Kurgo Baxter Dog Backpack Review

The Kurgo Baxter Dog Backpack is a great mid-range dog backpack, with practical features and an intelligent design, ideal for day hikes and long walks.

Kurgo Dog Saddlebag Backpack, Back Pack Dog Harness, Hiking Pack for Dogs, Packs for Pets to Wear, Camping & Travel Vest Harness, Reflective, Lightweight, Baxter Pack, For Medium & Large Pets

Pros / Reasons to Buy

  • 8 Points of Adjustment
  • Adjustable Saddle Bags

Cons / Reasons to Avoid

  • Saddlebags Straps Can Slip
  • Pocket Zips Come Open

Verdict

The Kurgo Baxter Dog Backpack is a well-made dog backpack suitable for day hikes and long walks. It has eight straps and eight adjustment points, making it very adaptable. It is made of polyester, making it practical and durable, but it is less stylish than other dog backpacks.

Analysis

The Kurgo Baxter Dog Backpack is a popular dog backpack, especially with day hikers. Its saddlebags are not really big enough to carry everything for a backpacking expedition. The backpack is well-made, with a handle on the top, four pockets, and two leash attachment points. The multiple adjustment points mean it can be customized to fit exactly to your dog’s shape and make it more stable and less likely to slip. However, the straps can loosen and slip during use, especially as there is no way to secure any excess strap. The pockets are fastened by zips with a plastic loop to make opening them more manageable. The zip runs from front to back, and consequently, the pockets can be pulled open if your dog rubs against obstacles like rocks and bushes. Your dog’s comfort has been addressed, and there are mesh sections for breathability and plenty of padding. There is nothing between the buckles and your dog’s skin, though, and this could cause sore patches. Overall, the Kurgo Baxter Dog Backpack is a practical, durable dog backpack that can be adapted so your dog is happy to wear it.

Performance Comparison

To make it easier to decide if the Kurgo Baxter Dog Backpack is the best dog backpack for your dog we have evaluated the key features.

Your Dog’s Comfort

The Kurgo Baxter Dog Backpack has plenty of adjustment points and padding to keep your dog comfortable. The chest plate where the straps meet is well-padded, and the main shell also has padding. Mesh sections provide airflow and increase breathability. This backpack has an ergonomic design to contour to your dog’s back to provide spine support. There is no padding between the buckles on the straps and your dog’s body, so you will need to check there are no sore patches.

Adjustable Straps

The Kurgo Baxter Dog Backpack is one of the most adjustable dog backpacks available. It has eight straps with eight points of adjustment. The backpack goes over your dog’s head with the strap across the front of the chest adjustable on both sides. The front chest strap has a chest plate that is well-padded. A strap that runs under your dog’s belly connects to the chest plate and is adjustable, too. Two straps on each side attach the saddlebags to the main frame of the backpack. These four straps are all adjustable, so you can have the pockets as high or as low as is comfortable for your dog. Another two straps go from the bottom of the saddlebags on the left and are fastened to the middle strap. These two straps buckle into the bottom of the saddlebags on the right. These straps are also adjustable.

It can take a bit of trial and error to adjust all the straps to fit your dog comfortably. With so many different points of adjustment, changing one tends to affect the others. However, it does mean the Kurgo Baxter Dog Backpack can be adapted to any shape of dog to provide a good fit. Once you have found the perfect fit, use a pen to mark on the straps the correct position.

There is no way to secure any excess strap. The straps can slip when the backpack is in use, especially if the pockets are full. Using a safety pin can help fix the straps and ensure the backpack stays in the optimum position for your dog’s comfort.

Materials and Durability

The primary material used for the Kurgo Baxter Dog Backpack is polyester. The seams are firmly stitched, and it is well put together. Part of the body is made of mesh to improve breathability. The straps are 1-inch nylon webbing.

The polyester material is waterproof, but the zips are not. So, while the Kurgo Baxter Dog Backpack is showerproof, if your dog gets very wet, so will the contents of his backpack! If there is anything you want to keep dry, it would be advisable to pack it in a waterproof bag before putting it in the saddlebags.

While most dirty marks should wipe off, you can wash the backpack. Handwashing would be the best method, but you could machine wash it with cold water on a gentle cycle with a mild detergent. Since the Kurgo Baxter Dog Backpack is primarily polyester, you will need to air dry it; do not put it in the dryer.

