Airline Travel Tips


dog-in-planeTraveling can be stressful for you and your pet. Here are a few tips to ensure a safe trip for your furry family member.


Always ensure that your pet’s kennel is properly fitted to their size. They should be able to stand up without touching the roof of the kennel and turn around fully.

Be sure that your kennel is airline approved, as they are not all suitable for air travel. Remember to use water dishes that can be filled from the outside of the kennel, and not to fill the water prior to screening if it can be avoided. Most kennels flying in the cargo hold will need to be emptied and x-rayed for safety reasons.


It is extremely important that your kennel is properly assembled and screwed together. Simply having the kennel clipped together is not safe nor is it airline approved. It is your job to make sure your kennel will not fall apart on the runway so please make sure you have secured your kennel. The most common cause of injuries for traveling pets is due to improperly assembled kennels. Consider adding zip ties to secure the parts of the kennel to each other for added security.You do not want to get to the airport and have your pet denied boarding so double check your kennel is safe.


Once your pet has cleared security zip tie your kennel doors so that the doors cannot accidentally pop open. Imagine if that happened on the tarmac? The last thing that you want is Fido running loose on the runway!


Always be sure to check your drop off and pick up times when traveling with your pet because you will need to be there early and likely stay late so plan accordingly.


Whenever possible to do not leave anything that could be a choking hazard…so this means bones, toys, collars and leashes. Pets may behave differently while on board so please keep them safe.


Always ask the flight crew to confirm that your pet is on board, it only takes a minute or two but it is an essential step to making sure that your pet gets the care he or she needs while flying. They will notify the captain to make sure the pet section of the cargo hold is climate controlled during the flight. This also applies to connecting flights. Ask the new flight crew to check that your pet made the flight. It is your pet so make it your job to ensure he or she is getting the best care possible.


If your pet is flying under your seat you will need an airline approved soft sided carrier. They will travel by your feet and they will get warm so do not stuff your purse in beside them! Try to avoid super warm blankets as well. You want to keep good air flow and give them maximum space!


People often ask about sedatives but they are often not needed nor are they recommended in most cases. Contact your veterinarian to discuss further.



By Falyn Jarvis




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