5 Tips for Traveling Safely with Snub-Nosed Breeds

pug travel safety tipsPugs, English Bulldogs, Boston Terriers, Persian cats and other snub-nosed (or brachycephalic) pets require special care when it comes to air travel.

These breeds are more susceptible to heat stroke and breathing problems when exposed to stress or high temperatures because of their facial structure and hereditary respiratory issues, so travel is more risky for them.

This doesn't mean short-nosed pets can't fly safely, but planning a smooth trip requires a little extra preparation and attention. Here's what we suggest when traveling with snub-nosed pets:

  • Use a larger travel crate than normally is required (allow about four to six inches of clearance on all sides) and make sure it has ventilation on all four sides.

  • Use only pet friendly airlines when flying—these include United for domestic and KLM, Lufthansa and British Airways for international travel.

  • Acclimate pets to the travel crate by working on crate training during the weeks  prior to departure.

  • Provide plenty of water to your pet before, during, and after the flight.

  • Above all, make an appointment with your vet before you make any solid travel plans in order to discuss your pet's health and any questions you have about travel safety.

Realistically, some pet owners decide it simply isn't worth the risk to move forward with moving a snub-nosed pet, while others end up carrying out perfectly safe moves under the guidance of their vet and with the help of professional pet shippers.

Here's one more consideration relating to logistics: Many airlines will not fly short-nosed pets due to safety concerns and some operate with summer embargoes that may limit options. It's important to start planning pet travel well in advance so that you're aware of possible roadblocks and have time to seek out alternate routes or airlines.

For real life examples of snub-nosed pet travel, here are a few stories about snubbies we've recently helped with international relocations:

Contact PetRelocation for a consultation if you need help planning your snub-nosed pet's move—as you can see, we've had plenty of experience arranging all kinds of relocations and would be happy to discuss your options, as well.

Safe travels, everyone!

 

Editor's Note: This post was originally published in June 2015 and has been updated with new information.

Author:

PetRelocation Team

Topic:

Air Travel, Airlines

Pet:

Dogs, Snub-Nosed Breeds

Country:

Comments

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By Ashley on July 26, 2018 at 1:46 am

I’m planning a move for my pug who lives in Australia to come over to the US. Can you advise me of the best methods to go and an airline?
Reply

By maegan@petrelocation.com on July 27, 2018 at 10:28 am

Hi Ashley! As far as we are aware, Qantas Airlines does not have restrictions on pugs. Hope this blog post is helpful!
Reply

By Lisa on June 15, 2018 at 12:20 pm

Hi, I have a French bulldog who is 5 months old and I am moving from Russia(St.Petersburg) to London I want to take her with me, I know there are restrictions about this breed, what are the rules for British airways? Thank you in advance, Lisa.
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By maegan@petrelocation.com on July 3, 2018 at 9:56 pm

Hi Lisa! Unfortunately, British Airways does not allow French Bulldogs to fly on their aircrafts as "manifest cargo" and the UK requires all pets to arrive this way. Lufthansa might be a good option for your travels though? Feel free to let us know if we can help in any way! Thanks!
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By Donton Meinel on June 2, 2018 at 5:24 am

Hi I want to ship a French bull dog from Manchester/uk to Honolulu/Hawaii can you guys help or Tell me how to Do it thank you
Reply

By maegan@petrelocation.com on June 5, 2018 at 1:07 pm

Hi Donton! Thanks for reaching out. We can definitely help with your Frenchie's move. However, the logistics will be quite involved as we will want to make sure we are allowing enough time at each stop so that your pet is cared for by a trained pet safe agent. Please fill out our Arrange A Move form and a consultant will contact you to discuss our options. Looking forward to speaking with you!
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By Cha on May 19, 2018 at 3:22 am

I’m looking to buy a bulldog puppy and trying to find a way to fly him back after the purchase from Miami to Mn anyone have a idea of how should I do this
Reply

By maegan@petrelocation.com on June 5, 2018 at 12:55 pm

Hi Cha! Thanks for your comment. Some airlines will allow puppies to travel in-cabin if they meet the in-cabin requirements which vary by airline, see our DIY Booking Guide here for more information. But, unfortunately, there are no domestic US airlines that will carry bulldogs as "manifest cargo" which means they travel unaccompanied. Hope this helps!
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By Susan Massaro on May 14, 2018 at 2:34 pm

We are planning a move from Kauai to the US mainland in the fall. My dog, a Pekingese-Shih tzu mix, is probably a little too big for an under seat carrier although I will see if he’s comfortable in the large sturdibag one I have. All the airline pet policies either ban his type or won’t fly to/from/through Hawaii or both. Is there any possibility of him flying with us if the cabin carrier won’t work? He is about 10 years old, in good health, and has never had any problems breathing.
Reply

By maegan@petrelocation.com on May 16, 2018 at 3:37 pm

Hi Susan! Have you tried reaching out to Hawaiian Airlines? As far as we know, they do accept snubbies on their aircrafts as long as pets are in a crate that is one size larger than needed. These flights on Hawaiian Airlines only go into/out of the East or West Coast. Then you will have to drive your pet to the final destination or we can arrange for ground transportation. If we can be of any assistance in arranging your door-to-door move, please fill out our Arrange A Move form here. Hope this helps!
Reply

By Susan Massaro on April 23, 2018 at 2:34 pm

We are planning a move from Kauai to the US mainland in the fall. My dog, a Pekingese-Shih tzu mix, is probably a little too big for an under seat carrier although I will see if he’s comfortable in the large sturdibag one I have. All the airline pet policies either ban his type or won’t fly to/from/through Hawaii or both. Is there any possibility of him flying with us if the cabin carrier won’t work? He is about 10 years old, in good health, and has never had any problems breathing.
Reply

By Andrew Lane on April 4, 2018 at 5:23 am

Im purchasing a staffordshire bull terrier from a breeder in Illinois. Its only roughly 520 miles from me. Is there any other options for shipment besides air flight? United does not do snub nosed pets per their website. My schedule is busy or i would drive myself? Any suggestions?
Reply

By Marilette on March 26, 2018 at 6:57 am

Anyone moved their a year old pug from dubai to the Philippines in August flying with emirates airline? Anyone can help me the steps to do’s? Thanks a lot in advance!
Reply

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