Safety Tips for Traveling by Plane with Your Pet

If you are like a good many individuals, you do not want to leave your dog or cat behind when you travel. Your vacation simply would not be the same, not as enjoyable, if your beloved pet is not at your side.

With this in mind, there are strategies you need to employ to make travel with your pet easy, enjoyable, and safe. There are some specific tips you need to utilize when it comes to traveling by plane with your furry animal.

Overall Note on Traveling by Air with Your Pet

The ASPCA recommends that unless your furry buddy is small enough to ride under your seat, you want to seriously consider avoiding flying for your vacation if your dog or cat will accompany you. The stark reality is that there are risks associated with having your pet stowed in the baggage area of an aircraft, even if you follow all of the tips and recommendations set forth in this article.

With this cautionary note, there certainly are situations in which you must travel by air and which you definitely want to take your pet along. Moreover, your pet simply may not be of a size that he or she can travel under your seat. Therefore, you enhance your pet’s overall safety when traveling by air by following these suggestions.

Book a Direct Flight

If at all possible, book a direct flight if you are traveling with a pet that will be kept in the baggage area of an aircraft. Booking a direct flight decreases the possibility that your pet will end up left behind or place on an incorrect flight during a layover and plane change.

An associate point is that you need to make arrangements to visually see your pet loaded onto your flight. Airlines are used to requests from pet owners of this nature. They have protocols in place that permit passengers the ability to eyeball their pets being placed onto an aircraft.

See the Vet

Before you and your pet takeoff on an airplane holiday, visit the vet for a checkup. Make certain that your pet’s vaccinations are current. In addition, you can obtain from your vet what is an up-to-date health certificate. The health certificate should be obtained within 10 days of your flight’s departure.

Your vet can also provide you with strategies to relax your vet during flight. Keep in mind that this underscores that ideally you only fly with your companion animal if he or she can ride under your seat. Keep in mind that tranquilizing your pet for travel is not usually recommended. Using a tranquilizer can hamper his or her breathing.

Finally, if you will be traveling outside of the United States with your pet, you need to make certain that you are in compliance with the rules and regulations of your destination country. This includes vaccination issues. Keep in mind that some country’s have live animal quarantines. You most definitely do not want to be separated from your pet in a foreign country.

Use a Proper Travel Crate

You must make certain that you have a proper travel crate for your pet. There are crates for pets that approved by the USDA. This is the type of product you want to obtain and utilize for air travel with your pet.

In selecting a crate for your pet, it must be large enough for your furry firned to be able to stand, sit, and turn completely around. It should be lined with some type of bedding designed to absorb “accidents.”

Prior to travel, tape a small pouch of dry pet food outside the crate in the event that your dog or cat gets hungry during a layover. (See prior commentary on direct flights.)

The night before departure, freeze a small bowl filled with water. Taking this approach prevents the water from spilling when the crate and your pet are loaded onto the aircraft. Ideally, it will also melt as your pet is thirsty.

Make sure that the crate is securely closed. However, do not lock the crate in the event that a need arises for airline personnel to access the crate in your pet’s interests.

When it comes to the crate, make sure that you have complete contact information for you displayed on the exterior. In addition, be certain to have the crate marked “live animal” so that there is never any confusion about what is being moved about and transported by airline staff. Consider including your pet’s name on the exterior of the crate as well.




Photo of author


I'm Jethro. I'm a carpenter, and love to build things! You can find me in the garage or at work most days of the week.My sister is Crystal, who you might know from this very blog. Her son Johnny loves video games just as much as I do - so we have a lot of fun playing together!

Leave a Comment