Did you know that over two million pets and other live animals are transported by air every year in the United States? Whether you're planning to fly cross-country or abroad, it's important to make traveling arrangements for your furry friend before getting on the plane. USA.gov recommends:
Travelers ask their airline about requirements for and restrictions on traveling with a pet. Check with your airline to find out if they allow pets in the passenger cabin. If you can't bring your pet on your flight as checked or carry-on baggage, you might be able to ship your pet as cargo. You'll likely have to provide a certificate from a veterinarian stating that your pet is in good health. Airlines may not, however, require health certificates for service animals used by people with disabilities.
Travelers make sure they bring an approved kennel. The kennel for a carry-on pet must fit under the seat in front of you, and your airline will likely require your pet to stay in the kennel during the flight and in the airport. You'll want to de-clutter your pet's kennel before you get to the airport, in case TSA agents need to do a physical inspection of your pet's carrier.
Travelers carry a leash. Whether you need to walk Fido through a metal detector or carry him through, bringing a leash can help keep your animal under control in the busy airport environment.
Travelers take comfort into account. Traveling, particularly loading and unloading, can be stressful for an animal, so you should always consider your pet's comfort. Try feeding your pet a light meal two hours before getting to the airport. Walk your pet before leaving for the airport, and again before checking in. While you should leave the sedatives at home, if you're thinking about giving your pet something to help it sleep easier on the trip, always check with your veterinarian first.