American Airlines Pet Policy – Making Pet Travel Easier

American Airlines Pet Policy

Are you planning to travel with your pets on an American Airlines flight? Count on American Airlines pet policy for a hassle-free trip. Dedicated to making your journey convenient and comfortable, American Airlines has certain guidelines for pet travel.

So, you can fly with your pawed friends with peace of mind. In case AA doesn’t allow your pets in the cabin, they are welcomed as checked ones. AA Cargo accommodates larger pets better. The policy also allows service animals onboard to assist passengers when required. Are you eager to learn more about the AA pet travel approach, go through the following account.

What is The American Airlines Pet Policy?

AA allows you to travel with your furry friends, thanks to its pet policy that is customer-friendly. If you are taking your pet along in an AA flight, check the following American Airlines pet policy highlights –

  • Only cats and dogs are allowed as pets on AA flights.
  • Your pet must be at least 8 weeks old.
  • AA considers a kennel as a carry-on item. So, you can carry only one personal item with a pet carrier.
  • AA accepts checked pets only for the following personnel flying officially –
    • Active-duty U.S. military
    • U.S. State Department Foreign Service
  • You can check up to 2 pets.
  • AA mainline flights allow in the cabin –
    • Up to seven kennels in the cabin, service animals are exempted from this count.
    • 5 kennels on American Eagle flights and 1 on the First
  • The pert must stay in the kennel, under the seat in front of you throughout the flight.
  • Pets must be comfortable and move easily inside the closed/zipped carrier.
  • Provide your pet’s health certificate that a certified veterinarian has issued.

Can I Travel with My Service Animal on American Airlines Flights?

Yes, as per pet policy by American Airlines, you can take along your service animals on its flights. These are trained service animals (particularly dogs), and the airline allows them in the cabin at no charge. Disabled flyers get support from these animals.

Please note

  • Get in touch with the airline’s staff to know if your service animal fulfills the criteria to be onboard.
  • All requirements and applicable fees apply to service animals.

For Which Disabilities Does American Airlines Allow Service Animals Aboard?

  • Visual impairments
  • Mobility impairments
  • Deafness
  • Seizures
  • Post-traumatic stress disorder

What are The American Airlines Pet Carrier Guidelines?

Let’s look into the per-carrier or kennel guidelines for carry-on and checked-in pets separately –

Carry-on kennel guidelines

As per the American Airlines pet policy for in-cabin kennels, your pet’s kennel must be soft-sided and collapsible. It must be water-proof, have nylon mesh ventilation on 3 or more sides, and be padded.

Kennel dimensions

Hard-sided kennel

Mainline AA flights

19 x 13 x 9 inches / 48 x 33 x 22 cm (length + width + height)

Regional American Eagle flights

16 x 12 x 8 inches / 40 x 30 x 20 cm (length + width + height)

Soft-sided kennel

18 x 11 x 11 inches / 46 x 28 x 28 cm (length + width + height)

Please note

Contact AA Reservations or the customer service team at 800-433-7300 before your journey. This helps the airline to inform you of any requirements or travel changes.

Checked kennel guidelines

As per the American Airline pet policy, the kennel of checked-pawed travelers must stick to the following guidelines –

  • Maximum weight (combined pet and kennel) – 100 lbs / 45 kg.
  • Made of plastic, wood, metal, or similar materials
  • Clean and have absorbent material
  • Strong and secure that doesn’t let the animal cannot escape or poke any body part out
  • Leakproof
  • Kennels also must have –
    • At least 3 sides of ventilation for the domestic U.S. and 4 sides for international journeys
    • Separate food and watering dishes securely attached inside
    • A small food bag having enough for 24 hours and attached to the top

Which Destinations Allow Travel With Pets on American Airlines?

As per the pet policy of American Airlines, your pet can fly with you on most flights. These flights must have up to 12 hours duration or operate to/from select locations:

  • Within the 48 contiguous United States
  • The U.S. and Canada
  • Puerto Rico
  • Mexico
  • Alaska
  • St. Thomas
  • St. Croix

Please note

Other limitations are applicable when flying with pets to/ from these destinations.

What are the AA Charges for Carrying Pets Along?

