If you are thinking about traveling with your dog by air, there are many legal and safety considerations to keep in mind before doing so. Every factor from your dog’s health to the weather can determine whether or not your dog will be able to travel with you. It’s crucial to familiarize yourself with these laws and regulations before you even book your flight. Doing this can ensure a safe, comfortable flight for you and your dog.
Air travel will go much more smoothly if your dog is healthy, but more importantly, federal law requires a clean bill of health for your dog before flying. The law states that dogs must be up to date on their vaccinations as well as free of communicable disease, and this certification of health must be made within the ten days leading up to the flight.
Many airlines have heat and cold embargos in place during the summer and winter months to keep dogs safe from extreme temperatures. When traveling with your dog, consider both ends of the flight – if either place is likely to be over 85 degrees or under 35 degrees, an airliner might not allow your dog on the flight.
Isolated countries sometimes require quarantine of animals, so it’s best to do research on wherever you’re going to determine whether this will be the case. England and New Zealand are two examples of isolated countries with quarantine regulations in place. If your trip involves stopping in multiple places, look into the laws and regulations of those countries as well.
Although some might opt for tranquilization to calm a dog before a flight, tranquilization can make a dog very ill, or even kill it. For this reason, many airliners don’t allow tranquilized pets on their flights. Because of the severe medical risks surrounding this procedure, you should not do it before a flight since your dog won’t have access to immediate medical attention in the event of an emergency.
To help your dog cope with air travel, you can begin training well before the flight. In the days leading up to your flight, allow your dog to get accustomed to a dog crate so that he or she will be able to better tolerate the flight. Your dog should also be able to deal well with strangers and unfamiliar environments.
Many airlines have specific regulations in place to ensure a safe trip for your dog. By following these guidelines, you can properly prepare yourself and your beloved pet for air travel.