Here are the best carpet cleaners for pets to keep your home gleaming

Because they just love to march in mud...

Best carpet cleaner for pets

by Ruby Barry |
Updated on

Is there anything more wonderful than stepping barefoot onto a bouncy, soft carpet? Especially when it's clean and makes the room look AMAZING. However, they don't always stay that way - carpets are minefields for trapping hair, dust and bacteria, especially if you have a pet. So we've created the ultimate guide to the best carpet cleaners for pets to tackle dirt and grime.

Cleaning your carpets feels like a big job on the chore checklist, but with your own carpet cleaner, you've already got a head start. To help you find your perfect carpet cleaning companion for a pet-friendly house, we've researched the very best available for all budgets.

©getty images

Closer's best carpet cleaners for pets at a glance:

Best carpet cleaner overall: BISSELL ProHeat 2X Revolution Pet Pro Carpet Cleaner, £239 on Amazon

Best budget-friendly carpet cleaner: Vax Dual Power Advance Upright Carpet Cleaner, £160 on Argos

Best carpet cleaner for pet urine: Shark CarpetXpert Deep Carpet Cleaner, £249 on Shark

So whether you've got a dog with an affinity for bringing in mud, or a cat who has a knack for knocking over pot plants (on purpose, no doubt), opting for the best carpet cleaners for pets is absolutely worth it. With a powerful scrubbing brush and intense suction, it'll help keep your carpets looking their best and save you the trouble of having to go heavy on the elbow grease. You can also keep reading for our FAQs on when best to clean your carpet, so you can get a regular schedule going.

Ready to get to work?

SHOP: The best carpet cleaners for pets

best carpet cleaner overall

The BISSELL Pro Heat 2x Revolution Pet Pro is one of the top-rated carpet cleaners out there, specifically designed for homes with pets. We love it, and it's in our top spot. An update to the Pro Heat 2X revolution carpet cleaner, it comes with two rotating brush rolls with 12 rows of dirt-lifting power brushes which confidently lift away dirt and grime. In Express Clean Mode, the machine dispenses just the right amount of solution so you can have dry carpets in as little as half an hour - perfect if you're expecting a last-minute visit from guests.


  • Carpets dry quickly with Express Clean
  • The CleanShot Pre-treater lets you tackle tough spots as you go
  • Reviews praise the 3-metre cleaning hose, giving you plenty of freedom and flexibility


  • Some reviews state it can be heavy to lift up stairs
  • Amazon rating
Dimensions38 x 32 x 110 cm
Clean tank capacity3.7L
Dirty tank capacity4.5L
Power800 watts
  • Tough Stain Tool
  • 2-in-1 Pet Upholstery Tool
  • 3-in-1 Stair Tool
  • Upholstery hose
  • Nozzle cleaning tool

best budget-friendly carpet cleaner

We love the Vax Dual Power Carpet Cleaner because it has dual rotating brush bars to lift tough, deep-down dirt from your carpets. Furthermore, the Twin Tank technology separates clean water from dirty water to make emptying it a breeze. The pre-treatment wand and solution help to tackle stubborn stains in high-traffic areas. It's an affordable option for those wishing to save a bit of cash.


  • This machine is affordable for its large size
  • Lighter than other models, making it perfect for those with low mobility
  • You can currently get 25% off on Vax Cleaning Solutions with the carpet cleaner


  • The hose length is shorter than other options
  • Argos rating
Dimensions48.9 x 40.4 x 38cm
Clean tank capacity2.7L
Dirty tank capacity1.5L
Power800 watts
  • Vax Dual Power Pet Advance Wash Tool
  • Pre-treatment wand
  • Accessory Bag
  • 250ml Ultra+ Pet solution
  • 250ml Pre-treatment solution

best carpet cleaner for pet urine

Shark CarpetXpert Deep Carpet Cleaner
Price: £249 (was £299.99)

Have you got a pet partial to urinating in the house? They're just so cute that we can't be mad - but to tackle the wee head-on, opt for the Shark CarpetXpert. Why? We recommend this one as it comes with a Pet Stain Trapping Tool, which sections up the urine into a separate container to dispose of, instead of adding shampoo straight away, which might scrub the mess further into the carpet fibres.


  • The Pet Stain Trapping Tool suction any pet stains into a separate container
  • The CarpetXpert provides eight times deeper cleaning than a regular vacuum
  • It has 20 times more stain-striking power with no pre-treat required


  • Reviewers complain the dirty tank capacity is too small
  • Shark rating
DimensionsW: 30.5 D: 34.8 H: 111.2cm
Clean tank capacity2.1L
Dirty tank capacity850ml
Power960 watts
  • Tough Stain Hand Tool
  • Wide Tough Stain Tool
  • Pet Stain Trapping Tool
  • Crevice Tool
  • Hose-Cleaning Tool
  • Shark CarpetXpert Deep Clean Pro Formula
  • StainStriker OXY Multiplier Formula starter bottles

best compact carpet cleaner

The super-light Compact Power Carpet Cleaner from Vax weighs just 5.7kg, so we think it's ideal for those who don't want to lug a heavy machine up and down the stairs. The Aquaspin brush bar tackles everyday mess and grime and the narrow head helps you get into every nook and cranny. It's a basic carpet cleaner - it doesn't come with any attachments - but reviews say it gets the job done.


