questionspuppy dogs on a plane??

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I came to this question expecting it to be about a movie like "Snakes on a Plane" where everyone gets attacked by cute little puppies.

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I shipped my cat from Germany, and she was fine. I think they're pretty resilient at that age.

Normally, I would rail on about getting a shelter pet, but allergies can be brutal. Good luck with your new critter!

@cengland0: Ah, being licked to death by puppies...what a way to go...

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I know some friends of my parents that used to move a lot. They swore by giving their dog half of a Dramamine (common motion sickness pill).

They said on road trips the dog would be very docile and content for up to 10 hours sometimes, and it didn't have any adverse effects on him. They said beforehand, he was very frightened and spastic on road trips, being cooped up, but was then fine. Can't recommend this from personal experience, though...

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@cengland0: I agree...
I Have Had It With These Monkey-Fightin’ Puppies On This Monday-To-Friday Plane!

edit sorry to the OP I am no help.
double edit on second thought did you ask your vet? Mine was an expert in all odd things pet related things. We rescued a dog and he suggested using dawn dish soap to was the dog at first, I can not remember why.

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Talk to the breeder. If they are willing to ship the puppy blind, chances are they have a significant amount of experience doing it, probably more than the vet. Here are some of the caveats.

1) The airlines really, really don't like doing this on anything other than a non stop. Delays and cancellations en route can cause big problems.

2) Likewise, there are temperature limits when they will accept live animals. The temperature can't be too hot (pup cooks on the ramp waiting to get on) or too cold.

3) What kind of dog? There is a concern about short nosed breeds (cats and dogs) on aircraft. They don't have much of an apparatus left for humidifying and warming air, so taking them on any aircraft is a bad idea.

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Psychologically, probably not. Physically, be careful.

My dog made trips from the East Coast to Korea and back again, as well as some smaller trips, and the only thing wrong with him was that he was very anxious to see us again. But he was already a few years old when he made those trips. Not sure how a puppy would react - I volunteer with a shelter in my area, and puppies have a LOT of energy they need to burn off.

You have good advice from other posters (and @okham I'm so with you on shelter dogs, but yeah, allergies do make that difficult). Watch out for temps both where the dog comes from and where it lands (EVERY place it lands, if there are layovers). Consult with a vet and the breeder to decide how best to bring it over - best bet (though more expensive) might be to fly out and come back with puppy in a carrier in the passenger compartment, if you can manage it. Haven't dealt with animal "drugging" for planes ever, but you might want/need to carefully look into that as well.

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The last flight I was on (just the other week) on Airtran, they allowed a lady to put it under her seat as her "personal item." So if you can get a small enough pet carrier, that could be an option as well (maybe!).

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When I was a kid, we got a puppy from a breeder 1000 miles away. The breeder had plenty of experiance "shipping" a puppy by airline and the puppy had no problems upon arrival. There were no drugs involved.

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I would never do it. Two of my friends had their dogs die in the cargo hold after they were assured, by the airline, the dog would be fine, it was climate controlled, and had plenty of oxygen, would be strapped down, etc. Both friends had the crates handed to them by airline personnel without even a "sorry" or look of concern. My one friend said that the blanket in the crate was just saturated with urine so he must have been pretty traumatized. The one dog was a 60 pound terrier mix and the other a heavier shepherd mix.

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a passenger brought one on my plane earlier this week in her carry-on luggage.

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I think that if you could bring them on with you and that way you were personally responsible for its well-being like @texann97 said, it would be fine. I have seen what airlines do with luggage; no freaking way am I going to subject my pet to potentially the same treatment.

If it is a puppy, it can probably fit comfortably in a small carry-on.

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If I were you I would do as the last two posters said and go get him. That way he could travel in the cabin with you. I understand pets under 25lbs that will fit in a standard sized carry-on are allowed on flights. Last time I checked they only allowed two pets per flight, so you had to make a "reservation" in advance for the spot. I am curious what breed you have settled on, as I am sometimes asked to recommend dogs for people with allergies. Lots of people successfully ship pets, I am sure tragedies like @whatsmypassword described are pretty rare. But personally, I would be extremely reluctant to take that risk.

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I just remembered, someone on my Great Dane list lost a puppy in shipping last year. She was expanding her champion line bringing in a very expensive puppy from one of the oldest and most respected dane lines in Germany. At some point someone gave him a sock to play with (it wasn't in his crate when he was shipped) and he choked to death. This was a tragedy in several ways, the loss of an innocent life, the loss of a big investment, and the loss of an excellent addition to an American bloodline. She'd visited the kennel and picked out the puppy while in Germany. By the time giant breed puppies are weaned many of them are over the 25lb limit to carry on so she had to ship him. She'd had been talking on the list all for weeks about how excited she was to be getting a new member of her little dane family from such a distinguished bloodline, her plans for showing, etc. She'd posted pictures of the little guy with his mom and littermates. We were all really sad.

