THE Best Dog Backpack Carrier for 2019 (19 Tested)

THE Best Dog Backpack Carrier for 2019 (19 Tested)

  • 22 min read
  • Last Updated: 02/27/2019
  • Author: Jonathan Burton

Whether you’re hiking, flying, traveling to the vet, or commuting with public transportation, sometimes it makes more sense for your pup to ride in style rather than walk. Backpack carriers are nifty tools for dog owners to keep around. You want something safe, durable, and comfortable for you and your pup–and at a reasonable price. After carefully scrutinizing 19 dog carrier backpacks, we chose Petsfit Comfort Dog Backpack as our favorite for its fantastic quality, affordable price point, and comfortable fit. But read on–there are 18 more where that came from!

Click here to scroll down to see what things we look for
when choosing the best dog backpack carrier

Best Overall

Petsfit Comfort Dog Backpack

8/10

Durable construction

Folds down flat for easy storage

Bottom is sturdy

Very popular among cat owners

Only 1 color option

Safety leash is cheap

No pockets

Not very comfy to wear

Weight Capacity
Up to 15 lbs
Safety
Four mesh windows for ventilation and safety leash for security
Strap Design
padded shoulders straps with chest strap for added support
Material
Nylon straps
soft mesh
and canvas throughout
Sizes
1

Best Quality

Casual Canine Ultimate Backpack Carrier

8/10

Designed for long-term use

Optional mesh tent

Additional storage pockets

High price point

Only 1 color option

Bottom is slack and soft

Weight Capacity
Up to 22 lbs
Safety
Mesh panels and air holes for ventilation.
Strap Design
Stitched polyester straps with soft mesh padding
Material
100% polyester
Sizes
1

Best for Hiking

K9 Sport Sack AIR Backpack Carrier

9/10

5 color options

Lightweight and durable

Can be converted to different bag types

Adjustable side pockets

High price point

Lack of storage

No waist belt

Weight Capacity
Up to 30 lbs
Safety
D-ring for secure collar hook-up
easy-pull zipper
and breathable microfiber
Strap Design
Two mesh-lined
Foam-Tek
should straps
Material
Nylon straps
plastic buckles
mesh lined should straps
fully ventilated sides
Sizes
4 (Extra Small
Small
Medium
and Large)

Best on a Budget

Cosmos Legs Out Backpack Carrier

9/10

Design is fun and bright

Low price point

Very secure

Provides excellent support and comfort

Only one color design

Better for short haired dogs

Runs very small

Shoulder straps have no padding

Weight Capacity
Up to 15 lbs
Safety
Side mesh panels ensure air ventilation with velcro straps and zipper for closure. Leash clip is inside harness for security.
Strap Design
Basic shoulder straps
Material
Canvas throughout
soft padded back and mesh side panels
Sizes
3 (Small
Medium
and Large)

Best for Flying

Natuvalle 6-in-1 Pet Backpack Carrier

8/10

6-in-1 design for versatile use

Foldable for easy storage

Great for air travel

Well ventilated and spacious

Only 1 color option

High price point

Poor strap clips and zipper pulls

Quality control issues

Weight Capacity
Up to 18 lbs
Safety
4 mesh panels for air ventilation
safety leash
and reflective stitching
Strap Design
Padded shoulder straps with many different configurations
Material
Fleece bed
600 Denier Oxford fabric
Sizes
4 (Extra Small
Small
Medium
and Large)

Best for Medium to Larger Dogs

Snoozer Roller Backpack Carrier

8/10

3 color options

3 sizes

Excellent for airline carry on travel

Multiple storage pockets

Very high price point

Cumbersome as a backpack

Sizes vary considerably

Weight Capacity
Up to 30 lbs
Safety
Inner leash tether
Strap Design
Wide padded straps and a telescope handle for rolling the carrier
Material
Plastic frame
sturdy mesh sidings
stitched fabric throughout and sherpa padding
Sizes
3 (Small
Medium
and Large)

Outward Hound Front Carrier

7/10

2 color options

1 zippered pocket

Bottom supports very well

Really only suitable for small-framed dogs

Isn’t very deep

Weight Capacity
Up to 20 lbs
Safety
Interior safety harness clips to your dog’s collar and lightweight mesh keeps them cool
Strap Design
Padded shoulder straps with waist and chest straps for additional support
Material
Weather-resistant fabric
nylon straps and mesh sidings
Sizes
2 (Small and Medium)

NICREW Dog Backpack Carrier

6/10

2 color options

Low price point

Easy on and off design

Quality material

Very well stitched

Sizing is a bit tricky

Not meant for dogs over 20 lbs

Only fits a certain body type

Weight Capacity
5.5 lbs - 22 lbs
Safety
Breathable mesh carrier with legs and tail free to move
velcro elastic top
Strap Design
1.5” wide
padded strap in a crisscross pattern
Material
Nylon throughout
interior is soft mesh
plastic buckles
and metal zippers
Sizes
5 (Small
Medium
Large
Extra Large
and Extra Extra Large)

