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Fittingly Mad: Pets On Board

Recently, I went on a trip and as I took my seat on the plane, I heard a faint and desperate sound. "Meow...meow...meowwwwww." I turned to the woman next to me and asked, "Did you hear a cat?" "Two," she said, and pointed. Yup. There were 2 cats cramped in little cat carriers under the seat for a 7 hour plane ride.

My first thought was, "Those poor kitties," and my second thought was, "Poor me." Although I love cats, I am also highly allergic to them. Needless to say, my trip was an asthma attack waiting to happen.

So what's the deal? You can't bring more than 4 oz of liquid on the plane, but you can bring a friggin cat? Most airlines, like Delta do allow you to buy a one-way ticket for your pet, but they have to be small enough to fit in a carrier under the seat in front of you. And you're not allowed to let them out. So when do they get to use the bathroom? I don't wanna know.

As if flying doesn't already do enough to your precious sinuses, now we have to worry about sneezing, itchy watery eyes too. I guess enough people haven't complained about this.

Let me be the first to say it. Pets don't belong on planes. It gives them a little furry heart attack being cramped up and not knowing what's going on. Lots of folks have pet allergies so pet owners and the airlines need to consider this before causing someone a major allergic meltdown.

On a similar side note - Kids should not be allowed to bring whistles on board either.

