yellow backpack strap across man's chest

Backpacks for Carrying Cats

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Backpacks for carrying cats are a little more unusual than regular hard or soft carriers.

But they’re great because they offer a hands-free way of getting your cat from A-to-B securely.

Gray cat sitting in a cat backpack

Cat backpacks are popular with hikers but they can also be worn for taking a pet to the veterinarian, around the neighborhood, or on public transport.

For owners suffering with arm, wrist, shoulder or elbow pain, the weight distribution of a cat backpack can make it more comfortable than a traditional carrier. 

There are different styles and materials to choose from.

Owners should think about the personality of their cat before purchasing. Mesh material, for example, could be less suitable for cats prone to biting or scratching at carriers.   

Bubble backpacks are among our favourite carriers because they make cats look like little furry astronauts (and if that’s not a reason to buy one, we don’t know what is).

In a hurry? We’ll add links to our top 3 cat backpacks below so you can jump straight into shopping or keep reading for more information.

If you use one of our links and make a purchase, then we may make a small commission at no extra cost to you 😊

Buying Backpacks for Carrying Cats: Things to Consider

  • You’ll need to measure your cat from nose to tail to make sure you’re buying a carrier that’s big enough.


  • Think about why you’re buying a cat backpack and what you’ll be using it for.  If you’re planning on going hiking, then look for a pack that’s durable with strong stitching and check that it has a secure loop to attach a leash or harness to for added security. You may also need to consider the material it’s made from: do you need something that’s waterproof or only splash proof? 

  • If you’re hoping to fly on an airline with your cat in a backpack, then always double-check the regulations before you go. Often for in-cabin flights you need a soft-sided carrier than can be pushed down under the seat in front of you.  Plastic cat backpacks or ones that can’t depress under airline seating may not be suitable.

  • You might always want to see if there are pockets or zips that you can store items in. It’s useful to have a collapsible bowl to hand or space for some treats.


  • Some cat backpacks fold down which makes them a good option for anyone looking to save space on carrier storage. 

  • Some backpacks for carrying cats are entirely see-through so it gives the cat a better view of the environment during travel.  For some cats, this may be over stimulating or may cause motion sickness. 

PetAmi Deluxe Pet Carrier Backpack

This is an attractive cat backpack and it comes in a great range of colors. It also has a raft of good reviews on Amazon and comes with a free collapsible water bowl. 

PetAmi Deluxe Pet Carrier Backpack for Small Cats and Dogs, Puppies | Ventilated Design, Two-Sided Entry, Safety Features and Cushion Back Support | for Travel, Hiking, Outdoor Use (Heather Purple)
  • Designed for the maximum convenience and comfort for you and your pet while hiking, traveling, or taking your best friend to the vet, or going for a walk in the park. Measures approximately 12.5" x 10.2" x 16.3" (L x W x H). Easily fits cats, small dogs, and most other small/medium sized pets!
  • YOUR PET WILL TRAVEL IN COMFORT: Well ventilated design for optimal airflow, two-way entry for easy access, zip up mesh window for more headroom and visibility, and thick, cozy sherpa lined bedding so your pet can rest and relax. This backpack is firmly structured, providing ample room for your pet to move around.
  • DESIGNED WITH SAFETY IN MIND: Equipped with a firmly reinforced structure to prevent itself from collapsing on your pet while traveling. Also comes with a safety strap and buckle to secure your pet and prevent escape.
  • SUPERIOR COMFORT, FIT, AND CONVENIENCE: The back and shoulder straps are equipped with extra thick padding for more comfort during long trips. This backpack comes with both waist and chest buckles to give you extra support. We also added side pouches and a front pocket to store essential pet supplies and a collapsible pet bowl so you can keep your pet hydrated on the go!
  • QUALITY CONSTRUCTION: Made with durable 600D high grade polyester for a long-lasting experience; Available in popular colors.

Last update on 2022-09-25 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

  • Measures approximately 12.5″ x 10.2″ x 16.3″ (L x W x H).
  • Suitable for cats weighing up to 18 pounds.
  • There’s plenty of ventilation.
  • Two-way entry gives easy access into the backpack.
  • A zip-up mesh window gives more space and increased visibility.
  • Sherpa bedding for warmth and comfort.
  • Durable re-enforced design 
  • Has both a safety strap and buckle for security
  • Thick padding on the straps with additional support around both the waist and chest.
  • It comes with a collapsible pet bowl 
  • Side pouches and a front pocket for easy access and storage.
  • Good range of colors
  • Good for carrying dogs, too.

