Airline Requirements for In Cabin Dog Carriers

Traveling by air, people are more frequently opting to take their dogs in cabin in airline dog carriers rather than having their dog checked in as baggage and traveling in the belly of the aircraft. While there are similarities in the carrier requirements between the various airlines, each has their own specific requirements that can change depending upon the type of plane used for the flight.

General in Cabin Carrier Guidelines for Airlines

All air carriers must follow transportation guidelines as established by the U.S. Department of Agriculture. This includes container requirements for in cabin as well as those carried in the baggage compartment. Carriers must be large enough for the dog to stand up, turn around and lie down in a natural position in the carrier with no portions of the dog's body, including the head and tail, extending beyond the bounds of the carrier. There must be absorbent material in the bottom of the carrier. If the carrier is soft-sided, it must be constructed of water-repellent, padded nylon material with mesh ventilation on two or more sides of the carrier. Travelers must check with their specific airline if their plans include international travel. Many do not allow dogs in cabin on international flights and many regions require a 6 month quarantine of any dog brought into the country.

Major Airline in Cabin Dog Carrier Size Restrictions

While there are commonalities in the construction of the dog carriers allowed in cabin on a flight, each of the airlines has slightly different size restrictions for the carriers. Because regulations change frequently and airlines require travelers to make reservations for their dogs, it is best to double check with the particular airline to ensure the appropriate sized carrier is used.

When considering air travel with your dog, whether they're going to be in cabin with you or in the pressurized compartment in the belly of the plane, there are key considerations to keep in mind. Many airlines require that the dog's health certifications be securely attached to the kennel or carrier they are traveling in, they require that the kennel or carrier meet certain stringent requirements including name of the dog written clearly on the exterior, contact information for someone at the destination point and contact information of the owner. These requirements are necessary to ensure that the dog has a safe and comfortable flight.