Join The Conversation
JennyJen2 JennyJen2 10 years
I completely understand both sides of this debate. I am a new mommy and I recently recieved an email from that gave the 30 things that change when you have a baby - one of them was: "Your dog — who used to be your 'baby' — becomes just a dog." And I literally laughed out load about this because we seriously love our dogs, but something changed when we brought our baby home. I dress my dogs up for a good laugh, and when they are cold I let them get under the covers with me, but I don't think they would love me any less if I didn't do those things. So basically - I think this debate is all relative to each individual. I don't think it is worth starting a big argument over because until you are in the other person's shoes you don't understand. However - I still think bringing your pet on a plane is just selfish because you are not thinking about the health of other passengers.
Butrfly4404 Butrfly4404 10 years
lilbum - I genuinely feel sorry for you. I understand the function of a pet very well and my cat is very much a 'part of my family.' When a neighbor dog scared my Tess away and she didn't come home all night, we all cried and made posters and walked the neighborhood looking for her. She is still not a baby. In fact, a baby does not have the natural instinct to RUN from a dog (nor the capability, depending on age), a baby does not have a natural instinct to find its way home. Also, I would not allow a baby to go play in the garden by themselves. Because its a baby. And Tess - she's a cat. She's also - even though she's been alive 9 days longer than my daughter - onto the last half of her life. Remember, their life span is much shorter than that of a HUMAN. Your dogs were born to be wild animals...even if born to domestic parents, they were still born with the natural instincts to care for themselves. Dogs do not need sweaters (unless you groom them and cut all their fur off). Dogs do not even need you to feed them if you let them fend for themselves. They definitely do not need you to cuddle them and tell them how much you love them. Of course, for the domesticated pet, all these things make for a more comfortable life, but they do not NEED it as humans do. I was not insulting your pets - I'm just saying: THEY. ARE. NOT. BABIES. THEY. ARE. DOGS. I genuinely feel sorry for you that you get so upset when people's comments bring you back to REALITY. That's fine if you want to pretend that they are babies and give them baths and dress them up and call them gooshy names. That's your business. But you really can't get so upset when people with REAL KIDS think its ridiculous that you believe what you are doing and what they are doing are the same thing. One question: What's your baby want to be when it grows up? Oh, JennyJen - what an a-hole! I get compliments on how well behaved my kids are (*sometimes!*), as my grandparents did with me and my sibs. I understand how people could get upset about unruly kids, but how could you get mad about a sweet, sleeping baby??
JennyJen2 JennyJen2 10 years
Butrfly...It is ironic that you wrote about people banning children from places. I recently had an experienec where I went to a restaurant with my husband and our baby. The baby was actually sleeping or we would have probably skiped the meal. So she was being very quiet and apparently just the site of her upset some man so much that he asked for his seat to be moved so he and I quote, "didn't have to sit near that kid." I understand wanting to enjoy your meal, but honestly the baby was not even so much as breathing heavy and teh a-hole made a big stink about her being there. I joked with our server that I wanted to be moved to sit next to the man again to show him how "that kid" wouldn't affect his meal. Kicker of the whole stoy was that the next group that was seated next to us complimented us on how good our baby was with out even knowing about the situation that occured. Oh yeah when they reseated the man who didn't want to be disturbed by the baby - they put him right next to the kitchen door!
lilbumbleybees lilbumbleybees 10 years
Pets don't "NEED you, they NEED your guidance and your love and support and nourishment"? Wow, I'm done here. Hopefully someday someone will educate you more on animals and how they actually do live as family members. I genuinely feel sorry for you. This will be my last post here. Liz*
Butrfly4404 Butrfly4404 10 years
Haha.. I have a single guy friend who has two labs and every time we are talking about our kids..."Oh, Boy is starting basketball," or whatever, he jumps in with a story about a trick his dog learned. He once tried to claim that he knew he would be a good parent because his dogs were "just like kids." He could never be more wrong. They are not children, they are pets. Just because you feed them and, sometimes, dress them and call them your wittle babies does not make them actual babies. Actual babies NEED you, they NEED your guidance and your love and support and nourishment. Your animals are simply domesticated beasts. I'm not saying don't love your animals. I love my cat. She would never come with me on a plane, but I still love her lots. All I'm saying is that PETS are not CHILDREN. No matter how much you try, they will never be children. If you think having a dog is the same thing, try having a baby and you will feel like a fool for calling your dog a child. No matter how much a part of your family they are, they are not children. NOT. CHILDREN. Got it? Okay. About the airplane issue, I really like snickerdoodle's idea about a special compartment for pets to ride in. I do not think animals should be allowed on airplanes (in the cabin) because of the noise, too, but mostly allergies. But I see why people wouldn't want to put them with luggage. That, or they could have special flights for 'animal companions' - whereas, the flight would be specified as 'animal friendly' and allergic persons could avoid it, then. If they are the ones who want special treatment for their animals, they should be the ones to move, not the unsuspecting person with allergies. ALSO, about the perfume's a common courtesy thing that you are not supposed to wear heavily fragranced products when you are going to be in such a tight, you can't ask people not to wear them, but if they had any courtesy, they would do it on their own - BUT some places DO state on their doors that they are fragrance-free and you will be asked to leave if your 'scents' disrupt other's. (Pulmonologists' offices for sure!) Okay, one last thing: I feel sorry for people who say things like "children should be banned from..." While I would never bring my kids to a fancy restuarant or whatever, (they would hate it more than you hated them being there!) I still can't get past the selfish "Breeder-haters." You were a child once, too. I understand that some kids are unruly, but banning people - of any age - is discrimination. I can't imagine what kind of childhood you must have had that made you hate kids so much.
