Airline Policies To Consider Before Flying With Your Pet

Travel Hacks

Are you thinking about relocating to a different country? How about that dream of having an extended trip abroad?

Now, you do not have to worry about leaving your fur babies behind. Wherever you go, you can definitely tag them along!

Flying with pets is not without any complication. According to Purring Pal, there are strict airport rules and airline regulations when flying with pets that you should adhere to ensure that both of you can have the most amazing trip possible.

Here are several airline policies you should consider before flying with your pet.

Airlines Pet Travel PoliciesPick an Airline

This is important as tolerance to certain breeds of animals varies per airline. Although most of them would accept dogs and cats, there are certain breeds that they would not allow.

It is best to check with your airline of choice if it can fly your pet to your desired destination. Most airlines would only fly within states or locally and would not admit pets for international flights.

Again, this is something you have to confer with airline personnel prior to booking.

Pet Travel Documents

Traveling by plane would require identification cards and documents, just like us. A pet passport should be a staple if you plan to travel frequently with your fur buddy.

Health certificates and inoculation records would also come in handy. Most airlines would only require the ones mentioned but it is still best if you double check with your airline and country of destination if additional paperwork are still required.

Traveling to rabies-free countries would also mean additional blood tests to avoid getting detained and quarantined upon arrival. You do not want your fur baby to go through that, do you?

Modes of Travel

There are several ways to have your pet travel through commercial flight carriers. Small dogs are usually placed inside an IATA-approved carrier, tucked under the seats.

Your pet has to be well-behaved and nonaggression so as not to disturb other passengers. Flying through cabin means that you can check on your furry friend’s well-being all throughout the flight.

Unfortunately, not all animals can fly through in-cabin.  Some airlines simply do not allow pets to mingle with other passengers inside the cabin and large breeds are also not allowed inside.

If this is the case, then your pet can be transported as checked-in baggage.

Do not worry as you will still be on the same flight as your pet. But instead of having it at an arm’s length, it will be placed inside the cargo with other baggage.

Do not forget to remind your pilot that your pup is at the back so he may adjust the thermostat. Your pet will be considered as excess baggage and you will be charged as such.

If your airline of choice does not allow animals inside the aircraft or your pet is too large, then flying through cargo may be a good option. This means that your pet will be taking another flight, not similar to yours.

This costs more than the other modes of plane travel but might be the only way to have your pet reach your destination!

If you have too much dough on your hand and you really love your pet that much, you can both enjoy the perks and privacy of a private jet. This way, you won’t have to worry about disturbing other passengers. You will have the entire flight to yourselves!

Banned Breeds

There are certain types of dogs and cats that are not allowed on board. Generally, brachycephalic dogs and cats are banned. These are the animals with short faces and noses – making them more prone to having respiratory issues.

Burmese, Himalayan, and Persian cats are not allowed inside the aircraft. Among banned breed of dogs are the following:

  • Belgian Malinois
  • Boston Terrier
  • Boxer, Brussels Griffon
  • Bulldog
  • Cavalier King Charles Spaniel
  • Affenpinscher
  • American Bully
  • American Pit Bull Terrier/Pit Bull
  • American Staffordshire Terrier
  • English Toy Spaniel/Prince Charles Spaniel
  • Japanese Chin/Japanese Spaniel
  • Lhasa Apso
  • Mastiff
  • Pekingese
  • Pug
  • Shar-Pei/Chinese Shar-Pei
  • Shih-Tzu
  • Staffordshire Bull Terrier
  • Tibetan Spaniel

As of 2018, Chow Chows are also not allowed on board.

Age Restrictions

Before booking any flight, you have to be aware of your pet’s age. Most airlines do not allow pets under 15 weeks to travel although the rule set by IATA is only at 8 weeks old.

They should be able to feed by themselves especially if you plan to transport them as checked-in baggage or cargo.

Reminders prior to travel:

  1. If you plan to have your pet travel with you inside the cabin, make sure it is of the right size. The size of your pet will determine if you can bring it inside the aircraft cabin.
  2. Make sure your pet is well-behaved enough to travel. Dogs with high-anxiety levels might not be a good travel companion.
  3. Your pup should be comfortable within its carrier. Of course, the carrier should be in line with the standard requirements but do not try to fit the poor thing inside a tiny carrier.
  4. Pack all necessities in one bag. You do not want to get caught unprepared for any event that may happen.
  5. Water should be placed inside a spill-proof container. Poop bags, bone, and your pet’s favorite toy are among the things you should not forget to bring.
  6. Do not feed your dog the morning before take off, withhold water two hours before the flight, and take your pet in a long walk before leaving. Trust us, this will not harm pets in any way and they will be fine without water or food for a few hours.

This will keep them comfortable and will avoid accidents from happening. Taking them on a long walk would make them too tired and eventually make them fall asleep. Your pup will be knocked out the entire flight!

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