Airlines tightening leashes on support animals

U.S. & World

NEW YORK (NBC News) Airlines are tightening the leash on animal restrictions.

American Airlines has announced it will ban certain support animals including goats, hedgehogs and insects and any animal with an “odor” from its flight.

United, Delta and Alaska have already imposed stricter rules for animals in flight, hoping to reduce the growing problems they’ve caused.

Delta cited an 84 percent rise in animal-related incidents since 2016. 

Some of the new restrictions are based on behavior. Most won’t allow an animal that barks, growls or jumps. A misbehaving animal could be denied boarding or removed from the aircraft.

Delta and American Airlines require documentation for support animals at least 48 hours before travel. The forms include behavior guidelines and health information.

If you need to get a travel kennel, don’t wait until the last minute.

“About two weeks before you travel, switch from a wire crate to a nice airline crate, so its nothing new, something where they can be comfortable and can relax,” says dog trainer Helen Barker.

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