Safe for Dogs in cargo/baggage to Hawaii?

mrmilagro

New Member
Hello all.

My mom is trying to take her dog to Maui (long term) from LAX. None of the airlines will allow any dog (except guide dogs) to be in the cabin to Hawaii. The dog is a six-year-old female and weighs about 9 pounds and my mom loves that dog like she is a person. My mom is afraid to let the dog travel with baggage/cargo. What do you think? Are the cargo areas reliably pressurized and temperature controlled? Or do you think that it's too dangerous for a small dog?

Continental has a service that they advertise in which they claim to be the industry leaders in pet travel. They have a "petsafe" program and they claim that the area for the pets is completely safe. Continental flys to HNL but not OGG. Could some of the Continental guys offer their opinion(s) on whether or not it's safe. Any insight would be great to hear.

I found (online) some listings of pet fatalities on the airlines but there's a lot of conflicting information. I appreciate your help.

Thanks!
 

mrmilagro

New Member
She has already researched and complied with the quarantine rules. There is no Hawaii law or FAA regulation that prevents the dogs from flying in-cabin, however, the airlines only allow dogs as checked baggage or cargo.
 

Kristie

Mama Bear....
Staff member
I've seen dogs on board international flights before, so i don't know exactly what airline you're talking to that says they don't allow dogs in cabin....there are some airlines out there that have no problem with a dog in cabin as long as it along with cage fits below the seat.

if the dog won't fit under the seat, then it has to ride in the front cargo hold which is temperature controlled and pressurized. I know doug's seen a lot of dogs in his cargo holds and they've all been handled with extreme care.

If she's still that worried about it, she might want to take a boat, stay where she is or give the dog up. there's not a whole lot of choices out there.
 

MQAAord

Scheherazade
Staff member
Some airlines do not allow pets in the cabin at all. Southwest for example.

Some may have restrictions on cabin pets for such long flights.
 

3green

Well-Known Member
AA allows dogs in the cabin as long as they can fit in a carrier under your seat. With that being said, I've seen little doggies before on my preflight and on my postflight after we've loaded them into C4(rear cargo) on the ERJ and I would not put anything living in the back(or under depending the A/C) after how messed up looking that poor little puppy came out looking :(
 

mrmilagro

New Member
Thanks for everyone's help so far. Yes, mom's aware of all the rules. What I was hoping for was lots of input on whether or not the baggage/cargo area is safe for small dog transport or if there's a high probability of trauma/injury/death. Anyone have first hand experience with whether or not it's safe?
 

Screaming_Emu

Joe Conventional
My family has always had all sorts of pets and we have done our fair share of moving around and we have always brought our pets. So far we have done DCA-JFK-MUC, MUC-AMS-NRT, NRT-IAD, and JFK-NRT with pets as cargo.

While I have heard many horror stories we have only once had a problem. One of our cats had apparently meowed the whole way from MUC-AMS-NRT and was extremely dehydrated by the time we got there. Unfortunately we had to put him down.

But other than that one instance, while needless to say a little scared, all of the other pets have done very well. When we did DCA-JFK-MUC both of our collies arrived with clean cages! That was probalby the biggest surprise of the trip.

I think the biggest thing has to do with temperment of the animal. During my walkarounds if I see a cage I always go up and check it out since I love animals. I have seen some dogs who seem to be quite relaxed (maybe sedated) and happy to be sitting out on the ramp, but some not so much.

Then there's the question of trusting the airline. In the plane I fly one of our cargo holds is heated and ventilated, but only if we turn it on...which requires the ground crew to tell us there's an animal back there. Certainly wouldn't hurt (if its possible) to stick your head in the cockpit and make that fact known.
 

