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How do I Choose the Best Pet Carrier?

By K. K. Lowen
Updated May 17, 2024
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There are numerous factors involved when choosing the best pet carrier. The type of animal or animals that will use the pet carrier is important. You also may want to consider the length of time your pet will be in the pet carrier. Deciding how much money to spend is also a significant concern for many consumers.

The size of the pet carrier depends largely on the size of your pet. You will need to make sure that the pet carrier you choose gives your animal enough space to turn around. Cats and small dogs may fit comfortably in a bag style carrier, which resembles a duffel bag with mesh siding. Bigger animals often will require a large transport container, generally manufactured from heavy plastic with some metal components.

If you plan on using the carrier to transport an animal on a long trip, you will want to make sure that the pet carrier has sufficient space for your pet and is sturdily constructed. Ensure that the carrier you choose is well-constructed and stable enough to keep your pet safe. Proper reinforcement can help prevent the carrier from becoming damaged during travel. If you have a large pet, a carrier with wheels and a handle may make the journey easier for you. Smaller pet carriers may utilize a shoulder strap, and you may want to make sure that the straps are adjustable and adequately padded.

Make sure that the pet transportation device has good ventilation. Providing proper ventilation is a significant concern because the animal could become ill or die without suitable air flow. Good air circulation can increase a pet’s comfort level and might make it more cooperative and calm.

It is important for the carrier you choose to have a working lock that will prevent the pet from escaping. When shopping for a pet transporter, ensure that the door can be fastened properly and that it is strong enough prevent the animal from breaking it. Many smaller pet carriers have zipper doors, which should be sufficient for animals small enough to fit in the carrier.

If you are purchasing a pre-owned pet carrier, make sure to inspect the item before purchasing to ensure that the carrier has no cracks, rips, or other damage. You also should make sure that any metal parts are not rusty or broken to prevent injury to your pet. If the carrier has been soiled excessively, you may want to consider how easily you can clean it, as lingering animal odors may offend your pet.

WiseGeek is dedicated to providing accurate and trustworthy information. We carefully select reputable sources and employ a rigorous fact-checking process to maintain the highest standards. To learn more about our commitment to accuracy, read our editorial process.
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