The thought of flying with a dog can make a lot of people nervous. There are many things to consider well before you get to the airport if you plan on flying with your dog. And once you get there, navigating luggage, security, crowded airports, and the usual stress that comes with air travel can be a bit much.
If you are thinking about or are planning to fly with your dog, there are some things you need to know in advance. Before you book that plane ticket, read up on what you need to know about flying with your dog.
Flying with your dog can be tricky, and there is a lot of research that you need to do before you book a flight for you and your furry friend. Before you fly, you will need to consider the airline itself, your flight options, and the type of flight you are on.
Some airlines will allow you to have the luxurious option of cuddling with your dog onboard, whereas others will not allow your pup to fly at all. It is safe to say that airline pet policies vary widely.
Most airlines have weight and size restrictions for bringing your dog in the cabin with you for your flight. In general, many airlines only allow small breeds that can fit in a carrier underneath the seat in front of you. Those airlines are:
If you have a small dog that you want to bring with you in the cabin on your flight, always call the airline in ahead of time. Many of the above airlines have a limit to the number of dogs they allow in the cabin for each flight. To know the details for bringing your small dog on the flight with you, call your preferred airline in advance.
Some airlines allow larger pets to fly in the cargo compartment. Checking your dog into cargo can be more stressful for you and your dog, so take extra precautions if you choose this option. If you can, try to fly with Virgin Atlantic which has a special air-conditioned and heated compartment for furry friends.
If you plan on bringing your larger pup on a flight with you, call the airline in advance so that you can ensure that your pup fits in the cargo of that flight. More than that, notifying the airline that you are bringing your pup will help them prepare to give your dog a more comfortable flight.
When flying with your dog, you want to ensure that he is as comfortable as possible. Choosing a direct flight can help you avoid any hiccups that come with doggie air travel. Shorter flights tend to be better for pups since the most stressful part of their day (and yours) is over sooner.
Layovers can complicate things when flying with your dog. Layovers often mean that your pup will be traveling for longer. Not only that but as with any connecting flight, if your dog is in the cargo compartment, he could even end up on the wrong flight. Try to choose your flight with this in mind.
If you are going to fly your dog across the country, you might not need to worry about clearing customs if you stay continental. But even if you keep your flights domestic, flying with your pup to and from Hawaii can get your pup quarantined. If you are flying internationally, research any customs requirements for entering that country and for returning home.
Flying is harder for certain breeds than others. Short-nosed breeds have a difficult time adjusting to changes in temperature and air pressure than other dog breeds. If you have a short-nosed breed, check with your vet to make sure that your pup is safe to fly.
Once you have planned your flights and bought you and your dog tickets, you need to visit your vet for a health check-up. At the vet, they will give you a health certificate saying that your dog is healthy enough to fly and that he is up to date on his immunizations. You will need a health certificate for the trip there and back.
On the day of your flight, you want to make sure you have everything in order. Here are some things to keep in mind on the day of your flight:
Having everything in order and giving yourself enough time will help to smooth out the process of flying with your dog.
On the day of your flight, you want to make sure that your dog is comfortable. Your dog will likely be confused and worried that he is separated from you. For a lot of dogs, this can create a lot of stress and anxiety. But there are some things you can do to help ease your dog’s nerves.
Keeping one of your pup’s favorite toys or blankets with them during the flight can give them a sense of familiarity. Some pet owners report giving the dog a shirt that smells like you to help comfort your pup.
You can also consider giving your dog some treats that have been proven to help reduce stress and anxiety. CBD dog treats can calm your pup for an extended period of time. This can help ease your dog’s worries for the duration of your flight.
Once you have arrived at your final destination, you will want to try to reunite with your dog as soon as possible. Your pup will no doubt need a bathroom break and will be ready to see your familiar face after a couple of hours in a strange environment.
I work as a part of the Content Team at FOMO Bones. We all work together to curate the best articles to share with our readers and help them be the best parents to their dog babies.