Dmitri Ivanov

New Member
I do not think is safe. A dog is a very special person to someone with a dog. Perhaps you should give it to someone who is not having of a dog? Just make sure they are not hungry for soup! :)
 

3green

Well-Known Member
This is one of those, just cause it can be done doesn't mean it should be. From what I've seen the dogs get stressed out and frozen by the time we got to our destination. Thank goodness PETA is busy with KFC and the chicken issue or they'd be on the airlines about this stuff too. Seriously, if you love your pet don't make them ride in cargo, it ain't pretty from what I've seen.
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Old Pete

Cockpit Authoritarian
This is a difficult question to answer. Nothing is perfectly safe. I own, breed and show dogs and I am reluctant to ship dogs as cargo or checked baggage. I have a good friend who has had two dogs die that were being shipped by an airline and she still ships them by air.

I definitely would not ship them this time of year. The risk of heat stroke is simply too great.

Good Luck
 

MQAAord

Scheherazade
Staff member
Some airlines also have time-of-year restrictions on animals as cargo/checked baggage. I do remember there being embargos on pets during the height of summer and also the height of winter.
 

Van_Hoolio

Well-Known Member
AA allows dogs in the cabin as long as they can fit in a carrier under your seat. With that being said, I've seen little doggies before on my preflight and on my postflight after we've loaded them into C4(rear cargo) on the ERJ and I would not put anything living in the back(or under depending the A/C) after how messed up looking that poor little puppy came out looking :(
We don't allow any live animals in the rear cargo of our ERJs at XJT. I'm surprised Eagle does.
 
Sorry this is a little off topic, but how does the pressurization in general affect the dog. My dog is 13 years old and I'm a little worried about how it might affect her in general just in the cabin.
 

I_Money

Moderator
We dress ours up as service dogs 'in training' - vest, tags, paperwork, etc - we have never been refused flying them in the cabin, even in the busiest travel seasons.
 

pic

New Member
Hello all.

My mom is trying to take her dog to Maui (long term) from LAX. None of the airlines will allow any dog (except guide dogs) to be in the cabin to Hawaii. The dog is a six-year-old female and weighs about 9 pounds and my mom loves that dog like she is a person. My mom is afraid to let the dog travel with baggage/cargo. What do you think? Are the cargo areas reliably pressurized and temperature controlled? Or do you think that it's too dangerous for a small dog?

Continental has a service that they advertise in which they claim to be the industry leaders in pet travel. They have a "petsafe" program and they claim that the area for the pets is completely safe. Continental flys to HNL but not OGG. Could some of the Continental guys offer their opinion(s) on whether or not it's safe. Any insight would be great to hear.

I found (online) some listings of pet fatalities on the airlines but there's a lot of conflicting information. I appreciate your help.

Thanks!
I've seen numerous puppies and cats get transported in cargo, both on the plane I fly (tprop) and RJs. I always feel so bad for the animal, sometimes I look at their packing slip and see that they're doing TWO leg cross-country flights.. I mean what the heck?! It's gotta be insanely stressful for them.
I've seen cats being transported in the cabin (in a pet carrier, under the seat) on Hawaiian Airlines from OGG to SEA.. have you checked to see if they allow dogs as well?
Also, I know of a cat that made it from the east coast to Greece.. the cat belonged to a friend of a friend, so I don't know all the details, but the cat did survive.
 

mrmilagro

New Member
Most of the airlines allow dogs and cats to travel in-cabin from Hawaii to the mainland. The flight from the mainland to Hawaii is the one that ALL of the airlines refuse to have pets in the cabin.

My mom has emailed all of the airlines' customer service departments. About half of the airlines responded. One "customer service" department responder was an indian person who didn't write anything remotely resembling english. The other responders were form emails that didn't address the questions posed.

The airlines have employees who handle (meet, escort, etc.) the young, elderly and disabled. Why not have an employee assigned to escort pets to the quarantine area? For an industry who has begun charging for even the smallest of conveniences and who is crying about profitability, the airlines suck at customer service. If there are neither Hawaii laws nor FAA regulations preventing it, why not take mom's hard earned money and let the dog fly in-cabin?
 

Av8trix

Well-Known Member
We dress ours up as service dogs 'in training' - vest, tags, paperwork, etc - we have never been refused flying them in the cabin, even in the busiest travel seasons.

I like this idea. I too always feel sorry for the animals I see waiting on the ramp in ATL.
 
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