Whizzotech Pet Backpack Carrier

6/10

5 color options

Low price point

Lightweight material

Well stitched and supported

Little tight between the legs

Runs a bit small

Weight Capacity
5.5 lbs -15 lbs
Safety
Breathable mesh fabric
internal leash attachment
and velcro elastic top closure
Strap Design
Nylon crisscross straps
Material
Nylon
plastic buckles
metal zippers
and soft mesh
Sizes
4 (Small
Medium
Large
and Extra Large)

PetAmi Deluxe Pet Backpack Carrier

5/10

9 color options

Chest and waist straps for additional support

2 convenient access points

Very convenient for air travel

Not great for long distance backpacking

Not ideal for medium to large dogs

Doesn’t maintain shape

High price point

Weight Capacity
Up to 18 lbs
Safety
Zip-up mesh window for optimal airflow
safety strap and buckle for security
Strap Design
Shoulder straps padded with mesh for comfort and moisture wicking
Material
Durable 600D polyester
sherpa lined bedding
nylon straps
and plastic buckles
Sizes
1

COODIA Legs Out Front Carrier

6/10

3 color options

Low price point

Very stylish and secure

Made with cheap materials

Runs small

Does not offer any back support

Weight Capacity
Does not specify but estimated up to 15 lbs
Safety
Interior safety clasp
metal zipper and velcro for top closure
Strap Design
2 (crisscross straps or shoulder straps with back belt)
Material
Nylon straps
mesh shoulder supports
and soft fabric throughout
Sizes
4 (Small
Medium
Large
and Extra Large)

Mogoko Dog Backpack Carrier

4/10

5 color options

Airline approved

Bottom support is not firm

Constantly needs adjusting

Only suited for certain dogs

Weight Capacity
Up to 15.5 lbs
Safety
Ventilated head out design and elastic mesh window is adjustable
Strap Design
Reinforced mesh shoulder straps with waist belt support
Material
Durable nylon canvas
soft mesh
metal zippers
and plastic buckles
Sizes
3 (Medium
Large
and Extra Large)

OxGord Paws & Pals Rolling Backpack Carrier

4/10

Low price point

Doubles as a backpack and a rolling carrier

2 storage pockets

Only 1 color option

Not very durable

Will most certainly break if you push the weight limit

A bit bulky

Not ideal for long-term use

Weight Capacity
Does not specify but estimated up to 20 lbs
Safety
Air mesh panels for air ventilation and safety leash
Strap Design
Polyester and nylon shoulder straps
Material
600D polyester
plastic from
and
Sizes
1

PetAmi Pet Backpack Carrier

2/10

9 color options

Low price point

Made out of quality material

Only fits for rather small dogs

Will collapse on itself

No padding in the back

Ventilation is poor

Weight Capacity
Up to 12 lbs
Safety
Safety strap/leash and side mesh panels
Strap Design
Padded mesh shoulder straps
nylon chest and waist belts
Material
600D polyester
sherpa lining
and nylon straps
Sizes
1

Pet Gear Roller Backpack

7/10

6 color options

Two side storage pouches

Handle for carrying and separate telescopic handle for rolling

High price point

No additional support for backpacking

Bottom as very little padding

Weight Capacity
Up to 25 lbs
Safety
Mesh side panels for good air ventilation and leash tether
Strap Design
Padded shoulder straps
Material
Polyester
nylon straps
and mesh side panels
Sizes
4 (Medium
Large
Extra Large
and Sports)

Becko 3-in-1 Backpack Carrier

5/10

Doubles as a travel crate

Excellent for small dogs that weigh under 10 lbs

Great for short walks

Only 1 color option

Lacks sturdiness

Does not have a solid bottom or support the weight of the animal

No significant padding on shoulder straps

Weight Capacity
Up to 15 lbs
Safety
Side and top mesh panels for air ventilation. Safety leash for additional security
Strap Design
Mesh padded shoulder straps and waist belt of added support
Material
Scratch resistant polyester
durable mesh panels
and nylon straps
Sizes
2 (Small and Large)

Pet Magasin Backpack Carrier

6/10

Expandable mesh wings

Foldable for easy storage

Accessory loops on side

Only 1 color option

Does not keep shape laying down

Lacks structure support

Weight Capacity
Does not specify but estimated up to 15 lbs
Safety
Mesh panels for air ventilation but not indication of a safety leash
Strap Design
Soft mesh padded shoulder straps and waist strap for additional support
Material
Water-resistant Oxford fabric
mesh panels
and nylon straps
Sizes
1

PAWABOO Pet Backpack Carrier

8/10

10 color options

Low price point

Legs out and tail out design

Very comfortable

Can be worn in front and behind

Doesn’t have additional support for the back and chest

Lack of shoulder strap padding

Weight Capacity
Does not specify but estimated up to 15 lbs
Safety
Hook and loop velcro with metal zippers for security. Two breathable mesh panels for air circulation
Material
Breathable mesh panels
polyester fibre throughout and nylon straps
Sizes
4 (Small
Medium
Large
and Extra Large)

CozyCabin Backpack Carrier

7/10

5 color options

Very popular with Dachshund owners

Comfortable for owner and dog if proper size fits

Straps are not sturdy at all

Not great for short dogs

Base is flimsy

Ventilation isn’t great

Weight Capacity
Up to 12 lbs
Safety
Buckle design inside carrier connects with pet’s collar and air mesh side panels for ventilation
Strap Design
Padded and stitched mesh straps for comfort
Material
Sturdy canvas
air mesh panels
plastic buckles and nylon adjustment straps
Sizes
3 (Medium
Large
& Extra Large)

How To Choose

When picking the perfect backpack carrier for you and your dog, there are many factors to keep in mind. Because every dog is unique in size, we’ve opted to look at the more general features of the backpack harness in order to help you decide which one to go with. We also thought it was important to only include those with a lot of feedback and have been tested by real owners.

