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Animals On Airplanes!

Thu Aug 21, 2003 4:24 am

Ever experienced sitting next to a pax, with an animal?
or maybe you heard lots of barking from the cargo compartment?

How was your experience?
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RE: Animals On Airplanes!

Thu Aug 21, 2003 4:39 am

Oh we had a recent incident in India when one ran amok when the plane got delayed and slapped the Captain (whom the airline - Jet Airways suspended on charges of misbehaviour towards the animal!).

Turns out that the animal was the Indian Labor Minister...

Sarfaroshi kii tamannaa ab hamaare dil mein hai, Dekhnaa hai zor kitnaa baazu-e-qaatil mein hai
America West
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RE: Animals On Airplanes!

Thu Aug 21, 2003 5:16 am

I sat next to a cat on a Delta 737-800 flight from CVG to ABQ (about 2.5 hours) and I didn't even know it!

After we took off, this lady took her bag from under the seat and put it on the seat in between us. It looked like a regular piece of luggage - with flowery patterns on it.

After we arrived at the gate in ABQ, she had the bag rested on the seat back as she was standing in the aisle. She smiled at it and said "we're home sweetie." As she moved up the aisle I saw a small screen on the side of the bag that was facing her, and there was a cat in there.

[Edited 2003-08-20 22:17:25]
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RE: Animals On Airplanes!

Thu Aug 21, 2003 5:25 am

The thing that absolutely kills me is that airlines are required to make all sorts of accomodations for people who are allergic to peanuts (about a tenth of a percent of the population), but there isn't any problem whatsoever with cramming PETS into the same pressurized metal tube, even though about 20% of the populace has some sort of allergic reaction to them!
"In this present crisis, government is not the solution to our problem - government IS the problem." - Ronald Reagan

Comments made here are my own and are not intended to represent the official position of Alaska Air Group
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RE: Animals On Airplanes!

Thu Aug 21, 2003 5:30 am

you make a good argument about the peanut allergy, except that peanut allergies are often some of the most serious, as in life or death. i don't ever recall hearing someone died because of pet dander.

there was a seeing-eye dog on a flight with me one time. the owner was very friendly and let me pet her dog (once they were seated and the dog was no longer "working"). it was great, the dog was awesome, and many people stopped to pet him. i think the presence of that german shephard was very relaxing, for many of the passengers, particularly the kids.

with that said, i do think that if an airline knowingly puts an animal in a seat, they whould query surrounding passengers about comfort and allergies. not everyone is as at-ease with animals as i am.
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RE: Animals On Airplanes!

Thu Aug 21, 2003 5:34 am

I always take my dog in the cabin with me. I will not fly an airline that does not allow me to. It only weights 5 pound so it usually isn't a problem. Just give them a sleeping pill and they'll be alright.
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RE: Animals On Airplanes!

Thu Aug 21, 2003 5:38 am

Sat one row ahead of a seeing eye dog on a MIA - ATL leg in a DL767 about two months ago. I was in the last row of first class and the dog was with its owner in the first row of coach on the A-B side.

The dog had its own empty seat but sat on the floor the entire flight against the bulkhead. I didn't hear as much as a whimper out of the dog as we climbed out of MIA in a good deal of turbulence (can't say the same about all the passengers). The animal navigated the cabin very confidently and without distraction when they came on and off. Never stops amazing me what a good dog can do.

A couple weeks later I heard that the FAA is now allowing accompanying pets to fly with their owners for a variety of conditions including anxiety as long as the owner has note from their doctor (I think this topic was discussed as part of the thread on the pig who flew AA). If the story is true, I think you'll start seeing a lot more pets in the cabin.

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RE: Animals On Airplanes!

Thu Aug 21, 2003 7:41 am

We were on approach to TPA on a Continental flight from EWR, and just before landing felt something brush against my leg...something furry. After a tense moment thinking "please tell me that's not some sort of rodent" I looked down and there was a little black dog staring up at me. I said "hello, there" to the dog and the guy in the seat stiffened up, muttered "oh, no", and deftly reached back and scooped up the dog just before we hit.

