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Review: K9 Sport Sack Dog Backpacks – AIR, AIR PLUS and Flex (2018)

If you have a small breed dog, it’s likely that you have to carry him around from time to time. Sometimes it is just for short trips out to the car, but sometimes it’s nice to carry your pet around with you when you go on adventures. Dog carriers and dog backpacks, like the K9 Sport Sack models, make it easy to bring your pooch with you wherever you go.

Backpacks are much easier to carry than dog carriers that you have lug by hand. Many owners find them to be more convenient and comfortable than carrier slings. No matter which type of carrier you use, it needs to be comfortable for you and your pup.

K9 Sport SackK9 Sport SackWhen it comes to choosing a dog backpack carrier, you also need to think about your physical abilities. How much does your dog weigh? Will you be comfortable carrying that much weight on your back during a walk or hike?

K9 Sport Sack has developed 3 different models of doggy backpacks. I have tried all three. Being an avid adventurer, I have used many dog carrier backpacks over the years, including the original design from this company. In this review, I’m listing the pros and cons of each of these models to help you choose which one may be the best choice for you and your pet.

K9 Sport Sack Dog Backpacks Review

AIR, AIR PLUS and Flex

K9 Sport SackK9 Sport SackWe adopted a Beagle/Cocker Spaniel mix a couple of years ago. We love to go hiking with our dogs, but I was worried when we got Molly. She is the first small breed we’ve ever had, and I didn’t know if she would be able to keep up on all of our adventures.

It wasn’t long before I realized that her little legs would definitely hold her back from doing some of the things that our Labrador can. I also noticed that Molly gets tired more quickly than our Lab, Saddie.

It wouldn’t be fair to take Saddie along and leave little Molly home alone. Enter the doggy backpack. Having a backpack carrier for her has given us the option of bringing her along on some tough hikes that she wouldn’t have been able to do on her own.

I felt a little foolish the first couple of times I used a doggy backpack, but the more I used one, the more comfortable I became. And, as you will see in my video review above, Molly feels the same way. She loves riding along in the pack and enjoys being up higher where she can look out at her surroundings.

RELATED: Benefits of A Dog Backpack Carrier & Why I Love Mine

K9 Sport SackK9 Sport Sack

The Similarities

This doggy backpack carrier is made with a lightweight, water resistant canvas material. When we’re hiking with our dogs, I usually let Molly walk by herself for a bit and then when she gets tired or the terrain gets too difficult for her I put her in the K9 Sport Sack.

You can roll up the AIR and AIR PLUS models easily, so they can fit inside your hiking pack and are ideal for traveling.

The shoulder and chest straps adjust easily, and these packs are all very comfortable to wear – even on long hikes. The shoulder straps are made of mesh-lined Foam-Tek and are slotted for ventilation.

K9 Sport SackK9 Sport SackI’ve carried Molly in these packs for hours, and I’ve never suffered shoulder fatigue or pain from lugging the doggy backpack. There is also a collar strap to secure your pet around the neck and adjustment straps on both sides to allow you to fit the sport sack to your pup’s body type.

All three models feature side mesh panels to keep your dog cool and the bag well ventilated. As you’ll see in my video review above, it’s easy to put your pet in this backpack too.

There are two small slots at the top of the pack that your dog’s legs will easily slide through. I found that the easiest way to secure your dog is to slip his legs through the slots, secure the collar around his neck and then pull the zipper closed. The zipper runs the length of the backpack – from the base of your pet’s tail to his neck.

K9 Sport SackK9 Sport SackOnce inside, all K9 Sport Sack models feature an integrated D-ring to hook your dog’s collar to in order to prevent escape. They also include reflective strips to keep you noticed in dim lighting and adjustable side pockets to store some small essentials.

I was very impressed with the durability and the quality of the materials used to make the K9 Sport Sack. There is a 20mm thick cushioned rest pad on the bottom of the pack for your dog’s comfort, and the material that the backpack is made from cannot be easily ripped by your dog’s toenails. The stitching is durable as well.

As you can see in my photos, there is also a Velcro strip on the back of the K9 Sport Sack. The company will make a custom ID tag for your pet for an added fee, like the one I got for Molly.

SIMILAR: Top 7 Best Dog Carrier Backpacks

K9 Sport SackK9 Sport Sack

The Differences

As you can see, these three doggy backpack carriers are very similar. They have very similar designs and are made with the same materials. But, these three models are all made for different types of dog owners.

The K9 Sport Sack AIR is simply the dog backpack carrier. It is designed for owners who only need to carry their pet and a few small supplies. It is available in Extra-Small, Small, Medium and Large. All sizes have a weight limit of 30 pounds, and it’s available in black, red, light grey, blue, light blue and red.

The AIR PLUS is extremely similar to the AIR, but comes with a detachable storage bag that measures 14″ X 9″. It is great for owners who want to carry their dog along and also take a few supplies with them. This model is available in K9 Sport SackK9 Sport Sackcolors of black and light grey.

This model also features a padded back for extra comfort, elastic straps for a water bladder/camel back and neoprene-lined front leg holes. It’s available in Small, Medium and Large with a weight limit of 40 pounds.

The K9 Sport Sack Flex is a big upgrade from the AIR models. This one is made for dogs owners who plan to hike long distances with their pooch and take along a fair amount of supplies. It has a weight limit of 50 pounds.

As I demonstrate in my video review above, the unique design of this K9 Sport Sack model allows it to offer 3 sizes in one bag. You can get an XS-Medium or a Medium-XL. It’s also available in colors of green or blue.

Because the K9 Sport Sack Flex is designed to hold more weight than the other two models, it also features a durable, extra-padded waist belt designed to help distribute the weight. It also has extra padded shoulder straps to help ease the burden of heavier loads.

In my video review you will also notice the added pockets on the waist belt and the elastic straps to secure a water bladder/camel back. I really like the padded back with a structure bar for additional support.

As you can probably assume, there is also a large price difference between the three K9 Sport Sack models. The AIR can be purchased on Amazon for $69.94. The AIR PLUS is currently selling for $94.90 and the Flex will cost you $129.95.

These canine backpack carriers aren’t cheap, but they are well-made with quality materials. If you hike with your dog frequently or carry him around with you on a regular basis, the price is definitely worth the value you’ll get with the K9 Sport Sack.

READ NEXT: 13 Essential Items for Hiking with Dogs

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