Last year, I headed to an animal shelter near my apartment to pretend I was actively looking to adopt a dog so I could get the chance to walk some rescues in order to temporarily fill the canine-shaped hole in my life. A few hours later, I headed back to my place a few hundred dollars poorer and with one more dog than I’d arrived with.
Seeing as my previous pet was a lizard I bought after having a couple more margaritas than I should have at a street fair, this was a bit of an upgrade. I quickly learned the ins-and-outs of owning a dog in New York City, which involves stopping them from eating the chicken bones that somehow materialize on every block and navigating around the 17 French bulldogs you’ll inevitably encounter along the way.
However, these slight inconveniences paled in comparison to what I soon discovered was the biggest obstacle when it comes to owning a dog in NYC: getting around.
The MTA policy concerning pets on public transportations states:
“No person may bring any animal on or into any conveyance or facility unless enclosed in a container and carried in a manner which would not annoy other passengers.”
This isn’t a problem for people with dogs that shouldn’t be allowed to be as small as they are, but people with larger dogs have had to think of some more novel solutions (like the pitbull I once saw sitting inside an IKEA bag). My go-to option was to convince my dog to get into one of the 17 tote bags that magically appear in your apartment when you move to Brooklyn, but I knew I needed another solution.
Thankfully, I eventually found it in the form of the absolutely game-changing K9 Sports Sack. One of the very first things I did when I got home from the shelter was set up an Instagram exclusively for my dog, and I noticed a number of people I follow going on various adventures with their pet strapped to their back.
I decided to buy my dog one for Christmas a couple of months ago, and it’s hard to understate what a difference it’s made when it comes to traveling from borough to borough and beyond. It only takes a couple of minutes after satiating your good boy or girl with treats to strap them in, and it’s specially designed to ensure that both of you are comfortable over the entire course of your journey (including a bunch of straps and zippers to ensure you don’t have to be paranoid about your dog falling off of your back).
The only real downside I’ve come across is the number of people who will try and fail to subtly take creepshots of you while you’re riding the train.
The backpacks come in four sizes that can accommodate dogs up to 30 LB. All you have to do is measure from head to tail in order to figure out the appropriate size, but you can also send a picture of your pup directly to the manufacturer and they’ll tell you what the best fit is.
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