How To Safely Travel By Plane With Your Birds

by Marnie Bii | December 19th, 2014 | Birds, Care

parrot (399x400)Pet birds are fragile creatures that do not fare well in harsh environments with poor temperature, noise and impact controls. As a result, you should never send your bird on a plane in the cargo hold area reserved for pets. Instead, you’ll need to seek out airlines that allow you to take your bird in the cabin. Furthermore, you’ll need to use a specially designed carrier and supplies to keep your pet calm and comfortable throughout the ride. Read on to learn more information.

Make In Cabin Arrangements

Most airline companies have a limit on the number of animals allowed in the passenger cabin each flight. You must make arrangements for your birds before buying a ticket to make sure they can accompany you onto the flight. Talk to a supervisor to verify that your birds will have priority on the flight, and then buy the tickets at that time. Furthermore, you need to clarify the total number of birds that can accompany each person. For some airlines, it’s just one bird each.

Use A Specially Designed Carrier

Although birds prefer to stay in a cage with a wire-lined floor, it’s just not possible while traveling by air. During the flight, your bird will need to stay in an airline-approved crate, much like the ones normally used to transport cats and dogs. You can make it comfortable for your bird by adding a towel or blanket that has your scent. To scent the bedding, carry the item around for a day before placing it in the crate.

Add A Blanket For Warmth

In addition to the blanket inside the crate, you’ll want to loosely wrap the entire exterior with an additional blanket to block out sounds, smells and cool air. Birds can catch a draft quite easily, which often leads to illness upon arriving at the destination. Stress can make your bird even more susceptible to illness than normal, so it’s wise to take as many precautions as possible. Once it’s wrapped up, you can gently slide the crate underneath most airplane seats to keep it out of the way and further diminish drafts and noise.

Keep Your Pet Hydrated

Give your bird free access to moisture-rich foods before, during and after the flight. Firmly attach a food dish to the bottom of the cage and fill it up halfway with vitamin rich pellets. Add some fruit and vegetables on top to keep your pet hydrated throughout the flight. Upon arriving at your destination, immediately transfer your bird to a cage fully stocked with fresh food and water.

Visit The Vet Before And After

A checkup before and after the trip allows the veterinarians to spot and treat problems caused by increased stress conditions and the air travel itself. Make sure to clearly report any changes in your bird’s eating habits, vocalizations or activity levels while visiting the vet. Although some changes mean nothing, vets look for slight behavior variations throughout the diagnostic process.

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