Kurgo offers a comprehensive guarantee against any manufacturing defects. The Kurgo Baxter Dog Backpack is designed to last, so any unraveling seams or torn straps will be replaced. Kurgo’s customer services are known for being helpful and happy to help with any issues.

Handles

A large handle runs along the top of the Kurgo Baxter Dog Backpack from your dog’s head towards his tail. The handle is padded and designed to give your dog a helping hand. It should not be used to lift your dog at any time.

Leash Attachment Points

There are two leash attachment points on the Kurgo Baxter Dog Backpack. The main one is on the top of the backpack at the rear behind the handle. There is a strong metal D-ring that is sturdily stitched to the backpack. The chest pad also has a metal triangle where the straps meet that can be used to attach a leash. Reaching the attachment point on the chest pad is a little awkward, and it is quite tight. If this is how you prefer to attach your leash, attaching a carabiner would be a good idea to make things easier.

Features

The Kurgo Baxter Dog Backpack comes in a choice of three colors. Your options are Coastal Blue, Chilli/Barn Red, and Black/Orange. The colors are bright and help to make it easy to spot your dog. Four reflective strips on the backpack increase your dog’s visibility at night.

As well as the four pockets, there is a fabric loop on each side of the handle. These two loops can be used to attach equipment for easy access. An interesting feature of the Kurgo Baxter Dog Backpack is a bottle opener hanging off the chest pad. While you are unlikely to be carrying bottles on a hike, there is also a straight edge that could be used as a screwdriver if necessary. The bottle opener detaches from the chest pad, so if you think you wouldn’t have a need to open bottles, you could remove it and leave it at home.

Pockets

The Kurgo Baxter Dog Backpack has four pockets, two on each side. The main pockets have a zip on the top that runs from front to back. The zip has a loop to make it easier to unzip, but this can catch on obstacles when your dog is moving and pull open the pocket unintentionally. On the outside of each of the main pockets is a small pocket with a zip.

These are the measurements of the pockets:

Baxter

  • 8 inches long, 4 ¾ inches high, 3 inches deep.

Big Baxter

  • 10 inches long, 6 inches high, 2 ½ inches deep.

Storage Capacity

The saddlebags on the Kurgo Baxter Dog Backpack are a medium size. They can carry enough gear for a day hike, but they are not large enough to hold everything you need for a backpacking trip.

Baxter (Small)

  • 229 cubic inches (3.75 l) capacity

Big Baxter (Large)

  • 458 cubic inches (7.5 l) capacity

Weight

It is essential not to overload your dog. Carrying too much weight can damage your dog’s spine. The ideal amount of weight to put in a dog’s backpack is about 10 – 15% of its body weight and never more than 25%. When calculating the weight of the load, do not forget to include the weight of the Kurgo Baxter Dog Backpack.

This is how much the two sizes of the Kurgo Baxter Dog Backpack weigh when empty:

Baxter (Small)

  • 4 oz (0.38 kg)

Big Baxter (Large)

  • 16 oz (0.45 kg)

Sizes

The Kurgo Baxter Dog Backpack comes in two sizes – the Baxter and the Big Baxter. The backpack has 8 points of adjustment, so it can be adapted to most sizes and shapes of dogs. However, if your dog is a very small or a very large breed, then the Kurgo Baxter Dog Backpack might not be suitable. Ensure you measure your dog correctly and contact Kurgo’s Customers Service Department for help if you are not sure.

Baxter (Small)

  • Neck – 17 – 24 inches (43 – 6 cm)
  • Front Chest – 20-38 inches
  • Back Chest – 27 – 40 inches (69 – 102 cm)
  • To fit dog 30 – 85 lbs

Big Baxter

  • Neck – 21 – 33 inches (53 – 84 cm)
  • Front chest – 24-39 inches
  • Back Chest – 30 – 48 inches (76 – 122 cm)
  • To fit dogs 50 – 110 lbs

Price

The Kurgo Baxter Dog Backpack falls into the midrange price bracket. It isn’t very expensive, but it is also not a budget buy. It is good value for money as it is well made and should last for years.

Conclusion

This is an excellent mid-range dog backpack. The Kurgo Baxter Dog Backpack is practical and well-made, with plenty of space for the essentials for a day hike. The eight adjustment points provide plenty of flexibility, making it a great choice if your dog isn’t a standard shape or size.

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