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Ruffwear's newest version Approach Dog Pack is perfect for day hikes & light overnight stays! It is rugged and loaded with features, yet lightweight & comfortable for your pup!

Campfire Orange
Blue Dusk
Size (Chest)

The Ruffwear Approach Dog Pack is a great camping and trekking dog backpack that is ideal for day hikes or light overnight adventures. The saddlebags are radially and sit on a built-in/integrated harness ensuring the pack fits comfortably and stays stable on your dog's back.. 

The Approach Pack has a perforated, molded foam chassis so it is breathable and has a flexible fit.  Plus, in 2022, the pack was updated with more from fade-resistant materials, an updated flopper stopper system for easier use when stabilising the panniers, and more streamlined saddlebag volumes.

ADD any dog leash to your order & SAVE 10% on the leash! Use 'SETSAVE10' at checkout


Measure around your dog's girth/chest - just behind your dog's front legs & at the widest part (so measure around it just like you were measuring around your own chest). Click here for a video on how to measure your dog's chest.

It is important for the pack to fit snug. Just like with saddlebags on a horse the pack should fit snugly so it stays stable and doesn't shift and rub. 

**Ruffwear recommend sizing 'down' if your dog is in-between sizes.

Do NOT size up just to get extra capacity - always choose according to chest measure.

Size Fits Chests Measuring Capacity Weight of Pack
XS 43-56cm (17-22") 5 L 0.33kg
S 56-69cm (22-27") 10 L 0.43kg
M 69-81cm (27-32") 13 L 0.50kg
L/XL 81-107cm (32-42") 21 L 0.59kg

* NOTE: it is not recommended that your dog carry more than 20% of their body weight in their dog pack (including the weight of the pack).   If your dog is new to dog packs, start with an empty bag and gradually work up from a light to a heavier load as your dog gets accustomed to wearing the pack.


  • Side Stash Pockets Keep Gear Organised - the panniers have 2 zipped compartments per side so your dog can carry their food, water, leads, bowls or other trail essentials.  The zippers are coated to run smooth & there are external gear loops.
  • Designed for Stable Gear Carry - the saddlebags are radially cut & designed for weight forward carry.  Plus there are flopper stoppers to help stabilise the pack & it's contents.
  • Handy padded handle on the back - the padded back handle & girth straps allow you to assist your dog over rocks & obstacles in a controlled & comfortable manner. 
  • Two leash attachment points - there is a single-piece aluminium V-ring just at the front of the back handle & a reinforced webbing loop sitting further back behind the handle. 
  • 5 adjustment points - the pack can be adjusted & snugly fitted to a wide variety of dog shapes. With proper fitting, the pack will should stay stable (not slide back and forth) & should not interfere with your dog's range of motion.
  • Low-light visibility trim - reflective trim runs across each side of the pack for improved visibility in low light.  There is also a light loop to attach The Beacon safety light (sold separately)
Get 10% of any leash when you buy a harness on Canine Spirit
Ruffwear Approach Dog Backpack on Lucky who wears a size XSRuffwear Approach Pack on Lennon who wears a size SmallRuffwear Approach Dog Backpack on Bailey who wears a size MediumRuffwear Approach Dog Backpack on Rio who wears a size L/XL

How to Fit & Adjust the Approach Pack

 Learn about the Key Features of the Approach Pack


  • Shell: 150 denier polyester
  • Harness chassis: Laminated, molded bonded mesh and perforated foam
  • Buckles: ITW Nexus Airloc side-release buckles
  • Leash Connection Point: Anodized 6061-T6 aluminum V-ring
  • Zippers: YKK reverse coil zipper


  • Hand wash
  • Mild detergent
  • Air dry

Customer Reviews

Based on 5 reviews
Belinda W.

Ruffwear Approach Dog Backpack - Day Hiking & Overnight Adventures

Sturdy, comfy and durable!

My Dog loves his backpack. He barely noticed it on his back, cambering over and under trees was no issue for him, and there was plenty of room for everything he needs!

Philadelphia H.
Still an adventure pup in training ..

Indy loves her Approach Pack - Ruffwear Dog Backpack for Day Hikes & Overnight Adventures!

She's still a pup but she's learning how to be an adventure doggo. The second I pull it out she knows we are up to something. It is easy to get on and the clips and adjustability of it see that it fits her now and when she becomes fully grown.
Even empty it doesn't flop around to annoy her. She LOVES wearing it and it doesn't seem to restrict her ability to move naturally.

We are looking forward to bigger adventures together with it.

IG: @phila_holmes

Highly recommend the Approach Pack for large dogs

Great quality and fit, snug with little movement, maremma behaves better when wearing it on walks. Love all the features, no complaints, great product.

Julie N.

The pack fits really well and I love the way the front under leg straps are angled back as there seems to be less risk of chafing.