A few years ago, if you owned a dog, it wasn't easy to take him with you on a plane journey. All you could do back then, was either send him to a friend's place or to an animal shelter for the time being. Both weren't safe options as trusting someone else to take care of your pet the way you do, was far from convincing.
But now that flying with dogs is officially allowed in airlines, you don't need to face this insensitive issue. All you need to do is get a permit for your dog and prepare for the journey.
Things You Need to Keep in Mind
Before you make any travel plans with your dog (if you are flying), you will have to check if the airline has any restrictions about taking pets on board. Not every airline allows this, as dogs can be quite a menace at times. You should get well-versed with all the policies and permissions you need, before you leave.
Many airlines allow only one dog per person and if there are more, then you have to purchase another seat. Then again, this only applies to dogs under fifteen lbs. Bigger dogs can be transported through cargo. Here are a few suggestions that might come handy for you on your journey.
- Buy low-cost airline tickets, as they will give you the liberty to get your dog on board, or in the cargo (if he weighs more than fifteen pounds). There are several low-cost airlines which provide this facility and that too, with good service.
- After you get the permission and make necessary arrangements, you will have to obtain a health certificate from your veterinarian saying the dog is healthy to make the journey by air. This should be considered a legal document while booking with the airline.
- If the veterinarian prescribes, only then use limited amount of tranquilizers and sedatives for your dog.
- Make the dog wear a collar and attach a legible identification tag to it, along with the rabies vaccination tag and license tag. You should also add your phone number and address to it, in case there is some problem.
- Use a proper kennel which is approved by the USDA and the airline carrying the dog.
- Make sure you have clipped the dog's nails to keep him from scratching the crate, and attach a dish for food and water inside the crate, so as to ensure that he doesn't run out of food and water. Feed your dog and give him water to drink before the departure and carry extra food supplies just in case he gets hungry.
- Make sure your pet is crate trained and can manage staying in the crate for long journeys as that is very important when you are traveling with him.
- Also make sure you close the door of the crate properly; don't lock it, but make sure your pet cannot escape.
Once the journey is over, make sure he is fine and not injured in any way. Also check whether he has finished the food and water you left for him. Additionally, make sure to clean the crate as soon as you get down from the plane and let him loose for sometime.