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Hi All,

Not sure which forum this should go in, so it's going here. I'm looking into flying with my dog at Christmas (a long ways away, but have to make travel and care plans soon). The dog will have to go under the plane in her kennel. She will be 6 months old at that time. The flight and boarding and offload time will be a total of 4 hours.

What do people recommend for taking dogs on flights? I've heard advice to both sedate and not sedate my dog. Obviously, I will have a chat with my vet, but I'm trying to gather more opinions. The pup likes her kennel and is crate trained. Will sedating her decrease the risk of having her really dislike her crate?
 

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I would not sedate. What if she were to have a reaction and no one there to see?
I tend to be overly cautious though. If she's fully crate trained,I see no reason to sedate. 4 hours is not that long.
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I know this was not one of your questions, but I would make sure that your crate is acceptable. I know they have lots of rules on this part If so you need a new create you will want to make sure she is used to it as well.
I would recommend double checking every information with the airline before traveling. What are their responsibilities, as wells what are yours. I would say she should be fine not sedated. Good luck and be safe!
 

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DON'T SEDATE! Many airlines won't allow your dog on the plane if she's sedated. For good reasons as well; tranquillising a dog on a flight could wind up killing the dog. In fact, over tranquillising accounts for over 50% of flight related canine deaths.

It's easier said than done of course; thinking about your dog alone down there can be scary. I brought my BC on an almost 24-hour trip last year (12 hours on the plane, 5 hour layover, 6 more hours to finish our trip) and I was a nervous wreck the whole time, especially since I couldn't take her out of her crate during the layover. I wound up giving her some valerian root before the flight, which is an all-natural calming agent. I mixed a few drops in with a bit of food, and she ate it right up. You can also get valerian root biscuits ready-made. Bryn did NOT enjoy the trip, but as soon as she was out of her crate, she forgot all about it and had a great time on holiday!
 

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Definitely don't sedate. Nobody will be there if the dog experiences negative side effects. Being sedated can also prevent them from maintaining balance during take off/landing and any turbulence, which can obviously cause harm.

I know flying is stressful, but you're better off just flying her as she is. Make sure you get a regulation airline crate and try to train her to be as comfortable in it as possible.
 

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I used to work in animal travel and were told that cats and dogs should never be sedated, one reason I believe was something to do with the affect of altitude.
There are very strict rules about travel crates as has already been mentioned. If you can, let your dog get used to the crate before you travel .
 

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Discussion Starter #10
Thank you, all. I hadn't even considered so many of the things that could happen if she were sedated- negative reaction, effects of altitude, loss of balance in crate.

As it turns out, dogs are not allowed on flights during holiday season where I am. But should I ever need to fly her in the future, no sedation.
 

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Avoid tranquilizers at all costs. They can be deadly for humans and I'm sure they can be deadly for animals. I have first hand experience of this, those drugs are pure poison.
 
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