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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
I know it's be discussed on here and I've searched the SM history but it's overwhelming. We hope to fly this Fall and since we've never flown with a pet before I want to know a few things.

1. Truly, what is the best carrier for a 9 lb. dog so they will fit under the seat? I've seen on here where everyone talks about the Sturdi Bag but my biggest fear is that we'll get to the airport and they won't let us on the plane because either the bag won't fit under the seat or something else. Have any of you ever been turned down to fly because the carrier wasn't the right size?

2. How exactly do you go through the security check with a dog? Do they make you take the harness off so it doesn't make the security arch thing buzz?

3. Can you take them out of the carrier while you wait at the gate?

I really appreciate anyones input on this. Kim and Girls
 

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Kim,

I have flown with Hunter 2 times and with my brother's dog once. During security we have always taken off all collars, clothes, and harnesses to ensure no metal. Then we carry the dog through the screener - I would never just send a dog through - too many people and too many distractions.

My brother used a sturdibag and was fine with it and was not refused. It did fit under the seat but he was allowed to take his dog out during the flight.

In the airport he did permit his dog to walk around and did not make her stay in her bag -he merely put her in the bag before boarding.

When I flew with him by myself I flew a very early in the morning flight and just used my regular bag for Hunter that zips on the top. However, they did not require him to stay in the bag at all as there were only 10 people on the flight. He had his own seat in business class and was given his own little fruit cup. It was the exception but it was wonderful not to have to worry about him being under the seat and barking.

While waiting for the flight he was on my lap - he only went in his bag when boarding and until the flight attendant gave me permission to take him out (after I asked, which was before take-off actually).

Sorry I dont' have any more typical experiences to share but every little bit helps right?
 

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I have flown several times with a dog. I also carry her through security with no harness. She can walk around the airport until time to board. Some airlines are very strict about keeping the dog in the carrier under the seat. American Airlines is pretty bad-at least they used to be. My sister was on a flight where a girl took her dog out several times after the flight attendant told her not to. They actually had the police come and arrest her in the plane when they landed!!!! and she was in first class!! I've been on American where we had a long delay on the runway and they let me put the carrier on my lap-but not the dog. It really depends on your flight attendants with how lenient they are. A nine pound dog gets somewhat heavy to carry, but my favorite bags are the celltei tote-o-pet. I have a medium and it fits under the seat. You can get a matching stroller made that folds up so you can put the dog in the carrier,stroll the dog through the airport, leave the stroller at the gate where the baby strollers are left, and pick it back up at the gate when you get off!!
 

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1. Truly, what is the best carrier for a 9 lb. dog so they will fit under the seat? I've seen on here where everyone talks about the Sturdi Bag but my biggest fear is that we'll get to the airport and they won't let us on the plane because either the bag won't fit under the seat or something else. Have any of you ever been turned down to fly because the carrier wasn't the right size?

I like the Sturdibag myself. I have a large and it fits 8.25 lb Roo with room to spare. Although it is taller than some airline regulations, I've never been questioned. It would be as easy as showing them the back is made to be smushed under the seat (press down on the top and the sides expand).

2. How exactly do you go through the security check with a dog? Do they make you take the harness off so it doesn't make the security arch thing buzz?

You must carry the dog, without any metal, through the security detector in your arms. I would not leave any clothing on the dog either - nothing that you could "hide" something in. I have heard of some people with dogs in wraps being asked to take them down so the security people could see what was there.

3. Can you take them out of the carrier while you wait at the gate?

This depends on the airport. I have been through many with signs on the front doors stating animals must be in carriers at all times. And I've also seen plenty of dogs not in their carriers at these places and nobody say anything. As a rule, other than to take them out for a drink of water, I keep the pet in the carrier.
 

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this is an excellent post.. a question of mine... do u pay for the pup always ? do u need to show papers , when u buy the ticket do u mention the fluff , or can i just take my pup on the plane in his carrier. ?
 

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Discussion Starter #7
this is an excellent post.. a question of mine... do u pay for the pup always ? do u need to show papers , when u buy the ticket do u mention the fluff , or can i just take my pup on the plane in his carrier. ?
Great additional questions! I hope someone answers them.
 

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this is an excellent post.. a question of mine... do u pay for the pup always ? do u need to show papers , when u buy the ticket do u mention the fluff , or can i just take my pup on the plane in his carrier. ?
Do you pay for the pup - yes

Show papers - I never have been asked, but I keep my Rabies vaccine paper on hand in case

Buy a ticket/mention fluff - I call the airline before reserving my ticket to verify that the dog limit has not been exceeded. If it is fine, I reserve the ticket then call the airline to let them know that I will be flying with a dog. Depending on the airline some have you pay then (I think Continental) others will have you pay when you check in.

HTH
 

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thanks for answering ! how much do u pay ?
Depends on the airline. I think the least expensive is AirTran at $69 each way and other airlines go up to (I think) $125.
 

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this is an excellent post.. a question of mine... do u pay for the pup always ? do u need to show papers , when u buy the ticket do u mention the fluff , or can i just take my pup on the plane in his carrier. ?

Pets traveling in cabin are always charged for. I've been charged up to $150 each way.

Documentation depends on the airline. Many require a health certificate within 10 days of flying. If they require nothing, I would do like Mandy and keep a rabies certificate. I have never been asked for papers, but if they require a health certificate and you don't have it, they can refuse your dog.

