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The Ultimate Guide for Flying Safely with Your Dog

August 02, 2018

dog looking at flying drone

Are you planning a trip to Paris to see the beautiful Eiffel Tower with all your family members?

Travelling with a dog can be challenging. You can take your dog with you if you plan for it well and much in advance.

Let’s look at the different ways in which you can travel with your dog or pup for the perfect getaway!

Tips for Flying Safely with Dogs

Size of Dog

If you want to keep your dog in the cabin, his size assumes importance.

Since all airlines have their strict rules for the size of the pet carriers, do keep it in mind before booking the flight. Usually, the pet carrier should be a comfortable fit under the seat in front of you except service or therapy dogs.

The airline-approved pet carrier comfortably fits dogs which are less than or equal to 15 pounds.


Temperament of Dog

Well, actually not every dog is a good candidate for flying. Consider the medical conditions, the age of the dog as well before making the bookings.

If you fly with a dog who has any breathing difficulty like a bulldog or even a pug, it may not be allowed on many airlines.

So, checking out the airline rules regarding the size and the breed will help.

Dogs who may get high-stress and high anxiety may not be ideal for flying on a plane. The overexcitement and stress generated by the overall environment and the flying experience may not bode well for the health of your pooch.

In fact, many airlines specifically mention that the dogs should be well-trained and quiet if they are to be allowed to fly inside the flight.  Dogs who can be noisy may not be good contenders for flying.

It would be advisable to get a good dog care center or resorts where he can stay for the time you will be away.

Suitable Pet Carrier

Check out the airline’s requirements as to the size and type of carrier which is allowed on the flight you will be travelling in. This can vary for different airlines but usually stays between 16 to 19 inches and is around 10 inches tall.

Smaller carriers can be stressful for dogs and pups, so get an adequately sized carrier.It is good to test the carrier out with your pet in it before the actual travel.

This will get him used to the carrier, and he will be comfortable in it once you strap him in for the flight travel. Also, help him get used to the crowded places before you take him to the airport.

Since pet carrier counts as cabin baggage, apart from this, you will be able to carry only one more bag. Consider getting a pet carrier with side pockets or storage space to make it easier for you to store some stuff.

Do your research

Understanding the airlines’ specific rules and regulations, and being aware of what documentation is needed will help in crunch time. The Federal regulations expect pets to be a minimum of 8 weeks of age before they are fit for travel. You can even visit your veterinarian before making the travel booking. The vet can confirm if its safe for the pet to fly.

Make your booking early as many airlines limit the number of pets allowed on a flight. Try booking a direct flight to your destination to avoid changing planes and the additional steps of immigration checks.


Tips for Flight Day

To make the flight day go off smoothly, consider the below checklist of steps to do before you board the flight with your furry friend:

  • Before the flight, take your beloved friend for a walk and put him at ease.
  • If you are taking a cat in the crate, make sure she plays a lot that day and gets tired, before you put her in the container.
  • Make sure your pet’s tummy is empty, and he is relatively hungry.
  • Put an ID card with your detailed contact information on your friend’s collar.
  • Do remember to pack a separate bag with all the pet supplies needed on the flight and upon landing like the pet’s food, bowls, medication, his leash or harness.
  • If your pet is travelling in the cargo hold, make sure everyone know about it including the flight attendants and pilots.
  • It is good to keep a picture of your pet with you at all times in case of any emergencies.


Now once you have taken the necessary steps to make it a safe journey for your furry friend, sit back, relax and enjoy your travel.

Make it a reality by taking care of a few essentials, travel hacks and have a safe and memorable trip!


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