-Light Vacuum which is a stick vacuum that converts between an upright and a handheld model, giving you the best of both worlds.
Power level can vary between different types of vacuums. Uprights tend to have more power than a robotic or handheld, for example, since they’re most often used for whole-home cleaning. And since power correlates with suction, it’s important to pick a vacuum that can meet your needs. If you live in a house with a lot of pets, you may want to look for a vacuum with a strong power level, such as the 960W of the Eureka NEU188A.
All vacuums, regardless of type, have a capacity. All the ones on this list are bagless, meaning they use canisters, so at some point, the vacuum will be full of dirt and debris and need to be emptied. The larger the canister, the more the vacuum can hold before being emptied, though sometimes larger canisters on some vacuums, like handheld models, can make the vacuum heavier, which is an important aspect to consider when purchasing a vacuum if you have weight constrictions or are elderly. For a vacuum with great storage capacity check out the 1.1-gallon Eureka NEU188A, or for a handheld option the BLACK+DECKER HHVI315JO42 has a 31.8-ounce capacity.
Runtime (for cordless models)
If you’re interested in a cordless, or a robotic vacuum, these models typically work on a rechargeable battery system, which is especially useful when you’re searching for a vacuum for quick cleanup for cat litter or pet hair. Runtime, therefore, is an important consideration when purchasing a vacuum.
If your house is larger or has a lot of dirt to pick up, you’ll need a vacuum that has a runtime that can assist you in your cleaning needs, or at the very least a fast recharge on the batteries. Check out the robotic vacuum the Roborock E35 which has a 2.5-hour runtime.
Vacuuming can be loud. The suction creates noise that usually can’t be avoided. But if the noise level is an important consideration for you, especially if you have a home with pets that might be frightened by vacuums, it may be a good idea to check out robotic vacuums. Because they’re made to vacuum on their own, they’re also designed to be as unobtrusive as possible, which means they’re typically quiet so they won’t disturb you or your pets. Check out the eufy BoostIQ RoboVac 11S if you’re looking for a quiet robotic vacuum.
Dimensions and weight
The size of the vacuum is one of the most important aspects to consider when purchasing it, regardless of type. If a handheld vacuum is too heavy, it won’t matter how long the battery runtime is if you can’t carry it long enough to get the job done. If a robotic vacuum is too large, it won’t be able to fit under your furniture to clean. And if your upright vacuum is too heavy, it may make it difficult to use in your rooms, and if it’s too large, storage can be difficult.
An all-around good bet in this regard is the Shark Rocket TruePet Ultra-Light Vacuum which can convert between an upright vacuum and a handheld vacuum. And because it’s a stick vacuum, it’s very small, making storage easier than a larger upright vacuum.
It’s always important to check the warranty of any vacuum you purchase. A well-made vacuum should last years, but sometimes accidents happen and you need to rely on a warranty for replacements or repairs. If you’re looking for a vacuum with a robust warranty, check out the Shark Rocket TruePet Ultra-Light Vacuum which has a great five-year limited guarantee.
Some vacuums come with extra features, which is an added bonus when considering which vacuum to purchase. For a vacuum with a lot of optional cleaning tools, check out our Editor’s Choice the Dirt Devil Razor Pet UD70355B. Or if technology is important to you, look at the Roborock E35 which comes with its own app to make scheduling and monitoring the robotic vacuum a breeze.
How to clean a litter box
Keeping a clean litter box will not only keep your furry friend happy and healthy, it will also keep your home healthy and clean. Follow these steps for cleaning a litter box:
Scoop solid waste from the litter box.
Vacuum scattered litter around the litter box.
Empty and dispose of all litter from the litter box.
Scrub litter box with chosen cleaning agents.
Dry litter box thoroughly.
Add new litter (сonsider adding a layer of baking soda for odor control).
Most of the models on our list are made to handle pet hair, but the handheld Bissell Pet Hair Eraser 33A1 is the only model that comes with a rubber nozzle to assist in removing pet hair from upholstery and carpet.
You should for sure empty the dust box after every use (or more frequently if required by your model.) And depending on the type of filter you have will dictate how often it should be cleaned, from anywhere to after every use, to every few months.
Wattage correlates with power level, and power level means more suction. All of the vacuums on this list are powerful enough to suck up spilled kitty litter, though big upright vacuums will cope faster due to generally more powerful motor.
Vacuum cleaners can help make your house or home even more enjoyable to live in, especially if you have pets that leave hair and litter scattered around. Whether you want to clean your home yourself or trust a robot to handle the chore, there’s a vacuum cleaner out there that will fit your needs.
Our best vacuum cleaner for cat litter is our Editor’s Choice, the Dirt Devil Razor Pet UD70355B. This upright vacuum has a brush roll that can be turned off or on, preventing it from spreading litter everywhere. It has an automatic floor height adjuster, so it works on multiple different floor types, and the filter is universal with other Dirt Devil models as well.
If you’re looking for a budget option, then look no further than the handheld Bissell Pet Hair Eraser 33A1. Though it is a corded, handheld model, it just means that you don’t ever have to worry about running out of battery power or having to recharge in the middle of your cleaning. It’s also the only vacuum with a rubberized tip made specifically for picking up pet hair from upholstery.
Finally, for those looking for a combination of handheld and stick, your best bet is the Shark Rocket TruePet Ultra-Light Vacuum. This stick vacuum works great for all around home cleaning, but it also converts into a smaller handheld model, making it capable of full house cleaning as well as more portable cleaning needs such as scattered litter or pet hair.