BEST Dog Carrier For Planes
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Traveling can be stressful, but it suddenly makes navigating an airport a lot harder when you add a pet. A way to make things a little easier is by buying a sturdy, comfortable, and reliable dog carrier that you can toss over your shoulder when your hands are busy.


Best Dog Carrier For Planes
Our Pick

Our top pick for the best airplane dog carrier is the Sherpa Original Travel Deluxe Pet Carrier. It's a decent size for small dogs, and there are plenty of mesh panels for ventilation. The faux lambskin lining and wireframe allow it to retain its shape. Sturdy, elegant, and comfortable, this pet carrier offers all the doggy air travel essentials.

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After all, your pup deserves a splendid piece of luggage too. In this guide, we have carefully selected some of the best dog carriers for planes on the market and answer some frequently asked questions.

Best Dog Carrier For Planes – Comparison Table

Preview
Smiling Paws Pets 4-Way Expandable Airline Approved Soft Sided Pet Carrier, Pet Travel TSA Carrier Bag for Cats, Puppies & Animals, Collapsible Kennel, Airplane, Car & Train Travel, 17x11x9 L/W/H (XS)
Petpeppy.com The Original Airline Approved Expandable Pet Carrier by Pet Peppy- Two Side Expansion, Designed for Cats, Dogs, Kittens,Puppies - Extra Spacious Soft Sided Carrier! (Black)
MASKEYON Airline Approved Pet Carrier, Large Soft Sided Pet Travel TSA Carrier 4 Sides Expandable Cat Collapsible Carrier with Removable Fleece Pad and Pockets for Cats Dogs and Small Animals
Our Pick
Sherpa Original Deluxe Pet Carrier, Large, Black
Sleepypod Air In-Cabin Pet Carrier, Jet Black
Title
Smiling Paws Pet Airline Pet Carrier
Pet Peppy Airline Approved Pet Carrier
MASKEYON Airline Approved Pet Carrier
Sherpa Travel Deluxe Airline Approved Pet Carrier
Sleepypod Air in-Cabin Pet Carrier
Max. Weight (lbs)
18
15
20
22
15
Material
Laminated Fabric
Pristine-grade Nylon
Cationic Oxford
Fabric
Nylon
Dimensions LxWxH (inches)
11 x 4 x 16
17.01 x 10.94 x 2.91
19.5 x 12 x 12
19 x 11.75 x 11.5
22 x 10.5 x 10
Weight (lbs)
3.2
0.65
3.85
4.7
4.5
Prime
-
Preview
Smiling Paws Pets 4-Way Expandable Airline Approved Soft Sided Pet Carrier, Pet Travel TSA Carrier Bag for Cats, Puppies & Animals, Collapsible Kennel, Airplane, Car & Train Travel, 17x11x9 L/W/H (XS)
Title
Smiling Paws Pet Airline Pet Carrier
Max. Weight (lbs)
18
Material
Laminated Fabric
Dimensions LxWxH (inches)
11 x 4 x 16
Weight (lbs)
3.2
Prime
Details
Preview
Petpeppy.com The Original Airline Approved Expandable Pet Carrier by Pet Peppy- Two Side Expansion, Designed for Cats, Dogs, Kittens,Puppies - Extra Spacious Soft Sided Carrier! (Black)
Title
Pet Peppy Airline Approved Pet Carrier
Max. Weight (lbs)
15
Material
Pristine-grade Nylon
Dimensions LxWxH (inches)
17.01 x 10.94 x 2.91
Weight (lbs)
0.65
Prime
Details
Preview
MASKEYON Airline Approved Pet Carrier, Large Soft Sided Pet Travel TSA Carrier 4 Sides Expandable Cat Collapsible Carrier with Removable Fleece Pad and Pockets for Cats Dogs and Small Animals
Title
MASKEYON Airline Approved Pet Carrier
Max. Weight (lbs)
20
Material
Cationic Oxford
Dimensions LxWxH (inches)
19.5 x 12 x 12
Weight (lbs)
3.85
Prime
Details
Our Pick
Preview
Sherpa Original Deluxe Pet Carrier, Large, Black
Title
Sherpa Travel Deluxe Airline Approved Pet Carrier
Max. Weight (lbs)
22
Material
Fabric
Dimensions LxWxH (inches)
19 x 11.75 x 11.5
Weight (lbs)
4.7
Prime
Details
Preview
Sleepypod Air In-Cabin Pet Carrier, Jet Black
Title
Sleepypod Air in-Cabin Pet Carrier
Max. Weight (lbs)
15
Material
Nylon
Dimensions LxWxH (inches)
22 x 10.5 x 10
Weight (lbs)
4.5
Prime
-
Details

