Want to take a flight with your cat or dog that keeps you chill? Southwest Airlines says OK. But they’re right there with United Airlines on peacocks and Spirit Airlines on hamsters — they need to stay at home, take the train, or maybe the bus.
Unless your miniature horse has a purpose. Then, the living My Little Pony can board.
Southwest’s website lays out its updated policy on emotional support animals: only one pet, and it must be a dog or cat and on a leash or in a carrier that fits under the seat in front of you.
The owner must have his or her own documentation, as in a recent letter from a licensed mental health professional or medical doctor documenting a “mental health or emotional disability” necessitating the pooch or pussycat.
Now, as for trained service animals — such as seeing eye dogs — Southwest says it “welcomes trained dogs, cats, and miniature horses as service animals onboard our flights as long as the Customer is able to provide credible verbal assurance that the animal is a trained service animal. Southwest Airlines does not accept unusual or exotic species of animals.”
And for those of you used to getting your Shih-Tzu into the restaurant by putting it in a vest you ordered online, Southwest takes special care to note, “A service animal vest, harness, ID card, or registration is not accepted as the sole indication an animal is a trained service animal.”
Other airlines have similar policies on animals after the aforementioned support animal kerfuffles