Embracing Adventure “Life is either a daring adventure or nothing.” ~~Hellen Keller

Puppy Preparations Part II

Yes, that is a Delta Airlines Boeing 767-300...

Flight Arrangements

I called Delta on October 26th to confirm our plane tickets and that our dogs were scheduled to come with us. I’m glad I did because I found out the tickets were confirmed, but there was no request for the dogs. The lady told me that they can put in a request as long as space is available, but first she needed to know the breed, weight, and pet carrier dimensions for the dogs. I told her we have a Pembroke Welsh Corgi who is about 30 lbs. and a Miniature Pinscher who is about 10 lbs. We were about to buy carriers but hadn’t yet as I wanted to know what specifications they needed first.

Since we were going to have our dogs travel in the cargo hold as checked baggage rather than in the cabin, she said she wouldn’t need to know the dimensions after all. (A dog can only travel in the cabin if the carrier fits under the seat). She told me the kennels need to be big enough for the dogs to stand and turn around comfortably and ventilated on at least three sides. They also need to have a metal door, a food and water dish attached, and something absorbent lining the bottom. We already had a collapsible metal crate for Gir. Some airlines don’t allow that type, so I asked if we could use it. The lady said it was fine as long as it met the other specifications.

She said so far there was only one other pet traveling in the cargo hold on that flight, so there would be room for ours. She told me there is a temperature restriction for the cargo hold. They won’t take dogs when the temperature is below 40 degrees Fahrenheit. Then she said it’s actually 20 degrees minimum, but anything under 40 degrees requires veterinarian approval. We had picked up the European Union veterinary health forms required for their travel on October 18th, but had to wait to see the military veterinarian for their international health certificates. We couldn’t do this earlier than ten days before our flight, so we figured we could ask then if they could handle a lower temperature. We had also gotten Apollo a jacket to wear in case it was cold.

She reminded me the charge would be $200 per dog and could be paid at the counter when we check in and check our baggage. During this call, she also kept mentioning Sky Miles and a promotion they had for members who signed up for the credit card. I told her that I do have Sky Miles (which I hadn’t been sure if I would be able to put on) but we didn’t need the credit card. She put my number on the flight and told me that I’ll get credit for the miles on my ticket after the completion of the flight, so that was a nice perk of having called.

Pet Carriers

Petco store.

After the call, we went into PetCo to pick out the pet carriers. We picked one for Apollo first which is suitable for a dog up to a foot tall and we thought should have been more than big enough. The shell is plastic with a metal door. We already have a metal one for Gir which has worked for car travel and I was told would be okay for the flight. However, it is a bit awkward to carry and I’m not certain how secure the crates are in flight. My husband said that he didn’t really trust it. Rather than risk it, he just bought a bigger version of the crate for Gir. Then we bought food bowls that screw to the door and water bottles similar to the ones used for gerbils. I also already had one of those for Gir but wasn’t sure where the attachment was for it, so we bought a new one.

On October 28th we got to move out of our apartment. My husband went back to Texas for a few days to visit family and friends and drop off his car while I stayed with friends. While he was gone, I put together the crates so the dogs could get familiar with them. I discovered the 11 inch tall by 18 inch long one we had bought for Apollo was too small for him. The 24 inch long by 20 inch in tall seemed okay for Gir. Since she has traveling in a crate before and Apollo hasn’t, I attached the bowl to hers and put in food to entice him. He didn’t whine inside it as much as I thought he would, but he didn’t eat. I figured if we could get him at least used to hers, we could get him another crate or let him use that and get a bigger one for Gir. But that would have to wait for my husband to get back.

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4 Thoughts on “Puppy Preparations Part II

  1. Still can’t get over those 200 bucks per dog, what a rip-off! The flight was probably 8 hours, right? I am sure the dogs were fine, maybe a bit scared and stressed, but they get over it once they are outside! 🙂

    • I know right. The sad thing is that it was actually less than the pet shipping companies I had looked up if we had to go that route. Most of those were more than that for the consulting and didn’t include the price of the pet’s “ticket”. I was more shocked when I found out that it’s $50 plus $6/day for us to have them in the temporary housing (but we’re not here as long as I thought we would be and it turns out we get paid a stipend of sorts while we’re here so it’s not too bad).

      Well, we had showed up early and they took them probably two hours before our flight. We had an hour flight from Charleston to Atlanta where we had to wait for 2 hrs between flights and then the flight was 8 1/2 hours. Then once we got there we were able to get them to at least give them more water. But we had military stuff to take care of from that point. The guy had said we could take them out to walk once we got where we were going but then we went up to a secure room where we figured it would be more hassle and stress to take them out and have put them back in. Being there turned out to be a 3 hr ordeal and they had to travel in the cargo under the bus to post which was like an hour. So, all told they were in the crates like 16 hours before I got to take them out for a walk. I felt so bad for them. But they seem to have adjusted okay.

  2. We did thesame process to when we brought our cat from Saudi Arabia to here in Europe. I think we also pay same or a litle more of less 200$ I’m not quite sure. But I’m pretty sure we do pay in the check in too for our cat. Good thing we have our cat next to us during the flight, and same our cat never eat or drink during the flight. But when we reached the flat our cat eat and drunk tons of water.


    • We met people last night who said they paid less, something like $120, but they took theirs with United and they had a special area for them to be able to have the cat on the seat next to them as well. I guess United was our original airline but they were the ones that wouldn’t guarantee a spot and the flight was 6 hrs away so they changed it to the same city as where we shipped the car and to Delta (which works out okay because then I got miles too). All in all I think it worked out ok. Haha yeah our dogs drank A LOT after the flight.

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