Flying With Your Dog? 3 Steps To Help Ensure A Safe Flight

11 April 2016
 Categories: , Blog


If you're taking a flight, and you're planning on taking your dog with you, you'll need to do some extra planning for your canine companion. Airlines do their best to accommodate your dog, but there are still steps you'll need to take to ensure its safety during the trip. If your dog is a small breed, some airlines may allow you to carry your dog in the cabin with you. However, it will need to be small enough for its carrier to fit under your seat. If your dog needs to be transported in the pressurized cargo hold, you'll need to take additional safety measures prior to the flight. Here are four steps you should take to ensure your dog's safety during the flight.

Contact the Airline

Before you book your flight, you'll need to contact the airline. Some airlines do not allow pets—even in the cargo hold—while others have limitations on the number of animals allowed on each flight. If you book a flight prior to speaking to the airline, you run the risk of showing up at the airport and being turned away due to space limitations or other restrictions. It's also important that you ask the airline about specific paperwork they'll require at check-in. Some of the documentation they may require includes shot records and health certificate.

Visit the Vet

Before you fly with your dog, you should schedule an appointment with the veterinarian. This is particularly important if your dog has a pre-existing medical condition. Air travel can be stressful for pets in the best of conditions. However, add a preexisting condition and your dog could experience a medical emergency during the flight. If you're pet requires prescription medication, be sure to get extra medication from your veterinarian. Having extra medication will ensure that you're prepared for any emergencies that might come up. 

Plan Around the Weather

If your dog is going to be traveling in the cargo hold, it's important that you take the weather into consideration. Cargo holds are not temperature controlled, which means your dog is going to be subjected to extreme cold during the winter or extreme heat during the summer. If you must fly during extreme weather seasons, try and plan your flights when the temperatures aren't so extreme. For instance, try to fly in the evening when temperatures are cooler during the summer, and during the day when temperatures are warmer during the winter.

If you're going to be flying with your dog, you need to make sure that you've planned ahead. The tips provided here will help ensure that your dog has a safe flight. For more information or to find out what is recommended for your dog, contact a veterinarian like those at ​Parkview Animal Hospital.