We’re pretty impressed by the two-way entry system on this. You don’t always see that feature on cat backpacks. Our only concern with this carrier is that a few reviewers have said that the bottom platform (that sits inside) is a little too big.  Several reviewers have gone on to make their own base board but that’s obviously not always ideal. 

Henkelion Cat Backpack Carrier

This one gives the space capsule cat backpack feel but it has a completely clear front face to allow you cat to see out into the world. 

Henkelion Cat Backpack Carrier Bubble Carrying Bag, Small Dog Backpack Carrier for Small Medium Dogs Cats, Space Capsule Pet Carrier Dog Hiking Backpack, Airline Approved Travel Carrier - Blue
  • 🐶SPACE CAPSULE APPEARANCE - The unique and popular space capsule design makes your pet feel safer, comfortable and lets it have a broader vision of the outside
  • 🐶BACKPACK & FRONT PACK - Henkelion pet carrier achieves your hands-free and makes it easier to take care of your pet during hiking, travel, cycling and walking etc, whether you wear it on the front or the back
  • 🐶BREATHABLE & DURABLE - The solid ABS material and oxford cloth with nine-hole and air mesh bring both better air circulation and anti-scratch effect
  • 🐶ERGONOMIC DESIGN - The straps of backpack can absorb sweat and relieve the pressure from your backpack to make you feel more comfortable
  • 🐱TRAVEL WITH YOUR PETS - This dog backpack carrier is designed for outdoors and travel, you can use it to carry small dogs or cats for biking, hiking, camping, outdoor walking or meeting friends

Last update on 2022-09-25 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

  • Size: 12.2 by 11.4 by 16.5 inches


  • Weighs: Fits most pets up to 10 pounds


  • Ideal for hands-free traveling as can be worn on the back or the front of the body.


  • Good ventilation and airflow throughout


  • Adjustable shoulder strap helps distribute the weight evenly.


  • Comes with a safety tether


  • It’s a bestseller on Amazon

Several reviewers have commented on the strong manufacturing smell present when you first get it.  We’d recommend putting it outside to air in the sun. 

We think these are incredibly cute. They make cats look like they’re in a space capsule! The smaller viewing area may be more suitable for cats that don’t want a full view of where they’re going. The synthetic leather may be hardier that some of the fabric cat backpacks if you have an anxious cat. 

Texsens Innovative Traveler Bubble Backpack Pet Carriers Airline Travel Approved Carrier Switchable Mesh Panel for Cats and Dogs (One Size, Ash Black)
  • 1. Revolutionary semi-sphere window design adds a unique function in addition to its switchable mesh panel. Small pets, such as small cats and dogs can be easy to keep in carriers.
  • 2. Economize your carrying effort, eco-friendly casual life style. Adjustable padded shoulder straps and carrying handle make our carrier easy to attach to a seat belt.
  • 3. Built-in security leash, mesh panels & ventilation holes, soft washable pad, top & side entries for maximum accessibility, easy storage and travel - comfort, convenience and safety. Practically designed backpack cases, satchels, and bags are great for keeping your furry friend with you on all your adventures.
  • 4. The semi-sphere window design can stop them from escaping and keeps them safe in your care. It also provides a more interesting and safe space for your pet, which allows your pets to enjoy the sunshine and scenery with you and interact with the outside world.
  • 5. Dimension: 13.39 "L x 9.84 "W x 17.32 "H. Carrier Weight:4.4 Pound fits cat up to 13 pounds and perfect for 10 pounds cat.

Last update on 2022-09-25 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

  • Dimensions: 12.99″L x 9.05″W x 15.74
  • This backpack fits cats under 13 pounds but the optimum weight is 10 pounds and under.
  • There’s just something so adorable about seeing a cat in an astronaut bubble backpack, and we weren’t kidding — take a look at the video on the product page.
  • The semi-sphere window gives the cat a secure place from which to view the world and see what’s going on around them without the risk that they’ll bite or claw through the soft fabric.
  • There’s a built-in security leash for added security.
  • There’s good ventilation as well as mesh panels around the backpack.
  • The adjustable shoulder straps are great for added comfort and for supporting the weight of the cat against your back.
  • The top and side entry of the backpack allows for easy accessibility.
  • It comes with a plastic bubble dome that has 3 ventilation holes and a mesh cover.

The product may have a strong manufacturing smell when unboxed so you may need to leave it to air for a few days before using. 

