4 Tips For Your Pets Traveling Together
Published on: October 26, 2022 | Author: Starwood Pet Travel
Pets are important members of the family, and the whole world knows it. So there is nothing unusual about pets traveling internationally with their people. Even when families have multiple pets. However, organizing pet travel for more than one animal can be exponentially more complicated than simply multiplying by two. Or three. Or more!
1. Where can they fly?
Ideally, you will want all your pets to travel together on the same flight(s), but don’t make any assumptions about that. International pet travel rules vary by airline, route, and destination country. Each airline that accepts pets decides:
- Whether small dogs and cats are allowed to ride with you in the cabin, or all pets must travel as checked baggage or cargo.
- How many pets are allowed in the cabin, and in which seating section(s). No airline allows you to carry more than one pet on board with you, so if you have multiple small pets, each will need their own human (adult) travel companion, or they will have to travel as cargo.
- How many pets are allowed to travel as accompanied baggage? The airline may have an overall limit, but also limit the number of pets per family. If you have three or more, this could be a problem.
2. Size and breed restrictions
Another potential complication is the size of your pets. If you want your pets to travel together, their options will be limited by the largest animal. This is because airlines use smaller planes to serve non-hub destinations, and smaller planes often cannot accommodate very large dog kennels. Likewise, if any of your dogs or cats are snub-nosed breeds, they may face additional restrictions about where and when they can fly. These restrictions can create interesting (read “frustrating”) issues with your pets' travel itinerary.
3. Can pets travel in the same kennel?
We hear this question often from parents of multiple dogs and/or cats. Their pets are used to hanging out and even sleeping together, so why not en route? Surely they would be more relaxed if they could all be together.
Technically, International Air Transport Association regulations allow “two adult animals of comparable size up to 14kg (30 lbs) each” that are used to cohabitation, to ride in the same carrier. However, your pets still need to comply with all of the airline and destination requirements.
Most airlines do not allow it except for puppies and kittens for safety reasons. Air travel kennels are designed and sized for protection as well as comfort. Pets must be able to move around comfortably and have plenty of ventilation. It’s hard to make this work with more than one animal, especially if they are different sizes. And too much togetherness under high-stress conditions could cause even best-friend pets to act out in ways you’d never see at home.
So unless your pets are very young, each one will need his or her own travel kennel that meets IATA regulations. Regardless of how each of your pets feels about confined space, all dogs and cats are more comfortable in surroundings that feel familiar to them. Acquiring the carriers early gives them time to gain that familiarity by playing, eating, or sleeping in the carrier. On the day of departure, line the bottom of each pet’s carrier with something soft and absorbent that reminds them of you – a small towel, T-shirt, or blanket. You can also add a crate pad for some extra comfort (as long as all of the bedding is no more than 3 inches thick).
If your pets are traveling as cargo, rest assured the airline will place their kennels next to one another. They will be able to smell and see their compadres, but they will each have their own personal space.
4. Get professional help
There’s no reason to tear your fur out over all this or to come completely unraveled yourself as you attempt to unravel the intricacies of multiple pets traveling together. There’s one sure way to get it all straight and get some peace of mind for yourself at the same time – use a professional international pet transport company. Our Starwood team is full of seasoned experts that are ready to help. And we know our stuff since we deal with multiple pet travel plans every day, all year round.
We know the rules are mind-boggling, but we take them in stride because we’re used to them. And since we’re experienced working with airlines all around the world, we know which ones are best for your pets, given your destination and the size of your four-legged family.
If you leave the arrangements to us, your pets will arrive wagging and purring. You may be purring yourself, what with all that stress you managed to avoid. Who says traveling with multiple pets is difficult?!
Starwood Animal Transport has rebranded to Starwood Pet Travel. We are still the same great company with the best team, just now with a slightly different name.
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