What Size Pet Carrier Will Fit Under an Airline Seat?

Small pets can be admitted to an in-cabin carrier, provided it is small enough to fit under the airline seat in front of you.

  • The dog carrier should be well-ventilated, leak-proof, and have soft or hard sides. Some airlines will set maximum dimensions for cabin aircraft carriers.
  • For instance, they cannot be larger than 13.5 inches wide on Southwest Airlines, 8.5 inches high, and 18.5 inches long. Still, the dog carrier’s main thing must fit entirely under the airline seat in front of you, so it does not obstruct access to the aisle.

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Top 6 BEST Dog Carrier For Planes 1

What Size Pet Carrier Do I Need for my Dog?

You have to know your dog’s height and length to choose the correct size of the carrier.

  • The dog carrier should be large enough so that your pup can easily stretch out, curl up, or turn around while lying down.
  • Measure the dog’s back from the neck where the collar is to the tail’s base. Then add in a few inches to this measurement.

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Do Airlines Measure Pet Carriers?

Each airline has a specific policy regarding pets traveling in the cabin. These guidelines generally contain objective guidelines on the carrier’s maximum dimensions and the weight of the carrier with the animal inside. Airline policies often include more subjective rules, such as:

  • Appropriate size: the pet must be able to turn over completely and lie down.
  • Waterproof: the floor covering must be waterproof.
  • Anti-bite: the animal must not be able to bite through the dog carrier.
  • Breathable: air must be able to freely enter the dog carrier.

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Top 6 BEST Dog Carrier For Planes 1

What to Look for?

A) Dimensions

Most airlines have specific maximum dimensions that they impose on in-cabin dog carriers.

  • This size limit is determined by the space available under the airline’s seat.
  • Before you travel, always check that your carrier is suitable for all airlines you will use on your trip.
  • We found the “Safe Zone” to be 22 cm high x 33 cm wide x 48 cm long. If you’re using it as a guide, you should have no problem.

Top 6 BEST Dog Carrier For Planes 1

B) Weight

Remember, the weight restrictions you see on an airline’s website for cabin travel include your carrier’s weight with your dog inside unless otherwise stated.

  • Usually, the weight limit is around 9 kilograms.
  • With less than 2 kg, you have enough space to play with.
  • If your pup weighs more than 7 kg, make sure the carrier does not put you over.
  • The formula we always stick to is “carrier + dog ” = 9 kg or less.

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Top 6 BEST Dog Carrier For Planes 1

C) Materials

We cannot emphasize enough the importance of focusing on the strength of the material used in the dog carrier you are purchasing.

  • There are some lovely carriers on the market, in all kinds of decorative fabrics or with pretty embellishments.
  • But the reality is that your dog carrier for planes will take a beating. Here, durability is more important than aesthetics.

Top 6 BEST Dog Carrier For Planes 1

D) Straps

Even if your pup is lightweight, after some hours of walking with the dog carrier on your shoulder, you’ll feel the pressure.

  • It is essential to ensure the strap has a whole and foam-padded part of taking away the pressure on your shoulder.
  • Regardless of how tough you think you’re, you don’t have to feel so uncomfortable?
  • Also, make sure that the strap’s length can be adjusted so that the dog carrier can hover at the thigh where there is less pressure on your pet.

