How To Fly With A Pet: Tips For Stress-Free Flying

Flying with a pet can sometimes be stressful, but it doesn’t have to be that way. Flying with your pet is also not as difficult as you may think — at least once you know the right way to do it. Flying with your pet requires planning and research well in advance of your trip. There are many airlines that allow pets to fly with their owners, but there are also many airline policies and regulations that must be taken into account prior to check-in. There are many things you should consider before flying with your pet. The size of their kennel, whether or not they’ve been vaccinated against diseases, whether or not they’re spayed or neutered, and even whether or not they’re comfortable being handled by strangers.

How To Pick The Right Kennel For Your Pet

The first major consideration when flying with your pet is the size of their kennel. The FAA requires that all animals be contained in a kennel while in the plane’s cabin, and their kennel must fit underneath the seat in front of them. If you’re flying with a dog, be sure to purchase a kennel that’s large enough for them to stand up and turn around in. If you’re flying with a cat, a smaller and snugger kennel will be sufficient. If you can, pick a kennel that is made of a breathable material. This is especially important if you’re flying in a warm climate. Also make sure the kennel has a secure latch, or your pet will be able to open it and escape during the flight.

Vaccinations Are Important

Another important consideration when flying with your pet is whether or not they’ve been vaccinated against diseases. Many airlines require that pets be vaccinated for rabies at least 30 days before flying, but may also require additional vaccinations depending on your destination. If your pet is not vaccinated, you may be required to keep them in a quarantined facility for up to six months. This can be extremely stressful for your pet, and the fees associated with quarantine can be quite costly.

Spay/Neuter Is Also Important

If you’re traveling with an unaltered pet, you may run into some issues with some airlines. Many airlines require that all cats and dogs be spayed or neutered. If you’re traveling with unaltered pets, check with your airline to see if they have any restrictions or special regulations.

Make Sure Your Pet Is Comfortable Being Handled By Strangers

If your pet is skittish, be sure they are comfortable being handled by strangers. Some airlines require that your pet be vaccinated against kennel cough and distemper. This vaccination is performed by a veterinarian, and lasts for approximately one year. If your pet is skittish, or doesn’t like being handled by strangers, they will need a thorough exam by a veterinarian. Because of this, you should schedule an exam as early as possible to ensure there is enough time for the vaccination to take effect before your trip.

Confirming Nearest Airport And Drop Off Points Ahead Of Time

Before you book your flight, be sure to confirm the nearest airport to your destination and the drop off points for your airline. Many airlines have special drop off points for pets, and others have agreements with local kennels and veterinary clinics to take care of your pet once they’ve been dropped off. If you’re not sure where the nearest airport is to your destination, you can use the Airports Near Me website to find your nearest airport. If you don’t see your nearest airport listed, you can use Google Maps to zoom in and find the closest airport.

Checked Baggage Requirements For Pets

Another important consideration is the checked baggage requirements for your pet. Many airlines have specific requirements for how animals are transported, and others may even have special pet-only sections for animals traveling in the cabin. If you’re flying with your pet in the cabin, your pet must be able to fit underneath the seat in front of you. If you’re flying with your pet in the cargo section, the airline requirements are different. You can use this chart to find out the specific cargo requirements for your airline.


Flying with your pet can be fun and rewarding, but it’s important to make sure you know the right way to do it. The first thing you should do is research the airline you intend to fly with to see if they allow pets. For many owners, flying with their pet is the best way to travel. Not only is it convenient, but it also gives you a chance to bond with your pet while they get to see new places and experience new things. With the right planning, your pet can have a great time on the flight and you can enjoy their company all the way to your destination.