lovekailua lovekailua 10 years
hahaha snakes on a plane :) dog is a greyhound and needs a coat if it falls below a certain temp...i dont have a problem with people dressing up their pets is just the increase in chicks with little LV (or generic) dog carriers with their teacup maltese or yorkie in...i swear 3 or 4 years ago in my travels i might have seen one or two and it was like "wow a dog going on a plane!" now...they are everywhere, it seems. (on my recent trip to HI through TPA and LAX I had a pet every segment but one) anyway...i totally understand the allergy issue...maybe airlines should think of making a part of cargo more pet friendly or something i dunno...who knows though if anything will change but it certainly seems more people are traveling with pets these days.
YaoMing YaoMing 10 years
Wow, I didn't know you could do this. I guess I'm bringing my snakes with me in a carrier. I hope people don't mind the snakes on the airplane.
snickerdoodle snickerdoodle 10 years
Avoiding the whole "pets are people too!" argument, I've got to say that I do think that the idea of carrying pets on board a plane is perhaps a little selfish. While it seems ridiculous that the only other option is to pile a cat or dog in with the luggage - and I think that airlines need to do some serious revamping, this issue included - I think that putting an animal in with several dozen other people, in an enclosed space that recycles air for hours is the worst idea I've ever heard. It's true that making a plane all-allergy-safe would be impossible, but that just makes me more determined to want to take care of issues that are controllable. Would you want to be responsible for someone's lungs closing, just because you didn't want to pay the extra expense of a pet-friendly flying alternative? Children crying might be a little annoying, but locking someone with an allergic reaction in for hours upon hours is just cruel.
JennyJen2 JennyJen2 10 years
I am split on this topic. I have two dogs that I absolutely love, but I am highly allergic to cats - so I feel Fitsugars problem. I would have never been able to take that flight. All I have to do is walk into a house where there is a cat and my skin and eyes begin to icth and my nose and throat become congested. What people need to remember is that pets are animals. At one point every breed was in the wild. They can survive if not completely babied and putting your pet in cargo is not animal cruelty. If it was - don't you think PETA would be all over that? My problem is that some people tend to put their pets above the health and well being of PEOPLE. And whether these pet owners realize it or not we are the superior being. These pets are that animals. I would never want to harm any animal, but I would not want to harm a human either.
nycgirl nycgirl 10 years
How about all people's crying babies that I think shouldn't be allowed on planes? I HATE crying babies. At least mine don't cry and enrage everyone on the plane in 5 rows in both directions. I travel with my cat on occasion and I always make my neighbors aware of the kitty for courtesy/allergy reasons. We never take her out of her crate or do anything which would cause fur to fly (thereby triggering allergic reactions). Sorry to get angry, but I was actually just thinking on my flight home, I wish I could just buy a seat next to me and put my dog in it (who is too big to fly under the seat). I would gladly pay another ticket for my dog.
lilbumbleybees lilbumbleybees 10 years
To Katie's comment, so if my pet dies and I go into depression that's not as important? Or it's stupid because it's "just a dog"? I'm sorry, but I firmly disagree with you. Neither come first in my eyes. They're both as important. But it's just cruel to imply that someone's FURBABIES aren't as important b/c they are animals. For some people, these really are their kids. Look at the families who kids have grown and moved on and need something to love but are too old to raise more children. Look at the girl who can't bear children and isn't sure about adoption. I'd be careful who you say that to. Because one day you will offend them. Everyone around me see how important my furbabies are to me and they even understand it. Why? B/c they knew me before I got them and they see me now. I'm a much happier person. These babies bring so much joy to my life. They share everything with me. To see how they react when I cry and the way they sense that and offer comforting kisses or a head to lay on your lap. That's love. Or when you're happy and they get just as excited as you because you're happy over something. You can't match that. Even my boyfriend was like you when I first met him. And he's still with me at almost four years and sees exactly why I love my babies so much. They ARE my FURBABIES. They always will be. Nothing can ever change that. Nothing can ever change that for a lot of people. Liz*
lilbumbleybees lilbumbleybees 10 years
I think my pet wouldn't be a big problem to allergy sufferers. No I don't think they're gods. haha Let me explain. My friend's husband is VERY allergic to both cats and dogs. They currently own four cats AND four dogs. And he hardly ever had a problem breathing much less any kind of reaction to them. How is that possible you ask? Because shje takes care of hers the way i take care of mine. It's not that actual ANIMAL that people are allergic to. It's the dander on their skin, which gets onto their hair (obviously) as well. My boyfriend is kinda the same way with it. Both of us bathe our dogs and cats. My cats get a bath once a week and my dogs all get baths 2-3 times a week. When traveling anywhere where I know I'll be in the car or plane with them, they get a bath the night before or day of. Hence why I said mine are cleaner than most human children. haha Dander is not a problem if pets are kept clean. Unfortuantely, most pet owners look at them as just that. Pets. They're not. They have skin conditions like we do, personalities like do, feelings, and even health issues every bit as we do. They have to be taken care of like small people. I do see the people who carry them as accesories like Paris Hilton. But have you ever wondered why some people dress those little dogs up. My two Yorkeis have a slew of clothing and my lab/pit mix has quite a few jackets and fleece coats as well. Just because they have fur all over their body does not mean they can always keep warm. The SMART teensy doggie owners (like me) have these clothes for a reason. Small dogs have a hard time regulating their own body temperature. If you look at my little male Yorkie in the middle of summer in an place that has the AC on, he shakes like he's in a snowstorm. His body has a hard time adjusting itself. THAT is why my babies wear clothes. Sure, in the summer it's mostly b/c it's just cute when we're outside on walks. And come on, what girl didn't have fun dressing up dolls when she was young and misses that. lol My dogs even get excited over their clothes. They know it means they're going to get in the car and go somewhere, and they LOVE that! So I think I'm done writing my novel now. lol Just thought I'd explain myself a bit better there. :) Liz*
