Best Dog Carrier Backpack

In a nutshell

After analyzing hundreds of product reviews, we've narrowed our top selection of the best dog carrier backpacks to assist you on your next adventure.

A dog carrier backpack gives you the freedom to bring your beloved dog with you everywhere you go. If you choose the right one, it will ensure that both you and your dog are comfortable in the time you spend together. Additionally, it will last you for years!

We’ve researched more than 20 dog backpacks and below we review the top choices.

But first, are you interested in learning more about what to look for when picking the right dog carrier backpack?

OR

Do you just want to see our top picks?

Select one of the options below to take you directly to that section. Choose wisely.

Jump to The Research

  • How to choose the best backpack for carrying your dog?
  • What are the benefits of a dog backpack carrier?
  • Things to look for that differentiate dog carrier backpacks 
  • What’s the best way to use a dog backpack carrier?
  • What to do before purchasing the right dog backpack carrier?

Jump to Our Product Reviews

  • Best Dog Carrier Backpack for Rugged Dog Owners
  • Best For Dog Owners That Value Lifetime Warranty
  • Best Dog Carrier Backpack At An Affordable Price
  • For Owners Who Want An Airline Approved Bag As Well
  • Affordable Dog Carrier Backpack With Added Extras

The Research

How to choose the best backpack for carrying your dog?

First, think about the size of your dog. These bags are best for small to medium dogs only. If you have a larger dog, you might be better off putting him in a large crate or having him walk if he can. However, all crates differ in size, so measure your dog and compare it to the sizes on the carriers you’re looking at.

Make sure that you’re choosing a durable bag with strong zippers and padded straps. If you’re going on long hikes, ensure that the shoulder straps are heavily padded for your comfort.

Also, a bag with a comfortable, easily washable lining will make things easier for both you and your dog. You also need to make sure there are multiple areas made of mesh so that air gets into the carrier. A heavy-duty polyester material works great combined with this netting!

What are the benefits of a dog backpack carrier?

Like most people, you probably love your dog so much you want to bring him with you everywhere. However, most places don’t want your dog walking around their property because of the potential damage he could do. Or, if you want to bring your dog on an outdoor excursion, he or she might tire before you do.

Having a backpack carrier allows your beloved dog to go with you everywhere that you go, safely and comfortably.

Things to look for that differentiate dog carrier backpacks

Most dog backpacks are soft-sided, but some do have a stronger structure. If you’ll be taking the bag on or off, this is something to consider.

Make sure the bag’s zippers and mesh portals are claw-proof so your dog cannot escape mid-trip.

Whether the bag has heavily padded straps, lumbar support and a chest strap is an important feature. These are must-haves if you’re using the bag for a long hike.

Check to see how comfortable the inside of the bag is and if it is removable. Your pup will quickly dirty this area up after use and you want to have something that is comfortable for him but easy for you to clean!

What’s the best way to use a dog backpack carrier?

These bags are great to use on a long hike, a shopping excursion or even a walk around your neighborhood. Wherever you previously couldn’t bring your dog, now you can! The possibilities are endless. However, while these bags are comfortable for a couple of hours, they are not meant for long term use.

Your dog may have room to move a bit in these carriers, but not to stretch out or even lie down. For this reason, it is suggested that you limit the amount of time that you keep your dogs in these carriers to just a few hours.

What to do before purchasing the right backpack?

Before purchasing any product, it is imperative that you measure your dog. While some of these dogs say that they fit certain breeds, or a bag looks like it might fit your dog, each dog is different. The only way to truly know if your dog will fit is to weight and measure him or her.

Also, even if your dog does fit in one of these bags, he might have anxiety or fight back against going into the bag. Contact your trusted dog trainer to find out how to acclimate your dog to the bag so he will like going into it.

Product Reviews

OUR TOP PICK

Best Dog Carrier Backpack for Rugged Dog Owners

K9

Sport Sack

This bag was created so that every dog would have the ability to get into a backpack and climb! It comes in three sizes, and even if your dog is an “in-between” size, they have a little block that helps make the bag fit better.

What we love:  

  • Comes in many trendy colors
  • Great padding in the shoulder straps
  • Durable construction

What we don’t love:

  • Difficult to get your dog inside the bag; there are no instructions
  • Made of very thin fabric
  • If it doesn’t work, you have to pay for return shipping to the vendor

Why it’s great: With this bag, you truly can take your dog anywhere. Unlike some other bags where your dog is fully contained inside of a bag, this one operates a little differently.

