Want to cycle with your small dog? These five dog baskets for bikes are a safe and secure way to transport your adventurous pup.
Using a leash to control your pet isn’t safe, as even a small jerk could cause a crash. I also don’t think it’s fair to force a dog to run at a bike’s pace just to keep up.
Dog bike baskets are a popular alternative for small dogs. They allow your pet to ride in a secure carrier, often with comfortable padding and a built-in safety attachment.
Unfortunately, some bike baskets poor quality and unsafe for dogs. So, to help you choose a dog bike carrier, we’ve researched and reviewed five of the best.
A cute basket with a strong resin wicker frame
The PetSafe Solvit Tagalong is an excellent wicker bike basket for pets. It features an attractive design, soft liner, and an adjustable safety leash. It’s only suitable for dogs up to 13lbs though.
Safety is always the priority when travelling with a dog. And, while baskets can be safe, it’s important to be cautious.
Safety Tip #1: Bike baskets are only suitable for small breeds or a puppy.
The average front dog carrier has a maximum weight capacity of 13lbs. Heavier dogs could cause the base to sag, unbalance your bike, or even affect the stability of brackets. Rear carriers can typically hold larger dogs, but still aren’t suitable for most medium-size breeds.
For this reason, never exceed the manufacturer’s weight limit. Also, keep in mind that dogs can move around in a basket. The heavier they are, the more their movements will affect your balance when cycling.
Safety Tip #2: Always make sure your pet is secured in his basket – even if you think he won’t jump out.
You never know when a squirrel is going to run across the road! Always secure your dog during a bike ride to avoid a nasty accident.
If you’re using a basket with a leash attachment, never attach this to a collar. It could choke your dog if he falls out. Instead, attach the security leash to a strong harness.
Some cheaper baskets don’t include a built-in leash attachment. In this case, the harness should be attached securely to the handlebars.
Safety Tip #3: Be sensible about where you cycle with your pup.
There’s a big difference between a leisurely trip to the shops and mountain biking on a bump trail. Stick to flat roads and paths when cycling with your dog.
Safety isn’t the only consideration – you also need to think about your dog’s feelings.
Some dogs love having the wind in their face while watching the world whizz past. But others find cycling to be a frightening ordeal.
If your pet shows signs of stress, don’t force him to ride in a basket – especially not without training. Instead, teach him to enjoy spending time in the carrier inside your home. Give plenty of treats and praise to create positive associations.
Once he’s happy to sit in the carrier, attach it to your bike and repeat the process while stationary. Over time, you can progress to short rides, while making sure your dog is always happy and comfortable.
This can be a long process, so take your time and don’t rush your pet. Be aware that some dogs never learn to love riding in bike seats though.
Choosing a dog bike basket doesn’t need to be difficult, but here are a few of the most important considerations.
There are two broad categories of bike basket for dogs: harness attachment and mesh roof.
Harness attachment baskets keep your pet secure via a strong leash. They typically have an open or semi-enclosed design, so they provide less protection against weather.
Mesh baskets have a zip-up roof. This keeps your pet contained and can provide more weather-resistance. Mesh baskets are more restrictive, however, and there aren’t as many high-quality options available.
Note: Sling carriers are an alternative for the smallest breeds. They can be uncomfortable to wear for long periods though.
Dog carriers are designed for either the front or rear of a bike. While many of the best dog carriers for bikes are designed for the front, there are some excellent rear-attachment baskets too.
Tip: If you have a cruiser bike, a front basket may make turning more difficult. This is because the extra weight has a bigger effect on wide handlebars.
As I mentioned, bike carriers are really only suitable for small dogs.
Front carriers typically have a maximum capacity of around 13lbs – although some have a lower maximum. Rear carriers are able to hold slightly bigger dogs, with maximum weights of around 20-25lbs (although this varies depending on the design.)
If your dog is bigger than the manufacturer’s recommendations, the carrier won’t be safe to use. Canine bike trailers are often a better option for big dogs, although they are less convenient.
Once you’ve found a basket that’s the right size and is the type you prefer, here are a few other things to consider:
Note: Some dog baskets for bikes convert into regular canine carriers, but most are not crash-tested. For this reason, they shouldn’t be used as a car or motorcycle carrier.
