What Are Cat Bubble Backpacks?

Who amongst us devoted cat parents have not longed for that Lion King moment in the mountains with our beloved fur babe? Dog-walking is so over-rated when you can go hiking with your buddy in a cool cat bubble backpack, amirite? (Please don’t tell Reina, I said that).

Have catpack will travel! 

Who amongst us devoted cat parents have not longed for that Lion King moment in the mountains with our beloved feline fur babe?

Backpacking with a cat

But seriously, have you seen the latest bubble backpack cat carriers? As a short and wimpy cat owner, traditional kitty carriers are not comfortable for me to carry. They are bulky, heavy and awkward.

I never feel like I have a proper grip or that the cat is secure. It also gets tiring pretty quickly, especially with my fat cat, Stewy, who is a hefty lump of a thing. Plus, I don’t drive, so by the time I have lugged my poorly puss to and from the vet by bus, my shoulders ache. My ears too because he has wailed unhappily all the way, in both directions.

So, given that lugging cats anywhere is all pain and no pleasure, for me, the cat or any other bus passengers, it is not something I ever do for fun. But, my friends, I do believe that is all about to change …

Carried away with cat backpacks

A couple in a cafe was making such a fuss over a stranger’s brightly colored backpack that it drew my attention. Glancing over, I saw a little face peering out the window in the pack like a castronaut, obviously unfazed by the attention he was attracting. He looked just like my Spike, right down to the snooty attitude. The cat’s dad turned out to be Mike, and he told me that he was just on the way back from taking Sheldon to the vet. (Great name!)



cat bubble backpack

He said the backpack was the best thing he ever bought for Sheldon and that now that that the fussy feline was used to it, he got mad when Mike left the house without him. After chatting a bit, Mike set the backpack on his back, jumped on his bike and cycled off with Sheldon still calmly looking out at the world.

Benefits of catpacking

The first benefit of these cool newfangled cat carriers is obvious. Being a backpack, rather than sports bag shape, the cat’s weight is spread evenly across both shoulders and back, making it far more comfortable for the person doing the carrying.

Secondly, the backpack shifts around much less than a single shoulder strap carrier so the cat is going to be jostled a lot less.

The best cat backpacks

It is hard to say which exactly would be the best choice of cat backpacks for you (and obviously for your cat). Much depends on the size and temperament of your furbabe. I’m certainly not going to pretend that I’ve done extensive research and can break down the ‘best 5 cat backpacks’ or whatever. But here are some of the things you eed to consider:

Make sure you read the weight limit:
And overestimate the size of your cat to ensure maximum comfort. Look for backpacks made out of a breathable material that have plenty of ventilation and preferably one that has a safety leash with clip. Some have pockets on the sides which is handy if you like to travel light. Sling your phone and keys in there and you are good to go.

Construction and comfort:
For your own comfort, look at the overall weight of the pet carrier and its construction. Wide straps will be more comfortable and make sure there are no sharp edges to dig into your back. Some also have a chest strap which helps with stability and balance.

Of course top priority is your cat’s comfort and security.  Is the backpack made of high-quality materials, so it doesn’t fold in on him? Look for mesh panels and/or ventilation holes to keep the air flowing freely and keep yur cat from ovrheating. And also, look at the size of the window. To me, it seems, the capsule type, with the actual bubble, would be best for nervous cats. They can peek out just as much as suits them or curl up in the base. 

Those carriers with the full window seem to be too open, with nowhere for the cat to hunker down when he is feeling overwhelmed. Also, in sunny climes, how comfortable will your cat be exposed to the sun beating through the plastic window? 

Nevertheless, some people prefer the full window cat backpacks so even though that would not be my choice, I’ve included this style in the collection.


Modern catpacks with their bubble windows draw a lot more attention than the more traditional carriers. I’ve seen how curious kids get when they see a little castronaut peeking out at the world. For this reason, it is  a good idea to opt for a carrier that has a lock or password feature to stop little fingers from letting your cat out of the bag!

Airline approved
Yes, some cat backpacks are carry-on airline compliant but of course it would be too simple to tell you which ones because the requirements of every airline are different. So, if you and your travel cat are off on a long-haul adventure, check with the airline first and then ude those specs to decide on which carrier is the best fit. 

Just me and my cat

Once you receive your catpack, you want to make sure your cat is comfortable with it. At first, simply leave it open with a few treats inside to let him jump in and out, don’t try to zip him up inside. Consider that instead of being purely functional, only a way to take your cat from A to B, a cat carrier backpack enables you to spend time with your cat, and take him with you on leisure hikes and walks round the city. If you take the time to introduce your cat to the experience carefully he will soon appreciate going on adventures with you. 

Bubble backpacks are carried high on your back giving your cat a good view of their surroundings, and turning what was an unpleasant experience into a jaunty outing. And lastly, how else are you going to ever have that Lion King experience if you do not go hiking with your cat?