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Top 6 BEST Dog Carrier For Planes 1

Best Dog Carriers for Planes

Here are the best dog carriers for planes on the market today:

1. Smiling Paws Pet 4-Way Expandable Airline Pet Carrier

The Smiling Paws Pet 4-Way Expandable Airline Pet Carrier comes with a fleece pad that offers extra comfort and warmth to your dog.

Smiling Paws Pets 4-Way Expandable Airline Approved Soft Sided Pet Carrier, Pet Travel TSA Carrier Bag for Cats, Puppies & Animals, Collapsible Kennel, Airplane, Car & Train Travel, 17x11x9 L/W/H (XS)

  • The ventilated design of the carrier facilitates optimal air circulation.
  • It comes with reinforced hinges and parts made of stainless steel for extra security.
  • The included laminated fabric is leak-proof and water-repellent.
  • This unique carrier bag can be extended on all 4 sides, creating an unmatched space for comfort.
  • The carrier comes with a fuss-free top entry option that can be fastened and rolled back.
  • You can rely on the Smiling Paws Pet 4-Way Expandable Airline Pet Carrier to reduce your dog’s anxiety of confinement.
  • It is carefully sized to comply with both international and domestic airlines under the airline’s seat.
Pros
  • Expandable on all four sides.
  • Fully zipped side pockets for organization.
  • Washable fleece pad for comfort.
  • Reinforced hinges and parts for security.
Cons
  • A bit tough to adjust.
Check Price on Amazon

Top 6 BEST Dog Carrier For Planes 1

2. Pet Peppy Airline Approved Expandable Pet Carrier

This expandable pet carrier from Pet Peppy looks like a luxury carry-on luggage, meaning your dog is sure to fly in style.

Petpeppy.com PET Peppy Premium Airline Approved Expandable Pet Carrier with Wheels - Two Side Expansion, Designed for Cats, Dogs, Kittens, Puppies - Extra Spacious Soft Sided Carrier! (Brown)

  • Designed to carry small dogs up to 14 pounds, it also comes with a premium design.
  • Detachable 360-degree swivel wheels and fully retractable handle make it easy to transport your pup around the runway.
  • Thanks to its thick wireframe, it is robust enough when on the go.
  • The mesh panels let air in, and your pet can lookout.
  • The two side panels can be zipped up to create a roomy extension when you really need to stretch.
  • When you add a decent-sized zippered side pocket, a rigid floor, and a shoulder strap for on-board carry, you have a great airline-approved pet carrier for hassle-free air travel.
Pros
  • Wireframe for added stability.
  • Rotating wheels and retractable handle.
  • Expandable sides for comfort.
Cons
  • Not machine washable
Check Price on Amazon

Top 6 BEST Dog Carrier For Planes 1

3. MASKEYON Airline Approved Pet Carrier

The MASKEYON Airline Approved Pet Carrier offers your dog more space than the average dog carrier because its 4 walls can collapse down to offer extra space.

MASKEYON Airline Approved Pet Carrier, Large Soft Sided Pet Travel TSA Carrier 4 Sides Expandable Cat Collapsible Carrier with Removable Fleece Pad and Pockets for Cats Dogs and Small Animals

  • The design features a durable steel construction which is surrounded by a leak-proof material.
  • The exterior features a name tag slot and reflective strips for your convenience.
  • Furthermore, the carrier comes with 2 handy pockets for storing your dog’s essentials.
  • The smart design folds flat and collapses down for easy storage when not in use.
  • For your dog’s comfort, there is a removable mat inside.
  • The MASKEYON Airline Approved Pet Carrier has three entrances for easy access.
Pros
  • 4 breathable soft-sided extensions.
  • Adjustable and detachable shoulder strap.
  • Non-slip bottom protector
Cons
  • Ideal for smaller dogs only.
Check Price on Amazon

Top 6 BEST Dog Carrier For Planes 1

4. Sherpa Travel Original Deluxe Airline Approved Pet Carrier

The Sherpa Airline Approved Pet Carrier is lightweight, easy to carry, and just as useful for travel on land.

