On Board Dog & Allergy

Old Mar 16, 23, 12:59 pm
Original Poster
Join Date: May 2014
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Originally Posted by Butts
Can you have Cats as well as Dogs in the "Emotional Support" category ?
well not just dogs https://www.bbc.com/news/world-us-canada-42880690
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Old Mar 16, 23, 1:39 pm
formerly JackDann
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Id ensure any allergies are communicated to the airline before departure and ensure that I have the correct medication with me before travel. That way everyone should be happy.

I saw someone get offloaded from a flight, after causing a delay - due to not declaring their nut allergy before boarding (EZY) they declared it to crew once they were getting onto the aircraft. That was the second time that they had that happen within 24hrs. Id never take that risk if I had that severe of an allergy.

On a random note - I once saw somebody with an emotional support Monkey at Nashville airport.
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Old Mar 16, 23, 1:42 pm
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Originally Posted by bhomburg
Not only US carriers. BA ranks right at the top of the 'difficult-to-fly-with-animals' scale, together with the ME airlines (where people bringing falcons into the cabin are a thing, tough).
On BA, you can be 100% sure that any dog flying in the cabin is a bona-fide, vetted, 'real' assistance dog. Acceptance standards are very strict indeed, and emotional support animals ('ESA') which they reluctantly had to allow to and from the US for a few years are a thing of the past, acceptance was stopped for good in January 2021. No dog other than bona fide, UK-recognized assistance dogs have ever been able to set a paw on a BA flight since then.

As someone who traveled with a service dog on multiple airlines including BA and has encountered allergic passengers before:
The crew's response to your request was, well, substandard. In my experience, they were very helpful to reallocate seats so proper separation between dog and allergic passenger.

If you want to make absolutely sure you won't be traveling on the same plane as a dog, you'd need to fly TK - they have an official policy of not allowing passengers with assistance animals to fly on the same aircraft as passengers with allergies who have notified them (and supplied proper medical documentation) of said allergy in advance.
Or Korean - they have dedicated seating for passengers with animals who always get placed in the window seat on the starboard side in the last row of business class. This is visible on the seatmap so easily avoided by allergic passengers.

Trained assistance dogs (and their handlers) know about this and will time things so there won't be a need to use the facilities for the duration of a flight, even a long one. 12 hours are fine IME.
I`ve been doing this for a decade and never had an issue.

Assistance dogs are allowed in the lounges, yes, so pre-flight dining is a thing .
BA needs to be notified at least three days in advance if you want to fly with an assistance dog. Bypassing human verification is not possible, too. They ask for size and weight and can (and will!) deny acceptance if either the documentation or the animal's behavior at check-in isn't up to their liking 100%.
Seriously, BA is a real pain to use with any sort of in-cabin animal (I tried to avoid BA as much as possible when with the dog). There's a reason why there's so few dog threads on the BA board compared to other, more pet-friendly airlines.

Not on BA., not even back when they were allowed (but very grudgingly so) for a few years prior to January 2021 when thy were prohibited again. To reiterate: Ever since January 2021, no dog except carefully vetted assistance dogs have been able to get on board a BA flight.
Even US airlines have now closed their cabins to "emotional support " dogs following regulatory changes that allowed them to do so.
Better question..is the animal considered a guest so that the missus if without status is not permitted access? And follow up...animals permitted to eat in lounges? Just curious and have never witnessed this.
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Old Mar 16, 23, 1:48 pm
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Originally Posted by HIDDY
Whenever the missus gives me a row I go and get emotional support from 'Corchito the cafe dog'. He's very famous you know.
He is! Sadly we never met him, as we never ventured out of Puerto Madero when in Buenos Aires. Was so glad to stay there with the giant parks for those cherished loooong walks nearby.
Had to do the rental car madness in Sao Paulo and drive to Parque Ibirapuera with my dog for that...
And she served as emotional support for airline crew more than once (LH is about as hard to deal with as BA if you want to fly with a service dog...) :

Originally Posted by mediamonkey
really interesting insight in your whole post. Thanks for the reply
Originally Posted by mediamonkey
That's the old regulatory environment (the article is from 2018). U.S.Congress has passed new legislation in November 2020, and airlines have been very quick in banning ESAs from their cabins following up on it:
AA now says :Please note, [..] emotional support animals, and comfort animals may travel as pets, not as service animals.
UA is even more blunt: United does not transport emotional support animals. And, seeing they suspended PetSafe after a series of high-profile incidents including the widely-publicized case of a PETC dog dying on an UA flight after having been forced to be put in an overhead bin by UA cabin crew, flying UA with animals is, well.... not really recommended anyway.
DL- the same:For everyones safety, Delta updates service animal policy and will no longer recognize emotional support animals as service animals

The whole ESAN thing is over. It's dead, once and for all. People on here who travel a lot should rightfully know that.
The scrutiny people have to undergo these days to being dogs into airplane cabins is mind-boggling and not comparable to pre-2021 times at all.
My dog died last December of old age (she went on to live 18 years and 8 months, which is very old for her breed) , and I am going to take my first dog-less transatlantic flight next month.....

