Are Soft Pet Carriers Any Good? | Travelling With Pets

April 6, 2020 By Saif Ghori

Whether you and your pet travel together or you just need a safe way to carry him to vet. Either way, you need a good soft pet carrier for your pet, it keeps him safe while travelling and makes it possible to carry your pet on plane. That’s a job of a pet carrier. But how to choose the right carrier for your pet?

Don’t worry, we are going to discuss below how to measure your dog for a carrier, and what to think about while choosing one for your pet.

Dog Size and Measurement

Before you go looking for what type of carrier might be best for your pet, you need to know your pet height and length to choose correct size. Pet Carrier should have enough space for your pet to stand without crouching and fully turn around.

To get you pet’s length, measure his back from the base of his neck, where the collar sits to the base of his tail. Then add 2-3 inches to that measurement.

Next, measure your pet’s height from the top of his shoulder to the ground. For soft sided carriers, you’ll add three to four inches to that number to get the overall height of carrier that will work for your pet. For hard side carriers, add four to five inches. Wearable carriers, like pet backpack or sling carrier, your pet doesn’t need extra space to move around.

Pet weight is another factor to be considered. If you have a particularly heavy pet, the more durable the carrier will have to long last. Make sure carrier is sturdy enough to hold your pet without straining or breaking.

Note: If you are planning to travel frequently with your pet, make sure your pet carrier accommodates food and water bowl as well. However, it shouldn’t be too large that your pet doesn’t feel safe.

Consider what you’ll be using the pet carrier for?

Next before deciding for a pet carrier, think about how you’ll be using it. Are you looking to take your pet on airplane? Or maybe you need a safe way to travel your furry friend with you in car.

For Example, if a pet carrier is only for car trips or to keep him contained with you when you go out, you need a light weight carrier, easy to pack, easy to carry and comfortable for your pet.

If you plan to fly, you’ll probably want to look for a soft sided pet carrier that fit within airline specifications. There are size and construction requirements, and you should check with the airline.

Choose a Style

Different types and styles of carriers including backpack carrier, front carriers, small pet purses, duffel, and totes are available which can fit well for different types and sizes of pets. When shopping for a pet carrier, be aware there are two primary types of carriers. First one is Hard sided carriers, which generally made from durable plastic boxes and metal door and suitable for larger and more heavy pets. Second one is Soft Sided Carrier, which generally are more comfortable but suit smaller pets.

Hard Sided Carriers

Hard pet carriers provide the best protection to your pet, especially if your pet is a bit over-sized and cannot fit inside the airline cabin. They are sometimes preferred for their durability and rugged construction. Hard sided carriers have plastic sides that are much easier to wipe clean. They can work for any size of pet but preferred for medium size and large pets who don’t fit in other carriers.

Skipper Hard Side Carrier

Soft Sided Pet Carriers

Soft sided pet carriers are very common and popular for travelling your pet, especially if you prefer to keep the pet with you in airline cabin. There are different design and sizes to choose from in soft pet carriers which are specifically made for travelling on commercial vehicles like airplane and ships. Soft sided pet carriers are particularly beneficial for travelling as your pet able to ride in comfort, and these carriers also avoid sufferings from bumps and bruises that can easily occur when impacting the sides of hard carrier.

Soft Sided Pet Carriers

Since soft pet carriers aren’t bulky, they are easier to store when not in use. These carriers are generally required to have at least 3 sided openings and have plenty of zipper openings as well, which can make removing a pet easy, no matter where your pet tries to hide.

Back-Pack Carriers

Backpack carriers are another wearable option. These carriers are portable and convenient to carry your pet around with you. They are perfect for both small and medium size pets. Our furry friends can enjoy the sight and sound with us during outing.

Back Pack Carriers

The upcoming Pet carrier from Lil-Paws combines the soft pet carrier as well as backpack. It has been designed keeping in mind all aspects of comfort and safety that will help you to carry your pet along with you all the time. These Soft Pet carriers are especially developed for the pet owner’s assistance and offers complete comfort to the pet. Here is a sneak peek for its packaging:


Other Considerations when Buying Good Pet Carrier


The next thing that you want to pay attention is the quality of your pet carrier. Price determines quality and how long it last. You should consider features like extra side pockets, shoulder straps and extra storage. Buying a cheap carrier can easily lead to torn walls and parts of the carrier breaking off, so ensure the quality of pet carrier.


For both soft sided and hard sided pet carriers, you want to make sure that the carrier is well built and can protect your pet from collapsing along with providing ample ventilation.

Once you find an ideal pet carrier, get your pet to be familiarized with it even when you are not going anywhere. Start with short trips and gradually move towards long trips and your pet will be a great travelling companion in no time. An important tip is to make your pet carrier part of your home “furniture” so it smells familiar to your pet. This will help make the carrier not as scary and eliminate any separation anxiety.

We hope that the advice will help you in finding the right carrier for you and your beloved pet. Thank you for reading!