Best method for Flying with new puppy - Page 1

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by css33 on 09 January 2018 - 01:01

I am planning on getting a puppy and I will be visiting and meeting the pup/breeder in person and am flying back home. I basically have 2 options. Option 1 is a direct flight, about 2.5 hours, and I can carry the puppy on the plan in a soft crate the fits under seat. Other option is to ship pup via cargo, but that carrier does not have a direct flight, so i have to have the pup at the cargo area 3 hours early, and flight is another 4 hours as it is not direct. If I could do cargo and direct, that would be the best option, but that isn't available. Is a 9 week pup too big for carrying on plane? That is fast and pup is under my control. Any advice is appreciated.

by hexe on 09 January 2018 - 05:01

Direct flight, pup in soft carrier in the cabin with you, is the best choice. Will be easier on the pup and less nerve-wracking for you.
Q Man

by Q Man on 09 January 2018 - 15:01

Are you talking about transporting a German Shepherd Puppy? If so you would need to know it's weight and I'd call the airlines and ask...Each airline seems to have different rules about what they'll do...
Also check the prices for having the puppy in the cabin with you and under the seat...
Are you buying a puppy and going to get it or are you selling a puppy and taking it to the customer?


by Sunsilver on 09 January 2018 - 19:01

My most recent pup was too big to go in the cabin under the seat as she was 3+ months. However, her flight was delayed by bad weather, so the poor girl was over 14 hours in her crate, without any food or water, other than what she was given before boarding.

Flying the pup with you in the cabin definitely has an advantage, if the airline will allow it. But as said above, check the rules carefully with the airline!

by Jessejones on 09 January 2018 - 20:01

Cabin if you can.
Make sure at 9 weeks the pup is under or very close to the limited weight allowed on that airline for cabin transport. There are differences between airlines.
Make sure you carryon pet bag is approved by airlines. Not all bags are. Size must be correct. Best are soft sides and top with mesh area in front for viewing. Some even have a zippered accordion fold, so that you can open that zipper to enlarge the inner space a bit when stashed under seat.
Get a seat with best leg room, some airlines have this with additional cost of ticket, otherwise it is very tight in normal economy.
Ideally, get the carryon bag to your breeder well before hand, so they can acclimate the pup to the bag with positive food rewards. Never force the pup into bag without training, this could lead to trauma later.
Because pups can decide at any point of the flight to scream like banshees when restrained in a bag, I give 0.5mg of melatonin about half hour to 15 min. before flight to pup (based on German shepherd sized pups). Melatonin is a harmless Hormone and will make pup want to sleep a bit, or just calms.
NEVER EVER use a tranquilizer on pup!!!! But always check with your vet before doing even this.
Lay an absorbent diaper/bed pad into bottom of bag and take lots of treats to feed in the bag, when he gets resless.
And a chew bone too to keep him busy.

by css33 on 10 January 2018 - 02:01

Thanks for all the advice. Yes, it is a 9 week german shepherd puppy I will be picking up at breeder. My last 2 pups were imported and they spent a long time in the crate with the multiple flights, delays, etc. I would definitely do the crate and cargo if it was direct, but that isn't an option. I just don't recall how much a 9 week old puppy weighs and the size compared to the crate limits of 18 x 14 x 8.

by Jessejones on 10 January 2018 - 02:01

Ask your breeder to weigh him/her when the time comes. My GS pup weighed 9kg at 8 wks. And that airlines limit was 9 kg., and no one weighed her at the gate either.
If you can afford it, or get a good deal, buy the seat next to you as well for more space.

by beetree on 10 January 2018 - 17:01

My Beau was 9 weeks and 17 lbs.... I think? ... he was a big boy and just made it into the Sherpa large airline approved soft bag. I called the airline ahead of time to understand their requirements. I also paid $75 for the extra legroom and am glad I did. Packing a plastic table cloth and wee pads was good advice for me; if you end up waiting for your flight. This made a safe zone for pup to wait outside of the bag on leash, until flight time. In flight I was able to unzip the bag just enough for his head to pop up and I slipped him bits of ice cubes which he liked. He was a good dog and didn’t cry and was able to nap,

Good luck. I would fly with a pup again, being prepared was key to a pleasant flight.

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