Delta Pet Policy: Navigating Travel with Your Furry Companion

Embarking on a journey with your beloved pet is an exciting adventure, and at Delta Pet Policy, we strive to make it a seamless and enjoyable experience. Our comprehensive guide to Delta Pet Policy ensures that you and your furry friend can travel with confidence and convenience.

Carry-On Pets: In-Cabin Travel Experience

Small dogs, cats, and household birds have the opportunity to travel in the cabin for a one-way fee, collected at check-in. To qualify for in-cabin travel, pets must fit comfortably in a soft-sided ventilated kennel beneath the seat directly in front of you.

Requirements for Carry-On Pets:

  • Age Criteria:
    • For domestic travel, pets must be at least 8 weeks old.
    • For international travel to the U.S. or the European Union, the minimum age is 16 weeks.
  • Litter Exception:
    • A female cat or dog may travel with her un-weaned litter, aged between 8 weeks and 6 months.
  • Multiple Pets in One Kennel:
    • Up to two pets of the same breed and size, between 8 weeks and 6 months old, may travel in one kennel.
  • Kennel Specifications:
    • You can only bring one carry-on item, which is a kennel.
    • Maximum dimensions recommended by Delta: 18” x 11” x 11”.

Seating Restrictions:

Customers with carry-on pets cannot select seats in specific areas:

  • Bulkhead seats
  • Emergency exit rows
  • Seats designated as “no stowage”
  • Certain seat rows on specific aircraft types

Booking Your Pet: First-Come, First-Serve Policy

To ensure the comfort of all passengers, we implement a first-come, first-serve policy for pets in the cabin. Limited spots are available on each flight, so if your pet meets the requirements and you have a reservation, contact Delta Reservations promptly to secure your pet’s spot.

Additional Note:

For flights operated by partner airlines, it’s crucial to verify their specific policies regarding in-cabin pet transport.

Carry-On Kennel Requirements: Ensuring Comfort and Safety

Check your flight’s aircraft dimensions to confirm that your pet’s kennel fits beneath the seat directly in front of you. Adhering to specific requirements ensures a safe and pleasant journey for your pet.

Kennel Requirements:

  • Size and Comfort:
    • Your pet must comfortably fit in the kennel without touching the sides.
    • The kennel needs to suit just beneath the seat in front of you.
  • Ventilation and Leak-Proofing:
    • The soft-sided kennel must have ventilation openings on three sides for domestic travel and four sides for international travel.
    • It should be leak-proof to ensure cleanliness.

Checking In With Your Pet: A Smooth Process

Upon arriving at the airport, visit the Special Service Counter to check in with your pet. A Delta Pet Policy agent will verify that your pet and kennel meet all necessary requirements and collect the required pet fee.

Check-In Process:

  • Verification:
    • Delta agent ensures your pet and kennel meet trip requirements.
    • Collection of required pet fee.
  • Time Consideration:
    • Allow extra time at check-in for the agent to prepare your pet for take-off.

Delta Sky Club® Pets: Consistent Delta Pet Policy

When visiting a Delta Sky Club with your pet, policies mirror those on the aircraft. For the safety and comfort of everyone, pets must remain in their kennels. Delta representatives can guide you to designated pet relief areas at most airports.

Carry-On Pet Fees

Fees for carrying your pet on board vary based on currency and destination. These fees are established by the contract of carriage at the time of ticket issuance.

Carry-On Pet Exceptions

For specific destinations, pets (excluding service animals) must be transported as cargo and are not allowed in the cabin. These destinations include Australia, Barbados, Brazil/Colombia, Dubai, Hawaii, Hong Kong, Iceland, Jamaica, New Zealand, the Republic of Ireland, South Africa, the United Kingdom, and the United Arab Emirates.

CDC Rabies Suspension:

The CDC has temporarily suspended the entry of dogs, including trained service animals, into the United States from countries at high risk for rabies. Importation options depend on vaccination location and travel history.

Shipping Your Pet with Delta Pet Policy

In our commitment to providing exceptional services, Delta Airlines offers a dedicated approach to shipping pets, ensuring their safety and well-being throughout the journey. Whether you are an active U.S. Military member or a U.S. State Department Foreign Service Officer (FSO), we have tailored solutions to accommodate the shipment of pets with ease.

Shipment for U.S. Military and FSOs

Until further notice, we exclusively allow the shipment of pets for active U.S. Military personnel or U.S. State Department FSOs with active permanent change of station orders. For bookings, please contact the Delta Cargo Customer Service Center at 1-800-352-2746 (dial 711 for relay services). It’s imperative to provide a copy of your permanent change of station orders during the booking process.

Please be aware that existing live animal policies apply to all animals transported via cargo.

Shipping Your Pet with Delta Cargo

If your pet is too large to comfortably fit in a soft-sided pet kennel or crate, Delta Cargo provides a secure and reliable transportation option. Before arranging your pet’s travel, review the following guidelines to ensure a smooth process:

  • Separate Pet Booking:
    • A separate booking for your pet must be made through the Delta Cargo Customer Service Center.
    • Additional fees and charges apply, except for service dogs unable to be accommodated in the cabin.
  • Booking Timeframe:
    • Pets shipped via cargo can be booked 14 days prior to departure.
    • Note that pets are not guaranteed to be on the same flight as the customer.
  • Drop-off and Pick-up:
    • Pets must be dropped off and picked up at a designated Delta Cargo location.
    • Arrive 4 to 6 hours before domestic travel and 6 hours before international travel.
  • International Travel:
    • International customers must use a pet shipper approved by the International Pet and Animal Transportation Association.

