Whether it is a country-side adventure trip or a city tour, carrying your dog along always brings so much joy! However, it’s not practical to hold your pet always in your hand or make it run for long distances. This is where dog carriers can be of great help! Most dog parents rely on these equipments to safely carry their precious fur babies during road trips and even air travels. Depending on the size of your pet and your travel style, you can choose from different types of dog carriers.
This article helps you narrow down the best dog carrier for your dog by listing down the most popular products in the market. So, read to take your paw-friend for a ride?
Different Types of Dog Carriers:
Many pet owners believe that they need more than one type of dog carrier to suit different purposes. For example, you cannot use the same carrier to travel to a vet and on an airplane due to safety issues. Here are some of the popular styles of dog carriers available currently:
- Hard-Sided Dog Carriers: These are the standard travel dog kennels that are suitable for long travels by road, sea or plane. The carriers are made with sturdy plastic and can accommodate even large and medium-sized dogs comfortably.
- Soft-Sided Dog Carriers: They are like duffle bags, but for dogs! These carriers are ideal for dogs that get nervous with crowds or yet to be vaccinated. You can use them to carry your pets around the town conveniently.
- Dog Carriers with Wheels: These carriers are an excellent option for people who cannot carry their dogs on their shoulders for a long time. The roller dog carriers come with wheels that ride smoothly on the road. However, they are not meant for rough terrains like hills or bad roads, as the ride can get too bumpy for your dog!
- Dog Backpack Carriers: Backpack carriers are portable bags that you can use to carry your dog on your shoulders. These carriers work well for small to medium-sized dogs. You can use them for a casual stroll in your neighborhood or a hiking trip on the countryside!
- Sling Dog Carriers: These carriers are suitable for carrying small or young dogs in your hands without the dangers of accidentally dropping them. The slings have a small bag to accommodate your dog and let him enjoy the outdoor scenes.
List of 15 Best-Selling Dog Carriers, 2021:
Let us now look into the most popular and best-rated products in each category of dog carriers:
Best Backpack Dog Carriers:
1. K9 Sport Sack- Dog Carrier Backpack for Small and Medium Pets:
Next time you plan for a hiking trip, you can include your dog in the traveler’s list, thanks to the K9 Sports sack! The super cute dog hiking backpack carrier suits small and medium-sized dog breeds like pugs, Havanese, Jack Russell Terrier etc. The weight capacity is upto 30 pounds and three sizes are available to accommodate slightly bigger breeds like Corgi. The material is light-weight and quite durable. It has a ventilated mesh and side pockets, along with safety clips. You can choose from many colors like mint, black, grey etc.
Suitable For: Hiking, Camping, Walking, Cycling.
- Front-facing design so that the dog enjoys the view.
- A good amount of storage space.
- Light-weight and sleek design.
- 4 sizes available XS-L to accommodate different sized dogs.
- Straps are sturdy and soft on the shoulders.
- The resting base is comfortable for dogs to be seated.
- Many customers felt that the bag was not roomy for their dogs.
- The weight of the dog is not balanced and pulls the bag down.
2. Pet Ami Deluxe Pet Carrier Backpack for Small Cats and Dogs, Puppies:
If you have an anxious or a nervous dog that doesn’t enjoy “new” sights or people, you can try this mode of backpack carrier for dogs. The sturdy design offers enough room for your pet to move around. The ventilated zipper mesh on top lets your pet peek out if he likes or stay snug inside. The bag also comes with a safety strap and a buckle to secure your little dog inside. It is equipped with side pouches and a front pocket to store pet food, water and other supplies.
Suitable for: Road travel, Hiking, Cycling.
- Firmly structured design.
- Distributes weight evenly on shoulders.
- Made with 600D superior quality, durable polyester.
- Available in 9 colors.
- 2 access points.
- Multiple mesh windows for ample ventilation.
- Sturdy base with Sherpa lining bedding.
- 3 safety buckles.
- Suitable only for small and medium-sized dogs.
- Large dogs cannot fit in.
3. Mogoko Comfortable Dog Cat Carrier Backpack:
Check out this comfortable dog hiking backpack carrier which is suitable for small and medium-sized breeds like Yorkshire. The backpack can accommodate dogs with weights upto 15 pounds. It has a sturdy body with meshes on the sides for ample ventilation. The adjustable peephole design on top lets your pet enjoy fresh air without the worry of slipping out. The back comes with padded EPE foam on the back and sides to offer maximum comfort to you and your pet.
