Best air purifiers for pet odors

The Best Air Purifiers for Pet Odors (November 2022 Reviews)

Our veterinarians research and recommend the best products. Learn more about our process. We may receive a commission on purchases made from our links.

When you’re a pet owner, checking out air purifiers is something you’ll want to consider. Whether you’re sensitive to pet dander, or just proactive in air filtration, getting the right air purifier for your home can be a game-changer on home smells. The goal is that you not smell any difference when you get a new pet – and while that may be a lofty goal for heavy-shedders, house training puppies, or a spray-happy cat, an air purifier helps to make it a possible one.

Our vet advisor, Dr. Chyrle Bonk, looked at all types of air purifiers to determine which is the best option to get rid of pet odors, looking at factors like efficiency, ease of use, and types of filters. She chose the Honeywell Bluetooth Smart True HEPA Air Purifier for its efficiency and its convenience. You’ll love the Bluetooth functionality and the activated carbon pre-filter. Read how she chose the top 5.

Best Overall

Honeywell HPA 250B

For an air purifier that’s sure to eliminate your home’s pet odors, look no further than the Honeywell HPA 250B.

Check Price

If you’re struggling with your allergies or the ways your dog is inflaming them, then you may want to check out ways to help de-shed your dog. Finding a good brush is crucial to the process and you may be surprised how much of an impact maintaining your dog’s coat will help. If you find you’re not the only one struggling to adjust when you bring a new cat in, you may want to look for ways to make the transition easier on you both.

Our Vet’s Top 5 Air Purifiers for Pet Odors

Here are our top picks. Compare the ratings and features of different models to find the right one for you.

Editor’s Picks Model Rating Activated Carbon Filter? Room Capacity Fan/power Modes
Best Overall Honeywell HPA 250B 5.0 310 sq ft 3
Best Budget Filtrete Pet Air Purifier 4.6 80 sq ft 3
Best Splurge Oransi Mod HEPA Air Purifier 4.4 1,250 sq ft Touch and toggle for several speed options
Best for Large Spaces Coway Airmega 4.7 1,560 sq ft 5
Best Portable LG PuriCare Air Purifier 4.4 Immediate Area Only 2

*Ratings are on a scale of 1 to 5 and based on reviews, feedback, and opinions of actual customers

Who Should Buy Air Purifiers for Pet Odors

  • When your pet just isn’t “getting it” – House or litter training is so easy for some pets to pick up, it never becomes an issue. However, if your puppy or kitten is struggling with their training, the odor can be atrocious! As they learn, an air purifier can certainly help eliminate the lingering odor.
  • Lots of pet dander – Potty training your pet may not be the only cause for odor. If you catch the sunlight in a certain way, at a certain time of day, you may see more air particles than you ever imagined. Pet dander lingers in the air longer than a lot of other allergens, so you’ll greatly benefit from an air purifier to help rid your home of those dead pet skin cells.1
  • Sensitive allergies – You may not see any extra causes for odor – they’re well house trained and they don’t shed an astronomical amount. So why are you still smelling them and sneezing? The fact is, pets just smell – and if you’re sensitive to common allergens like pet hair and dander, there’s a good chance you’ll pick up on what others don’t.

Who Should Not Buy Air Purifiers for Pet Odors

  • If the dog isn’t the problem – Obviously if you don’t have a dog, then it’s a no-brainer, but even if you do have a dog, you should make sure the odor is coming from him and not something else. Doing so will prevent you from frustration when you don’t solve the problem. It’s particularly important to remember that an air purifier alone can’t be the only change when your home has a pet odor. You’ll need to thoroughly remove pet waste (from accidents or litter boxes) as well as update your vacuuming schedule to rid your home of pet hair.
  • When your circumstances are temporary – If your pet is doing well potty training or you’re only dog sitting for a short period of time an air purifier isn’t an investment you’ll necessarily need. You can likely get by for a short period of time as your situation changes, but even so, an air purifier isn’t wasted when you’re still reaping the benefits of clean air.

Research Tips (From a Veterinarian)

Because purchasing an air purifier can be a moderate investment financially, you will want to do some research and find a unit that will fit your needs. Here’s what to consider when picking an air purifier for eliminating pet odors: 

