Are Natural Sedatives Okay for Pet Air Travel?

Hi PetRelocation team,

We will be relocating from New York to Hong Kong in about a month with our year old Mini Australian Shepherd. He's rather calm in normal situations, but gets a little anxious when he is away from us and in new environments.

Apart from getting him used to his crate before the move, do you recommend any natural calmers that would help keep him relaxed? I know they don't recommend sedating with any actual drugs, but we are looking into Rescue Remedy or something similar.

Is there anything else that would have a longer lasting effect for the 15 hour flight? I'm also guessing benadryl would not be recommended as it counts as a sedation drug, correct?



Hi Brittan,

Thanks for the question! First: yes, we would like to reiterate that sedatives (including antihistamines) are NOT recommended or even allowed for pets in flight. Sedatives can be dangerous and most airlines will not accept a pet who seems to have been sedated.

You're also right that crate training is the best way to increase calmness and avoid pet anxiety during travel -- this is one of our most frequent and emphasized recommendations for pet travelers.

Now, we have heard of some pet parents trying out herbal, all natural products to help with their pets' tension. This is something we would recommend asking your vet about and perhaps trying out before you travel to see how your dog will react. 

Making sure your dog gets plenty of exercise before the flight is another good way to combat nerves, and finally, you can place a familiar t-shirt or blanket in the crate to help your dog feel more comfortable. 

We hope these alternatives to sedation help your dog enjoy a safe flight to Hong Kong! Please let us know if we can be of further assistance. 


Pet Travel Question Details:

Name: Brittan
Number of Pets: 1
Pet Type: Dog
Pet Breed: Mini Australian Shepherd
From: New York
To: Hong Kong


PetRelocation Team




United States, Hong Kong
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