United is making sweeping changes to its pet policy and banning certain breeds of dogs from flying in the cargo hold

  • United Airlines announced a number of new restrictions for pets travelling in the cargo hold of its aircraft via its PetSafe program on Tuesday.
  • Starting June 18, the airline will only transport cats and dogs in its cargo holds, while banning dozens of breeds.
  • The airline also said it will not accept PetSafe reservations to and from Las Vegas, Palm Springs, Phoenix, and Tucson between May 1 and September 30 “due to high temperature restrictions.”

United Airlines announced a number of new restrictions for pets travelling in the cargo hold of its aircraft via its PetSafe program on Tuesday. The PetSafe program doesn’t apply to animals travelling in the cabins of its aircraft, including service and emotional support animals.

Starting June 18, the airline will only transport cats and dogs in its cargo holds, while banning dozens of breeds, including various types of bulldogs, mastiffs, and pugs “out of concern for higher adverse health risks,” according to the company’s website.

The airline also said it will not accept PetSafe reservations to and from Las Vegas, Palm Springs, Phoenix, and Tucson between May 1 and September 30 “due to high temperature restrictions.”

In a press release, the airline also announced it will start working with the humane animal organisation American Humane “to improve the well-being of all pets that travel on United.”

The changes to United’s pet transportation policy will make it more closely resemble the policies used by American Airlines and Delta Air Lines. American also uses weather restrictions and limits cargo hold travel to certain breeds of cats and dogs. Delta only allows US military members and their family who are travelling on active transfer orders and passengers with emotional support animals to check certain aminals for carriage in the cargo hold.

In March, the airline announced it would temporarily stop transporting pets in its cargo holds as it reviewed the PetSafe program following a number of dog-related mishaps. The announcement followed changes the airline made to its emotional support animal policy in February that require passengers to provide additional paperwork to prove their emotional support animals are medically necessary and able to behave in public. Delta Air Lines and Alaska Airlines have announced similar policies this year.

Of the 24 animals that died in the cargo holds on US airlines in 2017, 18 were on United flights, according to the US Department of Transportation.

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