Health Requirements for Cargo Travel

To ensure the health and well-being of your pet during cargo travel, adhere to the following health requirements:

  • Travel Crates/Containers:
    • Crates must comply with the International Air Transport Association Live Animals Regulations (IATA-LAR).
    • Allow the pet to stand, sit, lie down, and turn around without touching the top or sides.
  • Acclimation to Confinement:
    • Pets must be acclimated to confinement, a process that may take weeks to months.
  • Health Certificate:
    • Obtain a health certificate from a USDA-accredited veterinarian within 10 days of travel.
    • International travel requires an international health certificate.

Understanding the Risks: Delta Pet Policy

Transporting pets via cargo poses inherent risks, impacting each animal differently. Exposure to unfamiliar environments, people, and movements can lead to stress, illness, injury, escape, or, in rare cases, death. Discuss these risks with your veterinarian, considering your pet’s medical history, age, and breed.

  • Animal Age:
    • Consider age-related factors, such as impaired vision, hearing, or existing health conditions.
  • Breed Restrictions:
    • Certain breeds, particularly brachycephalic (snub-nosed) dogs and cats, are not permitted on Delta flights.

Live Animal Checklist & Feeding

When checking in your pet, complete a live animal checklist confirming recent food and water provision within 4 hours. If in-transit feeding is necessary, give the required food and feeding instructions for a 24-hour period.

Tranquilizers & Sedatives

For safety reasons, the use of tranquilizers or sedatives for pets during air travel is not permitted. This includes any medication causing sedation.

Weather Requirements

To prioritize your pet’s safety, we observe seasonal restrictions, avoiding extreme weather conditions. Pets will not be shipped if the temperature exceeds 80˚F (27˚C) or falls below 20˚F (-7˚C) during travel. A Certificate of Acclimation is required for temperatures between 20˚F (-7˚C) and 45˚F (7˚C).


Delta Airlines provides comprehensive guidelines for shipping pets, catering to active U.S. Military and U.S. State Department Foreign Service Officers with permanent change of station orders. For these individuals, Delta Cargo offers a secure option for transporting larger pets.

The process involves a separate booking through the Delta Cargo Customer Service Center, adherence to health requirements, and awareness of potential risks associated with cargo travel for pets. Detailed guidelines cover aspects such as booking timeframes, drop-off and pick-up procedures, and international travel specifications.

In conclusion, Delta prioritizes the safety and well-being of pets during cargo travel, ensuring adherence to health standards and considering individual risks. For active U.S. Military and FSOs, Delta Cargo provides a reliable solution for shipping larger pets.

For expert guidance and support in managing your flights and cancellations, don’t hesitate to turn to Flight Expert Support. Safe travels!

Frequently Asked Questions

  1. What is Delta's policy on traveling with pets in the cabin?

    Delta allows small dogs, cats, and household birds to travel in the cabin for a one-way fee. The pet must fit in a soft-sided ventilated kennel under the seat.

  2. Are there age restrictions for pets traveling in the cabin?

    Yes, pets must be at least 8 weeks old for domestic travel. For international travel, the minimum age is 16 weeks to the U.S. and 15 weeks to the European Union.

  3. Can I travel with multiple pets in the same kennel?

    Under certain conditions, like having two pets of the same breed and size between 8 weeks and 6 months, Delta may allow them to travel in one kennel.

  4. Are there specific seating restrictions for passengers with carry-on pets?

    Yes, passengers with carry-on pets cannot select bulkhead seats, emergency exit rows, certain designated seats, or specific rows on certain aircraft types.

  5. How can I book my pet for travel with Delta?

    To book your pet, contact Delta Reservations as soon as possible and have your pet's kennel dimensions available. Pets cannot be accommodated in-cabin if you're already traveling with a trained service animal.

  6. What is Delta's policy for pets too large to fit in a soft-sided kennel?

    Larger pets that cannot fit in a soft-sided kennel may be shipped via Delta Cargo. Separate booking is required, and guidelines must be reviewed before arranging travel.

  7. Are there health requirements for pets traveling via cargo?

    Yes, pets must have a health certificate from a USDA-accredited veterinarian within 10 days of travel. The crate must comply with international standards for live animal transportation.

  8. What destinations require pets to travel as cargo?

    Certain destinations, including Australia, Barbados, Brazil/Colombia, Dubai, Hawaii, Hong Kong, Iceland, Jamaica, New Zealand, Republic of Ireland, South Africa, United Kingdom, and the United Arab Emirates, mandate pets to travel as cargo.

  9. Can brachycephalic (snub-nosed) dogs and cats travel on Delta flights?

    No, Delta does not permit brachycephalic breeds on its flights due to their respiratory challenges. Visit Delta Cargo for a list of restricted breeds.

  10. How does Delta handle pet travel during extreme weather conditions?

    Delta observes seasonal restrictions, avoiding pet travel if temperatures exceed 80˚F (27˚C) or fall below 20˚F (-7˚C) during any part of the journey.

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