The best dog packs for day trips

The Best Dog Packs for Day Hiking

Are you ready for an adventure with your best friend?

You would like to venture out and immerse yourself in lush scenery and sweet air with nature’s best companion, but you also want to ensure that your equipment doesn’t hinder the pleasant experience of camping with your dog.

Dog packs can be cumbersome or poorly crafted if you select the wrong one.  You might find yourself pausing your hike too often to correct it.  If you select a good product, it can make your trek easier by giving your dog an efficient way to soften the carry-load and perhaps pack their own treats.  Some people who have used dog packs have even reported that their dog’s behavior became more attentive and obedient.

How we reviewed products:

There is a variety of dog packs available online.  However, not all websites provide exhaustive reviews or in some cases, any reviews at all.  We have scoured Amazon in search of the best dog pack products and selected the top 5.

We chose products that had at least ten customer reviews and a “satisfaction rating” above 60%.  The “satisfaction rating” we will refer to is the percentage of total customer reviews that were a 5-star rating.

Our goal with this review is to save you time. Are you ready to get started?

1. Mountainsmith K-9 PackDog Pack for Hiking

This dog pack had a satisfaction rating of 80%.  At $58, it is also the cheaper option of higher quality, compared to the next contender on our list.  Customers reported the positives of it having spacious room; the pack was able to fit 2-3 water bottles as well as food, collapsible bowls, and a first aid kit.  Customers also liked the size range and adjustable straps, with the medium size fitting a 68 lb Pit-bull.  

Most reported a snug fit that worked well.  And lastly, most reviewers were happy about the padding and protection from skin irritation for their pups.  The negative aspects of the product are that it is not water resistant, a few complained of clips and clasps coming open too easily, and the straps were too loose for one reviewer.

2. Ruffwear Dog BackpackRuffwear Dog Pack

The Ruffwear dog pack also had an 80% satisfaction rating and had more reviews altogether.  However, it is more expensive than the Mountainsmith, at $79.95.  On the upside, customers liked the good stitching and the fact that it has big pockets alongside small pockets.  It can hold over 15 pounds of weight.  The breast strap in a Y-shape made the pack more secure on their dogs.  One customer reported years of use and dozens of trips without a single sore on the dog.  The color specifically made dogs more visible and easy to spot for their owners.  It has a handle on the back to allow for any “up-and-over” maneuvers on a more difficult hike or rougher terrain.  It also features a ring on the harness for a leash.  On the downside, tension from the leash could cause some shifting of the pack.  Some felt there was not as much padding on the straps and the fabric could be tougher.  However, the only 2-star review out of all 130 reviews was a complaint that it was too small for a Greyhound.

3. Ruffwear SingletrakRuffwear Singletrak backpack

The Ruffwear Singletrak came in with a seventy-nine percent satisfaction rating and costs $89.95.  Positives include room on both sides for a 20 oz. water bottle and minimal shifting during use.  It is light and sturdy but not bulky.  There is a loop to affix a leash.  One customer was happy that their dog no longer pulled on the leash so hard when using the back-pack.  She felt her dog was better behaved.  Another customer was glad that it fit close to the dog’s body and that the load was distributed toward the front of the dog.  

Like the previous product in our list, this backpack also has a handle on the top-side to aid in lifting your dog over areas as needed.  The negatives that were reported included the straps being hard to tighten at first, however, they claimed it was still manageable.  One customer wanted a better leash hook-up and another complained that it did rub their dog on a long run (it is best for shorter walks).

4. Kurgo Baxter Dog BackpackDog Pack

This product had a 75% satisfaction rate, though it is worth taking note that it only had twelve reviews.  It is more affordable than other options, costing $39.32.  Customers were satisfied in the amount that the backpack could carry with each pocket being able to support a 16 oz. bottle of water, alongside other small necessities.  A reviewer said it was great for service dogs.  

The most common  positive reviews were that it fit well.  Some reviewers complained about it breaking.  One said that it is not good for a dog that pulls, as the seam for the leash completely broke off when their dog ran to greet another dog.  The other reviewer simply said “it ripped immediately”.  The only other complaint was that the material was not very breathable for their husky.

5. One Tigris Canvas Hiking PackTigris Dog Pack

Though the title is a mouthful, the Tigris hiking pack did well and had a sixty-five percent satisfaction rate with fifty seven reviews.  It costs $36.95, the most affordable on our list.  Customers enjoyed the oversized zipper pulls and their dogs were comfortable.  It can fit water bottles as well as two days of moist food.  A reviewer said the material was good quality.   

Another user reported that it was excellent in different terrains and there was no shifting (so long as weight is equally distributed on both sides).  On the negative side, one reviewer expressed concern that the product sits too low on some dogs’ spines.  They therefore advised that it isn’t for long trips. 

Have any other products we should add to the list? Let us know in the comments below.

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