Written by James Hall | 3 Comments | Last Updated: May 5, 2021
Miele C3 Cat and Dog
- Outstanding pickup on both carpet and hard floors
- Strong suction power
- Excels at sucking up pet hair
- Turbobrush for carpets and upholstery
- Easy to use
- Expensive for a cylinder
- Bag replacement indicator isn't always accurate
Many of Miele’s models are excellent all-round cleaners, but the C3 Cat & Dog is their primary vacuum for pet hair. This model has a high level of suction power, energy efficient design, and a turbo brush for getting hair out of upholstery and carpets. It also has an Active AirClean filter to reduce odours and excellent hard floor cleaning performance.
But does the vacuum really suck up even the toughest pet hair? Or are you better off buying the cheaper C3 Complete? And when should you consider buying a cordless vacuum instead? We’ll answer these questions and many more in our Miele C3 Cat and Dog review!
Please Note: This review is of the 890W version of the Cat & Dog. This replaced the 1200W version to comply with EU regulations, although many of the core features are the same.
Overview of this Model
- Two floorheads, including a Turbobrush for carpets and upholstery
- Excellent pet hair pickup and powerful suction
- Active AirClean filter removes pet odours from exhaust air
- Multiple power settings for different floor types
- Self-closing bag system prevents dust and allergens leaking into the air
- Power settings can be adjusted by foot for extra convenience
- Several tools including a crevice nozzle, upholstery nozzle and dusting brush
- On-board storage for tools
In-Depth Miele C3 Cat and Dog Feature Review
Appearance and Design
The first thing to note is that this is a bagged cylinder vacuum, so you’ll need to spend a bit of money on replacement bags. Fortunately, the bags are simple to fit and remove, although we recommend buying the genuine Miele bags as they provide extra filtration (more on that in the filtration section).
Due to the powerful suction and turbo tool, the Miele C3 Cat & Dog weighs around 7kg (around 1.5kg heavier than the basic C3 PowerLine.) This means it’s not eligible for our lightweight category (you can see our recommended lightweight models by clicking here), although the easy-to-manoeuvre design ensures it isn’t too tiring to use around the home.
As you would expect from a Miele vacuum, this is a sturdy model with a relatively large 4.5 litre dust capacity. It also has a comfortable handle for carrying up and down stairs, and the tube/hose reach is long enough to clean at least halfway up a staircase (so you can clean the entire staircase without needing to put the vacuum on a step). The body is supported by wheels, making it easy to move around the home. It’s also easy to use and much more mobile than the average upright.
Additionally, Miele have a reputation for producing high-quality and reliable machines. If you need a vacuum that’s likely to last a long time, then a Miele is a great choice.
Suction Power and Performance
As we mentioned in the introduction, this model has excellent suction power, even though the 900W motor can’t match Miele pet vacuums of the past in terms of raw power. In fact, the model is capable of cleaning performance that’s comparable to a 1200W vacuum, all while using significantly less energy.
The Miele does a great job on both carpets and hard floors. You’ll probably need to reduce the suction power when on carpets, however, as it can be difficult to push when on its maximum setting (although it’s useful to have this power available when necessary.) It’s also powerful enough to pick up dirt, dust, and hair from between floorboards.
For laminate and other hard floors, the basic floorhead (SBD 290-3) does a great job. For extra manoeuvrability, the floorhead is lightweight and comes with a pivoting design. You can also lower the brushes for better cleaning on hard floors.
For stubborn pet hair, the C3 also comes with a Turbobrush for stirring up carpets during cleaning. This does a great job of removing hair, even if you have a big Labrador or heavy-shedding cat. We recommend using the Turbobrush on carpet and upholstery, and the regular brush for hard floors.
Additionally, the model comes with electronic controls for variable suction power. This is a useful feature for reducing suction on certain surfaces such as carpets and vinyl flooring.
Ease of Use
It’s clear that a lot of thought has gone into making the model easy to use. Here are some examples of useful features:
- The cable can be rewound with a single press of the footswitch, saving you time and stress. This is an often-overlooked feature that makes using a vacuum more convenient, so we’re glad Miele included it with the C3 Cat and Dog.
- When you need to change the bag, the vacuum automatically closes the bag to prevent allergens leaking into the surrounding air. This makes the vacuum a solid choice for people who suffer from mild allergies, although for dust allergies we still recommend a vacuum with a HEPA filter.
- The cleaning radius is 12 metres with a cable that’s 8.5 metres long, so you won’t need to change plug sockets too often.
- A bonus of the C3 floorheads is the vacuum cleans right to the edge of carpets.
The Miele C3 Cat & Dog is also a relatively quiet vacuum, particularly when using the standard floor tool. The powered Turbobrush increases the volume noticeably though. The noise output also varies depending on which suction setting you use.
While the vacuum doesn’t come with a HEPA filter (this is included with the more expensive C3 Total Solution Allergy model) the 11-stage filtration system, which includes an Active Airclean filter and sealed design, is a step up from regular filters – especially for pet owners.
The AirClean filter includes an extra layer of charcoal. This helps remove pet odours from the air to prevent your home suffering from that “doggy” smell after cleaning. The Active AirClean filter also has a useful indicator when it needs to be replaced (the filter should last between 1-2 years depending on how much you use the vacuum).
In addition to the filter itself, the bag fleece is designed to filter air multiple times. This process removes more small dust particles and other allergens.
The Miele C3 Cat & Dog certainly isn’t the cheapest model on the market, with an RRP of around £300 (around £50 more than the C3 Complete.) We think that the combination of excellent suction power on both carpets and hardfloors, odour-reducing filter, and self-closing bags makes the model more than worth the money if you have pets.
Several on-board tools are included with the Miele C3 Cat and Dog. These are a crevice tool, upholstery brush and dusting tool, in addition to the Turbobrush and standard floorheads.
While you shouldn’t expect the crevice tool to be as effective at picking up pet hair as the Turbobrush, it still does a decent job for cleaning those hard to reach areas.
Frequently Asked Questions
Should I buy the C3 Powerline or the C3 Cat and Dog Powerline?
We reviewed the excellent C3 Powerline here, and while it’s cheaper than the Cat and Dog it’s inferior if you have pets. The filter doesn’t include the Active charcoal system and you only get a single standard floorhead (there’s no Turbobrush). If you don’t have pets, however, then the C3 Powerline is still a great option.
How often do the bags need to be changed?
This is a difficult question to answer, as it depends on how often you need to vacuum and the size/breed of your pets. In general, you should expect a bag to last several weeks.
How Does the C3 Compare to the C2?
The two vacuums are very similar, but there are some minor differences. Click here to read our in-depth comparison of the C2 and C3.
If you need a powerful vacuum for getting rid of pet hair while removing that unpleasant doggy smell, the Miele C3 Cat and Dog is one of the best options on the market.
It has strong suction power, durable design, and a relatively large capacity, while the two floorheads make short work of both carpet and hard-floor cleaning. There are cheaper options available, but the C3 Cat and Dog more than justifies its price for pet owners. Click here to view the vacuum’s price.