Is It OK To Vacuum Up Cat Litter?


  • Your regular house vacuum is unsuitable for cat litter due to potential damage and clogging. It can also spread waste particles and harm health.
  • You need a vacuum specifically for cat litter usage.
  • Dyson vacuums, like the V11, are capable of handling fine particles like cat litter.
  • Look for vacuums with strong suction, separate air and dirt, and are durable for cat litter cleanup.
  • Shop vacuums are recommended for their durability and ability to handle wet and dry messes, including soiled cat litter.

One of the most necessary chores of any cat owner is cleaning the dreaded litter box. Cat litter is never fun to handle. I love my Maine Coon cat, but altogether not the biggest fan of litter chores.

Plus, cats have a natural habit to kick litter out of the box. Eventually, you begin to find little pieces of litter everywhere.

So, you might start thinking about alternatives. For example, you may asked if it is OK to vacuum up cat litter? The answer is more complicated than yes or no.

There are circumstances where you can vacuum litter up, but be careful unless you have a specialized vacuum. Find out more about using a vacuum for cat litter clean up below.

Cat Litter and Your Vacuum

The regular vacuum you use around the house normally is not suitable for cleaning up cat litter. You can end up damaging a nice vacuum cleaner with the sharp pieces of litter. 

The fine dust in cat litter is also capable of clogging filters and basically contaminating the vacuum from the inside.

A typical vacuum is not designed to easily suck up small pieces of litter or large clumps of urine and feces.

Is it OK to Vacuum Up Cat Litter?

When it comes to cleaning cat litter from carpet or other flooring, consider other types of tools besides a regular vacuum. A regular vacuum cleaner will multiply your problems rather than solve the cat litter one.

Is it Safe to Vacuum Up Kitty Litter?

It is not safe to use a vacuum to pick up litter that you use elsewhere in the home. No matter how careful you think you are, you will end up spreading waste particles around your house.

Even if it is not visible to the eye, the vacuum brush may have remnants. You can harm the health of you and your family by spreading cat waste.

Is it Bad to Vacuum Up Kitty Litter?

Picking up litter with your usual vacuum can be just as messy as the traditional way of cleaning. Do not make it a habit with a regular vacuum not suited to wet clean ups.

Best Way to Clean Litter Spilled on Floor

So now you must be wondering about the best way to clean up cat litter. Depending on your flooring type, a broom is a quick way to pick up litter spilled from the box.

A lint roller or roll of tape are simple solutions, too. You just need to roll something sticky over the area to catch the tiny pieces.

If you want an alternative to a vacuum, consider a carpet sweeper. A carpet sweeper will work great for dry litter messes. A carpet rake will also loosen up litter manually from carpet.

Why is My Vacuum Spitting Out Cat Litter?

Cat litter is made up of tiny, sharp particles. Most vacuums are not designed to suck up fine particles easily. If your vacuum is spitting the cat litter back out, it may indicate a clog.

Spitting litter is also a sign of poor suction or a blockage in the hose. Make sure your vacuum features strong suction power.

Can You Vacuum Up Cat Litter With a Dyson?

Dyson is one vacuum brand that creates models equipped to handle fine particles, such as cat litter. Dyson vacuums, like the V11, can pick up sand, dirt, and other tiny pieces without trouble.

Qualities of the Best Vacuum For Picking Up Cat Litter

Not all vacuums are made the same. If you want to find a vacuum specifically for picking up cat litter, consider certain qualities.

Dirt vs Air

Vacuums that separate air and dirt produce strong suction. Look for a vacuum that forces dust, dirt, and litter into another chamber. Fine dust from cat litter will not clog its filter.

Suction Power

Without enough suction, you will end up shooting cat litter around the floor instead of into the vacuum. Getting litter out of carpet requires lots of power.


A cheap model is more likely to become damaged from sharp pieces of litter in the hose or too much dust in the filter. Choose a durable vacuum made with high-quality materials.

A shop vacuum is one type of specialist vacuum that is made to be more durable. Shop vacuums can pick up both wet and dry messes. Soiled cat litter is less likely to ruin this type of vacuum.

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