Jahn, K., Ley, J., DePorter, T. et al. 2023. How well do dogs cope with air travel? An owner-reported survey study. Animals 13(19), 3093.

It is estimated that 2 million domestic animals travel on commercial flights every year in the US alone and that dogs make up 58% of pets travelling worldwide. There has been little research on the welfare effects of air travel on dogs. The purpose of this owner-reported study was to understand how well dogs cope with and recover from air travel from a physical, mental, and emotional health perspective. An online survey questionnaire was distributed globally to pet owners whose dogs had travelled by air in the last 12 months, and the results were collected and analysed. Information was received about dog and owner demographics, logistics, and preparation for travel, as well as the dog’s experience of air travel. Results showed that most dogs cope with and recover well from air travel but that there is a group of individuals who suffer physical, mental, and emotional ill health consequences during or after air travel, including death. Stress management products such as anxiolytic medication, supplements, and pheromones were underutilised and, in some instances, actively discouraged. More education of all stakeholders of pet air travel is needed to improve the physical, mental, and emotional health and welfare of canine air travellers

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