(And I mean "hit" - it was the hardest landing I've ever experienced. TPA had apparently had light rain just before we arrived, and the pilot planted it - to reduce the chance of skidding, I guess - with extreme prejudice. The lead FA picked on him on the post-landing announcement - "please remain seated while we circle back to pick up any parts that fell off on impact, and then taxi to the gate.")

After we got to the gate, I saw that the guy in front of me and his wife had two small dogs in soft-side carriers. Cute little guys, too...and well behaved for the most part - until the one made his escape, I didn't even know they were there. The owners would unzip the carriers a bit so the dogs could stick their heads out, and after they had dozed off one of them figured out that he could work the zipper back with his neck enough to get out.

BTW, I have seen FAs asking passengers next to a passenger with a seeing-eye dog if they wanted to be reseated, and when one did (for allergies), they just asked for a volunteer to swap places. No drama. The only air travel related problem I've ever seen with an animal was a guy who threw an absolute fit about having to allow one of the "Beagle Brigade" to sniff his carry-on bag going through customs at LAX.
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RE: Animals On Airplanes!

Thu Aug 21, 2003 8:08 am

On a flight a while back from ATL to SNA, sitting in first class, after landing noticed a couple had a dog when they stood up and had taken it out to comfort it. The dog was tiny, and looked pretty scared... but never heard a bark out of it the whole flight, but the baby on the other hand that was up front is a whole other story.
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RE: Animals On Airplanes!

Thu Aug 21, 2003 8:13 am

I have flown with my cat on DL both non-revving and as a paying passenger. I try to always give the cat some sort of sedative, and normally it is not a problem. However, I am always very aware of other people around me, and if I can move to a seat where no one else is around I do. DL requires no health certificates, but does has a maximum number of 3 pets in the cabin on any one plane.
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RE: Animals On Airplanes!

Thu Aug 21, 2003 8:47 am

In the UK we cannot take animals on the plane at all unless it is a guide dog. My mother has 4 cats and she would take them with her anywhere if this was allowed in the UK but it isnt´t not even domestic flights.
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RE: Animals On Airplanes!

Thu Aug 21, 2003 8:55 am

Frontier has animals on EVERY plane :-p

Phil Derner Jr.
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RE: Animals On Airplanes!

Thu Aug 21, 2003 9:12 am

I'm all for letting pets ride on planes. Most are way better passengers than half of the asshole humams that fly on the planes- stinking up the seats not wearing deodrant, getting drunk, air rage and don't forget I never heard of a pet taking over a plane and flying it into a building.

They should put a special section on planes IN THE CABIN for people with pets, because they should not have to ride in the belly of the aircraft- you have all heard the stories of the heaters that didn't work and the animals freezing.

RE: Animals On Airplanes!

Thu Aug 21, 2003 9:39 am

Have I got a story.

My dad and I were coming back home from a ski trip in Montana. We flew from FCA to SEA to then catch NW from SEA to DTW. Well, as fate would have it we were late getting into SEA. We run to the NW departure gate as fast as possible since we were flying in first class. We get to the gate just as they start final boarding and get to our seats just in time to enjoy the complementary beverages before departure.

Then SHE showed up.

SHE was in a white skirt, while blouse, white hat, white stockings and blue eyeshadow. Possibly colorblind, I dunno. SHE was carrying a small kennel with the ugliest long haired white cat I had ever seen. The cats name? Fluffy. How original. As she takes here seat, my dad and I are about to burst with laughter but were able to contain ourselves. The obviously gay flight attendant took one look at fluffy and replied "Oh how Lovely. A cat. You have...... A........ Cat" He didn't like Fluffy.

SHE sat in the row in front of usand at this point I was about to die from holding in my laughter. My dad just rolled his eyes and started to read.

Fluffy was quiet for the most part during pushback, and meowed quietly during taxi. As the obviously gay flight attendant was going through the cabin before departure SHE proclaimed to him that "Fluffy and I are going to PARIS!"