  1. How large a room will the purifier cover? If you’re picking an air purifier for a small room and expecting it to rid your large open floor plan home of the odor, you’re bound to be disappointed. While any air purifier is better than none, you won’t see a difference unless you’re buying the right equipment that is robust enough to tackle the job you give it. It is essential that you purchase a system that will be able to handle the size of the space you are wanting to purify.
  2. What kind of filter does it have? There are several filter types and not all do well with eliminating odor. For example, a HEPA filter will do an excellent job at removing allergens  and pollutants from the air. This fact makes them ideal for someone with allergies or traditional sensitivities and the act of removing those allergens may also remove some of the odors associated with them. However, due to particle sizes, they don’t remove the odor molecules themselves. A carbon filter is the only type of air filtration filter that completely eliminates odor molecules.2 Beyond that, air purifiers can be energy-hogs, too. I suggest looking for HEPA-rated filters with activated carbon filters as well as Energy Star-rated purifiers so that the unit will be both effective and energy-efficient.
  3. What kind of odor does your pet produce? Different purifiers will filter different odors. If your dog or cat is a shedder, then you’ll want to make sure you have a robust air purifier, but the odor elimination will likely not end there. You’ll still be on the hook for de-shedding and regular vacuuming. Don’t expect to be able to simply turn on an air purifier and the job is done.
  4. Does it have all the features you want? Features that are important to look for when purchasing an air purifier for pet odors are adjustable fan speeds, easy-to-clean filters, and capacity.  With these things in mind, you can find the air purifier that fits your specific needs so well that it feels customized to your own home.
  5. How well will it hold up? Always look for solid construction and quality materials. I would avoid loud units as the noise may make them unbearable to run. Look for true HEPA filters and check that the filter is easy to remove and replace.

How Much Do They Cost?

Between $200-450

Air purification systems are the kind of home product that vary greatly in cost (and in quality!) You may very well be able to get a quality air purifier for around $50, but it’ll probably be meant for your desktop in your cubical. For a portable air purifier to eliminate the odors in a small area, expect to spend around $60, while a more robust purifier that will eliminate the odors of a larger area will likely run you a few hundred dollars. As a rule, you can expect to find what you need somewhere between $200-450.

Our Methodology: Why Trust Pet News Daily

As a veterinarian, I’ve seen a lot of problems with pet odors. Between my discussions with other veterinarians and pet owners, I’ve seen plenty of solution attempts and a quality air purifier is always the most successful. If possible, it is a great help to talk to someone that has used the system you are considering. Ask how well it cleans the air, how easy it is to clean and change the filter, and how loud the unit is while running. If they have pets, ask how well the odors are controlled and how often they must run the unit. – Dr. Chyrle Bonk, DVM

The Best Air Purifiers for Pet Odors: Full Reviews

Best Overall

Honeywell HPA 250B

For an air purifier that’s sure to eliminate your home’s pet odors, look no further than the Honeywell HPA 250B.

Check Price

The Honeywell Bluetooth Smart True HEPA Air Purifier filter has it all – and at a very reasonable price. Equipped with HEPA filtration, this filter works to capture airborne allergens and particles such as dust, pollen, pet dander, dust mite debris, and smoke. It’s meant pet odors specifically, this filter comes with an activated carbon pre-filter that works to capture and reduce pet odors.

This air purifier also has the added feature of being controlled remotely by mobile devices such as iPhone or Android mobile devices. That way you’ll be able to ensure your room (up to 310 square feet) is operating to maximum efficiency. And with the Allergen Alert setting on the app, you can even be notified of the outside pollen and mold levels in your area. Add in to the list of features that this is Energy Star rated and we’re sure you’ll be happy with this as your new purification system.

Pros
  • Includes filters
  • Activated carbon pre-filter
  • 5-year warranty
Cons
  • Pre-filter needs replaced every three months
  • Replacement filters are pricey
Best Budget

Filtrete Pet Air Purifier

If you want an air purifier that will eliminate your pet odors, but not your savings, try the Filtrete Pet Air Purifier.

Check Price

The Filtrete Pet Air Purifier is a great small and relatively inexpensive air filter for the home or office. Its small size and compact design make it a great choice for many different areas where pet odor may be an issue – a bathroom where you store the litter box or a bedroom where your dog sleeps. This air purifier works well for pet urine odor, dog smell, and cat litter odors, making it perfect for any of those odor offenders.

The filter comes equipped with three fan settings which allow you to easily adjust the fan speed and filter through the area’s air more quickly when needed and the slower speeds produce a softer sound. An electronic filter change indicator light ensures that you know when it is time to change the filter, so you never miss a scheduled change, either.

Pros
  • Includes Filtrete’s Allergen Reduction HEPA-Type filter
  • Fits several filter replacement types, including the Allergen Reduction + Odor Reduction filter
  • Compact design makes it portable and easy to fit anywhere
Cons
  • No activated carbon filter included
  • 80 sq ft capacity
Best Splurge

Oransi Mod HEPA Air Purifier

When you’re splurging on an air filter, then you won’t want to miss the Oransi Mod HEPA Air Purifier.

Not only sleek and modern, but the Oransi Air Purifier also comes with Smart Design styling that allows for optimum performance as well as convenience. The Oransi unit has been proven to remove allergens, dust, bacteria, pollen, mold spores, pet dander, smoke, and viruses from the air, down to 0.02 microns in size.  It’s equipped with a medical-grade, true HEPA filter, this unit has been tested to remove 99.4% of air pollutants.