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Old Mar 16, 23, 1:51 pm
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One can buy some BS ESA sweater on Amazon.

1. Fire the dog/cat/pig into the hold.
2. If it can be proven the pets owner acquired the ESA sweater under nefarious reasons, fire them into the hold as well.
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Old Mar 16, 23, 1:57 pm
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Originally Posted by EJetter
Passengers seated next to an assistance dog are supposed to be notified at the gate, and if they have an allergy will be relocated (either by ground crew or cabin crew) in the same cabin. Policy states that if this isn't possible then then the passenger with the allergy is offloaded, not the assistance dog.
If only the same policy covers those who claim death by peanut. Sorry. Not sorry.
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Old Mar 16, 23, 1:57 pm
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Was the dog taken out of his container? Was the door opened?
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Old Mar 16, 23, 1:57 pm
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I would have just asked the cabin crew to have the dog disem - bark

Ill get my coat..
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Old Mar 16, 23, 2:22 pm
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Originally Posted by mediamonkey
I love the bit about "Hobie" leaving a deposit on the plane and being unceremoniously escorted off.

I'd like to see someone trying to put a nappy on a Cat
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Old Mar 16, 23, 2:29 pm
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Originally Posted by PAL62V
I would have just asked the cabin crew to have the dog disem - bark ……

I’ll get my coat…..
Are you sure you don't mean deplane..
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Old Mar 16, 23, 2:42 pm
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Originally Posted by mediamonkey
Flying to DFW in Business. Got on board and settled into my seat, a short while later a fellow passenger takes the seat in front of me, complete with a small dog. The dog doesn't have a 'working dog' style jacket on so I can only assume it's an emotional support dog or similar and of course has been given permission to board.

Now I have a pretty bad allergy to dogs.
So does my kid. We've been through this more than a few times.

Originally Posted by mediamonkey
Even hypoallergenic ones.
There's no such thing as a hypoallergenic dog, that's just marketing. Even the American Kennel Club admits that.

Originally Posted by mediamonkey
However I think there's probably enough space between us for it not to be an issue. However ten mins later my symptoms start appearing.

I go speak to the crew, I explain I have an allergy, that my medication which would help it is in my checked luggage (I wasn't assuming that there'd be a dog on board) and asking what they could do.
That mistake is on you. Rescue medication should always be on your person.

Originally Posted by mediamonkey
I was told the flight was full in business and there was nothing they could do. They refused to ask anyone else to reseat and said if it was going to be a problem for me they could move me to economy. Those were my options. So basically they were offering no help at all.

I suppose the point for discussion is what is the airline meant to do in this instance. The fact that they refused to ask other passengers seemed weird to me. If someone hadn't overheard us I would have taken it upon myself to ask other passengers if anyone minded switching. Equally the downgrade didn't seem like a fun option when I'd paid full fare business.

Is there a duty of care to one passenger over another? Assuming this is an emotional support animal then of course they have a duty of care to that passenger and their dog, however is their no duty of care to fellow passengers who are put out by this, be it allergies, fear of dogs or any other reason? Does one passenger trump another's needs? I know if I'd had to stay in that seat the flight would have been hellish with constant streaming of eyes, sneezing and a sore throat.
That might be hellish for you, but a bigger issue is are you still able to breath? My kid would be in severe respiratory distress if confined in a closed space that close to a dog.

Originally Posted by mediamonkey
So, what say you?
You don't mention where you boarded the plane, but I'm guessing UK. The info I can provide is based on American law, so not relevant to an ex UK departure, but might be helpful on your return flight from DFW.

Number 1 thing, always contact the airline in advance and request that "severe allergy to dogs" be noted on your reservation. With that, you have some basis to complain if suddenly there is a dog near you. Absent that, you'll likely get the response you did: nothing cabin crew will do.

