In the United States, every Service Dog handler enjoys the right to travel with their Service Dog. However, finding straightforward information about airline policies and requirements, international laws, TSA regulations, security checkpoints, and other commonly encountered situations isn't easy! To help you prepare you for your trip, we've compiled Service Dog travel tips, tricks, hacks, guidelines, and resources. Terminology note: U.S. Federal law includes miniature horses in the list of allowable Assistance Animal species. Miniature horses trained as Assistance Animals usually provide either guide services or brace and mobility support. Since the majority of Assistance Animal handlers partner with a dog, we usually utilize the term "Service Dog" instead of the more universal "Service Animal." However, any time you see "Service Dog," you could replace it with "Miniature Guide Horse" or "Brace and Mobility Support Horse" seamlessly. Miniature horse users possess identical public access rights to Service Dog teams. Airlines Updated Service Dog and ESA Policies Several Years Ago Throughout the course of 2018, nearly every major domestic airline updated their Service Dog travel policies. Most airlines designed their new protocols to crack down on people using legal loopholes to transport untrained or unsuitable dogs free of charge in the cabin. As such, many of the new rules differ greatly from the "old" airline Service Dog requirements. This is particularly true concerning Emotional Support Animals (ESAs). Many airlines now require an extensive, multi-step approval process for Service Dogs and Emotional Support Animals. Some airlines outline different rules or behavioral expectations for different types of Service Dogs. As an example, American Airlines requires Psychiatric Service Dogs to meet the Emotional Support Animal (ESA) requirements instead of the standard Service Dog requirements. Learn More About how Service Animals, Therapy Dogs, and Emotional Support Animals Differ Other types of professional working dogs, like Search and Rescue Dogs and Police K9s, often fly under an airline's established Service Dog policy. However, that's far from universal -- airline working dog policies range from nonexistent to clearly defined with everything in between! All handlers should confirm their airline's Working K9 or Service Dog travel policy several days prior to flying. Airlines accept Service Dogs in Training (SDiTs) at their own discretion. Service Dnimals in Training are not covered by the Air Carrier Access Act (ACAA) and therefore have no legal rights to fly under any Service Animal policy. Some airlines provide better SDiT policies than others. Service Dog Definitions and Requirements Vary Widely In addition to tightening the rules for
From everyday work to planned vacations to unexpected medical emergencies, there are lots of reasons you may need to leave your furry friend behind. Whether you have a pet or a Service Dog, it's helpful to have backup care in case you need it. Pet sitting is the best possible solution for any working pet owner. It is an alternative to the dog kennel system. Pet sitting is a type of daycare where you leave your pets during work hours. But rather than going to a specific institution, you can hire possible care and support for your pet at home. Dog Sitting vs Kennel Boarding When you need to leave your dog behind there a lot of things to consider. While some dogs are fine staying in a kennel, others may may experience stress or emotional issues. These issues can be brought on by a lot of factors other than just training — some are natural features of their breed. For example, herding dogs such as German Shepherds may actually try to herd the other dogs in the kennel, which of course is a behavior that's tough to train out. Other factors that can complicate boarding are medical conditions or dogs in heat or pregnant. Luckily, there's another solution: dog sitting in the owner’s home. Finding a Dog Sitter Has Become Easier Luckily, finding a pet sitter has become easier over the last decade. Today, there are a lot of great services that can help you find a pet sitter. These professionals will keep your pet supervised and look after them while you’re gone. But before you choose to bestow your pets to them entirely, you must get your pets familiar with the pet sitting team. That way, the experts will be able to handle your pets professionally and efficiently without fearing any extreme circumstances. Pet Sitting Costs Are Similar to Kennel Boarding You might be surprised at how comparable pet sitting prices are to kennel boarding. With a kennel, there are a lot of overhead costs from the building itself to all the equipment and gear required to take care of all the animals. If you have more than one pet, you may also save money because pet sitters often don’t charge or charge very little to care for multiple pets. In some cases, a pet sitter may be less expensive. Pet Sitting May Be The Healthier Option Most people don't think about dogs getting sick, but
Holiday travel with a Service Dog doesn’t have to be stressful. By following a few simple tips, you can reduce any difficulties associated with bringing your partner along for Christmas celebrations. Prepare Ahead of Time Preparing ahead for holiday travel solves many potential problems. If you’re flying, call the airline and let them know about your Service Dog. If you’re driving, look up good spots to stop so your Service Dog can stretch their legs. Having a solid plan in place means you don’t have to think about details on the day of travel. Preparing ahead also means packing for your dog. Divvy out individual meals and put your Service Dog’s gear in a small bag so it’s easily accessed. Bring extra food, medication, treats, and copies of documentation. It’s better to have a bit too much and not need it than to need more and not have it. If you’re traveling for an extended period, consider purchasing a bag of food once you reach your destination instead of trying to fly with or pack enough for several days. Understand Travel Buddies May Not “Get It” People who don’t routinely see you working with your Service Dog may not entirely understand what your partner does for you. Many people are lucky to have friends and family who support their Service Dog, but some teams might face criticism, disdain, or other difficulties when they return home for the holidays. Be prepared to enforce boundaries concerning your partner, especially regarding access and interaction. Many holiday guests may not “get” that your partner is working for you while around the house, so be sure to be clear about when your Service Dog is on duty and when they’re off duty. If there are children, consider using a visual cue that your partner is working or not. A bandana often works well for this. If your Service Dog has a bandana on, it’s like an invisibility cloak and the kids should pretend they can’t even see your dog. If your dog isn’t wearing a bandana, then they may be petted or played with. If you’d prefer that no one interacts with your partner except for you, then enforce that from the very beginning. Be clear and consistent in your expectations. Stick to a Routine Try to avoid changing your Service Dog’s routine during holiday travel if at all possible. If your partner generally eats at 10 am and 3 pm, do
Halloween 2013 is tomorrow and with it comes fall festivals, parties and trick-or-treating. While Halloween events are fun and exciting for the entire family, this most spooky of nights also carries many dangers, particularly for four-legged pack members. Before heading out to celebrate Halloween 2013, review our list of precautions to learn how to keep you and your Service Dog safe and your night of frights as trouble-free as possible.
The leaves are starting to change, there's bit of a chill in the air, and many people are pulling out their trusty hoodies and apple cider recipes. Fall is a beautiful time of year, but it also heralds the holiday season. Here are 10 autumn safety tips to keep in mind for your Service Dog as you both begin to enjoy this wonderful time of year.
Service Dogs can ride in airplane cabins with their handlers, but other types of working dogs often aren't allowed. Learn about the best kennels and crates for transporting working dogs, including search and rescue dogs, police K9s, and detection K9s. Airline policies can vary widely concerning non-Service Dog working dogs.
A "tether" is a short, 2 to 4 foot long piece of coated cable with a snap on each end. When it comes to training a Service Dog in Training (SDiT), few tools are as helpful as the tether. Read on to find out why tether training works, what it does, and how to do it!
While traveling with a Service Dog in the United States is your privilege, navigating airline policies, international laws, TSA regulations, security checkpoints and other commonly-encountered situations can be anything but smooth sailing. Here are some tips, tricks, guidelines and resources to ensure your trip is as stress-free as possible.
here's no question about it: evacuations are stressful. If they're required because of an impending disaster or emergency, they're even more difficult and scary. For people with a disability or those partnered with a Service Dog, evacuations require even more planning and thought than normal. Ensure you and your partner remain as stress-free as possible by preparing ahead of time and knowing what resources are available for you. Here's steps you need to take to develop a disaster or evacuation plan for people with disabilities who use Service Dogs.