How to Travel With a Pet in an Airplane

Travel-Pet-200x300Traveling with a cat or dog can be a real challenge.  Some airlines until recently, unless an animal was a service animal, would insist that the cat or the dog be put into the cargo hold. What that meant though was that pets were literally relegated in spaces like they were suitcases, and they were not attended to for the entire plane ride.

Animals would be left in hot or cold conditions without food or water and would be there until the plane arrived at the destination. This was traumatic for many pets that were unable to feel any sense of direction or know when they would arrive at their destination. Since and animal cannot talk, many of them would whimper and cry, not knowing their destination, or knowing if their owner had abandoned him or her. When you listen to the noises that children make, let alone animals when a plane is landing, it is very evident that they are terrified. There is a whole new level of G force as well as shock that the body is a part of in flight. In addition to this, there is also a whole new level of pressure that is in the ears of the pets, like babies as well. In addition to this, when you consider that a dog or a cat can also hear 4-5 better than a human, imagine all of the terrifying noises that they also must be hearing coming from the plane.

When you think about a cat or dog also being loaded into the cargo hold, you also have to think about the confusion of the turn style for the pet as well as the handling of their crate by people that they do not know. Many cats and dogs will cower in their pet holder based on the fact that they cannot stand the noise. When it comes to cats and dogs being in this position, as a pet owner with a furry member of your family that must mean that your heart breaks for them, the cargo hold is not appropriate.

What About Service Animals?

This is a title that has become much abused in recent years by pet owners. Many pet owners will a service vest online for their dog and then put it on them so that they have the ability to bring the cat or the dog into the main cabin of the plane. The real problem with this is that there are many people who have medical or psychological needs who are being discriminated against now because of the people out there who are insisting that their animal is a service animal. This lack of attention on behalf of pet owners has led to many bans of service animals on planes and in other locations.

What About the Fair Treatment of Animals?

You will be thankful to know that there has been a change in the rules of most airlines these days. Instead of thinking that it is OK to treat pets this way, now they are being brought on board to airlines and stowed if they are small in a carry on under the seat in front of the traveler. This can still mean that large animals have to travel in the cargo hold sometimes. However, it also means that they are able to be checked on at all times by the staff of the airline and that their needs of food and water are now being accommodated. It is hard to imagine that in 2015, it is possible that animals were being treated in such a manner.

Animals not having the ability to speak depend on us to be their voices and to ensure that they are safe and cared for in every sense of the word. That also means standing up to the airlines and ensuring that they know that it is not feasible or OK to treat pets like luggage. They are after all members of our family and deserve to be with us for our entire lives. Consider how you would feel if you were locked in a little crate and relegated to a small area in the bottom of a plane. Chances are you would not be too happy about it. Now if you take away your ability to speak as well as your ability to completely understand what is going on, you have the same level of comprehension that a pet would have.  If there are any airlines out there that are not supporting the pets inside the main cabin, it is time for a change!  What are your thoughts or experiences regarding air travel?



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