Suitable for: Hiking, Outdoor travelling, Camping etc.
- Offers good space for the pet to move around.
- Good numbers of ventilation channels.
- The peephole has an adjustable drawstring.
- Built-in buckle collar to secure the pet.
- Padding gives extra comfort.
- Vents prevent overheating.
- Reasonable pricing.
- Shoulder straps can be too tight for large individuals.
Best Roller Dog Carriers:
4. Katziela Pet Carrier with Removable Wheels:
Check out this best travel dog carrier which saves you the burden of carrying your pets on your shoulders. The light-weight, soft-sided bag comes with removable wheels to easily transport your pet from place to place. You can take off the wheels and use like a pet-carrier bag as and when required. The bag comes with ventilation sides with full zippers, telescopic walking handle, safety leash and storage pockets. It is also approved for air travels!
Suitable For: Air Travel, Sight-Seeing, Walking.
- Versatile bag.
- Removable wheelbase to convert it like a bag.
- Soft mini-mattress inside.
- Sturdy carry handle.
- Washable material.
- Quick access snack door.
- Seat belt straps for extra safety.
- Airlines approved.
- For slightly heavy dogs, the bag can topple over when you wheel it too fast.
- Although the bag has 6 wheels, only two wheels properly rotate.
- Side pockets are too small.
- No major color choice.
5. KOPEKS Deluxe Backpack Pet Travel Carrier with Double Wheels:
Here is a multi-functional pet carrier with wheels that works like a backpack and a car seat carrier. The bag is made with sturdy, heavy-duty 600D Oxford fabric and contains 3 ventillation mesh channels to prevent overheating. The double wheel carrier has a weight capacity of 18 lbs and comes with an industrial-grade telescopic rod for easy maneuverability. There is plenty of storage space to carry food, water and other knick-knacks. The backpack straps are adjustable for better convenience and comfort.
Suitable for: Walking, Road Trips, Supermarkets, Airport Aisles, Flights.
- Multi-purpose product.
- Suitable for long dogs like Daschund.
- Approved dog carrier for air travel.
- A good amount of netting.
- Easy access storage pockets.
- Light-weight material.
- Extra padding on the bottom.
- The straps can get caught in the wheel.
6. HPZ Pet Rover Premium Heavy Duty Dog Stroller Travel Carriage:
With a heavy-duty roller dog carrier like this, you can happily enjoy a stroll without having to leave your darling pet behind! The pet carrier has a one-hand operating mechanism to easily fold and open up. It comes with 360 degree rotating wheels with an anti-vibration system and rear braking system. The extra thickness and heavy-duty frame can withstand even rough terrains. The internal compartment is size-adjustable to accommodate pets of all sizes.
Suitable for: Strolling, Shopping, Jogging.
- Lots of space for the animal to stay comfortable.
- Ventilation mesh for better breathability.
- Large storage volume under the basket.
- Comes with three accessory bags and a bottle holder.
- Stainless steel, durable body.
- 3-Level Canopy stops.
- Cushioned handle cover for comfortable handling.
- Beginners find it difficult to assemble and operate initially.
Best Dog Carriers for Bikes:
7. Pecute Dog Bike Basket Pet Carrier for Bicycle:
Check out this cute dog basket carrier for bikes that can accommodate small breeds like Pomeranians, Chihuahua etc. The multi-functional pet carrier bag comes with sturdy straps to fasten them onto a bike’s handle. This way, you can take your pet around for a jolly ride on your bike or cycle. The sturdy, light-weight bag even comes with shoulder straps and a car-seat strap for easy transportation. It has a weight capacity of about 20 pounds.
Suitable for: Cycling, Bike rides, Walking, sightseeing.
- Multi-functional design.
- Adjustable hole on top for pets to stick out their heads.
- Double-sided cushion.
- Wide shoulder straps for better balance and comfort.
- Extra storage bags.
- Removable wooden boards on the base.
- Takes some effort to clip on the straps to a vehicle.
8. Hillwest Bike Dog Carrier Basket Bag:
Here is an adorable bike dog carrier which you can use to take your pet out for a nice evening ride. The bag is quite easy to install and comes with a quick-release buckle to fasten and open. The material is durable, light-weight and water-resistant. The basket comes with metal support on the bottom to keep your pet comfortable for long. There is also a front flap pocket and side mesh pockets for storing your phone and other items. The weight capacity is 6 kgs!
