Flying the Friendly Skies with your Pup

While we may not be taking to the air as much this year, some may still be flying with pets this holiday season. Stressors of travel affect both humans and pets alike. A common question we receive as veterinarians is how to reduce anxiety during travel and the use of medications.


Make sure your pet is use to the vessel they will be traveling in. This includes carriers, harness, and being in tight quarters. Take out carriers days to weeks in advance of trips. For pets traveling out of carriers, they should be comfortable in slightly confided areas. Practice having your pet set at your feet when at home while giving them some tasty treats.


Calming pheromones help reduce stress for pets during transport. These come as collars and sprays for travel. Consider spraying a bandana with the pheromones and placing on your pet 15 minutes after application.

Medication Do's & Dont's

Medications that cause marked sedation or are tranquilizing are never recommended for pets for travel. During transport, it is important pets are able to be aware of their surroundings and respond to changes, including turbulence, car traffic, and other transport troubles.

Talk to you Vet

Some anti-anxiety medication can help pets adjust to the stressors of transport with fewer side-effects. Discussion options with your veterinarians weeks before travel.

Check with your airline carrier

If flying and using medications, always check with your airline carrier for their rules and regulations. The last thing you need during the holidays is to be held from boarding for not doing your homework.

Happy travels!
Dr. Nicky

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