Fly the Friendly Skies with Fido!
Are you getting rid to fly the friendly skies with your pet this summer? Plan ahead! Make sure you know which airlines allow for pet travel and be aware of the requirements for pet kennels. If you are planning to use that old cardboard box with cut-out air holes in it, plan on walking or driving to your destination. The airlines have strict policies, but you can still, in most cases, enjoy a journey amongst the clouds with Fido or FiFi in tow.
Air travel can be a traumatic experience for your pet, what with the cheap airline food and cramped leg room and all. Seriously! You have to be prepared. Some airlines actually do not allow pets to travel on board or in the cargo hold at all. Be sure to check with your airline first before you book your flight.
For domestic flights, be sure to notify your airline way in advance of your intentions to bring your pet as in many cases, there is a limited amount of room for pets to be transported, even on the largest of aircrafts.
If you are using more than one airline, check the rules for each one and inquire if there are separate fees for each one or if one fee applies to all airlines used. If you have a carry-on kennel for a smaller pet, the airlines that do allow this might charge a fee comparable to that if your pet was being transported beneath in the cargo area.
Kennels that are over nine or ten inches in height are typically meant for the cargo area. For carry-on, the kennels must be no greater than nine or ten inches so that they can fit under the seat in frotn of you. (“Scooby Doo on the plane! Scooby Doo on the plane!” – For those of you unfamiliar with this, go to You Tube and search for Miss Swan episodes from Mad TV…the Scooby Doo on the plane one is hilarious!)
If you are able to bring your pet aboard as a carry on, your pet will have to remain confined to the kennel for the duration of the flight. In other words, your charming lap dog cannot join you for the in-flight festivities!
Soft-shelled kennels are meant for carry-on use. They are gaining in popularity because they usually come with shoulder straps, which allow for easier carrying of the kennel. Or, if you happen to have three teenage boys like the writer of this post today does, then there’s your answer as to how you will carry the kennel from the airplane to your next destination!
Make sure your seat back and tray tables are up and enjoy the flight! May your in-flight movie entertainment be “101 Dalmatians!”
(Thanks to the About.com web site for some of this information!)