lovekailua lovekailua 10 years
whoops effects
lovekailua lovekailua 10 years
i put my kitty in cargo about 4 years ago and he was so terrified when he came out but he recovered. this past two weeks i travelled almost 10k miles and the amount of small paris hilton type dogs travelling is hilarious (esp when i was at LAX good lord)...and their "yip yip" is really annoying. maybe i am just jealous i can't take my greyhound as carry on :) anyway...i saw quite a few cats too and didnt even think about the allergy boyfriend is very allergic to them too.
Fitness Fitness 10 years
Wow, I love how much you love your pets and wouldn't dare to be away from them - I love mine too. I love ALL animals, and I hate the fact that I am highly allergic to them. A few people did ask to move their seat, and I would've too - if it would've helped. My body is really sensitive and if a cat or doggie is in the room (or plane in this case) with me, I'll have a major reaction. It's really scary not to be able to breathe. I'm really sad about it actually because I love those furry guys so much. Too bad my body doesn't. :(
katie225 katie225 10 years
i would totally bring my little parrot on the plane with me! he's probably the most-traveled pet bird on the planet (car trips back and forth from college to home every other weekend), so he has a little travel cage, it's so cute. good thing is, very few people are allergic to birds in cages! until i read this, i would have been okay checking him in cargo with a locked cage. i think most pets are okay in cargo, honestly. pet owners should try to take their pets as many places as possible in crates/cages/etc so that the pets get used to being in such situations. if your pet is too sensitive to be in cargo, it's too sensitive to fly at all. but, i'm okay with them being carry-on! i cringe at the term furkids. they're pets, not humans. i don't care how much you love them. they're not kids. they are in no way even remotely as important as somebody's actual children. humans come before animals at all times. sorry, but that's how i feel.
lilbumbleybees lilbumbleybees 10 years
I HIGHLY disagree with you. My two Yorkies ARE my children and I'll be d*mned if they're flying cargo underneath a plane. My furkids even have a carseat in my car that they are strapped into for car rides to work (yes they go to work with me) and anywhere else they frequently travel with me. A plane is NO different. You wouldn't stuff your child in a crate and just toss him/her in with the rest of the luggage underneath would you? No, exactly. I expect the same respect to be given to my babies as I give to human children. Especially when mine are better behaved and a hell of a lot cleaner than most human children ever are. Liz* P.S. Sorry, but I get very heated over pet topics. Mine are literally my children and it does nothing but irritate me when people do anything to tell me otherwise. >:/
cams cams 10 years
Why didnt you just ask to move? It probably would have saved you alot of the energy you wasted being mad. How about we ban kids too? that would be most excellent.
BeachBarbie BeachBarbie 10 years
FitSugar, I didn't mean to sound like I didn't understand your pain/problem...I'm highly allergic to cats, too. :( I really like Jennifer76's comment on this...I would ask to change seats if this ever happens to me. I feel like pets are part of the family, and I've heard some really bad stories when, they put the pets in the bottom of the plane (with the luggage). So, I really like Renees3's solution to this problem. I just didn't have enough time to write this out earlier. Take care, and I'm sorry you had a bad flight. :HUG:
Pinkrabbit Pinkrabbit 10 years
I think it is funny how they have to ban peanuts. Can't have ANYTHING like that, but a cat is fine... Just put it in the back. What the heck?
a-nonny-mouse a-nonny-mouse 10 years
The kitty in that pic is so very pretty. I understand how hard it can be on people with allergies. I have pernicious chemical sensitivities -- I get allergy migraines often and easily. These are usually caused by too much heavy fragrance. I avoid stores that (predominantly) sell candles or cleansers, gas stations, department store fragrance sections, even the smelly isles at Target. It is absolutely AWFUL sitting close to someone with noticeable perfume. . .but I understand that it would be unreasonable to expect that other passengers would refrain from using their heavily scented lotions, perfumes, or other various smelly agents. Most people are far more attached to their animals than their soaps and lotions. . . I don't have a problem with pets on board, but it would be wise for the airline to have certain types of pets in a single section (dogs and cats should be separated). My son is severely allergic to most dogs, and will begin wheezing and gasping for breath within half an hour -- so I completely understand the concern for those with allergies.
BeachBarbie BeachBarbie 10 years
oh, I messed up...I thought it said, the cats were stored in the overhead compartment...that's why I was shocked...Never mind. :OOPS:
jennifer76 jennifer76 10 years
I don't know...seems like its easier to ask a flight attendant to move you then to ask people to abandon their pets...? My dog has flown a lot. We've lived in three different states in his lifetime. He flies cargo, but he's never once gone to the bathroom in his kennel and he's been on 16 hour flights. Sure, he doesn't like it. But, I'm pretty sure he's happier moving to a new place with us then being left at the pound.
Renees3 Renees3 10 years
I disagree. I have a small dog (doxie mix) that if I'm travelling, he's coming with. He is part of my family and I wouldn't leave him anywhere. I agree that the airlines should have some kind of maybe Section of the plane (like the very front or very back) where the passengers with pets can be and should let other passengers know if a pet is going to be on the plane so they can adjust their seats accordingly. But it's not fair to just ban them from the planes. I have a bad allergy to most perfumes, but for some reason I ALWAYS end up sitting next to some lady with a bottle on. Should I kick her off the plane? People can be allergic to everything, they can't make the planes 100% allergy proof. Like I said, the airlines could do some more to be sure people with alleries aren't on Top of the animals, but they shouldn't ban animals from planes.
BeachBarbie BeachBarbie 10 years
I'm shocked! :JAWDROP:
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