Monday, May 20, 2013

Choosing the Best Cat Carrier

With so many options on the market today as far as cat products go, choosing the best cat carrier can prove to be rather challenging. There are several different styles of cat carriers to pick from. After writing about why you need to take your cat to the vet in a carrier, I thought it might be helpful if I shared some of the best cat carrier styles available.

The most important thing to remember when choosing a carrier for your cat is to pick something that suits your needs and your price range. Here are some of the best cat carrier styles to choose from.

Soft Carriers

These carriers are nice for a few reasons. They aren't bulky or heavy which makes them easy to carry. They also usually come with a shoulder strap which is also great for easy transport. Since soft cat carriers aren't bulky, they are easier to store and take up less space. They usually have plenty of openings, which can make removing a cat easier.

Cat in a soft cat carrier
Soft cat carrier.
Photo via greekgeek

Some of the downsides of soft cat carriers is that they may be harder to clean if soiled. They typically have less space than other carriers also.



Hard Plastic Cat Carriers

These are probably on of the most popular types of cat crates out there. If you plan on purchasing a hard plastic cat carrier, I'd recommend getting one that comes apart. Preferably one without screws. This comes in handy at the vet's office for scared kitties. It's easy to snap the lid off and remove the cat safely. Putting them back together is usually a cinch too.

Hard plastic cat carrier.
Photo via quinn.anya

One of my personal favorites are the kinds that have a "sun roof" so to speak. You can open the top easily and reach in to remove a cat. It's usually pretty easy putting them in their crate too.

These may not be the best cat carriers because they are bulky and take up a lot of room. They are not as easy to carry around, but they do get the job done. 

Suitcase Style Cat Carriers


I don't see this style much, but I really like it! (The above image is an affiliate link - clicking it will give you the option to purchase it on Amazon.com.) They look like suitcases with mesh on the sides and front so the cat can see what's going on around them. You can roll the carrier around rather than carrying it. These are great for people who can't really carry or lift heavy things.

They look like they'd be a little hard to clean, however. They are also a little large if you're worried about space. 

So, Which Style is the Best Cat Carrier?

I think they are all great options, personally. Some features I would stay away from are hard carriers that screw together. Those are a quite a hassle. One feature you definitely want in a cat carrier is one that can open from above. I find that this style is easiest for putting a cat in and removing a cat from a carrier.

Cat carrier with a "sun roof" style opening at the top.
Photo via ewen and donabel

What do you think the best cat carrier style is? I'd love to hear if you have any other recommendations besides these! 

Disclosure: This article contains affiliate links. Pawsitively Pets receives a portion of earnings from any products sold through our affiliate links. We encourage our readers to consider purchasing through these links to help support our blogging efforts. 

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26 comments:

  1. Hehehe, for my brothers...something that can't either be torn out of or one that takes a really long time to do so! ;-) But you are definitely right, if you go with a hard carrier, get one without the screws cause it can take a looooooong time to yank out the kitty! :-D

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    1. Lol - I'm sure your brother couldn't be that bad! ;) You're right though, those screws can be pretty annoying in my opinion. Plus they get lost easily too. :(

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  2. I used a soft carrier. Worked better than a hard one for me and my boy.

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    1. I do like the soft carriers most of the time. They are so easy to carry.

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  3. Have a marvellous Monday Ann.
    Best wishes Molly

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  4. Thanks for this post, Ann.
    I have a plastic carrier for my cat Athena but I'm thinking of getting one of those soft carriers. She's a cat that loves to hide so maybe she'll prefer that one.

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    1. Thanks for reading Marie. The soft carriers might also be a bonus for you because it will be easier to carry!

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  5. we haz had both hard sided N soft sided...N while we NOE what goin IN de carrier meenz......we gotta say we prefer de soft for comfort...de hard carrierz iz a bit better if ya gotta fite off like intenzz heat N cold ....we still get blankets N towelz wrapped round uz N de carrier two tho....

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    1. That's a good point guys. I guess I didn't think much about staying warm.

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  6. We have hard carriers. One with screws (you're right ... kind of a pain), and one with sliding latches (much easier). They just seem to offer a little more protection for the kitties when we have to take them anywhere...

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    1. They do offer more protection. Sometimes, even for people! Lol.. I remember a few times I was scared to carry some angry kitties that were in soft carriers...

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  7. We have had all sorts of carriers. The soft one is definitely the best for our cats but the hard one is better for our pig :-)

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  8. I think the best carrier is one that never goes to the Vet!

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  9. We have the Kennel Cab which is the only one I'll climb into. Last time I went to the vet, they had to take it apart so they wouldn't have to take me out. The peeps have tried in the past getting all kind of soft ones, even the one with wheels but they like this one best.

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    1. It is nice for kitties who don't like to come out. I remember just taking off the top and examining the kitty right in her crate. Pretty easy.

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  10. Mom likes the "sun roof" ones too :) Especially for a bunch of foster babies!

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    1. They are my favorite ones when I was working with cats... I have a blue one just like the one in the picture but I can't get the top to open... it's weird.

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  11. I'm surprised you didn't mention the ones that are basically like cages, wire bars on all six sides ;) We had one of those and one of the plastic ones when I was a child, and because the all metal one opened on the top and the plastic one only had a front door, the metal one got used more. Of course we made sure it had newspaper and towels in the bottom for little kitty feet.

    Those plastic ones with the mesh lid seem like the best of both though :)

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  12. I guess we use a sort of suitcase carrier, but ours is smaller and no wheels. It is canvas with mesh sides and has a frame so it stays in shape. Kitty seems to like it as much as she would like any carrier. :)

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  13. I had a soft carrier for my cat, but it proved to be a problem on long car trips when she was stressed and managed to claw holes in the sides while driving which was stressful. Just switched to a hard one so that I'm not worried about her escaping into the car.

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    1. Sounds like a good reason to switch over. Hopefully the hard carrier works out for you, but sounds like it should do just fine!

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  14. We're looking into getting a hard carrier. Our cat is an escape artist and can undo the Velcro and pull back the (double!) zipper in mach 3 seconds!

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  15. I had a hard carrier (Petmate) with latches instead of screws. I prefer the screws. As I was walking down a very busy street, the door came off because a latch had come off!!! Luckily, the cat was just as surprised as I was and just sat in the carrier. I'll definitely go for the screws!

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  16. I agree, the screws are much safer. I have a large carrier with the sun roof, and I have to tie a web belt around the carrier, because if the top comes off when I'm carrying it, I've lost a cat. Having the handle attached to the sun roof means that the whole weight of the carrier AND the cat is pulling on the latches holding the sun roof on--and it also means that it's easier for the door to pop open. I am looking for an old-fashioned carrier with NO sun roof and screws, but sliding latches seem to be the only thing now.

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    1. Maybe you can check out some garage sales or Goodwill?

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