Suitable for: Cycling, Riding around the town.
- The natural brown color that suits almost any bike.
- Easy to clean material.
- Removable inner pad and padded chin rest.
- Reflective strips on the bag for better visibility.
- Water bottle pocket on sides.
- Not for medium-sized or bigger dogs.
9. Pet Safe Happy Ride Bicycle Basket for Dogs:
Check out this multi-purpose dog carrier for bike which you can easily convert into a shoulder bag. The innovative design comes with brackets and safety straps to safely attach the bag to your bike handles. It comes with a detachable shoulder strap to carry your pet physically wherever you go. The bag has a removable sun protection shield and three side pockets for better storage. It has a weight capacity of 13 pounds.
Suitable for: Pedalling, Bike rides.
- Light-weight, durable Nylon material.
- Unique bracket system for easy install.
- Removable sunshade.
- Three-way adjustable system for a better angle.
- Additional pockets.
- Sporty look.
- The bottom is quite hard and needs additional padding.
Best Lightweight Dog Carriers:
10. Morpilot Pet Travel Carrier Bag:
This lightweight dog carrier bag from Morpilot solves your problem of keeping your pet safe during travels. The portable pet bag is made with durable polyester material that can withstand weights upto 15 pounds. The support board on the base holds the shape, while the breathable mesh on the sides offers ample ventilation. The bag is quite easy to clean and even comes with a removable soft cushion. It even comes with a detachable shoulder strap for easy transportation.
Suitable For: Road Travels, Walking, Train travel etc.
- Breathable design.
- Closed design for pets with anxiety problems.
- The shoulder belt maintains good balance.
- Side opening for each access.
- Comes with a comfortable bed.
- A folding bowl is offered as part of set.
- Seat belt for safe travels in car.
- Bottom is not sturdy.
- Not suitable for air travel (as claimed by the brand).
11. Amazon Basics Soft-Sided Mesh Pet Travel Carrier:
Check out this affordable, soft-sided dog carrier from Amazon basics! The light-weight bag has an 8-pound capacity and can hold small to medium-sized dogs. The material is washable and durable, making it ideal for long-term use. The carrier also comes with a removable base insert and a fleece for the better comfort of your pet. An adjustable shoulder belt comes along with the bag to carry your pet safely from one place to another.
Suitable for: Short road trips.
- Reasonable pricing.
- Sturdy material.
- Removable fleece cover.
- Quite light in weight.
- Can be machine-washed.
- Has side opening and top opening.
- The metal clasp is too small for slightly bigger dogs.
- Too narrow for pets to stand up.
12. AOFOOK Dog Sling Carrier:
This sling dog carrier is the best way to hold your pet close to you without actually having to bear his weight. The carrier works great to take your pet out for a casual walk or while meeting your friends. It comes with a wide shoulder pad that evenly distributes the weight on your shoulders. The pet sling has a cosy kangaroo-like pouch to place your pet safely inside. The stylish dog carrier also has a big pocket to store your phone and other items.
Suitable for: Walking, Casual Strolls.
- Washable, sturdy material.
- Enough room for small dogs.
- Air mesh offers good ventilation.
- Safety clip with an elastic string.
- Good storage space.
- Looks stylish and compact.
- No structural support.
- Not suitable for heavy dogs.
Best Airline Approved Dog Carriers
13. MASKEYON Airline Approved Pet Carrier:
This best airline approved carrier solves your worries of carrying your pet safely in an aircraft. The pet-friendly design features one top opening and 4 side extensions built with ventilated mesh. There are not one or two but three entrances making it easy for your pet to access the carrier. The fleece pad which has a Velcro support on the bottom offers superior comfort to your dog. It even contains reflective tapes on both sides for night visibility. The weight capacity is upto 9kgs.
Suitable for: Air, Ship and Train travel.
- Made with high quality, non-toxic material.
- Anti-escape metal zippers.
- Non-slip bottom protector.
- Collapsible design for easy storage.
- Two expandable foldouts to create more room.
- Three side view.
- Two storage pockets.
- Some customers had problems with the base being too hard.