"Oh how lovely" he replied, shooting a stare at here that would make Ru Paul straight.

Well, Fluffy didn't like take off too much..........


allllllllll through take off and alllllllllll through out climb out. This went on for about an hour. I was in hysterics since I was the only one in first class with a walkman and didn't have to listen to Fluffy lose it. My dad went to the restroom and the flight attendant offered him 20 dollars to silence Fluffy by any means necessary. He was serious too.

SHE really loved Fluffy. Shh spoke to this cat like it was a baby saying things like..... "How's my little Fluffy wuffy!" and "Your such a good baby! Mommy loves you KISS KISS KISS KISS!"

My dad said he wanted to puke, The guy in the next aisle said he already did.
It was conclusive. We hated Fluffy.

Then SHE went to the restroom. Fluffy didn't like that either. Fluffy went in to cries and moaned like she was dying. Fluffy didn't know how close she really was.

The whole flight was smooth. My dad was now praying for some good turbulence to shut Fluffy up. He got his wish. We went up. We went down. Side to side and damn near did a loop de loop.

So did Fluffy.

While people in coach were holding on for dear life and frowning, we were smiling. Fluffy went up, down and allllllll around.

SHE returned to her seat and said "Fluffy! What happened are you alright!"
To which my dad responded "God I hope not" SHE heard that and sneered.
I laughed like I never laughed before.

(And yes Fluffy was fine)

After we arrived in DTW we found out that the plane (A DC-10) would be continuing on to Paris, but everyone had to deplane for servicing. SHE then asked the obviously gay flight attendant "Could fluffy stay on board?" The flight attendant couldn't hold it in anymore

"Oh hell no. Get that cat off my plane!"

SHE replied "Well, you don't have to be so rude!"

We then glared at her with the displeasure of suffering through Fluffy in our eyes. She saw all 24 First class passengers unhappy and then she went to get Fluffy.

This is why I died laughing when I real about the pig in First Class to SEA on USAir. What up with freaky pet owners in SEA??
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RE: Animals On Airplanes!

Thu Aug 21, 2003 9:49 am

The GAY flight attendant did NOT like FLUFFY????

Somehow I would picture him having a cat named Fluffy.

RE: Animals On Airplanes!

Thu Aug 21, 2003 9:51 am

So the gay flight attendant didn't like the PUSSY cat. What wrong with that??
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RE: Animals On Airplanes!

Thu Aug 21, 2003 10:08 am

So what's the deal? Can you legally take an animal in the cabin with you? Is it up to the airline?

Anyway, on a flight from ATL => CVG one time, I saw a young lady a few rows behind me with a chihuahua in her handbag.

[Edited 2003-08-21 03:09:18]
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RE: Animals On Airplanes!

Thu Aug 21, 2003 10:27 am

When I move form YUL to YVR in 98, TS allowed me to take Choupette (female cat) with me in the cabin. I just gave her some sleeping pills the vet prescribed and she remained in Lala land all the way to YVR. The pills were the best thing to do as Choupette usually bawls as soon as she is in her cage.

Ben  Smile

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RE: Animals On Airplanes!

Thu Aug 21, 2003 10:30 am

We've sort of been down this track, before see:

I know I'm in the minority here, but I do not agree with any unsecured objects in the cabin - yes including 5lb dogs. If if can't be stuck in the bin or under the seat in front then it shouldn't be in the cabin.

Again, I know I'm being very un-PC here, but that should also include seeing eye dogs. Oh, how I would love to be on a flight with severe turbulence when a 20kg German Shepherd is flying (literally) around the cabin.

BD1959 - pet lover (believe it or not!)
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RE: Animals On Airplanes!

Thu Aug 21, 2003 11:50 am


as a pet owner as well, I do not think that the air is a place for pets, period. I do not think it is really safe. We do not know what the pets go through up there.
I do, however disagree with the seeing eye dog. There is nothing worse than a blind person without a way through the cabin. A seeing eye dog MUST stay with its owner at ALL times. That is its job.
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RE: Animals On Airplanes!

