Perhaps you are planning a trip with your four-legged friend or maybe you already did and you don’t know if it was a good experience for him. Or are you wondering if you can travel with dogs by plane safely?. In this article we will tell you everything you need to know about taking your dog in the cargo of a plane, options to avoid it and suggestions to make it less traumatic.
How does your dog feel in the cargo of the plane
I don’t know if you are one of those who enjoy traveling the most. But for many people, the experience of traveling by plane is a bit stressful. It takes many steps that test our patience and can be distressing.
Imagine what your pet feels. What he wants most in the world is to be with you, and he cannot do it. His safe place in the world is his house, which he knows perfectly, and right now he is in a strange environment.
Not to mention that many times, the weather conditions in an aircraft cargo are extreme. It can suffer a long time in the sun while being loaded or the suffocating heat inside the cargo. As well as the cold once the plane is in high heights.
If the airport staff are a pet lovers, they might be treated kindly. But there are plenty of videos and testimonials that show how they treat dogs in cargo like suitcases. Some dogs have ended up with bleeding wounds and signs of dehydration due to abuse while traveling.
Some airlines chose not to risk lawsuits and canceled the possibility of dogs traveling on the plane. Others avoid it in times of high heat.
And this is so because it is a fact that your pet suffers a lot in these conditions. Even, brachycephalic dogs are not allowed to travel, due to the respiratory problems they have and the risk of death on an airplane trip.
It is best to avoid cargo trips
Before deciding to have your dog with you on a plane, have you exhausted all the possibilities? Seeing how traumatic it is, you need to think about whether it’s the only option.
-Find out if you have no way to travel by land. Even if it is more expensive or takes longer to arrive, your pet will suffer much less being in your company.
-Consider if there is no possibility of leaving it with someone. There are special pet-friendly services, or just ask a friend to take care of your dog in your absence.
-Consult on various airlines. When it is not large, sometimes for very little difference in weight some airlines allow dogs to travel in the cabin. It is not the same to take your friend in a dog carrier next to you, than to put him in a dog cage in the cargo.
If there is no other alternative, because your trip is not short, or you are moving, we give you some suggestions. This way, it may be less difficult and risky for your pet to travel in the cargo of the plane.
Tips so that your pet does not suffer as much on its journey in the cargo of the plane
–Try to travel only on direct flights. This helps a lot, since when transferring luggage from one plane to the other, your dog is treated like one more suitcase. The less loading or unloading, the less mistreatment your friend will receive. They may be more expensive, but your dog will appreciate it.
-The carrier you choose must be of high quality. Always make sure they have a waterproof floor, and that your dog can stand inside it without his ears touching the ceiling.
-Get your pet used to at least a month before to the dog cage that you will use. Try to do it in a positive way, rewarding him when he enters it or even making him sleep there at night. It would be nice to put on a familiar blanket and some toys.
-Try to make your flight the same as your dog’s. And try to see how they get him on and off the plane, that way you will be calmer about the treatment he receives. If possible, talk to a flight attendant and let them know that your dog is traveling on the same plane.
–Do not travel when the planes are very full. Because on those dates your dog is more likely to be mistreated. There are hundreds of testimonies of how they are beaten as if they were boxes and not living beings that suffer.
-If your dog is brachycephalic (those with a flat nose) or a puppy, it is totally not recommended to travel in the cargo. You are putting his life at risk.
-If the time of your trip is in winter or summer, try to choose the hours when the temperatures are more bearable. Avoid mornings and nights in winter, and evenings in summer. You don’t realize it because you’re air-conditioned, but in the cargo it can be hell.
–Have your dog super identified, with badge and collar, and your address and telephone contact. The dog cage or carrier must also be identified. And you should travel with a recent photo of him, in case you have to show it to identify him.
-If the vet does not recommend it, do not buy tranquilizers or sedatives. They are not the best for your dog, although it may seem more comfortable to you.
-On arrival at the destination, check that he is in good condition. If you notice something wrong, don’t stop complaining and make sure to take photos and videos. But the most important thing is that you take your dog to the vet immediately.
Well, we hope that this article has served to answer your doubts about whether it is safe for your dog to travel in the cargo of a plane. Traveling with dogs by plane can be easier than traveling with children, but you have to be very careful if you do not want them to suffer.
If possible, avoid it. If it is unavoidable, take the advice we give you to make it less traumatic.
Finally, we advise you to read this article: Traveling by airplane with pets from the Human Society.