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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jun 2010
    Location
    New York City
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    20

    flying with your pets?

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    Has anyone done it recently on domestic flights?
    dog or cat?
    how big? size & weight?

    (FYI - I have flown my cats between Switzerland and the US a couple of times - both times in the cabin on a non- US airlines.)

    We are thinking of going away for 2 weeks and will leave our cats at home. But we also have a Westie whom we adopted a few months ago and don't really feel comfortable boarding him since he has bad legs and is shy around other dogs. He is about 13lbs and can fit inside a Sherpa bag (ok, it's a bit tight). I just can't decide if it's a good idea to have him cramped inside a bag for a 5-hr flight. Flying cargo is not an option - my DH will absolutely not allow it.
    Last edited by gfbikernyc; 10-26-2010 at 06:47 PM.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Sep 2010
    Location
    Jacksonville area of NC
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    821
    Several years ago my one sister flew from California (San Francisco area to Cleveland, Ohio) with a young Rat Terrier. Her puppy did fine. Long story, but the dog did fine for the flight. He flew in the cabin with my sister. I think he was around 6 months old at that time.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Apr 2006
    Posts
    1,372
    I was hoping someone with better info could get back to you. I fly with my birds sometimes, but size/weight for them is rather irrelevant to you.
    There is a max weight allowed, I think it's 15lb, and I've never had them weigh my carrier, so I think they'll take your word for it.
    Like everything else, they are more strict than they used to be. Make sure you have reservations, they have rules about the number and types of pets allowed. with my birds, I've been bumped because someone showed up with a cat before I got there, and they don't allow "incompatible" pets in the same cabin (they also don't allow the pets out of the carriers, so I'm not sure how that's relevant).
    I agree with your DH, I'd rather have a dog cramped in a too-small crate then put in cargo.
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  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jul 2009
    Location
    Dallas metro
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    A friend of mine took a Westie I picked up on the side of the road and flew back across the country with her. As you say it is a tight fit for a Westie in an approved under-the-seat sized kennel.. Spend some time working with your dog prior to the flight, slowly increasing the length of time he spends in the kennel. Make it a good experience! Lots of little treats. I gave my friend one of those rolls of pet food you see at the checkout area at Petco and she broke pieces off of it and gave it to the dog periodically.

    The only problem she ran into was security making her take the dog out of the kennel during screening. She was concerned about getting her back in, but we had spent enough time with the dog and treats that she practically flew back into the kennel when it was opened up.

    I used to work for the airlines, and I agree with your husband. I would never send a pet of mine (or recommend it to anyone else) via the cargo option.

    Every airlines website has posted rules and regulations for pet travel. Some have limits on the number/type in the cabin, some require paperwork from your vet, etc. You definitely want to check the appropriate airlines website before going to the airport!
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  5. #5
    Join Date
    Sep 2009
    Location
    Tampa, Florida Area
    Posts
    44
    I've flown with my Yorkie (4 lbs) many, many times, both pre- and post- 9/11. He's small enough that if he gets whiney, I can sneak him on my lap under a blanket and no one really notices, but for shorter flights, he's done fine. A lot of it depends on the temperament of your dog -- I have friends who give their dogs a vet-approved mild sedative when getting on the plane to ease their dog's anxiety. Be sure, too, to walk your dog as last-minute as possible before going through security, and ASAP when you get off the plane. You will have to take the dog out of the carrier while going through security (it doesn't go through the XRay machine!) so the dog has to be comfortable being in your arms through that portion of things as well.

    Good luck! It's gotten harder to travel with the dog since we've had the kids, but we do love having him with us when we can.

    And if you can't bring the dog, consider a dog walker in lieu of boarding for an older dog. THey will come to your house 3x a day or so, exercise your dog, etc., but the dog gets to sleep in its normal spot, etc. We do that when possible if we can't bring Tucker with us.

    Hope this helps!

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jun 2010
    Location
    New York City
    Posts
    20
    Thanks everyone.
    I managed to trick him into the Sherpa bag today - he wasn't very happy but did stay inside for 20 minutes. He did bark though when I went to check up on him and let him out. Oh well.......looks like I will have to go to the pet store tomorrow and get more treats!

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Jul 2003
    Location
    Traveling Nomad
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    Glad this was posted as we are going to have to deal with when we move and transport our Boston Terrier, Paisley, to Belize . The fact that it is an international flight just makes it all the more iffy as to whether it will all work out and be allowed. I do NOT want her flying in cargo (w/her smushed face, she's even more likely to have problems with temperature and breathing than most dogs), but she's definitely on the edge of not being able to fit into an airline approved under-seat carrier. It's only a 3-hour flight, so I am sure she'd be totally fine even if she couldn't stand in the carrier, but the regulations say she needs to be able to. She's a shorter but long Boston Terrier, 16 lbs, and we'll just have to buy a carrier and see if it would ever work. If not, I have no idea what we'll do. I envy dinabean w/her 4-lb. Yorkie!
    Emily

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  8. #8
    Join Date
    Apr 2008
    Location
    Texas
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    894
    Try Companion Air http://www.companionair.com they are staring out and seem to offer great service.
    Last edited by TxDoc; 10-28-2010 at 06:04 PM. Reason: correct website and info
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  9. #9
    Join Date
    Aug 2005
    Location
    Houston, TX
    Posts
    303
    I have flown with my Jack Russell Terrier a few times. He is 16 lbs, and does fit into a sherpa under seat bag, but can't stand up. He doesn't mind though since he can turn around just fine. No one has ever commented about him not being able to stand up, so I wouldn't worry about that.

    He actually loves his little carrier since he knows it means he gets to go somewhere. We use it in the car as well since otherwise he is bouncing all over the place and it isn't safe for him or for me.

    One thing to remember, the dog carrier counts as one of your carry on bags, even though they charge you extra for it... grrrr....

    for going through security, you do have to take them out of the carrier and hold them going through the metal detester... but they do let you have a leash on them (which I do just in case he decides to make a dash for it!) and I have had TSA agents give me a hand getting him back into the carrier... there was just too much going on and to look at for him to go back on by choice.

    Good luck. I am with everyone else here on not wanting to put them in as cargo. I am trying to figure out how I will move the dog if I end up moving overseas for work... that will be a long flight (or a couple of long flights)....sigh....
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  10. #10
    Join Date
    Jun 2010
    Location
    New York City
    Posts
    20
    Hi DrBadger

    Which airlines did you take? Both Frontier and Jetblue have direct flights to Denver so that's pretty much our choices.

    What size of sherpa bag did you use for your Jack Russell Terrier?

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Jul 2003
    Location
    Traveling Nomad
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    6,763
    DrBadger,

    Thanks so much for posting. It sounds like your Jack Russell is very similar in size to our Boston Terrier, Paisley, so that gives me a lot of hope. I also would like to see a link to the model/size of Sherpa bag you have and know what airlines you have used to fly with your dog.

    Thank you! I'm feeling better already.
    Emily

    2011 Jamis Dakar XC "Toto" - Selle Italia Ldy Gel Flow
    2007 Trek Pilot 5.0 WSD "Gloria" - Selle Italia Diva Gel Flow
    2004 Bike Friday Petite Pocket Crusoe - Selle Italia Diva Gel Flow

 

 

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