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Is Your Dog Flying With You This Holiday Season?

Is Your Dog Flying With You This Holiday Season?

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For many people, their dog is a family member, and a holiday without them wouldn’t be complete. Their pet is on their essentials holiday list alongside sun cream and flight tickets.

Holidaying with your dog is a great joy for you and, for them, the chance to explore new places and experience something different from the usual daily routine. There are plenty of pet-friendly destinations and accommodations worldwide that welcome canine visitors.

Here, we explore the challenges you might face when flying with your pet and what you can do to make a holiday with your pup that much more delightful.

Flying In-Cabin or Cargo?

Airlines have varying restrictions on flying with pets in cargo or the cabin, depending on the dog's size and status. People flying with pets may have to purchase a separate ticket to fly with their pet in-cabin.

But some people have service dogs, and these creatures have protections that allow them to fly in the cabin. Service dogs are canines trained to perform a specific support function. Assisting visually impaired people is one of the first categories of service dogs that springs to mind.

However, service dogs can have a much broader remit, providing the ability to complete tasks that are essential for daily living. Their capabilities might include managing safety signage, acquiring food, or alerting someone to an impending medical situation or crisis which could seriously affect their health.

If you're wondering how to make your dog a service dog, the process varies depending on your disability, the specific task you need the dog to perform, and more.

Your booking options may change if your pet is less than 20 pounds, a regular pet, a service dog, and more. Look into the accommodations and restrictions for the specific airline, or buy tickets for a carrier that is more accommodating of your situation.

Being Considerate of Other Passengers

A dog may be a holiday essential for the owner, but some people, particularly those nearby, may be less impressed, especially on a flight.

Not everyone likes dogs; some people are frightened, and others may have pet fur and dander allergies. Their concerns are legitimate.

Dog owners must ensure they have a firm handle on negative responses. New owners need to plan their holiday carefully to be considerate of other passengers.

Making Airline Arrangements

Check with the airline for arrangements about flying with your pet. Also, research the departure and arrival airports to find out their accommodations. Depending on the flight, you may need to consider your dog's food, water, and toilet needs.

Finding a location that is away from other passengers may be helpful. Airlines can have restrictions even for service dogs.

Finding Pet-Friendly Accommodation

Try and aim for accommodation that is already pet friendly. It can place holiday homeowners or hoteliers in a difficult position if a dog owner insists on a room or apartment not designated for pets. The only exception in the United States where the landlord or hotel manager would have to provide accommodations is for a service dog—not other dogs.


If you are contemplating travel and vacation with your dog, you can—but you need to plan carefully to ensure you both receive all the accommodations you desire. Holidaying with your dog could make that dream vacation come true.

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