Getting ready to Fly together with your Dog


You get this amazing trip coming up and driving cross country together with your dog just won’t cut it this time around. Is flying together with your dog in the cabin a feasible option? Thousands of people fly with pets every year, and airlines have become more accommodating than ever. With a little preparation for you personally as well as your dog, flying doesn’t have to be an ordeal!

Choose Your Airline

Every airline has its own rules regarding the number of pets allowed within the cabin on each flight. Be sure to check your airline’s website for that list of rules and requirements and phone the airlines with any queries you may have ahead of time. Discover the rules regarding dog height and weight, crate size and breed restrictions. The BringFido website has a handy guide that addresses most of the major U.S. airlines’ pet policies.

Book Your Flight

Make your reservations as soon as possible as many airlines have rules concerning the quantity of dogs allowed within the cabin on each flight. You should call the airlines to create your reservation to ensure that your pet includes a reserved spot on the plane, and also to ask any questions that you might have so you’re prepared. If you are scheduling a round trip flight, ensure that you tell the airline that you will have your pup on legs of the trip. Count on paying a charge to have your pet fly with you; fees generally vary from $95-$125 each way. Book nonstop flights if at all possible like a long day's travel with limited use of comfortable doggie bathrooms and confinement to some carrier aren't in the welfare of the pet.

Health Certificates: The truly amazing Debate

Depending on whom you ask, you’ll receive differing answers about whether a health certificate is required to fly. Many people report needing to show their certificate when checking-in, while others say these were never even asked for a certificate. Most airlines require that you have a health certificate completed with proof that your dog is up to date on his rabies vaccinations.

Health certificates have to be issued within 10 days of your trip and usually cost less than $35.

Sedating Your pet

The American Veterinary Medical Association states that generally dogs shouldn't be given sedatives when flying as they can increase the likelihood of respiratory and cardiovascular problems. In case your dog is vulnerable to anxiety, you are able to consult with your veterinarian in this visit to determine if sedatives will be the safest choice for your pet.

Approved Travel Carriers

Your dog will need to travel inside an approved carrier during his/her time in most terminals but for the entire amount of the flight. Airlines will tell you the appropriate dimensions of the carriers that'll be allowed to be used on the plane. These dimension is according to how big carrier will fit under the seat, so trying to sneak in an additional inch isn't advisable! Check out the Guaranteed On-Board program for specific info on which carriers are appropriate for each airline!

Choosing a Travel Carrier

When selecting a dog carrier, make sure that your pup fits comfortably. Look out for carriers that provide small pockets for storing items just like your pet-fee receipt, health certificate, along with a small baggie of food. Packing everything you need for the pup might help result in the trip more manageable. Remember that this will count as the carry-on bag, so getting the option to store some personal items in along side it might be to your benefit!

Travel Carrier Tips

You might want to line the bottom of your dog carrier with blankets or absorbent materials if the dog comes with an accident. Remember to also attach identification information to the carrier so you can be easily reunited together with your dog should something happen. 

Getting your pet familiar with traveling in their carrier before a flight ticket might help reduce stress on your trip. Bring your dog on a few outings where he or she must ride within the carrier, so he associates it having a fun adventure.

Off towards the Airport!

You’re all ready to travel! Learn to cope with security efficiently and keep your dog comfortable throughout the flight within our Flying with Your Dog Blog!