How to Prepare your Pet for a Flight

Alan Morrison

How to Prepare your Pet for a Flight

Now that we’re firmly on the way into spring, the chances are that your thoughts have begun to turn towards vacation opportunities. What do you do, though, when you see your pooch staring at you with big puppy-dog eyes as you browse through possible flights and hotels? For some people – the answer is to take their pet with them on their vacation, and in fact, this solution is becoming more popular than ever.

Of course, before you start printing your pet’s boarding pass, you might need to think carefully about how you’re going to prepare your furry friend for his flight. After all, there’s a lot more to think about with a four-legged travel companion than whether or not you should take your world travel adapter along for the trip.

Before Your Flight

A big step when you prepare your pet for a flight is to introduce them to their accommodations. Before you even consider taking your pet with you on your vacation, you’ll need to ensure they’re comfortable in their carrier. Having an animal that’s terrified of going in their carry case is going to lead to disaster very quickly if you expect your furry friend to stay in that location for hours at a time.

Don’t hide the carrier in the attic. Instead, leave it out by your pet’s bed so that they can explore it whenever they like. At the same time, remember to take him or her for rides in the carrier from time to time so that they feel more comfortable sitting in it. Your pet shouldn’t associate travel exclusively with visiting the vet.

Get the Right Info

The chances are that you’ll need to get a certificate of health from your vet that you can take with you to the airport. Make sure that your dog or cat also has a collar attached that includes your phone number, and information, along with an embedded microchip.

While you’re looking for vital information on what you need to prepare for when flying with your pet, remember to check the airport’s website to learn what you should expect when you arrive. Some TSA officers will ask you to take your pet out of their carrier as you go through security, so you’ll need to bring a leash or harness.

When You’re in the Air

Part of preparing for your flight is knowing what you’re going to do with your pet when you’re in the air. It’s important to make sure that you fly with a company that allows you to place the pet carrier under the seat in front of you – rather than in the cargo hold. Otherwise, you’ll need to opt for a pet-friendly airline that gets attendants to check on your four-legged friend at regular intervals.

Leaving your pet unattended in an unfamiliar space for long periods of time is bound to lead to panic. This is why so many people avoid using cargo-holds to store their beloved furry family members.


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