The NYC Subway Banned Pets That Don’t Fit Into Bags, And Dog Owners Responded Hilariously

The city of New York banned dogs on the subway unless they fit into a bag or carrier, and pet owners were initially outraged. But as we well know, dog people will do just about anything to keep their precious pups nearby, and subway riders got really creative with this new rule. Wait until you see the hilarious (and adorable!) ways some clever dog owners got their pooches on the subway.

It’s Called The Doggybag Phenomenon


Instagram user jackiegreaney posted this seriously LOL-worthy pic of her dog waiting for the train. "XL LLbean Tote: How a 45 pound black Lab rides the New York City subway," reads the caption. Hey, this is perfect! It meets all MTA’s requirements and is also just about the cutest thing we’ve ever seen.

Someone asked how she gets the dog into the tote bag, and jackiegreaney responded, "We just pick her up and put her in! She knows it means she gets to go somewhere so she cooperates." Good doggy.

Next: those big blue IKEA bags come in handy for so many things…

IKEA To The Rescue

People have found some great ways to reuse those huge blue IKEA shopping bags. They’re great for laundry, arts and crafts, storage… the list goes on and on. One use that we hadn’t even thought of, though, is dog carrier!

We use the term "carrier" loosely here since this large pooch is clearly not being carried. But hey, it’s technically in a carrier since the bag has handles on it, right? That’s some clever thinking there.

What Are You Looking At?

The official MTA rule states that "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."

We’d say this doggo and his owner are absolutely within the rules in this case. The big guy looks like he’s completely used to being carried around in a bookbag, which is saying a lot because he must be pretty heavy to lug around.

Catching The Train At Franklin Avenue

Instagram user looningaround, who shared this amazing photo of a dog in a backpack, wrote: "This is how dogs should commute on the subway. No dog carriers, or stupid strollers."

But they also added, "Someone should tell him he is staring at the wrong direction. The subway is coming from the other side." Hey, this guy is just along for the ride. There’s no need for him to be the navigator.

Completely Content

Both human and doggo appear to be completely content during their commute. The man has his music to keep him occupied, and the pup is clearly interested in checking out his surroundings on the subway.

That dog looks rather young, so you have to wonder if he’ll stay small enough to fit inside a bookbag for much longer. We bet his human will find a way to continue commuting with him even if he gets huge.

IKEA Jacket

When Redditor emilNYC posted this photo of an IKEA-clad dog (with the caption "I think this owner nailed it"), a supermarket employee jumped in to praise these big blue bags that we keep seeing over and over.

"I work at a grocery store and occasionally someone will bring one as their reusable bag. They always only bring just that one. And then they have me put their entire $250 grocery order in it. And it always fits. It weighs ten [expletive] tons, but it always fits." More proof that the bags are good for anything!

Enormous Backpack To The Rescue!

Hoo boy, this is a big dog! We would not have imagined him fitting into any kind of carrying bag, but here you go. His clever human bought a gigantic backpack that can comfortably hold him safely in place and out of other passengers’ ways.

This one looks like he’s on the heavy side, but those fancy hiking backpacks offer great support. In fact, the dog-in-a-backpack is probably easier to deal with on the train than the other luggage he has with him.

Happy To Be Traveling

Awww, this shepherd looks absolutely overjoyed to be going on an outing with her human buddy. She’s riding in style, perched in a large green backpack that he’s wearing on his front.

It might be a good thing that she has a leash on because she has a gleam in her eye. That kind of gleam that a dog gets when they’re feeling a little mischievous and might just take off after a cat or any other interesting distraction.

A Real Champion Commuter

On Instagram, user kacy.burdette posted this hilarious photo with the caption "Brady’s first NYC subway ride!" We have to say, although he’s completely adorable, Brady looks a little less self-assured than some of the other dogs on our list.

He’ll surely get the hang of it soon enough. After all, that Champion duffel bag sure looks like a comfortable way to travel the rails. We wouldn’t mind riding in one ourselves…

What A Dapper Doggo

This Shiba Inu pup is like the Kate Spade of subway commuting. From the khaki canvas duffel bag to the stylish scarf around her neck, you can tell she is definitely used to traveling in comfort and style.

