My dog is perfect. He also sheds so much that in the three years we’ve had him, I have probably amassed enough hairballs to knit an entire beige sweater.
This is a common problem for any pet owner, and that’s why Maytag has launched a washer-dryer specifically engineered for everyone’s perfect-yet-shedding cats and dogs. The Pet Pro range’s sleek top loader comes with a filter that can remove five times more pet hair than Maytag’s regular washers; and the dryer sports an extra-large lint trap that pulls out from the top.
The Pet Pro system comes on the heels of a pandemic pet boom that sent cat and dog adoptions soaring through the roof in the first couple of years of COVID-19. Today, the American Pet Products Association estimates that 70% of U.S. households, or 90.5 million families, own a pet.
“Our research in this space showed pet parents were lint rolling, vacuuming, and shaking out things like clothing, bedding, towels, furniture covers, and other items before even placing them in the washer,” says Anna Utley, vice president and general manager of laundry for Whirlpool Corp., which acquired Maytag in 2006. “It’s a lot of extra work.”
Maytag’s washer-dryer promises to make things a lot easier. Compared to traditional washers where pet hair can be lifted and redeposited on the clothes during the same wash cycle, the Pet Pro variation uses more water (the company hasn’t disclosed exactly how much more) and increased “agitation” to help loosen the pet hair off clothes.
Once loosened, the hair is captured in a filter that’s built into the washing machine’s agitator—a spindle that rotates clothes back and forth in the top loader.
At the end of a load, you simply twist and lift the filter to remove it from the agitator, empty it in the trash, and put it back in. (Meanwhile, the dryer spends up to 45 more minutes drying your clothes, with no extra heat, to lift any residual hair.)
And if you’ve read this far without being a pet owner (who are you?), you should know that Pet Pro is just a setting you can choose amid a sea of other options, like a built-in water faucet in the washer that can soak clothes right in the drum, or a steam function that helps prevent wrinkles in the dryer.
One of those can be yours for $1,199 (for the white) and $1,299 (for the black), making it almost certainly the most expensive non-vet-related pet purchase of all time.