I recently was travelling on an airplane, across from me was an elderly couple and their small dog. I smiled to myself and thought, “those owners are so brave.” Flying can be stressful for people, let alone a small dog in a confined space, with loud noises, strange smells, and strangers. Overall, the dog was a great passenger, and only barked a few times. This experience got me thinking, “what are the rules, regulations, tips for flying with your dog?”
Here are a few tips I found:
- Make sure your dog is the right size, the size of your dog is very important. Your dog and the carrier must be able to fit under the seat in front of you.
- Make sure your dog has the right temperament to fly. It would be great if all our furry friends could travel with us. However, sometimes they have high anxiety or are high-stress dogs. So then, it may not be worth the stress for your dog. Some airlines require your pet to be well trained, and relatively quiet to fly. If you think your pet may not be able to fly in the sky with you. There are many great dog boarding facilities, dog sitters, as well as trusted family and friends.
- Find the right carrier, airlines have strict size regulations when it comes to carriers. Make sure to check the airline you are flying with for specific requirements, such as the acceptable type of carrier and size. While you are flying, your dog must remain inside the carrier at all times. It is important that the carrier is not too small, this can stress your pet out more. All of us want to be comfortable while flying.
- Pack all necessary items. Make sure that you have enough food to last your dog while you are gone, a non-spill water container and their favourite treats. The air conditioning in the airplane can get cold, so you can even bring an extra blanket. Also, a t-shirt of yours at the bottom of the carrier can make your dog’s flight more enjoyable. A bone or his favourite toy can keep him busy throughout the flight.
- Extra fees; keep in mind that there is a fee to travel with your furry friend. It is a good idea to look into this before you book your trip, the price varies on the airline you fly with.
- Health certificate; it is helpful to have your dog’s health certificate up to date with all vaccines. this shows your pet has all they need to travel with you to another country.
- Airport security; your dog will go through airport security with you, as will your dog’s carrier.
- Before flying, double check with your airline of their specific travel requirements; this can vary depending on the airline. As well, you need to reserve your pets spot ahead of time, this means you must call the airline before departure. Make sure to arrive early for your flight, so you can check in your pet. This will allow you to have everything necessary, so you and your pet have positive travel experience.
If you feel that your furry friend would be a great travel companion, go for it. Travel is all about making memories with those that we have around us. We enjoy travelling with our friends and family. Now, you will have your whole family on vacation, paws included. Sounds like a perfect holiday, I hope you found these tips helpful.
Happy and safe travels!
Written by Madison Vandenberg ACA