Thanks to a mandate issued last may by the U.S. Department of Transportation, airlines are required to provide relief areas for service animals like guide dogs. Airports are beginning to go beyond the minimum requirements, developing off-leash dog-parks that are open to all travelers and their four legged friends. Here are just a few:
-Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International: 1,000-square-feet of landscaped off-leash rest area, located steps away from Delta’s check-in desk. The most elaborate park yet, this area has flowers, grass, benches, biodegradable waste bags, and dog sculptures made from scrap metal.
– San Francisco International Airport: Two outside relief areas located near Terminals 1 and 3 baggage claims. Drinking bowls and “mutt mitts” (high-tech poop bags) are available as well.
– Philadelphia International Airport: Seven off-leash areas with mulch surfaces and biodegradable waste bags. Humans will enjoy the relaxation bench, while dogs will enjoy the faux fire hydrant and concrete paw print.
– The Lambert-St. Louis International Airport: Two gated outdoor rest areas, in the Main and East terminals.
Tracey Thompson, owner of PetFriendlyTravel.com, has compiled a list of nearly 50 pet-friendly airports. She says “Airports are wise to tap into what pet owners want, since more travelers are paying to carry their small pets with them on the plane.”
For more pet-friendly travel tips, check out the Pet Travel section of our blog!