Best Vacuums for Fleas of 2021

Keep your home flea-free with one of these top vacuum picks.

Are you tired of watching your pet suffer from flea attacks? You may worry that fleas will spread throughout your home and bother you and your family. What’s the best way to ensure your home is protected from them?

Flea infestations range from mildly frustrating to nightmarish. How you manage it can make a difference in the severity of your struggle. Vacuuming is an effective way to deal with fleas without introducing chemicals or expensive treatments.

Our Top Picks

Oh So Spotless earns a commission through the following independently chosen links at no additional cost to you.
Product Comparison Table

Product Image of the Shark ZU62 Navigator Zero-M Self-Cleaning Brushroll Pet Pro Upright Vacuum, Pewter Grey Metallic
Best Upright
Shark Navigator Zero-M Upright
  • Extra-effective filtration
  • Triple XL dust cup
  • Extension hose
Product Image of the Dyson V8 Animal Cord-Free Vacuum, Sprayed Nickel/Titanium (Renewed)
Best Stick
Dyson V8 Animal Cordless
  • Handheld convertible
  • Extended run time
  • No-touch dust bin
Product Image of the Ovente Electric Bagless Lightweight Canister Vacuum Cleaner 1.5L Dust Cup, Portable Corded Suction Vacuum Machine Easy Clean with Cleaning Tool & Extra Sofa Pet Brush, Black ST2010
Best Canister
Ovente Bagless Canister
  • Ergonomic design
  • Washable HEPA filter
  • Motorized brush

Why Invest in a Vacuum for Fleas?

Beyond having a healthier, cleaner home, here’s what a vacuum can do for you:

1. Kill Fleas

If you think chemical treatments are more effective at killing fleas than vacuums are, think again. Research from Ohio State University shows that vacuums can kill fleas in all stages of their life cycle (1).

Experts suspect that the pressure of the airflow from vacuums is what wipes them out. When a flea is sucked into a vacuum, its protective cuticle is worn away. Without this layer, fleas dehydrate and die.

2. Save Money

Flea infestations are a bothersome problem as is, but the frustration caused multiplies when you spend money trying to solve it. Calling in professional carpet cleaners, buying special pet shampoos and treatments will add up over time.

Investing in a good vacuum, however, is a one-time purchase that will last you for years. You’ll get greater value for money too since vacuums are multi-purpose machines. And if there is ever a recurrence of your flea problem, you’ll already be equipped to tackle it.

3. Easier Extermination

Flea shampoos are highly efficient in treating your pets once fleas have already attacked. The problem is that fleas spread, and will lay their eggs anywhere they can, including your carpets and furniture. A vacuum will have no trouble getting rid of them.

You could also use special flea carpet powders or carpet shampoos to kill them. But you’ll need a lot of product, and that might not be so healthy. You’ll also have to clean up all the residue and dead fleas once the powders have done their job.

Why bother going through all that effort, when a vacuum gets the job done in half the time? It’s the least toxic, and fastest, way to fight fleas.

4. Clean the Air Around You

Vacuuming is the healthier option because it’s non-toxic, but there’s more. Many models come with HEPA filters, which use a special mesh to purify the air of almost 100 percent of allergens.

So, HEPA filters leave you with fresher air that’s healthier to breathe. Chemical flea treatments are the exact opposite.

How to Choose the Best Vacuum for Fleas

Any domestic vacuum cleaner will do, but there are some specs to look out for if you want to get the best out of your machine.


Although any standard vacuum will combat fleas, not every model is suitable for pet hair. It’s safe to assume that you won’t have one without the other. So, make sure that the vacuum you choose is pet-approved.

Carpet Capacity

Fleas are likely to breed in carpets, or even your upholstery or mattress. Go for a carpet-specific vacuum or a multi-floor machine. If possible, a vacuum with upholstery and crevice attachments will work well.

