Why Does My Vacuum Smell Like Dog & How to Get Rid of

As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases.

If you have a dog in the house, you know how adorable they are and how special the relationship is. But you’ll agree, one of the downsides of having a dog is the smell. It can be the hair, sweat, body odor, or even lying around that can cause a weird dog smell everywhere. And for valid reasons, your vacuum takes the fall for the most part.

Even if you take care of your dog regularly, give them a bath, and keep them clean, there’s a chance you’ll end up with that odd dog smell. As a pet owner, you most probably use a vacuum cleaner to clean your carpets, floor, rugs, and everywhere. Since your dog is being everywhere, it’s reasonable that your vacuum smell like a dog sometimes. You’re not sure what to do with it because you can’t find the source, so it gets difficult to remove that smell. The question is, how to take care of it?



Let’s find the cause first and then spruce up a solution. In this article, we’re going to clarify why does the vacuum smell like a dog and how to get it out.

Why Does My Vacuum Smell Like Dog

There are a number of possible reasons why does your vacuum smell like a dog. Let’s take a look.

Pet Hair

If you have a dog, you certainly have to deal with the amount of hair they have. The furry outlook may feel squishy at the moment, but that fur tends to fall and spread on carpets, floors, and more. If you are vacuuming it in, you take the smell inside of the vacuum and in time, it creates a dog smell.

Pet hair and dander is a common issue when it comes to keeping a dog in the house. You should vacuum pet hair regularly to pick up the residues so that the fur is not left on surfaces that may endanger health later.

Pet Urine

Pet urine undoubtedly creates a nasty odor and it’s hard to get rid of urine smell once they’ve settled. If your dog accidentally does it on the carpet or floor, your vacuum could pick it up even if you clean the area. Urine can stick to your dog’s fur and hair, as well as dust in the house. When you are regular vacuuming, it can take up residues and smell like a dog afterward.

Resting Areas

This is one of the most common reasons why your vacuum smell like a dog. Your pet is a loving member of the family and they can rest almost anywhere in the house. Carpets and rugs are the most common areas where your dog might be lying to spend some quality time. If you vacuum a surface where your dog has been resting, you have the chance to pick up the concealed odor.

Even hair and dander from all the lying around can get into the vacuum’s filter, dust bin, and produce odor. Since you can’t restrict your dog from doing so, here are some of the useful techniques to get dog smell out of the vacuum in the following.

How to Get Dog Smell Out of Vacuum Cleaner

Now that we know the reasons, it’s time to learn how to get rid of dog smell in a vacuum cleaner. Regular care and simple guidance from our side should do the job. Follow the procedures carefully.

Clean the Dustbin

The first thing you should do is checking the dust bin of your vacuum cleaner. If your vacuum comes with a dust bag, it’s better to replace it once in a while, especially if there’s a lingering dog smell. If the vacuum has a dust bin, you need to clean it thoroughly before reuse.



Remove the canister from the vacuum and empty it into the garbage disposal. Then create a solution with warm water, a teaspoon of dish detergent, and a cup of vinegar. Use the mixture to wash and clean the dust bin for removing the dog smell, dirt, and potential mold growth as well. After cleaning, wipe with a dry cloth and let it air dry completely before reinstalling it into the vacuum.

Check the Filters

Next, check the filters of the vacuum cleaner. Most vacuum cleaners have filters of different kinds, for example, a HEPA filter. These filters trap dust, hair, dander, and prevent them to get out of the vacuum and into the house. Due to constant use, these filters can get real dirty and produce unwanted odor.

Remove the filter from your vacuum cleaner first. Check for stuck up hair, dust, and dander, clean them carefully with a soft brush. If your filter is washable, simply rinse it with cold water until it’s clean. Dry them completely before use.

If it’s not washable, it’s probably disposable so replace it in good time. Always check manufacturer instructions and manuals before cleaning filters so you don’t cause any damage to them.

Check the Brush and Hose

The brushes and the hose of the vacuum can also be stuck with pet hair, dander, and residues to generate dog smell. If your vacuum brushes are removable, take them off and remove hair residue. Then clean thoroughly with soapy water to take care of the smell, and dry them afterward.

If it’s not removable, carefully pluck out the hair and fur, then spray the brushes with a solution of vinegar and hot water. Again, let it dry before vacuuming.

If your vacuum cleaner comes with a hose, maybe it’s time to clean it. Fill your sink with warm water and a cup of vinegar, and mix them well. Then remove the hose and wash it thoroughly in the sink. Let it air dry outside before attaching the hose to the vacuum.

Baking Soda

Baking soda is an excellent pet odor neutralizer. Sprinkle some baking soda on your carpets to get started. Leave it for at least a day (24 hours) before you get down to removing the dog smell. Afterward, vacuum the carpet to take off baking soda residue and into the vacuum cleaner to take care of the smell inside.

How to Get Dog Smell Out of Shark Vacuum

If you have a Shark vacuum cleaner and somehow it’s started to smell like a dog, maybe it’s time to take apart the parts and get deeper.

Remove the canister and filters and clean them with a mixture of warm water and a cup of vinegar. Be careful when cleaning the filters so that you don’t damage in doing so.



Remove the brushes, take out hair, and dust residue carefully. Rinse them thoroughly with soapy water to take care of the dog’s smell. If you have a hose, detach and wash it too. Dry all of the attachments completely before you attempt to vacuum again.

Expert Tips: Sprinkle some baking soda on your carpets and rugs before using your Shark vacuum next time. It will take care of any remaining odor inside the vacuum cleaner and prevent further odor buildup as well.

How to Get Dog Smell Out of Dyson Vacuum

In order to get dog smell out of your Dyson vacuum cleaner, remove the receptacle and empty it. Then create a solution with warm water and a teaspoon of dish detergent. Wet a clean cloth in the mixture and wipe the receptacle to remove residues that generate the odor.

Next, remove the filter from your Dyson vacuum and clean pet hair, dust, and visible buildup. Run it carefully under cold water until it’s thorough and clean, then wipe with a dry towel.

Dry the receptacle and filters completely before you vacuum again. You can prevent future odor buildup by adding a couple of drops of vanilla extract to a small chunk of cotton and leaving it inside the receptacle.

Frequently Asked Question (FAQ)

How do I get my vacuum to stop smelling like a dog?

Clean the vacuum canister with warm water and vinegar solution, or replace the dust bag. Additionally, sprinkle baking soda on your carpet before you vacuum next time.

Why does my vacuum smell like a dog?

It can be pet hair or pet urine that’s causing the dog to smell in the vacuum. Also if you vacuum an area where your dog has been lying, there are chances of picking up residue that creates the odor inside the vacuum.

How do I get the dog smell out of my Dyson vacuum?

Clean the receptacle and filters of your Dyson vacuum. Next time you vacuum, leave a cotton ball dampened with vanilla extract inside the receptacle to get the dog smell out of the Dyson vacuum cleaner.

How can I make my vacuum filter smell better?

Use baking soda to sprinkle some on the filter walls and canister. Alternatively, you can add a small amount of baking soda inside the dust bag to neutralize odors.

How do I get rid of the dog smell in my house?

Vacuum regularly for dust, pet hair, dander, and everything. Keep your house clean and well-ventilated as much as you can. Also, train your dog to use specified areas to relieve themselves to get rid of unwanted dog smell in the house.

Wrapping Up

It’s not difficult to be proactive and prevent dog smell in the vacuum cleaner if you follow simple procedures regularly. Take care of dog smell in your vacuum cleaner, hence, in your house, and you can enjoy a healthy environment with your pet!

As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases.

  1. […] Related post: Why does vacuum smell like a dog […]