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Depending on the size of the puppy they can be carryon as mentioned. Look at your preferred airlines for otpions plus there are specilaized carriers such as http://www.airanimal.com/ that only handle animals.

I have often considered making a long trip on a train, that could be an interesting experience.

Of course the best thing anyone has said is consult with your vet and the breeder plus perhaps their vet. If you can't come up with a good solution between those 3 people I'd be surprised.

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To all of you kind folks who have answered... Thank you so much! You have given me some excellent advice and warnings. FYI... the "breed" is a mini labradoodle. I had a "duh" moment when it was pointed out that I could just fly out there and get the dog myself so that I could stow it as a carryon below the seat. That was a very logical idea!

Regarding the pound puppy concept... I am actually actively involved with our local rescue league and have patiently waited for a dog whose lines could be firmly identified so that I could know the allergy impact. Unfortunately, this is really hard to do. It is almost impossible to be certain of most pound dog's lineage. The last thing I want to do is bring home a great dog, quickly get attached and then have to give it up because I'm allergic. Thus...the breeding route..

The breeder, and my vet, indeed feel comfortable with the puppies on the plane. I was told that at 8 to 10 weeks their level of awareness is still pretty low. Thanks again!

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Just FYI, not all labradoodles are non-shedding. Labs shed, poodles do not. It could take after the lab and shed like crazy but you might not realize that until it was older and gets its adult coat in.

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@tippypaws: You are correct... we did investigate that potential. That is why you don't get a first or second generation combination. The multigenerational Australian breeds don't seem to have that issue (from what I have learned). The shedding has been bred out of them... but a very good point! This is why I have to go so far away to get one that has a proven multigenerational lineage.

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If you are able to go get the pup, that would be best. If not ask through the rescue about puppy transports. My Mom does rescue for dogs and birds. She has flown with both as a carryon that fits under the seat. There are also networks that drive dogs with a series of volunteer drivers to get dogs to new owners. There are also a few airlines that allow pets to fly through the rescues at discounted rates.

The last time Mom flew with a pet as a carryon, I think the fee was around $75 one way.

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@lpgstock: I appreciate how difficult it is to be able to get a pound puppy when dealing with allergy issues. The group I work with tends to call all the puppies we work with "All-Americans" as there is no knowing complete bloodlines, and often no knowing even what dad is. I'm glad you at least tried to work with your local All-Americans, and I'm really happy that you found an alternative and are going to have your own little bundle of fluff who won't make your house all allergy-fied.

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We have a Corgi at our house. None of us are allergic to dog hair. But my God, those little dogs can shed a dustpan full of hair a day of hair. We have a Roomba (thank you Woot) that we bought shortly after our corgi's arrival. It does pretty good keep it all picked up. If your thinking about getting a Corgi (which is a great dog breed) make sure you consider the shedding problem with the corgi breed. :)

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If it's not possible/practical to drive to get your new puppy, I would at least suggest you wait until after summer to have him flown over. Pets are usually kept in only slightly better accommodations than luggage, and the heat is a real concern.

Or what about one of you flying to the breeder, picking him up, and flying back with him on a pet-friendly flight. I think Southwest allows small dogs an cats in the cabin as long as their carrier fits the standards for carry-on luggage.

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http://www.petairways.com/ flies animals only, in the main cabin (with flight attendants!) between a limited number of major hubs. FYI, airanimal.com, mentioned earlier, merely coordinates pet transportation with the airlines; the animal will fly in the cargo hold.

I have no experience with petairways, but I knew I had heard of this option. There may be other pet-only airlines; this is the first one google turned up.

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There are also many professional ground transporters, like this one: http://propetvehicletransport.com/

Good luck picking an option that works for you to bring your puppy home. I agree with those who caution against standard airline cargo shipment. No doubt many thousands of pets travel that way without incident, but they are subject to the same risk of loss and mishandling as luggage. My childhood story: after being put on the wrong plane, our dog then had to spend six weeks quarantined in France when our military family returned stateside from Germany. (He was very happy to see us!)

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There are now DNA test kits available for rescue dogs. I know rescuse that have pure bred dogs, too. Not sure where you are located but if you Google Dog Rescues in your area, I wonder if you could find one. Also, the DNA test runs about $65