All of the airlines I've used you have to call ahead. I usually pay when I check in.
 

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It really depends on whether you are flying stateside or international---these are all good posts! I have had EVERY possible situation in the 40 yrs. I have flown---both stateside & international on all airlines---each one different. Call the airline you are flying with--try to get everything in writing if you can! Reserve the cabin when you book & pay when you arrive---costs vary w/airlines. If you are traveling w/ sibilings they can sometimes fly together at no extra cost.
Don't feed dog unless flight is short. Be sure & give small amounts of water as dehydration can occur. Squirt small amount from syringe into mouth---not gulps. Potty before and immediately after flight. Don't medicate---take it yourself IF you think it is necessary! Try to remember the dog is more comfy in it's bag than in your lap---
Be sure dog is micro-chipped and is wearing ID in the event of any kind of emergency. Take food in the event of airport delay---all to often!
Try to book early morn. or late night flight in hot weather---even if booked in cabin (this is the only way to take a dog in my humble opinion.)
Say a prayer and keep a sense of humor----:)
 

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Discussion Starter #14
It really depends on whether you are flying stateside or international---these are all good posts! I have had EVERY possible situation in the 40 yrs. I have flown---both stateside & international on all airlines---each one different. Call the airline you are flying with--try to get everything in writing if you can! Reserve the cabin when you book & pay when you arrive---costs vary w/airlines. If you are traveling w/ sibilings they can sometimes fly together at no extra cost.
Don't feed dog unless flight is short. Be sure & give small amounts of water as dehydration can occur. Squirt small amount from syringe into mouth---not gulps. Potty before and immediately after flight. Don't medicate---take it yourself IF you think it is necessary! Try to remember the dog is more comfy in it's bag than in your lap---
Be sure dog is micro-chipped and is wearing ID in the event of any kind of emergency. Take food in the event of airport delay---all to often!
Try to book early morn. or late night flight in hot weather---even if booked in cabin (this is the only way to take a dog in my humble opinion.)
Say a prayer and keep a sense of humor----:)
:goodpost:
 

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I took American Airlines,they have the largest allowable underseat and pet carrier allowances of all the airlines 19x11x13. I used a Sherba,it's soft sides and is approved by all airlines. Mine was actually a smidgen bigger than allowed but it squished so nothing was said.
I fit 2 Malts in my carrier,which seemed like it wasn't a lot of room but they actually did quite well,more room than I thoght there was.
I took mine out of the carrier on 2 of the 4 flights I took,flight attendants never said a thing and even got water for them.
I didn't do it on 2 short flights had to people that just hated dogs....the longer flights I took them out and the passengers actually wanted to hold and pet them.
I was charged $100 each way for the bag,even thought I had 2 fluffs.Paid for it at the time I got to the airport But make sure tell them when you make the reservations since they only allow a minimum number of dogs on a flight. Keep the receipt w/ you coming and going so you won't get charged again.

Had to take out the fluffs for x-ray and held them on the walk through. In the airport lounge,I took them out ,on leash,no one said a thing,they loved them.
Really all depends on the flight attendants and passengers next to you.
 

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Coco should have frequent flyer miles--loads of them. I have purchased a ticket for her on only 1 flight. She never makes a sound. The people next to me don't even know I have a dog with me. They've NEVER asked for a ticket for her. Lola has made 2 flights. Not knowing how she would do, I paid $200 round trip for her, and no one asked for a ticket. They had NO idea I had a dog with me until I told the lady next to me.

I take them out to go through security. Since they're in their bag (not a special one, just a purse type dog carrier with vents on either end), they do not wear their harness, so we just take them out of the bag and walk through security. The TSA agents always ooh and ahh over my dogs, and we go on our way. Last flight, after I made it known I had a dog on the flight, the flight attendant brought Lola a cup of water. I fly American, and not one person has ever asked for anything for them.

They don't charge $100 for a carryon bag, why charge it for a dog who sits in a carrier, makes no noise and fits under the seat in front of me? Whatever...If I am stopped, I'll run buy a ticket. My daughter flies with her dog all the time, a larger dog than either of mine, and she's never paid for hers, either. She's flown USAir and Southwest (now that they allow dogs in the main cabin).
 

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That article was great - Thanks Kim!!!! I know we are very lucky to be able to have the pets in the carriers in the cabin but it still urks me that their tickets are often more than the human's tickets. And that you have to pay for a dog but not a child under the age of 2. Neither are taking up a seat.
 

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Check the airline sites for pet carron on sizes. Some seats have very small under seat storage. American Airlines has the largest I've seen. Try for an isle seat. The window seat has the smallest only because of the curving in of the cabin shape,it gives you less foot room too.

Try to fly mornings too,I've found the evening and night crew to be the rudest!

I flew mornings most of the time,or early afternoon and they were all really polite.
They let me take out the fluffs and offered drinks.
If you fly a lot you're bound to run into rude flight attendants and dog hating passengers but for the most part,I ran into many who had to leave their fluffs at home or had rescently lost a fluff and loved to pet mine.
Mine only barked once during the whole trip,while in the airport,when some kids walked by,otherwise ,not a peep.
No drugging either.I did get some sleepytime meds from the vet,just in case,for Bitsy,she hates loud noises and anything that sounds like thunder. I waited to see how they did first before I would opt for meds...They both did great.
 
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