Pets take flight!

posted: by: Lt Murphy Tags: "Clinic Specials" "News" 

Hey ya'll! Murphy with more travel tips for you! What a great weekend it was. The sun was out. People and pets were in the parks and at play. Were you? If not, you should have been!

Where were we? Talking about travel, right? Many pets are flying with their owners, these days. Can a pet fly safely? Absolutely! A few things need to happen, first. In order for a pet to move between states, a Health Certificate is needed. For this Certificate, a veterinarian must examine the animal(s) and then sign the Certificate saying that the animal has been examined on that date and is found to be free of contagious disease. Typically, Health Certificates are only good for up to 10 days after they were signed. If you will be flying back from your trip more than 10 days but less than a month after the initial date, most airlines will honor them, still.

Some airlines do not regularly check for the Health Certificate, but they are a legal requirement, nonetheless. The Doc often recommends that the Health Certificate and a copy of the current Rabies Vaccination Certificate be stapled together and carried with you, when you fly with your pets. It avoids much hassle!

Will your pet be flying in the cabin or in the hold? Smaller dogs and cats are often allowed in under-seat carriers, in the cabin. Be sure your pet is accustomed to being inside these carriers well before travel. If your pet is very vocal when in the carrier, ask the Doc is tranquilizers are right for your pet. Though service animals are allowed on some flights, expect the airlines to clamp down on this. Too many animals who are not service animals - but the owners claimed were - have been allowed on flights with some bad results. Screaming pigs (yes, one was allowed on a flight) or pooping dogs on an airplane are bad things.

The morning of your flight, only give your pet 1/4 of their normal meal. Also, be sure your dogs are walked thoroughly before heading to the airport. After your kitty has breakfast, place him in the litterbox. These are ways to minimize the risk of your pet pooping during travel. Arriving at your destination with a clean pet is a good thing!

When the weather is quite hot, some airlines will not fly dogs in the cargo hold. Be sure to call your airline well in advance to see what their policy is regarding heat or cold. Their policies can impact your travel!

Have safe travels and remember that pets should not be left in cars, especially with the summer heat!