al United Airlines Pet Policy - Fly With Your Dog or Cat Safely

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United Airlines Pet Policy

United logo

Can my pet fly with me in the cabin? Yes (Certain Flights)
Can my pet fly with me as checked baggage? (Military on PSC orders only - weight of pet and crate less than 100 lbs.)
Can my pet fly with me as manifest (air) cargo? Yes (see restrictions below)


PetSafe transports of live animals will not available for an undetermined time due to the COVID pandemic. Need to transport your pet within the United States? Get a quote for ground transport.


United Airlines cargo has resumed acceptance of pets traveling with Military personnel on PCS orders between Guam and Honolulu only. The service is limited to cats and dogs only and the combined pet and carrier weight cannot exceed 99.9 lbs. with pets traveling on bag tags. Military member must must travel on the same aircraft as their pet. Reservations must be made between 48 hours and 10 days prior to flight. Send booking request to


Effective immediately: all flights between New York and Mumbai have been suspended due to recent incidents involving Iran.


Pets are not permitted on United flights to Puerto Rico, India, Australia and Dominican Republic.


United Airlines In-Cabin Pet Policy

cat flying in-cabin
Pets Allowed

United and United Express permits small, domesticated cats and dogs to travel in the cabin on flights within the continental United States (not Hawaii).

Form Requirements

Your pet must have a health certificate and rabies certificate reflecting a current rabies vaccination administered more than 30 days prior to flight for primary vaccinations or vaccinations administered after the previous vaccination had expired.

Age Requirements:

Pets must be at least 4 months old and their carrier must fit comfortably under the seat in front of you. Your pet airline carrier will count as a piece of carry-on luggage. One pet is allowed per carrier.

Passengers can purchase an extra ticket to accommodate a second pet in a carrier if desired.

Route Restrictions:

Pets are not allowed to fly in the cabin on flights to, from or through Australia, New Zealand, Hawaii, Guam, Cuba, India, Panama, South Africa, Tahiti, Trinidad and Tobago or the United Kingdom. No service is provided to Lagos, Nigeria or Dubai.

Pets are not permitted in First or Business Class on Boeing 747, 757, 767 or 777 aircraft due to lack of space under the seat.

Carrier Requirements

If your dog or cat meets the requirements listed in United Airlines pet policy to travel in-cabin, you will need an approved airline pet carrier. Carriers can be rigid or flexible and must have a waterproof bottom, adequate ventilation and secure fasteners. (Zippers are preferable.) The maximum dimensions for hard-sided kennels are 17.5 inches long x 12 inches wide x 7.5 inches high (44 cm x 30 cm x 19 cm). The maximum dimensions for soft-sided kennels are 18 inches long x 11 inches wide x 11 inches high (46 cm x 28 cm x 28 cm).


You must notify United Airlines that you are traveling with a pet. Reservations can be made online or by calling 1-800-864-8331. We suggest that you make your airline reservations as far ahead as possible as there are a limited number of pets allowed in the cabin of each flight. Travelers with pets are also not permitted to sit in bulkhead seats or seats in exit rows.


You will check in at the passenger counter as animals are not checked in at curbside. A fee will be collected at the time of check in. Your pet airline carrier will count as a piece of carry-on luggage.


$125USD for this service which can be paid at the reservations counter at the time of check in. (An additional charge of $125 on flights with layovers more than 4 hours in the US or more than 24 hours outside of the US.)

Service Dogs

Trained service animals are permitted to travel in the cabin with qualified individuals with disabilities. Only dogs will be accepted as service animals.

No sooner than 48 hours before departure, United Airlines will require the following forms for people traveling with an emotional support animal: veterinary health forms and immunization records, signed letters from a licensed doctor or mental health professional and signed certification of training.

As of January 8, 2019, puppies and kittens under 4 months of age will not be accepted on United flights as service or emotional support animals. ESAs are limited to cats and dogs. Other animals are evaluated on a case by case basis.

No emotional support animals will be transported after February 28, 2021. Bookings must be made prior to January 11, 2021.

See more information about United Airline policies on service and emotional support animals.

Therapy animals are considered neither comfort nor service animals and are not subject to provisions provided for service and emotional support animals.


United Airlines Cargo Pet Policy - (PetSafe® Program)

checked baggage

For dogs and cats that are too large to travel in the cabin or are traveling unaccompanied, United Airlines will transport them under their PetSafe Program in the cargo hold.

Pets Allowed

Cats and dogs only.

Route Restrictions

United does not provide service to Dubai, India, Australia or Lagos, Nigeria. Live animals will not be transported out of Seoul, Beijing or Chengdu nor will they be transported in or out of Shanghai until temperatures fall.

Aircraft Restrictions

Until further notice, United will not fly live animals in the cargo hold in their Boeing 787 aircraft.


Reservations must be made between 5 and 30 days before travel. All bookings for international travel must be made through an IPATA agent (


One dog or cat is permitted to travel in one crate; however, two kittens or puppies are permitted in the same crate if they are younger than six months, are of comparable size and weigh less than 20lbs. (9 kg) each.


See United's cost table to transport pets.


Puppies and kittens must be at least 2 pounds and 10 weeks or older for domestic travel. For international travel, proof of rabies vaccination no sooner than 3 months must be provided. Puppies and kittens cannot travel with United internationally until 30 days after the rabies vaccination was administered.