Pecute Pet Carrier Backpack

We love how this expandable cat backpack is spacious when being used but it’s also collapsible so it’s easy to store. 

Pecute Cat Backpack Carrier, Dog Carrier Backpack Expandable with Breathable Mesh for Small Dogs Cats, Dog Backpack Bag for Hiking Travel Camping Hold Pets Up to 18 Lbs
  • 【 Expandable Design 】 This pet carrier (17.3x13.6x10.4in) with an expandable back design gives your pet more space to rest and increase air circulation, allows your pet to move around more comfortably and reduces the anxiety. Airline approved? Each airline sets their own specific requirements, so it is advised to check with your airline of choice.
  • 【 Ventilation & Visibility 】 1, The top of the dog backpack can be open, for your pet to stick their head out off, you can zip the cover on the mesh for breathability and visibility or you can snap on the shade cover to protect from the sun. 2, Three-sided acrylic sheet design can provide good light transmission. There are four venting holes + venting net design on the left and right sides to ensure air circulation and no sultry heat.
  • 【 Adjustable Shoulder Strap 】 Widened design, adjustable shoulder pad to help reduce load and increase comfort, two retractable buckles on the top and bottom of the cat backpack to prevent shoulder strap deviation and maintain the stability of the pet puppy carrier.
  • 【 Sturdy and Comfortable Bottom - Double-sided Used 】 The dog carrier has a removable firm bottom that can be unzipped and features soft, comfy padding for your pet to sit or sleep on comfortably. It can be used on both sides: the bottom mat is made of short plush. In the winter, pets can stay indoors to stay warm and comfortable; the other side is oxford-cloth design, suitable for summer, cool and breathable! It can be removed and washed separately!
  • 【 Storage and Safety 】 1, Made of high-quality oxford cloth, waterproof, anti-scratch, environmentally friendly, non-toxic and non-irritating, let your pet breathe freely and relax. 2, There are two bags for storage on the side of the pet bag, one for waste bags and dispensers and water bottle holders, another for storing a mobile phone, wallets, and other small items. 3, Built-in retractable hook safety rope with anti-escape zip to prevent pets from escaping.

Last update on 2022-09-30 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

  • Product size: 34 by 27 by 44 cm / 13.4 by 10.6 by 17.3 in


  • Extended size: 62 by 34 by 45 cm / 24.4 by 13.4 by 17.7 in


  • This cat backpack can be opened out to give your cat some extra space when you’re not carrying it.


  • Good ventilation


  • You can adjust the shoulder straps to make the backpack more comfortable and for better weight distribution.


  • Made from waterproof and anti-scratch fabric


  • You can zip and unzip on both sides


  • It has storage pockets on both sides


  • The double-sided pad that fits in the bottom will help keep your cat warm in the winter and cooler in the summer.


  • There’s a safety leash.

Some reviewers have said that the cat backpack heats up quite quickly in very hot weather. 

This is a really versatile way to travel with your cat because it’s multiple carriers in one. 

Last update on 2022-09-25 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

  • The cat backpack measures 16″L x 12″W x 15″H
  • This isn’t just a backpack but a car seat, carrier, roller bag and a tote all-in-one.  
  • Its telescopic handle allows you to pull it along like a suitcase.
  • You can add an additional three inches of space by expanding the sides.
  • The side storage pockets are useful for things that need to be kept close to hand.
  • Some reviewers have said it’s ideal for trips to the veterinarian’s office but less so for use in airline cabins.
  • There’s a removable washable pad

There are three size options so we’d recommend that you measure your cat before buying. Also, some reviewers have said that it’s a little bulky as a backpack.

Are Cat Backpacks Cruel?

Backpacks for carrying cats are no crueler than a regular carrier.

It’s the same principle as a hand-carrier but it has straps and you hold it on your back.

Of course, some cats might not like being enclosed in a backpack because while there’s ventilation in a backpack they might prefer to feel the air on their whiskers.

It will probably depend on the personality of your cat and how they usually react to being put in a carrier.

Cat backpacks are enjoyed by countless owners and pets. They might not be for everyone but they’re not cruel if used correctly and with the cat’s best interests in mind.

Backpacks for carrying cats are a great alternative to more traditional carriers.  Some cats will love them and if your feline has a taste for the open country or enjoys being up high then they’re ideal.  

2 thoughts on “Backpacks for Carrying Cats”

  1. Nice list of backpacks for cats! The first time I heard of this idea I bought one lol. I got mine from but the brand’s you mention also sound pretty cool! Have you seen the carriers with transparent windows? My baby loves it!

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