Ask any pet owner. While they love their furry family members, there’s one thing they can’t stand—all the hair their beloved animals shed. But thanks to the creation of the vacuum cleaner in 1860, cleaning up after our pets isn’t as much of a problem. Unfortunately, vacuum cleaners aren’t the easiest of home appliances to maneuver. However, as the years have progressed, they have not only become smaller in size, but you also no longer need to push them around. And now, there are robot vacuums for pet hair problems.
When we think of animals’ interactions with robot vacuums, we picture fluffy kittens sitting on top of the circular home appliance. Or there are the dogs that have staring contests with the robot cleaner. Despite the hilarious visuals that come to mind, these machines do actually help in cleaning up pet hair in your home, and we’ll be laying out all the ins and outs of that process below.
History of Vacuums with Pet Hair
Pets have inhabited homes way before vacuum cleaners came into fruition. And while the animals’ excessive shedding hasn’t really changed, the ways it has taken over people’s lives has. Years, perhaps decades ago, concrete and wood floors were quite popular. And if your pet’s fur started to fall, at least you would be able to see it and clean accordingly.
However, homeowners during the 1950s felt that lush carpets transformed houses into homes, and these floors also felt great under your feet. The ’50s brought carpet into vogue, and soon the carpet industry was booming. Although that added style and luxury to homes at the time, it forced pet owners to work a little harder to get the fur off of their carpets, furniture and just about everything else.
As time went on, brands needed to add new mechanical features to make sure that their vacuum cleaners could pick up the fur. Motors and brushes needed to be sturdier, and suction had to be stronger. And let’s not forget about the accessories that would be included with the cleaner. Vacuum cleaners weren’t only meant to clean the pet hair off of carpets and hard floors, but they were also expected suck up fuzz from couches, pillows, curtains and anything else that pet fur would stick to.
Despite all the extra work, that was a small price to pay for having a new furry family member. But even though you love your puppy or guinea pig, busy schedules in and outside the home make it hard to keep homes fur-free without cleaning every day. But thanks to the invention of the robot vacuum in the 2000s, people can now have some help in trying to keep their lives as free of pet hair as possible.
The Difference between Traditional Cleaners and Robot Vacuums for Pet Hair
Before we talk about how robot vacuums do in comparison to traditional cleaners when it comes to pet hair, it would be good to take a look at the difference between the vacuums themselves. Let’s start with the basics. Most non-robotic vacuums, with the exception of the handheld one in your car, are significantly larger than a robot vacuum. Traditional cleaners usually run on electricity and need to continuously be plugged into an outlet. Meanwhile, robot cleaners can run on rechargeable batteries, and many know to roll back to their charging stations when they’re running low.
If you own the fluffiest of animals, then you will really need to figure out your plan of action. Robot vacuums are good at cleaning pet hair every day. However, the capacity of their bins is smaller—limiting how much pet hair you can pick up, so it will need to be emptied very often. Meanwhile, traditional cleaners like an upright canister or drum vacuum are significantly bigger. You can fill them with lots of dirt, debris and, more importantly, fur before needing to empty them.
They Clean After Your Pets While You Do Other Things
Then there is the most obvious difference. You need to actually move a traditional vacuum around. Whether you’re an adult or a baby in a buggy, traditional vacuum cleaners need some help when actually working around the home. But if you have a robot vacuum, then you won’t need to worry about having to drive it around your home. When it does the first cleaning, many robots have cameras and sensors that will be able to map out its route. Then the robots store the information in their memories for future cleanings.
You can also let it run on its own without actually having to be in the house. Many of the newer models can be put on a set schedule. So you can set it, forget it and go! Because of the automated functionalities, you can deal with other household tasks or relax on the couch while your robot cleaner does its thing.
How Good Are Robot Vacuums at Cleaning Up Pet Hair?
Now that we know the differences between traditional vacuum cleaner sand robot vacuums, let’s look at how well they do at cleaning up pet hair. Suction power is important. But how often you actually clean the carpets and hardwood floors and what exactly you’re cleaning are also factors. However, considering you will be cleaning pet hair off the floor, then you will need something with a little more power. Sure, robot vacuums aren’t as powerful as upright models, but they can still stack up with the traditional ones.
The iRobot Roomba 694 or Shark AV2501AE are two examples. They have special modes that make them powerful enough to scrape hair from carpet. There is also the bObsweep PetHair Plus. It is probably one of the best machines when it comes to cleaning up pet hair. Besides having strong vacuum power, it also has the word “pet” in its name, so that has to mean it’s perfect for the job!
Roombas Are Pet Hair-Cleaning Machines!
Many flock to the iRobot Roomba line because of how well-renowned it is. And when it comes to picking up fur balls, the “i” and “e” lines from this brand are pretty stellar for this kind of cleaning job.
Cleaning Up Pet Hair from Your Robot Vacuum
If there’s one thing that many people don’t like about robot vacuums, it’s the fact that you need to clean them out more than an upright or canister vacuum cleaner. However, if you schedule time to clean your machine, the actual washing time will decrease, and regular cleaning will also guarantee that it will always be working at its optimal level.
When cleaning a robot vacuum, you will want to flip it over and unscrew the panels that hold the brushes. There’s usually a tool that will help you take out any excess hair that’s stuck on the brushes or blocking the sensors and gears. And when it comes to filters, be sure to tap out the excess dust and debris that are on it. Do not try to wash them with soap and water unless otherwise specified in the instructions.
How Pets Feel About Robot Vacuums
As we mentioned at the beginning of this post, robot vacuums and pets seem to bring funny images and videos to mind. But even though there are cats and dogs that like to play around while you’re vacuuming or even like to be vacuumed, there are also many other animals that will freak out once they hear the motor running. If your pet falls into the latter category, then there are a few ways to calm your kitten or puppy down while the robot vacuum cleaner is on.
While most vacuum cleaners sound alike to us, pets hear them differently, and each animal reacts to different machines and parts of machines very differently. One way to train them is by introducing them to all the different movements and sounds your robot can make while it’s running, and when they learn to stay calm, reward their calmness with a treat. The key to helping your pets get used to the presence of the robot vacuum cleaner is to show them that it’s not threatening. But don’t be surprised if your puppy follows the robot vacuum around the house and starts barking. The machine is something that it feels is invading its territory, so once you let it make friends with the robot, all will be at peace. Soon it will want to ride and play with the robot just like the babies below.