Animals can fly in the cabin, in the heated baggage compartment, or as cargo (an option for very large dogs that aren’t allowed in the checked baggage compartment).
Some airlines suspended transportation services in the baggage and cargo departments during the coronavirus period. Some only transport animals in the cabin, while others require animals to be checked into the baggage or cargo compartments.
The cabin usually accepts pets small enough to fit underneath the seat in front of you in a carrier. Each airline has its own carrier size requirements, as well as requirements regarding the weight and age of the animal. You can check the current transportation rules and carrier requirements on the website of the airline you plan to travel with.
Preparation for traveling with pets.
Start preparing as early as possible – a few months before your planned flight, so that you have enough time left to collect all the documents and get the necessary vaccinations done.
When buying a ticket online or immediately thereafter, be sure to call the airline and arrange for your pet to fly. This is crucial, since each type of aircraft has restrictions on the number of animals transported in the cabin and in the hold, as well as on their compatibility on the same flight. You’ll need confirmation from the airline that the animal can be transported on the specific aircraft you’ll be flying on.
In addition, some airlines have special requirements regarding breeds of dog – for example, some do not allow brachycephalic breeds (pugs, bulldogs, etc.) on board. This point should also be clarified with the airline separately.
After transport for your pet is arranged, make sure that your pet has all the necessary vaccinations and a chip. Prepare all the required documents. If you have not vaccinated your pet during the last year, you need to do it no later than a month before the flight.
Buy a carrier and begin to accustom your pet to it in advance, so that during the flight the pet feels calm in it. We also recommend attaching a tag to the carrier with your contact details, the route and date of the flight, as well as the name of the animal, if you’re checking it in to the cargo compartment. Be aware that the animal must be wearing a collar tag at all times, including in the carrier.
On the day of the trip, you will need time to arrange the transportation of your pet, so arrive at the airport no later than 3 hours before the flight departure. Remember that you cannot check in online with animals. When departing on an international flight, you’ll need to go through veterinary control.
And finally, do not feed the animal on the day of departure and do not give it any sedatives without first consulting with a veterinarian.