How I prepared Merlin's crate for his flight..

Discussion in 'Dogs - General Dog Chat' started by Fran101, Jun 22, 2014.

  1. Fran101

    Fran101 Resident fainting goat

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    I figured this might help people since I flew with Merlin and got the advice of a TON of people and A LOT of trial & error went into testing each of the things we used (yes I'm a crazy person)

    Here is Merlin's crate.
    [​IMG]
    (in the bag in the front, attached to the front bolt I put...2 tiny bags of food, a short leash and poop bags)

    First off you will need an airline crate, one where no part of the dog will touch the top (sorry people with prick eared dogs...)
    I chose the Petmate sky kennel (the compass weird door thing is a bit confusing at first but much more sturdy)
    [​IMG]
    for international/some local regional flights there must be air holes/ventilation on ALL SIDES

    and then reinforce the plastic screws on the sides which MUCH sturdier metal ones, I used these
    [​IMG]

    You will need two bowls to put in the kennel
    FREEZE WATER HALF WAY TO THE TOP OF THE BOWL THE NIGHT BEFORE YOUR FLIGHT
    I recommend kennel gear FOR THE FOOD ONE because there is no ring to hold the bowl up (I fear chocking and the bounce of the plane throwing the dish off the thing) and it's sturdy as hell
    [​IMG]
    and for the water I used this one because unlike kennel gear, it is close enough to the door to fill with a water bottle WITHOUT OPENING THE KENNEL DOOR (and it's spill proof)
    http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B000EMWMM8/ref=oh_details_o08_s01_i01?ie=UTF8&psc=1


    For the bottom of the crate I chose DryFur Pads. They are a bit like diapers...but flat and don't retain heat and really stay dry
    [​IMG]

    Next you will need a few LARGE ziplock bags.
    First of all print out an all inclusive fact sheet for your dog for flight attendants/workers to read
    this should include: picture, flight info, emergency contact etc...
    put it in a large ziplock back and stick it to the top of the crate
    [​IMG]

    You will need ANOTHER bag for COPIES of travel documents (rabies, flight cert etc..) and another flight info sheet back of the crate
    [​IMG]

    You will also need live animal stickers, you only need two but I attached like seven of them.
    I also wrote down handy notes (flight info/my name) on painters tape and put it in a few places on each side as well.
    Merlin was allowed to have a frozen kong with him! We did peanut butter and coconut oil frozen

    He was totally fine after the end of his flight, I was soooooo worried but thank goodness, all was well.

    a few other things...
    - Keep the hard copies of everything with you and a picture of your dog
    - Take rescue remedy (you'll need it lol)/give them some an hour before their flight
    - you can remind the flight attendants when boarding your dog is below the plane, they gave me a lot of peace of mind and told the captain who made sure he was there
    - you CAN attach treats to the top of the kennel, I did and counted them and a few people along the way gave him some
    - As for feeding, opinions vary but I gave Merlin a big dinner and skipped breakfast the day of the flight. Worked for us.
    - TEST DRIVE WITH THE CRATE IN THE CAR. Do some speedbumps.
    - DO NOT use zip ties to secure the dogs kennel if the person picking you up cannot bring scissors lol you won't be able to pack them or carry them and trust me your dog will want OUT

    That's it, hope it helps!

    You guys have any travel tips?
     
  2. meepitsmeagan

    meepitsmeagan Meagan & The Cattle Dog Crew

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    Thank you!!! Always so organized and informative. :D
     
  3. Julee

    Julee UNSTOPPABLE

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    I think you covered everything! Bloo's flown twice, we didn't do anything that you hadn't added :)
     
  4. Pintage

    Pintage Mountain Dawg

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    I put a LOT more bedding in their crate (I knew they weren't going to make a mess) including an oval dog bed... though it depends on the airline (Alaska Airlines lets me put whatever I want in their crates). I also trained them to use a rabbit water bottle and hung that over their frozen water bowl as backup (all of the ice water will spill out if your dog has a layover, even from a "spillproof" bowl). I also put down folded towels in the front 1/4 of the crate to protect the bedding from water splashing (when I didn't do this the first time, much of their bedding got soaked, but with the towel, just the towel got wet and everything else was totally dry).

    I also scheduled an early morning flight and had them run the night before, starting from 5 pm, every hour, on the hour (not letting them sleep) so they were completely EXHAUSTED by the time I dropped them off at the airport. When I was checking them both in they (leashed) were laying flat on their side passed out, and a few people remarked that they were the most relaxed dogs they'd ever seen at an airport. xD
     
  5. Fran101

    Fran101 Resident fainting goat

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    Merlin is such a hairy dog plus the flight to Miami I was scared of him over-heating, but I was thinking of getting a bed for his longer London flight, do you think a dog who doesn't use beds usually would like one?

    I didn't know you were allowed to use a bunny bottle, such a good idea!
     
  6. SpringerLover

    SpringerLover Active Member

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    I really did read the whole thing but I laughed so hard at this. My favorite part, by far.

    :rofl1:
     
  7. Shai

    Shai & the Muttly Crew

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    This is brilliant, thanks for taking the time to write it up! Saving this one on case I ever need it :).

    Webste is pleased that at a mere 20lbs he will need something like a 42" crate to accommodate his ears...
     
  8. *blackrose

    *blackrose "I'm kupo for kupo nuts!"

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    I really hope I never need to fly the dogs (because holy Jesus Batman will I need valium), but I'm making a note of this should I ever need to!
     

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