Small, but powerful, the Oransi quietly cleans rooms up to 1,250 square feet with 2 air changes per hour and is Energy Star rated.

Pros
  • Utilizes a multi-level filtration system
  • Activated carbon filter layer
  • 1250+ sq ft capacity
Cons
  • Poor sensitivity of the touch controls
  • Large design can be difficult to place conveniently in a room
Best for Large Spaces

Coway Airmega

When you have a big area to rid of odors, check out the Coway Airmega.

The Coway Airmega is a powerful air purifier is designed specifically to handle large spaces. In fact, accommodating rooms up to 1,560 square feet makes this system an option for even the largest rooms. Equipped with a true HEPA-rated filter, this air purifier captures and reduces up to 99.99% of particles, including pollen, pollutants, and other allergens.

A carbon-based filter in the unit adds to the cleaning power as it traps pet and other odors in the air. The Coway Airmega has five fan modes: Smart, Sleep, Low, Medium, and High. The manufacturer states that “noise level is nearly silent at lower speeds”.

Pros
  • Smart technology allows automatic fan adjustments based on air quality
  • Pollution sensor details real-time air quality
  • HEPA and carbon filters
Cons
  • Occasional app issues
  • Large size is difficult to place conveniently
Best Portable

LG PuriCare Air Purifier

If you’re looking for an air purifier that you can take with you everywhere you go, consider the LG PuriCare Air Purifier.

The LG PuriCare Air Purifier is so small that it can be easily moved and carried but still does an effective job of cleaning the air.  The dual inverter motors within create a faster, more powerful airflow and purification. This unit runs off of battery power so it can be taken to the area it is needed regardless of the proximity of an electrical outlet.

Four fan speeds make it versatile for different-sized spaces. The system is equipped with a BAF (British Allergy Foundation) certified filter that has been proven to clear 99.9% of particles down to 0.3 microns in size. The LG PuriCare has the added feature of being controlled remotely by mobile devices such as iPhone or Android mobile devices via BlueTooth technology.

Pros
  • Lightweight design – under 1.5 lbs
  • Low noise (30 dB in low mode)
  • Battery life of 8 hours
Cons
  • USB cable not included
  • Occasional Bluetooth connectivity problems

Frequently Asked Questions

How do I get rid of pet odor in my house?

The first step in removing an odor is identifying it! If the odor is coming from a soiled carpet, you will need to clean the carpet first and foremost. If the litter box is what’s smelling, then you’ll have to clean the litter box more frequently. You can only purify the air and rid your home of a smell if the cause is also eliminated. Once you’ve removed the cause and still find the aroma lingering, you don’t need to lose hope. You can remove the cause (dander, in some cases) with an efficient HEPA filter and the odor molecules can be removed with an activated carbon filter in your purifier. Even better if you can find an air purifier with both types.
Do air purifiers get rid of pet smells?

They can get rid of odors, but it’s important to use the right one and to use it properly if you want to be successful with it. As we’ve said, removing the cause is vital, but even beyond that, make sure that the filtration system within your purifier is capable of removing what you need to be eliminated. IE, if dander is the problem, make sure you have a good HEPA filter and if you just need the lingering odor removed, look for the purifier that has an activated carbon filter.
Does a HEPA filter remove odor?

Yes and no. It will remove the cause of some odors, particularly mold and pet dander. However, because odor molecules are too small to be caught by the HEPA filter, it can’t remove them entirely, nor can they remove gasses, chemicals, or volatile organic compounds (VOCs).3  HEPA filters are still crucial to creating high-quality breathing air, though, so you won’t want to discount them when looking for the best air purifier for your home.

Is activated charcoal filter safe?

Yes! Activated carbon in the form of a filter is an excellent method for eradicating your breathing air from the pollutants you’d be better off without. It make sense to question it, though, it is made from heating charcoal in the presence of gas4 but the process creates excess pores and spaces for chemicals, odors, and VOCs to fill. In fact, activated charcoal is often used to treat poisoning by ingesting it – which suggests its presence in your air filter is more than safe enough.

Article Sources

Pet News Daily uses only high-quality sources, including peer-reviewed studies, to support the facts within our articles. Read our editorial process to learn more about how we fact-check and keep our content accurate, reliable, and trustworthy.

  1. Pet Dander. American Lung Society. lung.org. Updated February 8, 2022. Accessed March 24, 2022.
  2. Gupta Y, Reddy V S P K, Shukla S, and Jayendra V S. Design and Fabrications of Air Purification Using HEPA Filter. Lovely Professional University, India. Page 289. Published 2018. Accessed March 29, 2022.
  3. Kernis I. Can an Air Purifier Remove Odors from Your Home? molekule.science. Published December 26, 2016. Accessed March 28, 2022.
  4. Activated Charcoal – Uses, Side Effects, and More. webMD.com. Accessed March 28, 2022.