Sherpa Original Deluxe Pet Carrier, Large, Black

  • This is our best option if you are looking for a budget-friendly option that fits your needs.
  • With the look of a gym bag and enough mesh panels for your dog to keep a lookout, this dog carrier is perfect for smaller dogs.
  • It fits perfectly under the seat of an airplane thanks to its wire spring frame that allows the end of the carrier to decrease in height.
  • It has a top and side entry point for easy access, flaps when your hound needs a break, and a washable sheepskin lining to keep him comfortable.
  • Thanks to the padded shoulder and carrying straps and a deep side pocket for your doggy essentials, it is also a suitable pet carrier for its owner.
Pros
  • Offers adequate ventilation
  • Encloses the pet safely.
  • Leak-proof design
  • Conforms to most airline’s under-seat dimensions.
Cons
  • None found
Check Price on Amazon

Top 6 BEST Dog Carrier For Planes 1

5. Sleepypod Air in-Cabin Pet Carrier

The Sleepypod Air in-Cabin Pet Carrier is a high-quality option that offers comfort and durability to your dog’s needs for frequent air travel.

Sleepypod Air In-Cabin Pet Carrier, Jet Black

  • The exterior is crafted from luggage-grade nylon for strength.
  • Additionally, the tear-resistant mesh makes this carrier bag a durable option.
  • The unique design of this carrier allows you to compress or expand the size of the carrier.
  • When fully expanded, this carrier measures 10.5-inches high, 10.5-inches wide, and 22-inches long.
  • Also, it compresses down to 8-inches high, 10.5-inches wide, and 16-inches long.
  • So when you are at the airport, your dog can have enough wiggle room.
  • When you board the airline, you can compress the carrier to fit underneath the airline’s seat.
  • The Sleepypod Air in-Cabin Pet Carrier has a large opening that offers easy entry.
  • It can accommodate dogs up to 18 lbs.
Pros
  • Durable construction
  • Compresses to fit under the airline’s seat.
  • Washable plush bedding for comfort.
  • Padded shoulder strap
Cons
  • It can be expensive for some dog owners.
Check Price on Amazon

Top 6 BEST Dog Carrier For Planes 1

6. 2PET Foldable Dog Crate

If you want to go on a quick trip with a pup but don’t want to carry around a bulky carrier, the 2PET Foldable Dog Crate is the carrier to get.

2PET Foldable Dog Crate - Soft, Easy to Fold & Carry Dog Crate for Indoor & Outdoor Use - Comfy Dog Home & Dog Travel Crate - Strong Steel Frame, Washable Fabric Cover, Frontal Zipper Small Red

  • It sports a lightweight yet sturdy steel tube design that can be easily folded and unfolded instantly.
  • The steel frame is covered with a soft, water-resistant fabric cover that is removable and machine washable.
  • This foldable dog carrier maintains ideal natural ventilation thanks to the well-designed mesh panels and bone-shaped windows.
  • The full-frontal zipper design makes it challenging for your dog to chew the carrier down to pieces.
  • The 2PET Foldable Dog Crate is available in 3 colors and 4 sizes.
Pros
  • Lightweight and easy to carry.
  • Sturdy steel frame for stability.
  • Full frontal zipper design.
  • Washable fleece cushion pad.
Cons
  • The mesh could be more durable.
Check Price on Amazon

Top 6 BEST Dog Carrier For Planes 1

Best Dog Carrier For Planes
Our Pick

Our top recommendation for the best airplane dog carrier is the Sherpa Original Travel Deluxe Pet Carrier. It's an ideal size for small dogs, and there are plenty of mesh panels for ventilation. The faux lambskin lining and wireframe allow it to retain its shape. Sturdy, elegant, and comfortable, this pet carrier offers all the doggy air travel essentials.

Whether you are heading for a quick weekend getaway with your furry friend, moving for summer, or traveling with your pup on a long vacation to another country, the best dog carrier for planes will keep your pet comfortable and safe on the go.

Top 6 BEST Dog Carrier For Planes 1

Key References

  • “Southwest Pet Policy | Southwest Airlines”. Accessed November 04, 2020. Link.
  • “Airline Requirements for a Pet Carrier | USA Today”. Accessed November 04, 2020. Link.

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