Reusable Dust Container

Once you’ve vacuumed up the fleas and their larvae, you’ll want to dispose of them. A reusable bin isn’t a necessity, but it will make your vacuum maintenance so much easier. You’ll save money on replacements too.

HEPA Filter

Many pet vacuums will include a HEPA filter but double-check, just in case. They’re an excellent addition to any vacuum and will give you a deep cleaning experience. The air in your home will be healthier for you and your pets too.

Empty Dust Bags Safely

When using reusable dust containers, don’t empty the mess straight into your trash can. For extra safety, dump the waste into a plastic bag. Seal it tightly before you throw it away.

The Best Vacuums For Fleas of 2021

We’ve scoured the internet, taken into account expert advice and have carried out our own extensive research. As a result, we consider these to the best vacuums for fleas.

Shark Navigator Zero-M Upright

Best Upright Vacuum for Fleas

This model comes with all the features needed for a happy, flea-free home. It’s an upright, so powerful suction is a given, but it’s also designed for ease of use and greater maneuverability. The swivel steering and lightweight design speak for themselves.

A sophisticated feature is the Zero-M self-cleaning brush roll. Tangles aren’t going to be a problem if you pick this model, which is fantastic if your pets shed a lot. It also includes an extension hose that reaches an extra 12 feet.

Not only does it include a HEPA filter, but it incorporates Anti-Allergen Complete Seal Technology for more effective cleaning. The triple XL dust cup is a bonus.

Why We Love It

Extra-Effective Filtration

The Anti-Allergen Complete Seal Technology works well with the HEPA filter. It’s better for your vacuum and will improve your suction and air quality. There aren’t many manufacturers that double-down on the filtration, so we appreciate that Shark has with this model.

Triple XL Dust Cup

If you’re battling fleas, you’ll want all the dust capacity you can get. This product has more than enough room to contain all of the dust, debris, fleas and larvae you will collect. If you have an extreme infestation, you’ll be surprised at how many fleas you pick up.

Extension Hose

Most uprights are limited to the range of their brush roll. They’re rigid and are typically only used on flat surfaces. We like that this model comes with an extension hose that gives you an extra 12 feet of reach.

You can use it for vertical cleaning too, making this upright vacuum one of the most versatile on the market.

Keep In Mind

Odd Button Placement

Some customers expected the controls of this vacuum to be somewhat simpler, compared to its predecessors. However, the button to switch from hard floors to carpets is placed on the canister and not the handle. If you haven’t used Shark vacuums before, this may take some getting used to.

Awkward Maneuvering

Though this upright comes with swivel steering, some users note that it doesn’t work as smoothly as they hoped it would. A few customers note that it’s cumbersome to move around, but we feel it’s standard for an upright.

Additional Specs

Filtration Anti-Allergen Complete Seal Technology, HEPA filter
Brush Zero-M self-cleaning brush roll
Features Swivel steering
Accessories Extension hose, duster crevice tool, upholstery brush, dusting brush
Capacity 26-liter reusable dust cup

Dyson V8 Animal Cordless

Best Stick Vacuum for Fleas

Dyson is a firm favorite, and its Animal series has met much success. The V8 is a powerful and versatile vacuum for use all over your home. On its Powerful setting, you can get up to 40 minutes of run time.

This model uses whole machine filtration and comes with a lifetime, reusable and washable filter. It converts into a handheld for effective cleaning in out-of-reach or tight spots. There’s also a no-touch dust bin with a release button, saving you hassle when it comes to emptying.

A motorized brush works against stubborn dirt, debris and pet hair. If you need a boost, combine this with the vacuum’s MAX mode for more power.

Why We Love It

Handheld Convertible

This stick vacuum is multi-purpose. You can use it on types of flooring, and it converts into a handheld vacuum for extra convenience and versatility. This is handy if you need to clean tight corners or small areas, like your upholstery or a pet’s bed.

Extended Run Time

If you operate this machine in its standard mode, it could last you up to 40 minutes. This is impressive for a stick vacuum and is sufficient time to fight those fleas.

