Stay Loyal to Your Pet and Take It With You Wherever You Go
Aggiornato il: 16 set 2019
If you are a loving owner of an animal, then you definitely know how hard is it to say goodbye to it when you leave home for a longer period. Travel is one of those challenging occasions. But after all, we live in advanced times and we are now able to carry our cute little (or sometimes not so little) friends with us.
All animals are unique, and just like people, they require special care and attention. This is especially relevant when you take the decision to put them on a plane. On the other hand, various airlines set their particular rules for carrying pets, besides, when it comes to international travel, local authorities have different requirements.
We browsed through several reliable sources and collected information to help you on your journey and probably save a considerable amount of trouble for you and your uncommon flying company. Here is a mini guide about how to prepare and handle the most popular types of animals onboard.
Dogs can melt your heart and usually they adapt pretty well in unusual situations but flying is another story. There are millions of people afraid of air travel and while this fear is unreasonable, it is not surprising a lot of dogs can feel it too.
It is absolutely necessary to provide the right size of a properly tagged crate or a kennel for your pet. A smart approach would be to start training the dog occupying the designated space before hitting the road, as this way it will be familiar with it in advance and later this crate will create a sense for security and it will help for overcoming the discomfort.
When it comes to dogs, there are several categories that it is important to be distinguished. Apart from pets, there are assistance animals, and then, there are emotional support animals. While the emotional support animals can be literally anything (including an elephant), assistance or service animals are just dogs. An example of such a dog is a guide dog for an owner with disabilities which has the privilege to stay in the cabin of an aircraft, and yet, not always. When traveling internationally with a helper dog, make sure you carry all the documentation and certification needed with you. You will have to also outfit your animal with a vest or a harness.
Some dog breeds are considered more violent than others and depending on the country, some breeds are not allowed in.
You might have to microchip your dog.
Clearly, you do not want to leave home without taking your special fluffy accessory - your cat. This is understandable but cats are attached to their environment and usually, they take more time to adjust to a new house, likewise, distant travel can cause them serious stress.
It is a good idea to put in the cat kennel objects that your cat recognizes and likes. This will help it to relax. Having said that, do not follow the advice to give your pet sedatives or any kind of drugs for relieving anxiety, it can cause damage! At a high altitude, that kind of medications might lead to heart and respiratory problems for the animal.
Cats are relatively small creatures so you would think they would be fine in the cabin and will not bother anyone. Unfortunately, this is not always the case. Some airlines allow pets in the cabin if they weight below 7-8 kg but regulations vary. Check the list on pettravel.com for details about carriers and countries standards.
Beware of rabies! Cats are prone to catch this disease because of their own wild nature which prompts them to get involved with wild animals that carry the disease.
The Falcon is the only type of animal allowed in the cabin of one Middle Eastern airline but that is an exception as this bird is the national symbol of the country the airline belongs to. Reality is, not many carriers are tolerant of birds in the cabin because they consider them loud and disturbing. They do not mind flying them in the cargo hold, though.
You might be suspicious whether the cargo is warm and pressurized enough, calm down, there are strict regulations about that. Also, your pet will not be tossed around in the hold like a basketball ball - there are special compartments and techniques to guarantee the safety of all the guests of the cargo.
Authorities and aviation companies will be more easygoing if your bird is of a well-known household species (not protected), rather than of an exotic and possibly harmful kind. If you have traveled to a tropical country, for example, and you fell in love with a strange type of bird, think again, will they let you bring it with you? In some scenarios, they can
ask you to put it under anesthesia, do not do it, it is dangerous!
4. Exotic animals
As we mentioned before, an emotional support animal can be any animal. Also called comfort or relief animals, they are highly valued and welcomed in specific destinations, often, if possible, even in the cabin of the airplane. They provide help to owners with mental disabilities or other health conditions.
This support should be approved and, recently, because of past incidents, an approval is becoming hard to get.
The majority of passengers with a permit to have their emotional support animals with them carry cats, dogs, rabbits, squirrels, rats but sometimes frogs, spiders, turtles, goats, ducks, kangaroos, ponies, monkeys, and pigs as well!
If you are wondering whether you can buy a seat for your pet and happily fly together shoulder to shoulder over the world, the answer is NO!