Dogs Not Allowed on Airplanes [2023]: A Comprehensive Guide for Pet Owners

As a team of expert dog owners at Snubby Puppy™, we understand the importance of traveling with your furry companion. However, not all dogs are allowed to fly on airplanes. It can be a confusing and stressful process for pet owners to navigate. That's why we've created this comprehensive guide to help you understand which dogs are not allowed on airplanes, the rules for flying with dogs, and additional quick tips and facts to make the process less daunting.

What Dogs Are Not Allowed on Airplanes?

It's important to note that each airline has its own set of rules and regulations regarding pet travel. However, there are some general guidelines that most airlines follow for the safety and well-being of all animals on board. Here are some examples of dogs that are typically not allowed on airplanes:

  1. Brachycephalic Breeds – These are dogs with short snouts or flat faces, such as pugs, bulldogs, and shih tzus. Their anatomy makes it difficult for them to breathe properly, especially in stressful or high-altitude situations.

  2. Pregnant Dogs – Pregnant dogs are not allowed to fly due to the potential risk of complications during the flight.

  3. Large Dogs – Depending on the airline, dogs that weigh over a certain amount (usually around 20-30 pounds) may not be allowed in the cabin and must be transported in the cargo hold.

  4. Aggressive Breeds – Some airlines prohibit certain breeds that are considered to be aggressive, such as pit bulls or rottweilers.

It's important to check with the airline you plan to travel with, as their policies may differ from these general guidelines.

What Are the Rules for Dogs on Planes?

Each airline has its own rules and regulations surrounding pet travel, but there are some general guidelines that most airlines follow to ensure the safety and well-being of all animals on board. Here are some common rules for flying with dogs:

  1. Health Certificates – Most airlines require a recent health certificate (usually within 10 days of the flight) from a veterinarian, stating that your dog is healthy and up-to-date on all necessary vaccinations.

  2. Carrier Requirements – Your dog must be able to stand up and turn around comfortably in their carrier. The carrier must also be leak-proof and well-ventilated.

  3. Reservations – You must make a reservation for your dog in advance, as most airlines have limits on the number of pets allowed on each flight.

  4. Sedation – Most airlines discourage sedating your dog during the flight, as it can affect their breathing and balance.

  5. Fees – Airlines usually charge a separate fee for pet travel, which can range from $50 – $500 depending on the airline.

Again, it's important to check with the airline you plan to travel with, as their policies may differ.

What Size Dog Can You Fly With?

The size of your dog will determine whether they can fly in the cabin with you or if they need to be transported in the cargo hold. Most airlines have size limitations for pets in the cabin, which can range from 18 inches long to 22 inches long and up to 20 pounds. If your dog is too large to fly in the cabin, they will need to be transported in the cargo hold.

It's important to note that traveling in the cargo hold can be stressful and potentially dangerous for dogs, so it's always best to check with the airline about their specific policies and procedures for pet travel.

Quick Tips and Facts

  • Make sure your dog is well-exercised and has relieved themselves before the flight.
  • Label your dog's carrier with their name, your name, and contact information.
  • Avoid feeding your dog a heavy meal before the flight to prevent motion sickness.
  • Check with the airline about any documentation needed for international travel.
  • Be prepared for potential delays or cancellations due to weather or other issues.

FAQ

Why are shih tzus not allowed to fly?

Shih tzus are considered a brachycephalic breed, which means they have a short snout and flat face. This anatomy makes it difficult for them to breathe properly, especially in stressful or high-altitude situations. Therefore, most airlines do not allow shih tzus to fly for their safety and well-being.

What are the rules for dogs on planes?

The rules for dogs on planes vary depending on the airline. Some common rules include health certificates, carrier requirements, reservations, restrictions on certain breeds, and fees. It's important to check with the airline you plan to travel with for their specific policies and procedures.

What size dog can you fly with?

The size of the dog will determine whether they can fly in the cabin with you or be transported in the cargo hold. Most airlines have size limitations for pets in the cabin, which can range from 18 inches long to 22 inches long and up to 20 pounds.

Quick Tips and Facts

  • The TSA allows one carry-on bag and one personal item, so if your dog is in the cabin with you, they will count as one of your carry-on items.
  • If your dog is in the cargo hold, make sure to attach a "Live Animal" sticker to the outside of the carrier.
  • Be sure to pack any necessary medications or food for your dog in case of an emergency or unexpected delays.

Conclusion

Traveling with your furry companion is a wonderful experience, but it's important to understand the rules and regulations surrounding pet travel. By following the guidelines set by your airline, you can ensure the safety and comfort of your dog during the flight.

Remember, each airline has their own set of rules and regulations regarding pet travel, so it's best to check with them before booking your flight. With these guidelines and precautions in mind, you and your dog can have a safe and enjoyable flight together.

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