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Pet Carriers

Updated on June 12, 2013

Sooner or later you are going to need or want to take your pet in the car with you, on an airplane, or even on a bus or a train. It may be that you will mostly be taking your dog or cat on short trips to the groomer or the veterinarian’s office or you may be taking it on a longer trip. Of course, when you move to a different house or city, you are sure to be taking your kitty or doggy along with you. After all, they are an important part of the family!

As important to us as our pets are, we want them to travel in as much comfort and safety as is possible. For this reason, you will want to choose a pet carrier that will serve your pet’s needs, as well as your own needs, as well as it can. There are a number of different kinds of pet carriers available on the market, so choosing the right one for your dog or cat might take a bit of thought. Read on for a few tips on picking out the pet carrier that is both right for your pet and for the uses you will put it to.

Cat in a pet carrier.  Careful now.  He, uh... doesn't look happy...
Cat in a pet carrier. Careful now. He, uh... doesn't look happy...

Types of Pet Carriers

Probably when most people they think about pet carriers they picture the plastic crates we put our dog or cat into for a journey across town or across the country. But although these are a popular kind of carrier, there are also such pet toting devices as fashionable pet bags and pouches that you sling over your shoulder with your cat or small dog inside or pet backpacks that you can put your pup into take into the outdoors or on a long city walk. 

Choosing a Pet Crate

If you are going on a long trip with your pet, especially if they will be riding on an airplane, you will be in need of a very sturdy pet crate carrier. These pet carriers are typically made from high impact plastic and have a locking wire door through which your pet enters and leaves. Most of these pet crates also have an upper half that lifts off the lower portion of the carrier by releasing a series of thumb screws.

When buying a pet carrier of this type, you will want to make sure that the carrier is of the most sturdy design in case it becomes jostled or stored in a crowded area on a train or airplane. Make sure the door fastens securely and can be equipped with a lock if necessary so that pets cannot escape or possibly be tampered with or stolen. Also make sure the thumb screws and other hardware is made of rugged plastic or metal. The top of the carrier should be reinforced so that your pet will be protected if something is accidentally dropped on the carrier.

A pet crate carrier should be large enough so that your dog or cat can stand up to stretch its legs from time to time. Your pet should also be able to turn around and to lie down with relative ease and comfort. On the other hand, a carrier that is too big will be cumbersome to carry and your pet might get jostled around in a carrier that provides too much space. Of course, you can choose a somewhat smaller pet carrier if you are only going to use it to take your cat or dog to the vet or groomer and will not spend too much time inside the carrier.

If you are interested in a carrier for a small animal like a guinea pig, rat, chinchilla, cockatiel, parakeet, and the like, there are small carriers made just for them as well.

Pet Bags and Backpacks

Some small dogs and even the more docile type of cat will enjoy going with you as you go about your day. You may want to take your dog or cat out on the town or with you when you go camping or hiking. For these purposes, there are many stylish and functional pet bags and backpacks available for purchase.

Pet handbags are all the rage in some circles. These handbags come in stylish patterns and designs that will please even the most fashion conscious pet owner. The dog or cat is placed snuggly inside the bag with it head poking out through the zippered opening. This way your pet can travel with you wherever you go in real style.

For the more adventurous pet, there are rugged pet backpacks available. Just load kitty or puppy into your pet backpack, strap it on, and you are ready to hit the trail. These packs are often made of rip and abrasion proof nylon and are vented to keep your pet cool on warm days. Many of these backpack pet carriers are also equipped with extra pouches for carrying food and water for your pet as well as things like leashes or your pet’s favorite toy.

As you can see, with so many choices in pet carriers, your dog or cat can go almost anywhere you go, in both comfort and style. Check out the many pet carriers available at your local pet store or online. And when you bring your cat home, treat them to luxury with some of the many items available at


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