First, his head remains outside of the bag at all time. However, you don’t have to worry about your dog jumping out at the first squirrel he sees. That’s because his arms are resting comfortably in little holes that rest against your body. Plus, the size restrictions are a bit looser on this bag; if your dog is a little chunkier, no worries.

The K9 Sport Sack was made to fit those dogs who might be a bit large, so the bag size is more dependent on how tall your dog is.

The closeness between your dog and you, in this case, means it is a perfect bag for dogs who have issues with separation anxiety, depression, aggression or have disabilities. Or, perhaps your dog is old and can’t climb with you. This bag is a perfect fit for you and your pup!

The best part about this bag, besides its durability and ability to fit so many different sized dogs, is that it is made right here in the USA. When you buy with K9 Sport Sack, you’re supporting a small business.

The company prides itself on being there for its customers, even offering a texting service if your order doesn’t work out. Plus, the bag comes with a 60-day warranty that protects your from virtually any damage or wear and tear within the first two months of purchase.

OUR UPGRADE PICK

Best For Dog Owners That Value Lifetime Warranty

Timbuk

Mutt Mover Light Day Pack

Timbuk is a well-respected brand in the outdoor world, primarily for their rugged sacks that are great for hiking or camping. They’ve taken the durable materials used in their human backpacks and created a perfect satchel to bring your pup along for the journey!


What we love:

  • Comes with a lifetime warranty from the manufacturer
  • Choose from multiple colors (blue or black)
  • Lightweight and a perfect choice for travel or outdoor activity (weighs 3 lbs)
  • Has comfortable chest and waist straps for hiking or extended use

What we don’t love:

  • The bag does not have a strong internal frame, making the inner cargo area smaller than reported when worn
  • Zippers are not waterproof; your dog will get wet if it rains

Why this bag is great: Timbuk believes in their product so much, this bag even comes with a lifetime warranty.

The Timbuk Muttmover bag itself is very lightweight, weighing a little under three pounds. This is perfect for hiking since you don’t want to add more weight than you have to when hiking with your pup! It carries up to 30 L of content, so this is good for a smaller dog, between 5-15 pounds.

It is made of a waterproof material that doesn’t show dust or dirt, and the comfortable inner liner provides a plush place for your dog to rest but is easily cleaned by just wiping it down with soap and water. The bag zips up entirely ensuring that your dog won’t slip out but has mesh inserts that provide maximum breathability for your pet.

For your comfort, the straps of this bag are extra padded. It also features a waist strap to keep the back close to you. The bag comes with a collapsible water bowl for water for your dog during your long hike. It also has large pockets for your dog’s treats, leash, and more. It also has a front pocket that is magnetic, so you can ensure that your keys and key fobs are not lost during your hike!

OUR BUDGET PICK

Best Dog Carrier Backpack At An Affordable Price

Ytonet

Dog Carrier Backpack

If you have a small dog and you’re looking to go hiking or carry your pup with you, this is undoubtedly the right product for you.

What we love:

  • Pockets on both sides of the bag can store your personal items and your dog’s needs
  • Straps of the bag have extra thick padding for extra comfort
  • Reinforced stitching and design provide safety for your dog while you travel
  • Two-way entry makes it easy to see your pet during your walk
  • The roll-up lid makes this product very versatile

What we don’t love:  

  • Only fits small dogs, under 18 lbs
  • Side pockets could have more storage space

Why this bag is great: For a small dog, this is a big bag. It’s a soft-sided carrier that’s made of durable, eco-friendly polyester. The material is so durable, you can take this bag through anything. Best of all, it’s extremely comfortable for both you and your pet.

The Ytonet Dog Carrier backpack is the perfect bag for breeds like Corgis, Toy Poodles, Pomeranians, Chihuahuas, Papillons and Schnauzers. While this bag fits dogs up to 18 lbs, it is more about the size of your dog. The bag measures 17.5″ x 10.8″ x 10.8″ so your dog shouldn’t be more than 17 inches tall.

The bag’s structure is firmly reinforced even though it is soft-sided, so the bag keeps its shape which allows your dog to rest more comfortably. You can roll back the top of the bag once it is unzipped, so while you’re hiking, your dog can get some fresh air. He’ll be safe, too, as you can tether his leash to the inside of the bag. Plus the bottom zippers are also lockable so your dog literally cannot escape.