Thu Aug 21, 2003 12:04 pm

They have shoulder harness belts for dogs in cars, because my dog has one. Why not get one for the seeing eye dog and perhaps give it a seat besides the blind person. I know it would cost the blind flyer a little more money, but perhaps help accomodate the handicap person by not charging them the extra seat- it would be good customer service and also good safety. I think a seeing eye dog would be tame and trained enough to allow the f/a to strap it into the seat- plus those dogs go thru weeks of training before being placed with a blind person, that could be added into the training.

For other dogs, if aircraft could just accomodate a small section in the cabin for pets (what do you average per flight? one or two pets usually) that they could have their cages in a back section of a cabin that could be locked down so they wouldn't have to be put in the belly of the aircraft where it can get hot while on the ground and while in the air, the heater could fail.
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RE: Animals On Airplanes!

Thu Aug 21, 2003 12:18 pm

My wife and I used to take our Yorkies with us (two 6-lb "pocket puppies"), as they would be comfortable and quiet in our, well, pockets. Then AA started charging $50.00/per, so we boarded them with a neighbor. I understand pets in the cabin are allowed at the discretion of the airline. Southwest allows NO animals in the cabin (don't know about seeing-eyes dogs), while the last time I checked, American would allow only one animal in the cabin (if someone ahead of you booked-on with a dog, you were out of luck if you wanted to bring you cat aboard, etc). Perhaps this rule has changed. Anyway, it's best to ask the carrier in advance...Jack
all best; jack
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RE: Animals On Airplanes!

Thu Aug 21, 2003 1:03 pm


My issue was with unrestrained animals. I think the suggestion of Michah's is great and a compromise which allows the seeing-eye animal in the cabin at the same time providing a safe environment for both the animal and fellow passengers.

I'm still chuckling at Flairport's assertion that the dog is there to guide the blind person through the cabin "row 26...row 27 woof, woof...we sit here".

On a slightly different angle I was at Melbourne one night seeing someone onto a Sydney flight which obviously connected into an onward Japanese service and a group of Japanese tourists were boarding. One of them had a couple of boxes of live lobsters which he'd tried to take into the cabin. A very camp F/A insisted they had to go in the hold "What if they escaped and started biting people" he shrieked - much to everyone's amusement.



RE: Animals On Airplanes!

Thu Aug 21, 2003 2:12 pm

Isnt this about paxs in and out of New York?
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RE: Animals On Airplanes!

Thu Aug 21, 2003 2:34 pm

When we moved from France to the united states we had to take our cat with us. The flight was on a TWA 767 in Business and we basically had the 1st row for ourselves so having the cage there wasn't a problem at all. The cat itself was frightened and therefore it didn't do much but sit in the corner of the cage. While having the cat in Business was perfectly fine I wouldn't do it in coach since there is simply too little space.
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RE: Animals On Airplanes!

Thu Aug 21, 2003 2:46 pm

I once had a Spider Monkey and an Asian Fishing Cat in F/C from JFK to SFO. We also had 2 Bengal tigers and a python in the cargo hold. The animals and their handlers were from SFO, but had been guests on a TV show that was taped in NYC. It was funny because the PIL actually listed the animals as F/C PAX. ie:

2A Monkey, Spider
3A Fishing Cat, Asian

The spider monkey was so cute because I gave him orange juice and he drank it from a wine glass, just like a human would. Before T/O we were allowed to go down onto the ramp to view the tigers, a mother and her cub. One of the F/A's kept making little cutsie cat noises until the momma cat let out a loud roar and put an end to her taunting. It was really funny.
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RE: Animals On Airplanes!

Thu Aug 21, 2003 3:23 pm


Until we find out that people can choke and die from being allergic to small pets (as they can from peanuts), I think it's OK for now. If the person sitting next to the animal is allergic, I'm sure the FAs could re-accommodate you in another seat.

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