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Flying with Pets


The first thing to consider when thinking about traveling with your pet by air is to make sure your pet’s physical condition is conducive to flying at all. An ill, injured, pregnant, very young, or senior pet has a higher risk to travel.

Certain breeds of dogs, such as collies and pugs, have special respiratory considerations because of their long or short snouts, and flying in the cargo area of a plane can lead to breathing difficulties because of poor ventilation. These types of dogs, as well as cats, should fly in the cabin, if allowed.

Bottom line is to know the risk factors when preparing for air travel with your pet, and always be sure to check well in advance of your trip to ensure you have the latest information regarding airline pet policies.

Always ask about pet carrier size regulations for underseat storage or cargo area, required immunizations and health records, and whether they allow pets in the cabin. In extremely hot or cold weather, some airlines do not allow pets to be transported in the cargo area.

Be sure to check out the airline’s pet policy by following the link at the bottom or on the right column of this page.

Follow these simple airline pet travel tips to make the most of your airline travel with your pet:

  • Plan early. Book your and your pet’s reservations well in advance and get the airline’s latest pet regulations.
  • You’ll need a general health certificate and a rabies vaccination certificate, which should be issued within 10 days of your departure. Have these with you as well if you are traveling interstate or internationally.
  • Nonstop flights work best to avoid plane changes, which will minimize your pet’s anxiety.
  • Think about the time of year you are traveling. Early morning or late evening flights work best in warmer weather. Midday flights are better in colder months.
  • According to the Animal Welfare Act, you will not be able to fly with your dog or cat if your pet is less than eight weeks old. Pets must also be weaned at least five days before traveling by air.
  • Allow plenty of time to exercise your pet when you arrive at the airport. Comfort your pet with words of reassurance as you place your pet in the carrier or crate.

International Pet Travel

If you need more information about traveling with your pet internationally, be sure to check out these rules and regulations.

Airline Pet Policies

View airline pet regulations for all carriers.

Pet Only Airlines

For cabin only air travel for your pets, check out pet only airlines and other private chartering services.

Fly With Your Dog in the Cabin

Want to travel with your dog in the cabin when you fly? DogTravel Company is the world’s first full service travel club for dog lovers!

Door-to-Door Pet Relocation Services

PetRelocation.com is one of the most experienced, respected and technologically-advanced pet relocation companies in the world, specializing in door-to-door domestic and international pet relocations.

Airline Terminology

Familiarize yourself with airline terms before you travel by plane.