Thursday, December 17, 2009

Can dogs fly...?

We are looking into taking our American dogs (my wife is American and so three of our family dogs reside in the US) to our home in Ireland. The last time we considered doing this I did quite a bit of research and became so worried about their welfare that I gave it up. Now I have been introduced to Dana at Pet Movers ( and she has been so reassuring about the whole thing that we are on for it again. She says that the secret is a) use only airports and airlines that treat the dogs as live cargo and not as luggage and b) get prior approval for everything so that there is minimal delay. She warned me against giving the dogs sedatives (which one vet had been suggesting) as it can endanger their health at altitude and told me that not once - ever - has she come across a dog that didn't recover quickly from the experience. It looks as if our dogs will fly after all!

1 comment:

  1. Our Black Labrador, Whisper, is a much travelled dog and has had no problems with flying. From Gatwick to Miami, Miami to St Thomas, USVI and then ferry boat to Tortola, BVI. All the airlines were really great and understanding with her being last on board and first off. She did look a bit bemused after the first flight but as she had a couple of hours between the flights, I was allowed to let her out of the travel cage for a wee and stretch of legs at Miami airport.

    When we came back to Europe, Whisper had her new sister Mukiwa to keep her company, although in seperate travel boxes. This time we flew from Tortlola, BVI to St Maarten, had half a day to wait for our next flight to Paris via Dominican Republic. Both were a bit tired and dazed from the long flights however, again the airlines were fantastic, letting us stay with the dogs until the last possible minute so they were last on and first off.
    The biggest shock was for Mukiwa to take off from a nice hot tropical climate and to end up on a very cold and frosty morning in France. Good job we had bought winter coats for her!!. Whisper remembered the frost very well and charged around like a lunatic and rolling in the iced grass.
    Neither dog was sedated as we were advised against it, they were checked regularly and offered water. Both were very happy puppies though once they met up with us again and were able to use their own legs rather than being sat in travel cage on a trolley.
    So do travel with your dogs, just make sure that their paper work is up to date and do check their microchips so that you know where they are - they can move and if the scanner is passed over them too quickly, they are not always located - this can start to get a little stressful for you!!