14. Petmate Sky Kennel Pet Carrier:
If you consider taking your pet on a long flight journey, then you must invest in a durable dog carrier like this product. The airline approved dog crate is built with a heavy-duty plastic shell with extra strong steel wire. An interlocking system offers superior security to your pet and prevents it from escaping. The crate has a 364-degree ventilation system to offer fresh air and visibility from all sides.
Suitable for: Air travel, Road trips, Long travels.
- High-quality material.
- Heavy-duty protection.
- 4-way vault door with lock system.
- Creates a safe “den” like experience to dogs.
- Meets most airline requirements.
- Comes with “Live Animal” stickers, Pet Id Stickers and clip-on bowls.
- Comes with plastic bolts instead of metal ones which are not approved by the airlines.
15. Pet Ami Premium Airline Approved Soft-Sided Pet Travel Carrier:
PetAmi soft-sided dog carrier is one of the best airline approved carrier which scores high in the looks department. The carrier lets your dog enjoy a comfortable journey with its well-ventilated design and soft padding. The bag even comes with buckle zippers and safety strap to maximise the safety aspect. A Sherpa lining bedding and a collapsible bowl are included as part of the package. There are two sizes and two color options to choose from!
Suitable for: Domestic air travel, Long car trips.
- Quality Construction.
- Multiple mesh windows.
- Safety buckle and leash.
- Adjustable shoulder straps.
- Padded handles for extra comfort.
- Comes with a Name Tag, collapsible food bowl.
- The bag doesn’t hold its shape and collapses on the animal.
How to Choose The Best Dog Carriers?
Here are some useful points to go through before buying a dog carrier:
- Always measure the size of the dog, including the height, length and the width. If it is a soft carrier, add two-four inches more and three to five inches in case of a hard carrier. For backpacks and sling carriers, you can go for the exact size.
- Understand the purpose of the carrier. You must know that not all carriers suit all purposes. For hiking and walking trips, you can go for backpacks or rollers. But, for airline travels, you must look for a carrier that follows stringent airline guidelines.
- Choose a style that suits your dog’s behavior and size. Backpack, sling and soft-sided carriers are most suitable for small to medium-sized dogs. Big dogs feel comfortable like large hard-sided carriers or crates, which offers them enough room.
- Analyze the safety aspects carefully. Ensure there are no sharp bolts or clips inside the carrier, which can harm your pet.
- Look for quality materials that can withstand your pet’s chewing. Material is something you cannot comprise at all!
- Pick carriers that have abundant ventilation and multiple access points to keep up with your dog’s temperament.
Those are some of the best Dog carriers in the current market. With so many different models and styles available, you need not worry a bit about leaving your dog out of the trip ever! Pick a good and sturdy piece to enjoy some memorable trips and outings with your pet baby.
Frequently Asked Questions and Answers:
Q1. Will pet carriers choke my dogs?
Ans: If you buy the right size and design that offers enough room for your pet, the carrier will not pose any harm. On the other hand, it will keep you safe from bumpy roads, unhygienic places and reduce the risk of infections. You can also use them to carry your pets on flights and long distances comfortably.
Q2. Do dogs feel comfortable in dog carriers?
Ans: Not all dogs feel excited or jubilant in a dog carrier from the word “go”. Some dogs can get pretty nervous and will take time to get used to their new ‘dens’. So, have patience and coax your pet with a warm blanket or some nice treats inside. Carry him around in the house first to understand the behavior. Once he is good, you can start taking him outside.
Q3. Are backpack dog carriers safe for dogs?
Ans: Yes! Backpack carriers are quite safe for dogs and do not pose any risks. The bags offer good support to the dog and do not strain his limbs or abdomen. However, you must be sure to get the right size that wraps around your dog well. It must neither be too tight nor too lose, lest your dog can slip out of it!
Q4. Is there a standard size of dog carriers?
Ans: No! Just like different dog breeds some in different sizes, carriers also come in various dimensions. You must measure your pet and choose a carrier accordingly. For crates and soft-sided carriers, the cabin size should be atleast 2-5 inches bigger than your pet size.
Q5. Are pet carriers allowed for cabin travel in an aircraft?
Ans: Yes! You can carry a pet carrier in an aircraft cabin, provided the product meets the rules and regulations set down by the airline. The carrier must be either hard-sided or soft-sided and must fit properly under the seat in front of you. The min and max dimensions can change from airline to airline.