Weight Capacity
Picking a backpack that can support your dog is very important. Make sure you know your dog’s weight and size before you start to shop! Many carriers are optimized for specific sizes, so spare yourself the disappointment of finding the perfect pack only to discover that it just won’t fit by knowing exactly what you’re looking for from the get-go.

Keep in mind that you may be able to physically fit your dog into a carrier under its weight class–but it doesn’t mean you should. In an ideal world, your dog will sit comfortably within the range a carrier is approved for. If your pup is above (or even maxes out) the weight capacity, you may run into problems down the road with breaking or tearing. For this reason, we have listed max weights and how well the backpacks hold up.

Safety
This is very important. Ensuring your dog has good ventilation while in the carrier can’t be overstated. The last thing we want is for you to go hiking and then find out that your dog is hyperventilating due to lack of air. Likewise, a good carrier will have safety leashes in place to make sure that, even if the flap is opened, your pup won’t escape halfway through your travel.

Strap Design
Even the daintiest teacup-sized pups can feel heavy overtime. To spare yourself pain down the road, pay attention to the backpack straps. In this category, we’re looking at fit (is it like a traditional backpack, or more of a sling?), padding, security (are there additional chest and waist straps?), and any other special features called out by the manufacturer.

Material
It might seem basic, but material is always critical to determining quality and durability. To know what the ideal material is for your specific needs, you should know the circumstances in which you plan to use the carrier–for example, on hikes, you want something soft but durable.

Sizes
Some carriers are specifically designed with only one size of dog in mind, while others have a wide range of sizes to accommodate more kinds of pups. In this section, we list out how many sizing options are offered to give you a sense of the specific backpack’s flexibility.

Back-Facing, Front-Facing, & Rolling

How do you want to carry your pup? Are you looking for traditional back-facing backpack, or do you want your pup to chill on your stomach? Or, would you prefer roll your little guy alongside you? All three styles come in handy for different situations. Below, we’ve gone into when you’d might like each.

Back-Facing
This type of backpack carrier is what you would consider when you think of your typical backpack. Most on the market are supported with shoulder straps and have side mesh panels for air ventilation. If you are going to be moving from indoors to out, starting and stopping, and have a medium-weight dog, this is a solid choice.

Front-Facing
This is the “kangaroo” option of backpack carriers. If you have a little dog and/or plan to do hiking, this is a very popular option. For hikers, carrying your dog in the front means you can still wear your traditional hiking pack on your back. For other owners, a front-facing pack lets you keep a close eye on your pup at all times, giving a stronger sense of security.

Rolling
A rolling carrier resembles a suitcase with wheels and often has the option to be carried like a backpack (although they tend to be optimized for rolling and are not the most comfortable for carrying). These are convenient if you don’t want the constant pressure on your back over an extended period of time–for example, in airports. Unfortunately, it’s also important to keep in mind that you can’t easily take rolling carriers on stairs or outdoors.

Flying With Your Dog

All airlines have different guidelines on the proper way to bring a pet on board, so be sure to check your airline’s rules here. But regardless, there are always two things to keep in mind: the carrier should be comfortable for you to carry and should fit under the seat in front of you.

Some backpack carriers are designed specifically for airplane travel and others try to use it as a marketing trick but don’t follow through. Overall, we’ve taken this into account and have scoured through the reviews to ensure that the ones that claim to be excellent for flying actually live up to that standard.

Likewise, we wanted to compile the links for the most common American airlines so that you could see these guidelines for yourself. The last thing you want to do before flying with your dog is to find out that the traveling carrier won’t work.

Delta

United

American Airlines

JetBlue

Southwest

Frontier

Allegiant

Hiking and Traveling Outdoors

We all know it’s fun to let your dog off leash and explore all the wonders of nature, but that isn’t always safe nor is it the right choice for every dog. More time than not, it’s better to just bring the right kind of equipment and carry your dog alongside you so that they can take it all in.

Many of the carriers designed for hiking will have additional support straps for the chest and waist. Another factor to keep in mind is ventilation–nobody wants a sweaty back if it can be helped! Plus, it is essential that you and your pup stay cool and don’t overheat.

Adventure Time

Being prepared with the proper backpack carrier can make taking your dog on trips a breeze. With the proper fit and great ventilation, you and your dog could go almost anywhere together.

We hope that this guide has helped you pick the backpack carrier for your needs! Be sure to let us know which one you went with to go on your adventures.