Which Airlines are Pet Friendly?
I am really concerned about the safety of flying my dog in the cargo hold. I'm looking at Lufthansa, because based upon what I am seeing on the internet it seems to be one of the best airlines to handle dogs.
Can you tell me anything about the conditions in the cargo hold, i.e. how often cabin pressure is lost, etc. My choices to get him to Spain are Lufthansa to Frankfurt or United or American to Madrid. Not sure how the airlines differ in their cargo hold live animal handling track record. Would love feedback.
Choosing an airline for your pet's flight is definitely one of the most important parts of your trip. We're happy to talk about this topic all day long!
We often use Lufthansa and United (as well as KLM and British Airways) for our clients' pets due to their pet friendly policies. These carriers have pet safe policies in place that entail loading the pets last onto the plane and removing them first upon arrival. The pets are transported in climate controlled vehicles (not left to sit on the tarmac) and attended to by trained staff.
Inside, the cargo hold is pressure and temperature controlled. Though many pet owners feel nervous about this part, it's important to remember that pets don't need to travel exactly the way we do. Here are a few common misconceptions about pet travel, and very importantly, a rundown of the safety statistics regarding cargo pet travel. Overall, the data will tell you that pet travel is quite safe.
To make sure you do all you can to help your dog have a good pet flight to Spain, it's also very important to help him acclimate to his crate in the weeks before the move. If your dog is able to see the travel kennel as a safe place to spend time, he will feel much less stressed during the flight itself. Hydration is also important, and we recommend getting plenty of exercise before the flight, as well. (Tired pets have less energy to spend on feeling anxious.)
We're happy to discuss any further questions you may have, Kathryn. Feel free to contact us for a consultation if you'd like some assistance, and as a parting thought, we'd like to direct you to a few of our recent client pet travel stories. As you'll see, many pet owners start out feeling worried as well but end up enjoying a happy reunion with their pets and ready to start life in their new home.
Good luck with the trip and thanks again for reaching out!
Pet Travel Question Details:
Number of Pets: 1
Pet Type: Dog
Pet Breed: Retriever
From: Chicago, IL, USA