No-Touch Dust Bin

We think the release button for the dust bin is a great addition. You don’t have to get your hands dirty, and it saves time in maintenance. So, once you’ve vacuumed up the fleas, disposing of them will be a breeze.

Keep In Mind

Weak Batteries

A few customers note that while the suction and efficiency of this model are great, its battery deteriorates faster than they expected. It’s worth mentioning, though, that this may not be Dyson’s fault. Stick vacuums, in general, are criticized for fading over time.

MAX Mode Drains Quickly

You should know that MAX mode will drain all of the vacuum’s juice. While it lasts a long time in Power mode, MAX is different. It will only run for 10 or so minutes before you’ll have to recharge. So, use it wisely.

Additional Specs

Filtration Whole machine filtration, lifetime washable filter
Brush Direct drive cleaner head
Features Handheld convertible
Accessories Mini motorized brush, mini soft dusting brush, crevice tool, combination tool, docking station
Capacity 0.5-liter reusable dust bin

Ovente Bagless Canister

Best Canister Vacuum for Fleas

Fighting fleas can be hard work, so we recommend this compact canister to lessen the load. It’s an ergonomic vacuum that won’t strain your back or shoulders. You can operate it, or control the brush height, with a convenient foot switch.

It’s easy to find your way around this machine. Suction control is made possible by a simple slider, and a pedal retracts its cord.

This product includes a great selection of accessories too. You’ll get a motorized brush, multi-angle tool and brush-crevice tool. Also included is a washable HEPA filter for purer air.

Why We Love It

Ergonomic Design

Each component of this vacuum makes operating it so easy. This is an excellent choice of vacuum if you struggle with back pain or strain. Though it’s a canister, you won’t have to bend too much to use this one, and its controls are simple and seamless.

Washable HEPA Filter

For the greatest effect, you should maintain or replace your filters every so often. This washable HEPA filter will save you money, effort and time. The result of this feature is fresher air inside your home with no extra fuss.

Motorized Brush

This canister works well on stubborn dirt, hair and of course, fleas too. The motorized brush will remove embedded dirt with ease. It’s a great addition to an already powerful vacuum.

Keep In Mind

Awkward Maneuverability

A flaw of the canister vacuums is that they trail behind you and might get in their own way. This seems prominent with this model, as customers say it’s as though it has a mind of its own. Keep an eye on it, though, and you won’t run into this problem.

Better for Hard Floors

This is a multi-floor vacuum. However, a few customers think it’s more effective on hard floors than it is on carpets and rugs. Experiment with its suction control to see what works for you.

Additional Specs

Filtration Washable HEPA filter
Brush Motorized
Features Foot pedals for power, suction control, cord retraction, ergonomic design
Accessories Multi-angle tool, brush-crevice tool
Capacity Approx. 1 liter

Vacuum For Fleas Comparison Chart

Product Best Filtration Brush Capacity
Shark Navigator Zero-M Upright Upright Vacuum Anti-Allergen Complete Seal Technology, HEPA filter Zero-M self-cleaning brush roll 26-liter reusable dust cup
Dyson V8 Animal Cordless Stick Vacuum Whole machine filtration, lifetime washable filter Direct drive cleaner head 0.5-liter reusable dust bin
Ovente Bagless Canister Canister Vacuum Washable HEPA filter Motorized Approx. 1 liter

Suck It Up

Vacuuming is a cost-effective, healthy way to combat and prevent flea infestations. Science has proven that some vacuums can kill 100 percent of fleas, so you may not have any need for chemical treatments.

Which of our recommended best vacuums for fleas is your favorite? Feel free to leave us your thoughts and stories in the comments!

Headshot of Amy Anthony

About the Author

Amy Anthony

Amy is a stay-at-home-mom, seasoned writer, and a home cleaning and organization aficionado. Amy enjoys having an absolutely spotless home and has worked hard to develop strategies to keep it that way, despite having 2 kids and 3 dogs!