Choosing the Right Airline for Pet Travel

dogPet Travel Question: How to Choose the Best Airline for Pet Transport

Hello PetRelocation,

I'm getting married in San Francisco in October and want to take our dog with us. She's 25 pounds but too big to fit under the seat.

Are there only certain airlines that will fly her, and at certain temperatures?




Hi Amy,

Thanks for your question, and congratulations on your upcoming marriage!

Choosing the right airline is definitely one of the most important parts of pet travel. For flights within the US, we primarily fly with United due to their PetSafe program, which includes a set of procedures that places an emphasis on pet cargo safety. We've flown thousands of pets safely with United over the last 10+ years (here are a few of their stories) and recommend that you consider them, as well.

Many airlines do operate with weather-dependent schedules, but by October summer embargoes have usually been lifted. Also, United is less affected by temperature because they work to keep pets in temperature-controlled environments year-round.

You'll want to double check everything with the airline directly before you go, but it's likely you won't need to worry about temperature (especially because you don't have a snub-nosed breed, who often do face special restrictions in warm weather).

Take a look at our blog if you have any general questions about pet travel, and be sure to look over the requirements for flying pets in the United States (you'll essentially just need proof of rabies vaccine and a vet health certificate).

If you have any further questions, please let us know. Either way, good luck with everything and have a great move!


Pet Travel Question Details:

Name: Amy
Number of Pets: 1
Pet Type: Dog
Pet Breed: Spaniel/Lab/Aussie mix
From: Austin, TX
To: San Francisco, CA

Need help carrying out your pet's move? Contact us to discuss your safe pet air travel options.


Editor's Note: This post was originally published in April 2014 and has been updated with new information.


PetRelocation Team


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