Significant Changes Made to the United Airlines Pet Policy

PetMD Editorial
Published: May 08, 2018
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The United Airlines pet policy has recently had a big overhaul. Starting in March, they began a comprehensive review of their pet travel policies and practices in order to improve the safety of pets.

On May 1, 2018, United Airlines announced their collaboration with American Humane. American Humane is one of the country’s oldest national humane animal organizations, and they will be working with United Airlines to improve the overall well-being of pets that travel on United.

In conjunction with that announcement, they also informed United customers that the PetSafe pet travel program would resume operations later this summer. However, there have been some updates and restrictions added to the United Airlines pet policy for pets flying in cargo that will go into effect on June 18, 2018.

The new United Airlines pet policy states that only cats and dogs can be accepted into the PetSafe travel program and that pet parents can begin making reservations on June 18 of this year.

They have also released a list of dog and cat breeds that will not be allowed to fly in cargo due to potential health risks. The majority of the dogs and cats on this list are brachycephalic or short-nosed breeds that are at a higher risk of having breathing problems.

The current list of dog breed restrictions includes:

  • Affenpinscher
  • American Bully
  • American Pit Bull Terrier/Pit Bull
  • American Staffordshire Terrier/”Amstaff”
  • Belgian Malinois
  • Boston Terrier
  • Brussels Griffon
  • Boxer
  • Bulldog (American, English, French, Old English, Shorty and Spanish Alano/Spanish Bulldog)
  • Cavalier King Charles Spaniel
  • Chow Chow
  • English Toy Spaniel/Prince Charles Spaniel
  • Japanese Chin/Japanese Spaniel
  • Lhasa Apso
  • Mastiff (American, Boerboel/South African, Bullmastiff and Ca de Bou/Mallorquin)
  • Cane Corso/Italian Mastiff
  • Dogo Argentino/Argentinian Mastiff
  • Dogue de Bordeaux/French Mastiff
  • English Mastiff
  • Fila Brasileiro/Brazilian Mastiff/Cao de Fila
  • Indian Mastiff/Alangu
  • Kangal/Turkish Kangal
  • Neapolitan Mastiff/Mastino Napoletano
  • Pakastani Mastiff/Bully Kutta
  • Pyrenean Mastiff
  • Presa Canario/Perro de Presa Canario/Dogo Canario/Canary Mastiff
  • Spanish Mastiff/Mastin Espanol
  • Tibetan Mastiff
  • Tosa/Tosa Ken/Tosa Inu/Japanese Mastiff/Japanese Tosa
  • Pekingese
  • Pug (Dutch, Japanese)
  • Shar-Pei/Chinese Shar-Pei
  • Shih-Tzu
  • Staffordshire Bull Terrier/”Staffys”
  • Tibetan Spaniel

The current list of cat breed restrictions includes:

  • Burmese
  • Exotic Shorthair
  • Himalayan
  • Persian