Flying home with a puppy
I have never done this and would like the low-down on how it works. I have the little Sherpa thinger to put the puppy in. So here are some questions...
1. Do I just tote the little gal through TSA? (I have artificial knees and set the alarms off and have to get patted down and so puppy and I will likely be momentarily separated.)
2. Do they run the puppy through x-ray... or do I take puppy out of bag and let them grope puppy and me and x-ray the bag.
3. Any health certificates or anything necessary (going from WA to NV) or any proof of ownership?
4. Is there any vet-approved puppy-Xanax or equivalent to help pup snooze through the excitement?
5. I think I'm flying Alaska Airlines but my understanding is that most airlines allow puppies if their in these Sherpa bags and "fit under the seat" though I have to tell you... the way they build these seats nowadays... I can't get my purse under the seat in front of me.
6. Puppy will be about 6.5 weeks old when all of this goes down.
What else do I need to know?
You might want to read up on Alaska Airlines policies concerning pets
3. you will always need a Vet's health certificate to fly
Dogs and cats must be at least eight (8) weeks of age and weaned.
I have made that flight and I think there are three short 2 hr non stop flights from Seattle to Reno to choose from
I just flew home with a puppy from Nashville to Seattle last month on United. I did NOT need a vet certificate for the puppy because it flew on board with me. If it had been shipped as cargo, it would have needed one. The puppy was suppose to be 8 weeks old to fly. The puppy did not go through the baggage x-ray. I held it and it went through the scanner with me holding it. It's carrier did go through the x-ray machine. All airlines have little differences to their rules, so check with the airline you are flying. They usually have the rules for flying with pets on their website.
We made it from Seattle to Orlando, FL w/ 2 pups and no problems. Best to call the airline to confirm their regs. Talk to real person and take down their name should questions occur later. Most require a payment for pups in the cabin and have limits on the number allowed in each cabin. Reserve early. We had vet clearances but were not asked for them. Better safe than sorry. Wear out pup as much as possible and make sure pup is fully "evacuated" before boarding and he/she will likely snooze the whole trip. If you can swing the cost, or have mileage to trade, an ugrade to 1st will make your and pups trip a whole lot more comfortable. Enjoy your pup!
The pup will do fine without any sedatives and in fact thats not safe to do, anyway.
She will fuss at first and not like the takoff- but will likely sleep through the flight. Ive done it twice, one was a quick trip, non stop fromPortland to Sac and the other was from Dallas to Sac, with about three stops.
The only thing I ask,is why is she so young? Anything before 7 weeks is too young ,IMO. Those few days make a huge difference. And the airlines require 8 weeks to fly.
Like Bon pointed out, Alaska Air requires a vet certificate of health to fly. You also need to call the airline ticketing number and let them know you will be flying with a dog in cabin. They only allow a certain number on each flight (so they say) and it's best to be on the list for one of those spots.
My mother-in-law flights to Portland from Sacramento on Alaska all the time with her little dog, and I'm usually the one booking the flight and making the call.
just put them in a comfortable crate with toys and bedding and check them in baggage. I'd rather be able to stand up, turn around and move a bit rather than be stuffed under a seat. AA brings you a ticket to your seat when you dog is physically loaded on your airplane. They also have them at the oversized baggage pick up usually before I can get to the baggage.
Or, you could sign up as a service dog. Saw that link going around FB. Service dogs fly free so, why not abuse it like all the others? (sarcasm here, heavy) I was told many of the show dogs which fly to Eukanuba and Westminster are "service dogs" too! Pretty sad many of the folks at that level are willing to claim their dogs are needed on board as service animals when they can live without them just fine while they are traveling to all the dog shows all over the country.
I flew a 7.5 wk old puppy in the cabin under my feet in a soft sided kennel bag. Minimal food or water before we left...and lots (15 mins make sure he does his business) of airing time outside prior to checking in. Puppy was off leash getting very well socialized at the check in counter. Always under my daughters close control. On the plane no one would of knew we had a puppy with us. Slept the whole time except when we would open the top and check on him. Had a small towel and a little kong type toy in the kennel. One hour layover enroute where he got to run around in a unoccupied area of the lounge and all was good. All that was needed as per the airline was a Vet Health Certificate within 10 days of departure. It was actually a much better experience than anticipated. First leg of flight was 3.5 hrs quick layover of 1 hr then 1.5 hr to our destination. And NO accidents in his kennel bag the whole trip.
Be nice to share a big puppy blow out with everyone on the plane if it did happen. People bringing more carry on baggage and bags they know are too big is bad enough. Some folks who fly are probably the most inconsiderate I've ever encountered.