Traveling through Chicago with a pet and wondering about layover conditions? Here's a look at what to expect.
The United kennel facility at Chicago O'Hare International Airport (ORD) opened in 2013, offering a new level of care for pets flying through ORD as part of United's PetSafe program.
The kennel is located inside United's ORD Cargo Facility and includes 28 individual enclosures so that animals of different species can be housed in separate ventilated, temperature-controlled areas. This is the third facility of its kind, resembling amenities already in place at George Bush Intercontinental Airport in Houston and Liberty International Airport in Newark.
From an official United statement:
"We refer to our new facility as 'State-of-the-Arf'," said Fran Cervantes, United's PetSafe Product Development manager. "It was designed to provide the ultimate in safety and care for animals traveling with us. With the kennel location close to the gate area, and our six specially-built PetSafe vans exclusively used to transport animals, we get our four-legged passengers to and from their O'Hare flights as quickly and comfortably as possible."
In terms of specific services, pet enclosures are kept clean and sanitized, pets are walked and exercised, and upon request, they can even be bathed and groomed. Staff is on hand to oversee the pet operations, and they include PetSafe runners, Ramp and Cargo Operations teams, and a team of experts available by phone who can assist with advance reservations, monitoring pets en route, and tracking weather conditions.
According to Rod Zimmerman, United's senior manager of Cargo Operations at ORD, "Many of us are pet owners, so we're proud of our role in keeping all the animals traveling through O'Hare as safe, healthy and comfortable as possible. PetSafe's reputation as the premier animal transport service in the industry is very important to all of us."
As always, contact PetRelocation if you have questions about how to move your pet. We'd be happy to assist!
Editor's Note: This post was originally published in May 2013 and has been updated with new information. Photo Credit: United.