Documentation Required

All required paperwork for the country of destination will need to accompany your pet if flying internationally.

Proof of current rabies vaccination administered no sooner than 30 days before travel must be provided.

Health Certificate issued within 10 days of travel
Customer Acknowledgment Form that must be signed by pet owner
Photo of pet crate in front of crate to verify it is IATA-compliant
Close-up photo clearly showing pet's face to verify breed

Pick Up and Drop Off

Refer to United Cargo Pick Up and Drop Off Locations in the United States. For international destinations, it will depend on the airport and you should contact United for that information. For flights into Mexico City, pets can no longer be collected at baggage claim; they will be taken to United's cargo facility where an agent will clear your pet with customs officials. You will pay for these fees when you pick up your pet. Note that pets should not be flown into Mexico City during the weekend when customs is closed.

Breed Restrictions

See restrictions below.

Temperature Restrictions

No bookings will be accepted at the following airports between May 1 and September 30 due to high temperatures: Las Vegas (LAS), Palm Springs (PSP), Phoenix (PHX) and Tucson (TUS). No bookings will be accepted that involve Chengdu or Shanghai, China between June 15 and September 15.

Comfort Stops

Comfort stops will be required on flights with one or more layovers that exceed 12 hours in total. Pet owners are responsible for fees associated with comfort stops. Dogs and cats will not be permitted on itineraries with more than 2 layovers.

Crate Requirements

United will allow 2 puppies or kittens under 6 months to travel in the same carrier as long as they are of the same species and there is room for them, otherwise, only one pet is allowed per carrier. Note that United can no longer transport Series 700 kennels.

Metal hardware must be used to fasten the top and bottom halves of your pet' crate together. Crates with clips securing the top and bottom of crate will not be accepted. Additional holes secured with cable ties must be added.

The crate must have air ventilation on 3 sides for domestic flights and 4 sides for international flights.

Crates must be hard plastic, wood or metal. Your pet must be able to sit up, stand up and turn around in the crate without touching the top of the crate. No crates taller than 34” will be accepted on any routes. Series 700 (giant) crates or custom crates larger than 34" in height will not be accepted.

See more on measuring your pet for its pet crate.

Click here for more crate requirements.

Need an IATA compliant pet crate? Have a crate already? Need accessories for your crate?


Airports Served


United serves locations worldwide in Africa, Asia, Europe, the Middle East, India, the Caribbean, North and South America including the United States, Canada and Mexico.

United is also approved to fly into London Heathrow, Edinburgh, and Glasgow (accompanied pets only) which are approved Border Inspection Posts for the United Kingdom.


Puppies and Kittens

UK puppy or kitten import

United will transport puppies and kittens over 10 weeks of age.


Banned Breeds

Banned Dogs in UK

The following breeds and their mixes are not accepted for transport under United Airline's Pet Safe Program:

Dog Breeds: Affenpinscher, American Bully, American Pit Bull Terrier/Pit Bull, American Staffordshire Terrier/"Amstaff," Belgian Malinois, Boston Terrier, Boxer, Brussels Griffon, Bulldog, American Bulldog, English Bulldog, French Bulldog, Old English Bulldogges, Shorty Bulldogs, Spanish Alano/Spanish Bulldog/Alano Espanol, Cavalier King Charles Spaniel, Chow Chow, English Toy Spaniel/Prince Charles Spaniel, Japanese Chin/Japanese Spaniel, Lhasa Apso, Mastiff, American Mastiff, Boerboel/South African Mastiff, Bullmastiff, Ca de Bou/Mallorquin Mastiff, Cane Corso/Italian Mastiff, Dogo Argentino/Argentinian Mastiff, Dogue de Bordeaux/French Mastiff, English Mastiff, Fila Brasileiro/Brazilian Mastiff/Cao de Fila, Indian Mastiff/Alangu, Kangal/Turkish Kangal, Neapolitan Mastiff/Mastino Napoletano, Pakastani Mastiff/Bully Kutta, Pyrenean Mastiff, Presa Canario/Perro de Presa Canario/Dogo Canario/Canary Mastiff, Spanish Mastiff / Mastin Espanol, Tibetan Mastiff, Tosa/Tosa Ken/Tosa Inu/Japanese Mastiff/Japanese Tosa, Pekingese, Pug, Dutch Pug, Japanese Pug, Shar-Pei/Chinese Shar-Pei, Shih-Tzu, Staffordshire Bull Terrier/"Staffys," and Tibetan Spaniel.

Cat Breeds: Burmese, Exotic Shorthair, Himalayan and Persian.


Other Animals

rabbits turtles other animals

United Airlines will only transport cats and dogs as air cargo. They will also transport small household birds and rabbits in the cabin on domestic flights within the United States.



Need more information?

Have a question?

To the best of our ability, we ensure that recommendations given on reflect the current regulations. We cannot predict how a given airline may enforce these regulations. Noncompliance may result in the need to deny your pet boarding privileges. We suggest that you minimize the disruptions that may occur by following the rules of the airline your pet is flying.

Further detail on import permits, costs, tests and procedures are available at minimal cost at We also stock all the equipment and accessories you will need for traveling with your pet. Same day shipping Monday through Friday until 4:00 PM EST.


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