Pre-boarding: ask at the gate if there are any dogs on the flight, and if they are seated near you. Request a change if necessary before boarding, being sure to reference the fact that you notified the airline in advance of your allergy. You may be asked if you are carrying rescue medication, and asked to show it to them - having it on you usually motivates GA's to take you seriously.

If the dog is a legitimate service animal, you, as a human with an allergy, will probably come in second place, but the airline is still required to make reasonable efforts to accommodate you, and generally that means moving you to a seat further away from the dog. Airline staff is allowed to ask questions to determine if the dog is really a service animal according the Air Carrier Access Act . If it is not, your medical issue, if you have informed the airline advance, should take precedence over a pet.

Again, the info I can offer is relevant to ex USA departures, not universal. However, it would be worth checking to see if UK law offers similar protection to people with severe allergies.
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Old Mar 16, 23, 2:51 pm
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Originally Posted by testycal
Better question..is the animal considered a guest so that the missus if without status is not permitted access? And follow up...animals permitted to eat in lounges? Just curious and have never witnessed this.
Actually, no , not a guest (I can still invite someone). I actually often/most of the time buy a seat for her when traveling in Y as she's simply too big to fit with just one seat so then she had her own boarding pass once (did that once on AA just for the fun of it, unfortunately that BP only lasted until the gate where the GA was not amused much). And dogs can't have FF accounts or be household account members unfortunately I tried with AAdvantage and BAEC but - not allowed. I have to go through some hoops if I want to get miles for her seat.
and Yes.
AA flagship dining @ DFW - the unseasoned chicken on the right is the doggie meal:

same facility, another time. I actually wasn't eligible to access FFD on that trip but was cordially invited in anyway because the staff all wanted to greet the dog. Yes. Note that she never (NEVER!) went on seats or furniture, got her food on dishes that aren't destined for humans on non-carpeted areas or with blankets underneath (I travel with three pieces of carry-on luggage when with the dog).
Those people who abused the ESA option when that blew up in the mid-2010s when those vests-off-the-internet were a thing annoy me to no end. I stopped putting hers on after I left it at a security checkpoint one time and we went without it for years. Didn't make a difference at all.

speaking of food - this may have been on BA . She got leftovers where cabin crew scraped the seasonings off the meat before giving it to me so I could prepare it for her.

Sorry mediamonkey to hijack your thread!
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Old Mar 16, 23, 2:55 pm
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1. If you have a serious allergy (I do and i am also a physician who has dealt with allergies and severe asthma attacks involving diversions on aircraft) you ALWAYS have your medicine with you in the aircraft cabin as well as in you baggage in the hold; BOTH places, its life saving medication!

2. You were, according to your own description, offered a move sufficiently, safely away from the allergen (dog), it just involved flying economy and apparently flying economy trumped the safety of avoiding the allergen. Having had severe asthmatic attacks, I would do anything to get away from a provoking stimulus on an over the ocean flight with no immediate medical access and so back to economy I would have gone and would have dealt with compensation later on the ground for the downgrade.

3. Nowhere do you state that you notified AA of the severity of this allergy so that they could have avoided seating the dog passenger near you. Do you let the airlines know that you have this condition and of it's severity?

4. I have provided my medications, as I carry lots of options with me, (steroids, antihistamines, inhalers, etc) to fellow passengers in distress on multiple occasions. Did you ask the flight attendants for such help to ameliorate your allergic response?
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Old Mar 16, 23, 2:57 pm
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I flew to PRG last year and my BP caused a red beep at the scanner at the First Wing. I got pulled aside while the agent had a look. Felt like a trouble maker. Turns out there was going to be a dog behind me and they wanted to make sure I was ok with it. I was. Im not allergic and I like dogs. Got a second beep at the gate and was again asked if I was ok which made me laugh.

Im really surprised crew wasnt more willing to try to find a volunteer. This clearly isnt a case of a family of four trying to save on seats. Or changing a really good seat for a bad one. Ive been asked plenty of times to change seats. As far as I can remember theyve always been reasonable requests where I guess people booked last minute and there were no seats together. So I was asked to move from 3D to 4C or whatever. I would have refused if I was asked to move from a bulkhead window in economy long haul to a middle seat 17 rows back.

I think the OP learned a valuable lesson about travelling with meds. And I also dont get the impression she or he was demanding the dog be offloaded. Glad things worked out more or less.

And yes, agree that entitled sphincters with their little dogs in Chanel bags ruined it for people who really need ESAs.
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Old Mar 16, 23, 2:58 pm
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I mean, the whole peanut thing happens IMO far to often and think some people exaggerate, come in, banning the whole flight with peanuts, mad 😠
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