United Airlines announced that it will resume carrying cats and dogs to travel to their destinations in the cargo area of planes again beginning this summer. After tragedies earlier this year – one from a family flying from Houston to New York ordered to place their puppy in an overhead bin resulting in the 10-month-old French bulldog’s death, which brought thousands of negative criticisms, the airline is trying to change their image. In that same week, a dog bound for Kansas ended up in Japan, however the dog was successfully sent to his destination without injury. The airlines apologized for both incidents and studied its policies for better pet care.
Effective June 18, United Airlines will implement new policies and customer requirements. United will no longer allow passengers to book a cargo hold spot for any “brachycephalic” ( short-snouted) or “strong-jaw dog breeds.” A list on the website bans dogs from American pit bull breeds to Shih Tzus and includes both Burmese and Persian cats.
In addition, the airline will also restrict dogs and cats on flights in the cargo area from May 1 through September 30 at Las Vegas, Palm Springs, Phoenix and Tucson airports because of the heat of summer. In a statement rolling out the new restrictions aimed at giving United Airlines “PetSafe” program a more positive spin, Jan Krems, United’s vice president of cargo stated:
“As we continue our review process to ensure that we are always doing what’s right, we are committed to making significant improvements in our program and adhering to the best practices of animal comfort, well being and travel on behalf of our customers and their pets.”
The airlines has been working closely with American Humane and still includes in-cabin pet travel. All rules can be found by clicking here.