Travel Tip of the Day: Pets and Airport Security

DogPets and Airport Security
I’ve been seeing an increase in travelers with dogs recently, and most of them have their companions wearing service dog harness vests. Unfortunately, I think most of these dogs aren’t really service dogs, as I know a number of people who say they’ve bought these vests so their animals fly for free, which is really pathetic in my opinion. I’m sure the industry is going to crack down on this sooner or later, which is only going to make it more difficult for those who really need a service dog, but that’s another can of worms.

For now, the worst part is seeing people try to put their animals (usually a cat or small dog) in their carriers through the X-ray machine. That’s a huge no-no. You have to take your animal out of the carrier and either walk or carry it through the metal detector with you. Here are more pet travel tips from the TSA.

Happy Labor Day!

 

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Comments

  1. I am not a “dog lover” — so sue me. I will refuse to sit near a dog — they have a foul smell and I get ill. Husband is allergic to them. The last time I was on a plane a woman had a small dog around her neck like a collar!!! I did not see it until we were leaving the plane (she was across a wide aisle.) BUT SHE actually took it into the ladies’ room with her. AARGH. Did she let it use the toilet?

  2. Have a friend who has acquired a Shitzuh as a companion, but calls it a service pet because her husband has a chronic condition (unassisted by said pet). Apparently, there is some place offering a couple of hours of puppy training that then hands out a certification that the pet is a “service dog”. They just want to travel with their “baby” including local restaurants, etc.

    I think it is sad because there are people who depend on service dogs all day, every day and I fear that when the airlines and other places finally develop a backbone, the people with a real need are going to be hurt by the actions of these many selfish people.

  3. I happen to have a real “service dog”. My comments about traveling with pets…..first of all, to be able to take in the cabin, they obviously, must be fairly small. Every time I have traveled with mine, no one knows until we land. If she weren’t a service animal, the airline charges a ridiculous fee. I mostly fly Southwest who charges $85 one way, close to the price of my ticket on my usual one hour flight. If the charge were more reasonable, like what most airlines charge for a checked bag, maybe there wouldn’t be so many “service dogs”. Meanwhile, children under 2 yrs still fly for free!!!!…..anyone within 6 rows knows they are on board!!!??

  4. From the feline side of the house and coming from someone who has brought multiple cats on international destinations here is my tip. Buy a cat body harness and put it on them and let them get used to it, they won’t like it, but put it on and let them wear it a few days before flying. Day of the flight put the body harness on and put them in their kennels. When you get to TSA and either check them as extra luggage/cargo or in cabin you need to x-ray the kennels. Open the kennel and attach the leash to the harness. If your cat gets freaked out by people, a dog etc. you have a safety net per se. Otherwise as cats do, they might scratch you, you let them go and it’s off to the races.

    And don’t tranq’ your kitties!

  5. Well, a common practice is to take pets out of the kennel and walk with them through the metal detector but generally it’s not a problem to put them through the X-Ray. The level of radiation is so small that it can’t harm them at all. If it can’t be true, can you imagine how would X-Ray operators look like after 12-hour shift?

  6. I suspect travelers with dogs will soon need a vets certificate. Personally, I am a cat person. Nothing against dogs, though. I’m not sure I’d like to be on a plane next to one. I’d ask to move, and there would be another problem for the airlines.

  7. By the way, I would NEVER send any pet (even a dog!) through cargo. A friend did it and her dog arrived DEAD. If you value your pet, you should never send them this way…….

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