You can go on as long a walk as you want as there are plenty of mesh areas where your dog can get fresh air; there are four air pockets! You can even feed your dog without taking the backpack off! This will help your dog find peace as you hike.

The bag has pockets on both sides to store the things you need for your dog and for yourself. Plus, the inner part of the bag is easily cleaned after your big hikes. You can remove the bottom pad and throw it in your washing machine if it gets dirty, too!

For the convenience of the owner, this bag folds up into itself when you’re not using it. That makes storage much easier! Additionally, you’ll be super comfortable during your hike because the straps of the bag have triple padding. You’ll barely notice you’re wearing this bag!

ANOTHER GREAT CHOICE

For Owners Who Want An Airline Approved Bag As Well

Mr. Peanut’s

Backpack Pet Carrier

Mr. Peanut is a brand known for its quality pet bags and this one is simply no exception. This small little backpack is perfect for hikers or those with small dogs who want to get out and explore the outdoors.

What we love:

  • Has chest and lumbar strap for extra support
  • Can be worn as a backpack or duffel-style
  • Is airline approved for use during airline travel

What we don’t  love:

  • With lots of use, shows wear and tear within a month of purchase
  • Smaller in size than reported; only can be used with very small pups

Why this bag is great: The bag itself only weighs about 2.5 lbs and features a breathable netting material on three of its four sides. This will help your dog get fresh air while out and about but also adds to her peace as she can see where she is going and interact with you. Mr. Peanut’s Backpack Pet Carrier is durable and waterproof too! Your dog will travel in comfort too as the bed is covered in a washable plush lining.

Take note: the bag is small, and you should measure your dog before purchasing. This bag is for pets up to 14” x 9” that are no more than 10lbs. The interior space of this bag is smaller than it looks due to the very plush padding.

One of the greatest things about this bag is that it is airline compliant. While you should check in with your airline for size guidelines before leaving, this bag will comfortably fit under the seat for most airlines. The soft-sided construction means it will contort to whatever size is available.

ANOTHER BUDGET PICK

Affordable Dog Carrier Backpack With Added Extras

PetAmi

Deluxe Pet Carrier Backpack for Small Cats and Dogs

This stylish carrier is durable and comfortable for both you and your dog. If you’re going for a long hike, this is the right product for you!

What we love:

  • Very stylish design
  • Comes with a collapsible water dish
  • Very comfortable when wearing on long walks
  • Comes in multiple colors like red, blue and purple

What we don’t love:

  • Seems smaller than advertised
  • Dog not as secure in this carrier as others

Why it’s great: It was designed to give you and your pet the most comfort possible while traveling or hiking.

Keep in mind, this case is best for small to medium dogs. It measures 12.5” x 10.2” x 16.3” and is a great fit for dogs like Italian Greyhounds, Schnauzers and Toy Poodles. Measure your dog before you buy but know that it is a great choice for your travels if the bag fits!

The PetAmi dog carrier backpack is really well ventilated with multiple areas of ventilation. This gives your dog some fresh air while also gives him a little comfort as he will be able to see where you’re traveling and enjoying the scenery.

It has a two-way entry which makes it easy for both you and your pet. It will help you get your pet into the carrier and help you see him more during your travels! He’ll enjoy visibility through both the mesh window and head area.

The bag is very well-built and durable. It’s soft-sided to an extent but keep its shape so that your dog has all the room he needs. It has a reinforced structure, so it won’t fall into itself while you’re moving about and has a safety strap and buckle to prevent your little guy from escaping mid-hike.

For your pet’s comfort, the carrier is lined with Sherpa that is very easy to clean. For your comfort, the back and shoulder straps have extremely thick padding. Plus, the waist straps and chest straps keep the bag close and balance weight during your long hikes. Should your pup get thirsty, the bag also comes with a collapsible water bowl. It is made from 600D polyester, so it is super durable!

Final Thoughts

After reviewing these products, the best dog carrier backpack is clearly the K9 Sport Sack. This carrier is roomy and since it comes in three sizes, it can fit almost any small to medium breed of dog with ease. The carrier was made by people who hike and who understand the need to create a very durable bag that is also comfortable to wear.

The bag’s straps are heavily padded, and the lightweight material ensures that you won’t be sweating like crazy with your dog on your back. For your pup’s sake, the bag allows him to safely have his head out at all times. This will ease his anxiety and also ensure that he’s getting the air he needs to stay calm. Both you and your dog will love going outside with this durable and stylish bag.


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