Do any airlines allow you to purchase a seat for your dog if your dog is too big to fit under the seat? I was thinking how nice it would be to put a travel harness on Roxy and hook her to the seatbelt. I'm guessing none do, but figured I'd ask anyway. My only other option is driving for 10 hours since I won't fly her in the cargo hold.
It'd be nice to sit next to someone knowing they aren't going to hog the armrest.

Lynne
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In my flying experience, I don't believe any airline will allow you to do that Emotion: sad I hate putting my dog in the cargo hold as well but at times I have to do it.
Lynne (Email Removed) said in
My only other option is driving for 10 hours since I won't fly her in the cargo hold.

Why not? I've flown my dogs often and the airport crew have almost always been beyond helpful and the dogs have always come out of the cargo hold in one piece (mentally and physically). I can tell stories where the crew has gone above and beyond their job descriptions.
http://www.rocky-dog.com/Friday/200408 WestJet.jpg

Matt. Rocky's a Dog.
Why not? I've flown my dogs often and the airport crew have almost always been beyond helpful and the dogs ... one piece (mentally and physically). I can tell stories where the crew has gone above and beyond their job descriptions.

Statistically there's probably less risk than driving but it still doesn't feel right. I can't get anywhere without changing planes at least once, anyway, and when Slick flew in he made an earlier connection than the one he was booked on and arrived in Elmira early. The airport staff chewed me out for not being there when he arrived and I certainly wish I'd known so I could be there, but if he's got to wait around in a crate better in the little airport in Elmira than in Detroit.
I have a meeting in Chicago this summer and I'm thinking of driving out, partly because I hate to fly but mostly because I'm thinking of going up to Wisconsin afterwards to do some camping and to visit the kennel Slick came from to see who's for sale. But, on the other hand, no more new dogs until we get some races under our belt and see how those go.

Anyway, I used to fly about 80,000 miles/year and saw a lot of stuff I didn't like, like crates sitting unattended on a hot tarmac, and would just as soon not fly a dog. It's not that I won't, but that I have a strong preference not to.
Melinda Shore - Software longa, hardware brevis - (Email Removed)

Prouder than ever to be a member of the reality-based community
(Email Removed) (Melinda Shore) said in
Anyway, I used to fly about 80,000 miles/year and saw a lot of stuff I didn't like, like crates sitting ... as soon not fly a dog. It's not that I won't, but that I have a strong preference not to.

I'm pretty anal about flying my dogs, but WestJet has been fantastic. They bring the dogs out at the last minute and park them under the wing. I've had ticket booth people volunteer to go with the dogs and supervise the luggage handlers (this was in Toronto where the handlers aren't WestJet employees).
Since WestJet flies only 737s and puts the dogs in the forward hold, I always book a window seat in rows 7 to 11 so I can watch the luggage ramp. Plus, I'm always the last one on the plane so I can watch my dog being loaded.
I used to take only direct flights, but since I found out where to sit, I don't mind a stopover. I've never had to change planes, though.
That said, this year the AAC Nationals are in southern Ontario and, instead of flying, Team Alberta is renting a bus, removing half the seats for dog crates, and hiring 2 drivers to drive us straight through (30 plus hours each way). This gives us transportation and secure benching at the nationals.

Matt. Rocky's a Dog.
Why not? I've flown my dogs often and the airport crew have almost always been beyond helpful and the dogs ... one piece (mentally and physically). I can tell stories where the crew has gone above and beyond their job descriptions.

Most of the time, my luggage flies on the same plane I do, and I have no complaints about the way it is handled. I'm worried about the exceptions. For example, this last trip flying from Calgary to Toronto, going through customs in Toronto, then continuing from Toronto to Logan, my checked wheelie didn't make it from Calgary to Toronto. As it happened, it was no big deal. The baggage clerk in Toronto made the necessary phone calls and put the necessary stamp on my boarding pass so I could go through customs without it. They delivered it to my front porch the next day. Truth be told, it was more convenient than lugging it through the airport, onto a bus, then into a taxi. I wish all my luggage were delivered to my home the following day.
BUT, there was no explanation for what went wrong! If that "bag" had been my dog, I'd have been a basket case. I'd have had to stay in Toronto until my dog was delivered, missed my connecting flight, probably would have been taken in by airport security for questioning for going crazy and becoming obnoxious. It's great when the crew goes out of their way to make sure everything goes well. I believe you when you say they do, but I'd have to say the crew went out of their way to make sure everything went well when they lost my bag too. Mistakes happen.
I realize my example is for an international flight where things must be different, but I'm extremely reluctant to fly with a dog in the cargo hold and haven't since Genny was a pup. (Around 1982 was the last time I flew a dog like that). Cubbe was in a boarding kennel for 3 weeks at $20/day this last trip. Maybe that wasn't optimum, but I never worried about her the whole time I was gone. (And they gave her a good report card when I got back.)
Lia
Julia Altshuler (Email Removed) said in
If that "bag" had been my dog, I'd have been a basket case.

Did you watch that bag being loaded onto the plane? Did you ask the flight attendant if your bag had made it on? Did you sit where you could watch the luggage ramp? Heh, probably not, but that's what I do when I fly a dog and I don't get on the plane until I see that dog loaded.

Matt. Rocky's a Dog.
Did you watch that bag being loaded onto the plane? Did you ask the flight attendant if your bag had ... I do when I fly a dog and I don't get on the plane until I see that dog loaded.

I didn't know they allowed you to do any of those things. Canada, the kinder, gentler, 51st state.
Lia
That said, this year the AAC Nationals are in southern Ontario and, instead of flying, Team Alberta is renting a ... to drive us straight through (30 plus hours each way). This gives us transportation and secure benching at the nationals.

Great idea! I've never flown a dog, but have to admit that I'd be hesitant to. Like someone else said, the odds may even be worse to drive, but I like to feel a bit more in control of our own destinies (yeah, for what it's worth).

Janet Boss
www.bestfriendsdogobedience.com
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