Many dog owners feel uneasy about travelling with their dogs via aeroplane. Many do not know about airport procedures, and what sort of preparations need to be taken prior to travelling. If you decide on this type of transport, then you should be aware that your dog is considered as cargo from a purely legal perspective. In other words: your pooch is luggage.
Some airlines allow small breeds (weighing between 5 and 7 kg) to travel in the cabin in suitable boxes. However, if the dog is larger, it has to travel as luggage in the hold. This means that it will be transported in a suitable box in the aeroplane's cargo area. In order to ensure that the journey goes smoothly, contact specialist companies who will be happy to answer all your questions. These will also often register your dog's transportation in good time, so that you don't run the risk of forgetting anything important. These companies will also be happy to answer any questions you may have regarding the entry conditions for your dog in the country of destination.
Many dog owners find the idea of having to leave the dog alone in the hold absolutely terrible. However, in our experience, dogs are far less bothered by flying than you might think. Our four-legged friends are far more concerned by the fact that they have to leave their owners. If the dog is never left alone, for example, it will probably think that the world is coming to an end during the flight. If you don't want to do this stress to your dog, make arrangements around this kind of travelling to let the trip be as pleasantly as possible.
1. Have the transport box delivered in advance, so that your pooch can get used to precisely this box, and ensure that he only has positive associations with it. This is one of the main steps towards ensuring a stress-free flight.
2. Get your dog used to spending longer periods of time alone in the box. It is naturally important that your dog uses this time for a refreshing nap, and doesn't consider it a punishment. The best way is to take a long walk and exhaust your dog with a ball game or similar. After this, Rover will be happy to have a snooze!
3. Ensure that you praise your dog and greet it in a friendly manner after letting it out of the box. Don't be too exuberant - so that the dog will not expect that the box is associated with something bad. Remember that your dog will only recall the impressions you give it. This means that if you act as though the box is something very pleasant for your dog, it will feel the same.
Finally, it only remains to say - have a good journey!