You’re not supposed to leave your bags unattended on the subway, but we bet the MTA gave the human who took this photo a pass since she was nice enough to share the picture afterward.

Just A Head In A Bag

Now, here’s a duffel bag that perfectly disguises its contents. Well, except for one rather large part – the dog’s head which is sticking out of the top to take a look around the train.

We can’t get over that sweet pink nose… if we were riding on this subway it’d be pretty hard not to reach over and give the darling pup a little pat right on the head.

A Rolled-Up Rider

Well, this one should be a spokesdog for the MTA. He’s not taking up any extra room since he’s tightly packed into his human companion’s big backpack. After all, isn’t that the point of the bag/carrier rule?

Hey, look at the woman in the green coat. She’s carrying an IKEA bag – do you suppose there’s a dog in there? We’re going to assume that there’s a dog in every IKEA bag we see after this.

Beagle In A Bag

Well, hello there you beagle in a bag! Check out this chilled-out pup, just casually waiting for her train to arrive and whisk her off to work. Or wherever she’s heading.

This bag actually looks like it could have been custom made for her. It’s a perfect size — she can even stand comfortably in it — and it has nice long handles for easy carrying. This is a dog-in-a-bag win!

If I Fits I Sits

This commuter dog is pulling a classic cat move — the “if I fits, I sits” maneuver. In this case, it’s fitting quite nicely into an IKEA bag.

We have to wonder if the pup’s owner actually carried this heavy-looking package onto the train or if there was some dog-walking involved. Either way, he’s abiding by the rules while he rides on the train. IKEA deserves a prize for allowing so many dogs to ride the train in their huge shopping bags!

Large Dog In A Lap

This post on Instagram, by user hansyandbrush, came along with a discussion about how to properly get your dog into a bag that’s suitable for the subway. Another user had a question about what size bag they should buy for their pit bull.

Hansyandbrush answered, "That one is an LL bean duffle bag! I don’t know the size but it’s prob a larger one. Check out their website!" That makes two LL Bean bags repurposed into dog carriers on this list. Well, we’re sold.

On Their Way To The Chiropractor?

Wow, this is one of the larger dogs that we’ve seen being carried while they’re actually on the train. Most of them are set down on the floor or on a seat (if there are any not in use by humans).

Huskies tend to get pretty heavy so we’re going out on a limb and guess that this duo is on their way to the chiropractor for a much-needed adjustment. Maybe they’ll get to stop at a fun dog park after that.

Doing A Test Run

Reddit user ZeroTransPat shared this precious photo of their pup doing a test run in one of those ever-helpful big blue bags. "I trained my dog to go into an ikea bag, could I bring her on the train now?"

We say yes. Another Redditor responded, "not without giving her a big hug first, you can’t!" Good point — a hug is always welcome. And good job on working around the technicalities in MTA’s pet policy. Welcome aboard, you darling pup.

Pink Stripes For A Sassy Subway Rider

Here’s a little doggo that rides the subway in style, being toted around in a two-tone pink striped beach bag. It’s hard to tell just how big she might be, with her body all hidden in the depths of the bag, but she’s obviously not too heavy to carry.

This is one of the sassier doggybags we’ve seen. We just hope she’s going somewhere fun, like the dog park, and not to the vet or any other unpleasant place.

Nothing To See Here, Folks

If you were riding on this particular train, you might not even notice this speckled dog in the tote bag unless you just so happened to look down. That’s because she’s tucked in so nicely, although it does look a little like she might be ready to make a run for it.

We hope no one steps on this precious cargo down on the floor of the train! Watch your step please, folks. You never know what might be under your feet when you ride the subway.

Completely Unfazed

If we had to guess, we’d say that the dog in this widely-circulated photo is pretty used to wearing his IKEA bag around. He looks like an old pro as he waits for the 5:15 train, all decked out in his "carrying" bag.

Once he’s settled on the train it will look like he’s sitting in a normal shopping bag, one that doesn’t have leg holes cut in it. This getup is the perfect work-around for the MTA rule.