Now, let’s take a look at the American Airlines pet travel fees at the airport or travel center in the table below –

Service Pet travel charges (per kennel) Regions
Carry-on pet $125 Within and between the United States and Canada, Mexico, Central America, and the Caribbean (according to the entry policy of the specific country)
Checked pet for Active-duty U.S. Military and State Department personnel only $200


$150 to/from Brazil

Within and between the United States and Canada, Mexico, Central and South America and the Caribbean, Europe and the United Kingdom
Service animals No charge All destinations
Cargo pet Varies, Confirms during booking Varies


Please note

  • Pay through a credit card or paper voucher (where accepted)
  • Cheque or cash payments not accepted

Which Breeds are Restricted on American Airlines?

Since American Airlines pet travel policy ensures that animals traveling with it stay safe and in the best of their health, it restricts some breeds, these restricted breeds include mixed breeds of snub-nosed and brachycephalic dogs and cats.

One of the major reasons for not allowing them on board is their hereditary respiratory issues and the related risks. Also, breeds having a history of being aggressive are not accepted on AA flights for safety.

Now, let’s take a look at the AA-restricted breeds –

Restricted Dogs

  • Affenpinscher
  • American Bully
  • American Staffordshire Terrier
  • Boston Terrier, Boxer (All breeds)
  • Brussels Griffon
  • Bulldog (All breeds)
  • Cane Corso
  • Chow Chow
  • Dogue De Bordeaux
  • English Toy Spaniel
  • Japanese Chin
  • Lhasa Apso
  • Mastiff (All breeds)
  • Pekingese
  • Pit Bull
  • Presa Canario
  • Pug (All breeds)
  • Shar Pei
  • Shih Tzu
  • Staffordshire Terrier
  • Tibetan Spaniel

Restricted Cats

  • Burmese
  • Exotic Shorthair
  • Himalayan
  • Persian

Please note

Travelers must fill out a form with correct details of their mixed breed animals flying on AA flights.

American Airlines Pet Travel Guidelines

As per the American Airline pet policy, follow the points mentioned below before taking your pet along on AA flights. By following these guidelines, your trip with your pet becomes all the more streamlined.

  • Provide a valid document of your pet’s fitness, stating that it is healthy enough to travel.
  • Provide an identity. to the requirements of your pet.
  • Learn how to accommodate your pet properly.
  • Research well.
  • Travelers can take their fully-trained service dogs in the cabin without extra charges. However,  these dogs must fulfill the criteria and parameters set.

What is the American Airlines Pet Policy for Cargo Animals?

Pets that American Airlines doesn’t allow as carry-on or checked pets as per the policy fly in cargo with American PetEmbark service. However, you can avail of this service only if you are :

  • The U.S. military member on active duty or
  • A U.S. State Department Foreign Service employee, flying officially

For cargo pet travel, AA has some additional requirements. Please contact a customer service representative or visit the website of American Airlines to know more.

Are American Airlines Guidelines Same for Pets Traveling Domestically and Internationally?

Yes, there are differences for pets flying to domestic or international destinations with American Airlines. For a better idea about this, scroll down –

Domestic trips

Within the continental U.S., Puerto Rico, or Hawaii, a pet can fly as Priority Parcel Service (PPS) if your pet –

  • Is under 100 pounds
  • Has a kennel within the dimensions – 36 inches x 26 inches x 28 inches (length + width + height)

International trips

Traveling out of Hawaii or your pet goes beyond the container and weight limits for PPS, and it will travel as ExpediteFS.

Please note

There are different charges for PPS and ExpediteFS. So, be informed about it beforehand.

In Conclusion

With American Airlines pet policy, flying with your pet becomes convenient and streamlined. However, follow the AA pet travel policy, and other guidelines so that you and your furry friends enjoy the trip. Although there are certain restrictions on weight, breeds, etc., these are in the best interest of comfort and safety of travelers and their pets.

Also, go through the fee structure for your pawed family member. Thereby having clarity on traveling with pets.  Additionally, book space for your pet in advance as the number of pets flying in every cabin is limited. So, the time to fly with your pet on AA flights is now!

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American Airlines Pet Policy – Making Pet Travel Easier
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