Tips for Flying with Your Dog
July 15, 2019

Many owners consider their furry friends to be family who they couldn’t imagine traveling or going on vacation without. If this is the case flying with your pooch is something you may have to do often. The more you know about flying with your canine companion, the easier it’ll be when it happens.

Flying with Large Dogs

Unless you have a certified service dog with up to date papers to prove it – your pup will not be allowed in the cabin. Instead, they will have to fly in “cargo”. This is not dangerous and will most likely be less stressful for your four-legged friend. Here are some things to know ahead of time:

  • “Check your dog” in advance and have a suitable crate for their size so they can travel comfortably.
  • Talk to your vet ahead of time about sedatives, this may help your dog travel better, but you should always consult your pup’s vet first.
  • For longer flights consider attaching a water bowl to the front of their crate. If you freeze the water beforehand, it can slowly melt during the trip. This helps to avoid any spills while providing constant fresh and cold water.
  • Remember, the “cargo” area is kept pressurized and climate controlled, so your canine will be just fine. A big dog especially will stay much calmer than they ever would in the cabin.

Flying with Little Dogs

Depending on the airline, if your dog can fit in an FAA-approved carrier that fits under the seat, your small pup should be allowed in the cabin with you. For small dogs, here are some things you’ll want to know:

  • Your pup is required to remain in their crate during the entire flight, so you need to ensure they are comfortable with that specific crate ahead of time.
  • Absolutely never take your dog out of their crate no matter how badly you want to. This is to ensure their best interest, yours, and everyone else around you. Especially if the flight encounters turbulence – you could be putting your canine in danger.
  • When staying in a hotel, the same crate can be used to leave your pet in while you run out for a bit – to ensure they don’t run out or disrupt a housekeeper if they stop by.

No Matter Your Dog’s Size Remember These Tips

Big or small if you’re flying with Fido remember these tips:

  • Whether it’s domestic or international flying, you’ll want all of your dog’s up-to-date medical records and vaccines with you. You should always check before you travel what the necessary paperwork for your dog will be when you land.
  • Stick to your dog’s regular diet, so either bring their typical food with you or have a bag ready for pick up or delivery upon arriving at your destination.

Flying with your pooch can be an exciting and fun experience if done right. Plenty of research and planning will help ensure smooth sailing and minimal issues – ensuring the least amount of stress for you and your pooch.