Can a Boston Terrier Fly in Cabin on a Plane?

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Suppose you’ve tried traveling with a Boston Terrier by land, now comes the next question: can a Boston Terrier fly in cabin on a plane? I’m going to look into risks, airline rules to follow, and how to prepare so that you can have a hassle-free, safe, and enjoyable trip. 

Can a Boston Terrier Fly in Cabin on a Plane?

Boston Terriers can fly in a cabin of a plane if they are inside a crate that fits under the seat in front of you. However, airlines have varying weight and age limitations, regulations, and requirements. 

Graphic image of a Boston Terrier and a plane with a text explaining whether Boston Terriers can fly in the plane cabin

For such reasons, I’m going to talk about the different things you need to prepare and consider before flying with a Boston Terrier. 

Health Considerations When Flying a Boston Terrier 

While Boston Terriers can fly in a cabin on a plane, it’s important that you understand there are respiratory risks for brachycephalic dogs like Boston Terriers. Due to their shortened noses, their nasal passages, sinuses, and a hard palate cram into that small area. 

Because of these abnormalities, they tend to have breathing difficulties, causing them to overheat. As a result, they become vulnerable to air quality and temperature changes inside an aircraft cabin.

A survey shows that 122 dogs have died from US flights between 2015 and 2010, with half of them involving brachycephalic breeds, including Boston Terriers. However, that doesn’t mean you can’t bring your Boston Terrier on your next air travel. 

Tips on Preparing a Boston Terrier for Aircraft Cabin Travel 

Despite risks for brachycephalic breeds, your Boston Terrier can still be part of the over 2 million pets that enjoy air cabin transport in America every year. 

Whether it’s your first time or not, these are simple ways to prepare both you and your Boston Terrier. 

Boston terrier dog looking upwards
  • Schedule a vet checkup: Most pets that suffer on a plane weren’t healthy before the flight, with senior and obese dogs being the most at risk. Make sure to bring your Boston Terrier to the veterinarian for a checkup and get all the necessary vaccinations.
  • Practice traveling using a crate: Your Boston Terrier may feel anxious or stressed once you put it inside the crate for the flight. Thus, you can introduce the crate to your pet through land travel. In this way, your dog can adjust and learn to settle down. 
  • Use medication: Vets may prescribe Benadryl to your Boston Terrier to ease anxiety and relieve motion sickness. It’s not advisable to sedate your pet as this may even cause dehydration or motion sickness.
  • Bring familiar things: Make your Boston Terrier more comfortable by putting familiar-smelling items inside the crate. You can use your pet’s blanket or chew toy
  • Select flight times carefully: Low temperatures and anxiety can make Boston Terriers shiver. While planes have controlled air pressure and temperature, it’s best to fly during the warmer times of the day.
  • Avoid multi-destination stops: If possible, book a direct flight so you can avoid layovers and shorten the time your Boston Terrier needs to stay inside a crate. 

Things You Need to Fly a Boston Terrier in a Plane Cabin 

Various airlines have different regulations about flying with dogs, so check the complete requirements on your desired airlines. Nevertheless, these things apply to most airlines. 

Travel Documents

Regardless of the airline or point of destination, your Boston Terrier must have some form of identification, which is usually a microchip or dog tag. Make sure to get a health certificate from the vet 5 to 10 days before departure.

Besides an updated vaccination record, the health certificate should show that your pet is healthy and fit to travel. Some airlines provide animal travel forms, which your vet needs to fill out.  

If you’re going to another country, your Boston Terrier also needs its own passport. Some countries have quarantine processes or restrictions, so it would be best to ask the consulate.  

Additional Costs

You don’t need to purchase a separate seat for your Boston Terrier since most airlines require the crate to stay under the seat for the whole flight.

However, an additional fee may depend on the airline, destination, and flight duration. Your Boston Terrier’s weight and size can also influence the cost. 

Some airlines have particular cabin spots for pets, so the price may also depend on the availability. Likewise, the additional cost may correspond to the price of a piece of luggage. 

Boston terrier lying on top of a person's leg

Dog Crate

For the right type or dimensions, it would be better to check with your airlines.

Although, in general, the crate must have a working locking mechanism that your Boston Terrier cannot push, gnaw, or distort. Aside from a mesh, the food and water containers must be accessible from outside the crate.

Which Airlines Fly Boston Terriers in Cabin

Due to current travel restrictions, only the likes of Copa, KLM Royal Dutch Airlines, and Korean Air allow Boston Terriers to fly in cabins.

Airlines such as Lufthansa, Gulf Air, and Swiss Air used to allow Boston Terriers in the cabin. They changed their policies due to the health risks of snub-nosed dogs. Alaska Air, Amerijet, American Airlines, British Airways, DeltaEmirates Air, Etihad, and United Airlines have also banned brachycephalic breeds for now.

Still, some airlines may allow your Boston Terrier in the aircraft cabin if it’s your guide or emotional support dog. 

Related Questions

Before I end, let’s go over some related questions about Boston Terriers.

Are Boston Terriers Good Family Dogs? 

Boston Terriers can be good family dogs as long as you’re looking for an energetic, even-tempered, and small dog. Most breeds can become good family dogs. Sometimes, it’s just a matter of whether the dog’s temperament, needs, and health are suitable for your living conditions.

Are Boston Terriers Good Travel Companions? 

Boston Terriers are adaptable by nature, especially in most living spaces. Fortunately, this trait extends to traveling, allowing them to do well in new environments. However, be sure to monitor your pet as it may still need to adjust to different places and people. 

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Traveling with a pet doesn’t have to be stressful. A Boston Terrier can fly in the plane’s cabin as long as you prepare the necessary travel documents and follow airline regulations. Make sure to provide the right kind of crate so that your Boston Terrier can stay comfortable and safe.

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