TSA question flying in cabin - German Shepherd Dog Forums
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post #1 of 20 (permalink) Old 12-08-2017, 12:57 PM Thread Starter
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Question TSA question flying in cabin

Hi ,
We will be taking our first flight here soon (my ESA dog/SdIT) , I just had a question for those of you who have done this multiple times! When you go through the TSA metal detector thing can you put your dog in a down stay and walk through first without holding the leash? Or is there a law you must hold on to the leash? My dog has an extremely reliable down stay (wouldn't break it for anything) so I would be more comfortable leaving him while I go through and then calling him without equipment on so we can get through security faster if possible. I'm also wondering if anyone knows approximately the dimensions of bulkhead seating floor space? We've practiced curling up in tight spaces (boxes, back of car on the floor, etc.) but hes a very big GSD, it would make me feel more at ease knowing he can do it ahead of time. I think he is a lot more prepared for this than I am lol. We have also already bought his frozen raw food at a petstore where we are traveling to so we don't have to bring along a cooler or anything but I'll need to bring with 1 lb for his dinner since we are doing some sight seeing before we reach our destination. Does anyone know if you can bring 1 lb of frozen solid meat along on the plane? I also would like to bring him a small marrow bone if I can (I don't think he needs it but it might make the trip more enjoyable for him) would TSA allow those items? Do dry dog treats need to be labeled or can they be brought on in a plastic baggy? We have called ahead and notified them he will be on the flight and requested bulkhead seating (his name has already been added to the flight) but when we arrive at the service desk should we ask to preboard or will they call us? Sorry for all the questions, I hate flying.
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post #2 of 20 (permalink) Old 12-08-2017, 01:03 PM
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You should call the airline and ask procedure. You also need to be aware that you will most likely have to pass by a detection dog when going thru security.




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post #3 of 20 (permalink) Old 12-08-2017, 01:06 PM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by Jax08 View Post
You should call the airline and ask procedure. You also need to be aware that you will most likely have to pass by a detection dog when going thru security.
We are going Sunday to practice getting him used to the airport so I plan on talking to the front desk anyways but I was curious what others do since they may not know the specifics like dropping the leash, etc. No problem passing other dogs, he heels beautifully and watches me. I can't say i've ever seen a detection dog passing through TSA though?
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post #4 of 20 (permalink) Old 12-08-2017, 01:14 PM
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TSA usually asks for the dog to walk "naked" through the X-ray scanner, without you. So take off the dog's equipment, put it through the scanner machine with your luggage, put the dog in a sit-stay, you walk through, get cleared, dog walks through. They may pat down the dog.

There may be a detection K9 in the area. Some I've seen have been pretty out of control (bouncing around and excited) but most are very calm. But either way, your dog needs to know a solid and reliable sit-stay, come, heel, with or without any equipment.

I used to fly a lot. Happy I rarely have to, now.
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post #5 of 20 (permalink) Old 12-08-2017, 04:10 PM
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They make slip leads with no metal that are good for going through the detecters
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post #6 of 20 (permalink) Old 12-08-2017, 04:12 PM
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I’m very active in the SD community and I have heard it both ways, they will either have you walk through with the dog....or separately. I would call and ask, but be prepared for either
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post #7 of 20 (permalink) Old 12-08-2017, 04:41 PM
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I have maybe 20 something flights under my belt with a dog. TSA is not very strict about how you go through X Ray. I've never been asked to remove a vest. They seem to really prefer you hold onto the leash too. You're overthinking it.

You'll never go through a scanner. It's a always X-ray and then the bomb swipe hand thingy.

As for the bulkhead space 60 pound mal is a squeeze if I'm respecting the space of those next to me. You may end up needing the underfoot space of the person next to you.
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post #8 of 20 (permalink) Old 12-08-2017, 04:53 PM Thread Starter
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Thanks guys
Yeah I am a total worry wort lol. The seats next to me will be occupied by my family so i'm not too concerned if he spills over a little bit. I'm bringing with his towel that we practice his place command so he won't get the floor all furry and he'll be comfortable. He is usually good at tucking tight but if I take him for a hike in the morning no doubt he'll be out by the afternoon and probably stretch out a bit. I'm also worried if they do a pat down he might try to give TSA a kiss if they get personal.. don't want to scare the person frisking him down. Guess I could hold his muzzle or warn them? When you preboard do they show you where bulkhead is? I haven't been on too many planes so I'm not sure I know where it might be at. I'm most worried this point about me walking the wrong way or going somewhere I shouldn't lol. Also still need to find out if i'm allowed to bring on a pound of meat and a bone. I imagine dry treats and cow ears are fine to bring on? I don't want to have to buy him new snacks at our destination. I voted to drive but my family ended up buying us plane tickets for christmas. Bah humbug. Any other tips from the veterans ?

Last edited by GandalfTheShepherd; 12-08-2017 at 05:00 PM.
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post #9 of 20 (permalink) Old 12-08-2017, 05:01 PM
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You might consider taking a small bag of Ziwi Peak or equivalent for food, until you get to your destination. It's the closest shelf-stable substitute for raw, and most dogs think getting it means "treats" for dinner (jack pot!). That way if you have an unexpected, very long delay on a tarmac or on a connection, you won't have thawed meat rotting in your bag. I also would always want to travel with "emergency" dog food for a flight cancelation/overnight stay en route, and Ziwi doesn't take up a lot of space (it's air dried jerky).

ETA: if you ask them to find you a person who doesn't mind sharing foot space with a nice dog in the bulkhead, you'd likely get plenty of volunteers. I would be thrilled to do that when traveling, as a stressful travel day never seems quite as bad when a dog's around, even if it's someone else's. I'll gladly take sharing my foot space with a nice dog on a plane over having some dude man-spreading next to me ANY day!
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Last edited by Magwart; 12-08-2017 at 05:06 PM.
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post #10 of 20 (permalink) Old 12-08-2017, 05:12 PM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Magwart View Post
You might consider taking a small bag of Ziwi Peak or equivalent for food, until you get to your destination. It's the closest shelf-stable substitute for raw, and most dogs think getting it means "treats" for dinner (jack pot!). That way if you have an unexpected, very long delay on a tarmac or on a connection, you won't have thawed meat rotting in your bag. I also would always want to travel with "emergency" dog food for a flight cancelation/overnight stay en route, and Ziwi doesn't take up a lot of space (it's air dried jerky).

ETA: if you ask them to find you a person who doesn't mind sharing foot space with a nice dog in the bulkhead, you'd likely get plenty of volunteers. I would be thrilled to do that when traveling, as a stressful travel day never seems quite as bad when a dog's around, even if it's someone else's. I'll gladly take sharing my foot space with a nice dog on a plane over having some dude man-spreading next to me ANY day!
Thanks I will have to look into that Ziwi stuff! I was bringing a pound of his food because he is skipping breakfast and we land in the afternoon. My family wants to stop and sight see before we reach our destination so we wouldn't get in until late at night (we're picking his food up the next morning). I wanted to make sure he had a full meal that day since we will be doing tons of walking (going to a kris kringle mart). This is the pup with the sensitive stomach so I wanted to try to stick with what he is used to. Can't hurt to have the Ziwi on hand and just throw away the meat if we get stuck. Do you mix it with water? Thanks for that suggestion . Hehe he is a very friendly pup with the softest head you've ever felt (seriously his head feels like a baby duck) i'm sure he would get lots of volunteers lol.

Last edited by GandalfTheShepherd; 12-08-2017 at 05:20 PM.
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