Listed below are five of the best bike dog baskets. I’ve included both front and rear options, along with tips for choosing the right carrier for your pet.
With a resin wicker exterior and comfortable faux-sheepskin liner, the Tagalong is a high-quality basket for the front of your bike. I like the small removable sunshade to protect your dog from harsh weather, and the adjustable leash makes it easy to secure your pup via his harness.
Another advantage of the PetSafe is that it’s easy to install on almost any bike. It features a bracket system that can be quickly adjusted, so you can get a secure fit without pinching the brake cables.
There’s also something very cute about a small dog riding in a wicker basket!
A downside is that the basket liner can only be hand washed using cold water. The liner is relatively easy to remove, but a machine washable design would be more convenient.
The initial setup can also be fiddly. Once fitted, the basket should feel secure though.
Despite the low price, the ANZOME has a quick-release mount, so it can be quickly attached to your bike. It also has a folding design for easier storage.
The frame is made from strong metal, so the ANZOME is also a relatively durable choice – although the brackets aren’t as strong as I would like. The soft fabric isn’t as luxurious as faux sheepskin though, so you may want to add extra padding.
A drawback is that it doesn’t come with a built-in seatbelt or leash attachment. Instead, you need to use a leash to attach your dog’s harness directly to the handlebars. It also doesn’t come with clear instructions, so be patient when installing.
Keep in mind that this is only designed for the smallest breeds. With a maximum dog weight of just 11lbs, it’s not suitable for bigger breeds. I also don’t recommend it for bumpy rides – it’s just not secure enough. For short rides on flat roads, however, it’s a cost-effective option for small dogs.
Rear bike baskets are often a better choice for pets weighing more than 13lbs, as they are less likely to unbalance your bike. The Snoozer Pet Rider is a great example, as it’s suitable for dogs weighing up to 24lbs – almost double the PetSafe Tagalong.
It’s also a well-designed and high-quality carrier. The foam interior provides a comfortable container for your pup, while the plywood base gives a solid surface. It also has a machine washable cover, reflective back strip, and three-point safety strap.
It’s not perfect though. While the cover is removable, there is some disassembly required to access it. I also think the safety strap should be shorter, as it may allow some dogs to fall out (this is why it’s essential to attach it to a strong harness rather than a collar).
Another issue is that the Pet Rider doesn’t come with a bike rack. You’ll need to purchase one separately, making it an expensive choice.
For dogs between 13lbs-24lbs, however, the Pet Rider is one of the best dog bike carriers on the market.
Like The PetSafe Solvit Tagalong, the Happy Ride comes with a detachable sun shield and built-in safety tether. It also has three pockets, which are useful for carrying water bottles, leashes, poop bags and other doggie essentials.
One of the great things about this carrier is that it’s quick and easy to remove from your bike. If you often cycle without your dog, this is an essential feature.
It also provides great value for money. The bottom isn’t as padded as I would like, however, so you may want to add a soft pad or towel for comfort.
With 10 available colors and a reflective strip, the Travelin K9 Pet Pilot certainly stands out on your bike. It’s not all about appearance though – this is a solid dog bike carrier with a metal frame and adjustable safety leash.
Other features include a breathable mesh front panel to increase airflow, side pocket, side water bottle holder and reflective strips. I also like that the safety leash has two attachment points, as this increases safety.
The biggest drawbacks are the price and that it’s only suitable for dogs weighing up to 10lbs. If your dog fits, however, it’s an excellent bike basket.
Note: A “MAX” version of the Travelin K9 Pet Pilot is available for larger breeds.
The best dog baskets for bikes provide a secure and comfortable place for your pup to ride. They are only suitable for small dogs, but can be a convenient way to transport your pet to the shops or a nearby walking spot.
My favourite dog carrier for a bike is the PetSafe Solvit Tagalong. It’s an attractive wicker basket with an adjustable leash, detachable sunshade and comfortable inner lining. If you need a rear bike carrier, the Snoozer Pet Rider is a good choice – although you’ll need to purchase a rack separately.
Do you have any questions about choosing a dog basket for your bike? Please let me know in the comments section below – I’d be happy to help!