How to Fly With a Dog Image

How Can I Fly With My Dog? | A Vet’s Advice On Traveling With A Dog

Having a pet is a challenging task. It is as similar and hard as raising a child. Be it any animal, and you must take care of it at every step. Let’s talk about dogs here. Among all other animals, the dog is the most preferred pet. A dog goes through many phases, including the shedding or teething period. It would help if you were with them all the time. While travelling, owners regret and worry about leaving their dog with someone or in any daycare. Do you know that you can fly with your dog? Whether travelling to another country or taking your dog to any special care, travelling with a dog is possible. Here you will learn everything about how one can fly with a dog.

How to Fly With a Dog?

Travelling with your dog is possible, which is a great relief for pet owners who travel a lot worrying about their pets at home. Travelling is possible, but are there any considerations or requirements they should check before boarding? The first question before flying with your dog should be, is it necessary to take it with you? If something is possible, it does not mean one should do it. Travelling with your dog comes with many hidden costs. Vets advise not to take your dog unless you are going on a long trip, moving permanently, or for any medical emergency for the dog. It is stressful even for dogs when they travel.

The first condition to fly will be the size and weight of your dog. It is a determining factor for your dog to travel. However, the weight and size may vary from airline to airline. Before travelling, you should have a best dogs carrier or a kennel that will be your dog’s home on the plane. Also, you should be aware that the dog kennels or carriers will only be treated as a piece of baggage.

There is no guarantee that your dog will be completely fine with such an environment. The plane is very big and noisy, and flying up high will be challenging for your dog, especially with all the noise and scary sounds. There will be no one around your dog to provide the warmth that you do. Before flying, do a complete checkup for your dog.

What are the Dog Kennel Requirements?

If they confirm that you are taking your dog on the flight, it should fulfil certain things before boarding. The most important thing is the kennel or the carrier. Every airline has its limitations and sizes. Firstly, you should check the weight and size of your dog and then measure and consult the airline about your kennel’s size. The kennel should be comfortable and properly ventilated. They prescribe that the kennel size should not exceed 18 x 18 x 12. Also, the weight of the kennel, including your dog, should not be more than 5 kg. If you are using the crate to carry your dog, then it should be completely ventilated and comfortable.

Also, before boarding, do not miss writing “Live animal inside” and “this way up” so that the carriers do not get confused with your dog and other stuff. Ensure the crate is properly assembled and not loose from any corner. Also, the bottom should be leakproof and solid. The food and water bowls or containers must be attached. Remove the wheels if attached before boarding to prevent the kennel from rolling. Also, write the name, address, and cell phone for emergencies. Leave a t-shirt or piece of cloth with your smell for your dog to provide comfort. Many airlines will ask you to drop and include some shredded newspaper or dog pads with the kennel.

How to Transport a Dog on a Plane?

Until here, we are clear that flying with your dog is possible; however, you might be thinking, how will your dog be transported? Will it be on a seat alongside yours, with luggage or by any other mode? Everything depends on the size and weight of your dog and sometimes on the airline’s policies. There are 2 possible ways for transporting dogs on planes, either in a cabin or in cargo. Now, what is the difference between both? Which one to go for?

#1 Cabin

Let’s say your dog is small and cooperative, and you can easily take your pet to a cabin. In-cabin it is treated like any other of your luggage or carry-on. There is a small fee for the same depending on the airline. Notifying the airline, you will be boarding in advance that you are carrying your dog will help you travel comfortably and calmly. Size, weight, and height are significant factors in flying with a dog in cabin.


They will transport your dog as cargo and board as luggage or any transportable stuff here. They will mostly ask you to place your dog in a closed and properly ventilated crate. There are also certain limitations related to size, weight, and breed. Rest everything remains the same, but you should avoid boarding multiple flights if you are flying with your dog in cargo.

What is the American Airlines Pet Policy?

Now let’s talk particularly about American Airlines and their pet policies.How to transport a dog on a plane? Flying with your dog on an American airline is straightforward and smooth compared to other airlines. According to the American Airlines dog policy, you should ensure the following requirements for dogs to fly:

Requirements for dogs to fly image
  • Your dog is at least 8-9 weeks old.
  • Provide dog vaccinations for boarding proof, although it is asked sometimes but keep it to be safe.
  • Consult with your dog vet before travelling and have a health certificate not more than 10 days old.
  • The cost is nearly around $125 per kennel.
  • There are temperature, weight, size, and breed restrictions.
  • The kennel must be comfortable enough.
  • Bulldogs, Pugs, and Boxers cannot fly due to breathing issues.

How to Travel with a Dog on a Plane?

How to fly with a dog? Here in short, let’s brief you again on how one can travel with a dog step by step.

  • Select the date and time when you wish to travel and book the flight
  • Pick your airline and select whether to go for cargo or a cabin.
  • Buy a cabin or large dog kennel according to its size and introduce your pet to its house.
  • Get your pet checked thoroughly, not more than 10 days before the flight, and get a dog health certificate and vaccination proof.
  • Prepare your dog before boarding. Take a good walk and wait to feed anything 30 minutes before the flight.
  • Remember to drop any cloth with your smell and a toy for your dog.
  • If carrying in cargo, make sure to mark the dog facing up. Mention your name, address, and phone number for any emergency.
  • Do not feed your dog during the flight.
  • Do not remove your pet from the carrier.
  • After landing, be prepared with all the paperwork.
  • Take feeding and bathroom breaks after landing.
  • Remember to cuddle after the flight.


So hope you have got everything you wanted to know about flying with your dog. As I mentioned earlier, we would want to repeat our words, “do not fly unless necessary”. Travelling with your dog is not easy, especially if you are in a bad mood or stressed. Anyway, have a safe flight with your pet with our guide that includes dog kennel requirements along with American Airlines pet policy. Moreover, remember to give your pet best calming chews for dogs to calm their sickness.