  • Machine weights just 5.7 kg, the lightest machine on our list
  • Reviews state its compact size means it's ideal for smaller homes
  • Twin Tank technology makes it easy to empty


  • No attachments included, for flat surfaces only
  • Amazon rating
Dimensions106 x 25 x 33cm
Clean tank capacity1.8L
Dirty tank capacity1.5L
  • No attachments included

best spot carpet cleaner

The Rug Doctor Portable Spot Carpet Cleaner is ideal for cleaning accidental spills and stains that happen at home, although it isn't designed to clean your whole house unless you're VERY patient. If you have a rug, carpeted stairs or small sections of carpet to clean, it would work well. It can also be used on mattresses, sofas, car seats and in caravans.


  • We love this cleaner for smaller spills and stains
  • The Rug Doctor Spot has double the suction compared to other portables
  • Can be used on sofas and in cars as well as carpets


  • Reviews state to be careful not to tip the machine as the tank can spill
  • Argos rating
Dimensions40 x W 41 x 28 cm
Clean tank capacity1.9L
Dirty tank capacity1.12L
Power1100 watts
  • Upholstery tool

Best carpet cleaner for quick cleaning

Another lightweight offering, the BISSELL HydroWave cleans deep into carpet fibres, removing what vacuums leave behind. It has a motorised XL brush roll with 10 rows of DirtLifter power brushes and Clean Shot technology to tackle stubborn stains. Your carpets will be clean and dry in one hour using Express Mode.


  • Express Mode cleans and dries carpets in just one hour
  • The 6m cord length is ideal for easy manoeuvrability
  • Lightweight machine, weighing only 5.6kg


  • The dirty tank will need emptying more often due to its small size
  • Hughes rating
Dimensions38 x 25 x 112 cm
Clean tank capacity1.7L
Dirty tank capacity0.6L
  • Antibacterial/Wash+Protect Formula

best anti-bacterial carpet cleaner

The ECB1SPV1 Platinum Power Max Carpet Cleaner from Vax claims to be able to remove up to 93% of bacteria, fungi and allergens, leaving your carpets fresh and dry within an hour. The hand wash tool and stretch hose let you easily clean any stubborn spots in your home, including stairs and upholstery. It has a large tank so there's no need to constantly stop and empty it out, and it has seven SpinScrub and rotating brush bars to rid your carpets of embedded dirt.


  • Reviews praise its ability to clean and how quickly their carpets dried
  • The VAX Platinum Power Max removes up to 93% of bacteria in your carpet
  • We love that both the clean and dirty water tanks are large


  • Some reviews say the attachments can be a bit of a pain to clean
  • John Lewis rating
Dimensions110 x 34 x 41cm
Clean tank capacity3.5L
Dirty tank capacity2.9L
  • 2 x 250ml Platinum solution
  • 250ml Pre-treatment solution
  • Pre-treatment hose
  • Upholstery tool
  • Spin scrub brush
  • Hard floor tool

best industrial carpet cleaner

Henry is a brand that's trusted in the cleaning world, and this carpet cleaner doesn't disappoint, tackling small and big jobs well. It quickly cleans carpets and hard floors and freshens up furniture and the car. It can also handle emergency spillages, and can even help you with unblocking the sink. It has a huge clean tank and an even larger dirty tank, so it's ideal for big jobs, although it is heavy to transport.


  • We trust the Henry brand as life-long users of their vacuums
  • The long 10m cable is ideal for manoeuvrability
  • Reviews say using the Henry Wash leaves their carpet smelling so fresh


  • It can be bulky to move around smaller spaces
  • Argos
Dimensions37 x 36 x 51 cm
Clean tank capacity5L
Dirty tank capacity9L
  • Dual Scrub Floor Tool
  • Fishtail Tool
  • Upholstery Tool
  • NuChem 4 Carpet Washing Solution

What to look for in a carpet cleaner for pets

When you're shopping for a carpet cleaner, especially for a home with a furry friend, here are a few key features to keep in mind:

Strong suction power: Look for a cleaner with powerful suction to effectively remove dirt, hair, and stubborn stains left by pets.

Effective scrubbing brush: The whole point of a carpet cleaner is to do the work for you, so you need one with a robust brush to dig deep into the carpet to shift dirt and pet hair.

Attachments and accessories: Some carpet cleaners come with handy extras, like crevice and upholstery tools to tackle all areas of the home. Keep an eye out for pet settings and attachments, too, designed to deal with pet stains and odours from even the muckiest pup.

Size and weight: If you've got carpets all over your home, choosing a carpet cleaner that's lighter or smaller may make it that much easier to carry.

Noise level: While some animals are nonchalant, others can be sensitive to loud noises. If you've got a nervous pooch or kitty, considering one that's quieter may be the best shout. This is where the reviews come in handy as you can see how others have got on with their anxious pets.

Cat on carpet
©Getty Images/ Sjale

How often should you clean your carpets?

So, you definitely want to deep clean your carpets at least once a year. But if you've got a big family, lots of pets, smokers in the house, or tons of people coming and going, you might need to do it every three to six months instead.

Regular carpet cleaning is super important because it gets rid of allergens, dust, bacteria, and pet hair, making your home a lot friendlier for anyone with allergies or asthma.

Plus, it helps keep bad smells away, makes your carpets last longer, and keeps them looking great.

How much solution should I use for a Vax Carpet Cleaner?

Vax recommends using 40ml of cleaning solution per litre of water.

Does carpet cleaner kill roaches?

The deep extraction that takes place during a carpet clean with one of the machines above has a high chance of rooting out any bugs and their eggs from your carpet fibres. However, if you're having a sustained problem with insects such as cockroaches that won't go away, you may need to hire an extermination team to get rid of them for good.

Ruby Barry is a Product Writer for Closer, specialising in fashion and beauty. The team has nicknamed her “dupe queen”, as there’s not a product in the world she can’t find a cheaper alternative for.

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