Pets on a Plane

There has been a lot of buzz and pressure surrounding policies regarding pets on airplanes this year. It’s important to research and determine whether or not it is a good idea to bring your pet along or keep them at home with a sitter.

Here are a few policies for airlines:

Alaska Airlines:

  • Alaska Air allows small pets (dogs, cats, rabbits, and household birds) to travel in the cabin if the combined weight of the pet and carrier does not exceed 20 lbs (9 kg). Dogs and cats must be at least 8 weeks old to travel in the cabin.
  • Passengers traveling with emotional support animals will be able to bring only one emotional support animal on board with them: either a dog or a cat that will always need to stay leashed or in a carrier.
  • Documentation and a 48-hour notice are also required.
American Airlines
  • American Airlines allows small pets (at least 8 weeks old) to travel in the cabin if the combined weight of the pet and carrier does not exceed 20 lbs
  • Passengers to provide three forms of documentation 48 hours before a flight for any emotional support or psychiatric service animal. The rules also prohibit many types of animals from flying as emotional support animals, including amphibians, goats, and snakes or spiders.
  • Dogs and cats are the only approved animals allowed on Allegiant Air flights. Guide dogs are allowed regardless of their weight and size.
  • Health certification is not necessary for pets traveling in the cabin.
  • Passengers must provide proper documentation from a mental health professional when bringing an emotional support or comfort animal on board.
Delta Air Lines
  • Carry-On Pets. Small dogs, cats and household birds can travel in the cabin for a one-way fee, collected at check-in.
  • They must be able to fit in a small, ventilated pet carrier that fits under the seat in front of you.
  • Your pet counts as your personal item, part of your carry-on luggage.
  • Pit bull-type dogs and animals such as hedgehogs, ferrets, reptiles and rodents are not permitted to fly as service or support animals.
  • The airline reserves the right to refuse transportation to any animal that growls, barks excessively, jumps on passengers, relieves themselves in the gate area or cabin, or eats off seat-back tray tables.
  • Frontier Airlines allows small pets (dogs, cats, rabbits, guinea pigs, hamsters and small household birds) to travel in the cabin on flights within the USA.
  • Only dogs and cats are able to travel on international flights.
  • Support animals requires documentation and excludes aggressive or disruptive animals and unusual or exotic animals including rodents, reptiles, insects, rabbits, non-household birds and animals with foul odors.
  • Only 4 pets on each flight
  • JetBlue accepts small cats and dogs in the cabin on both domestic and international flights if the combined weight of the pet and carrier does not exceed 20 lbs
  • 1 emotional support animal per passenger and requires documentation 48 hours before a flight, including a medical or health professional’s form, a veterinary health form and a confirmation of animal behavior.
Southwest Airlines
  • Southwest Airlines accepts pets on a first-come, first-served basis until they reach their capacity. The total number of pet carriers on each flight is limited to 6
  • Southwest Airlines allows customers to bring small pets (cats and dogs only) in the cabin on their domestic flights. Unfortunately, pets are not allowed to travel on international flights.
  • Limits ESAs to one dog or cat per passenger.
  • Animals must be kept on a leash or in a carrier both in the airport and on the aircraft.
  • Proper documentation is required for each animal and disruptive animals may be denied boarding.
United Airlines
  • United allows domesticated cats, dogs, rabbits and household birds (excluding cockatoos) to travel accompanied in the aircraft cabin on most flights within the U.S.
  • Passengers may travel with only one emotional support animal.
  • Animals must be trained to behave properly in a public setting and, as with most airlines, anyone traveling with an emotional support animal is not permitted to sit in an exit row.

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