Air Travel For Live Animals

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All of your questions regarding air travel for live animals will be answered here. The first thing you need to know is: THERE ARE MORE RULES & PAPERWORK FOR SHIPPING LIVE ANIMALS THAN THERE ARE FOR PEOPLE. The ONLY transport requiring a more detailed & intense process than a live animal with the airlines is an unaccompanied minor. If you have reservations about transporting live animals, after reading the process & hearing how simple & stress free it really is, PLUS all of our options, I know you will agree that air travel is a great choice for transporting your puppy from my care to yours if you do not live within driving distance for pickup here at our only location at Talala, OK. I have shipped about 65 puppies per year EVERY year with the airlines since 2006 so I am a 'KNOWN SHIPPER' and I KNOW the process for air travel for live animals WELL and can get your puppy to you safely. If your puppy's flight out of Tulsa is cancelled or delayed making them miss their connection I ALWAYS go back to the airport and get them and then reschedule for the next available shipping day so your puppy is safe here with me.

Currently, we have American Airlines available to us here in Tulsa, OK (TUL) to accommodate our shipping needs and is less than a 30 minute drive one way for check in typically at 4:30 am. Alaska Air has just added a new cargo location in Oklahoma City in June 2021. However, because this facility is a 3 hour drive ONE WAY for me, this airline will be utilized going to the west coast, MT, & ID at MY discretion and ONLY when flying on American here in Tulsa is not available due to scheduling or weather. Alaska Air also accepts a 40" crate that will accommodate an adult dog so we can utilize this service for our spayed females going west coast as they reach their 2-5 litter limit here. American only accepts 36" crates in Tulsa and that typically cannot accommodate our adult dogs. Check in on Alaska Air will require an ALL DAY drive there and back and staying 3 hours at the airport until the flight departs in case of delays or cancellations and having to drive back home and make the trip again next business day. Keep in mind that the airlines ONLY accept live animals at age 8 weeks AND when the forecasted temperature at time of take off at the origin, connection, and landing at the destination is between 20 and 85 degree's. There are only certain aircraft that can accommodate live animal transport and only ONE connection is allowed. Cargo does not accept live animals on Saturday, Sunday, or holidays so we are limited to flying ONLY Monday through Friday. I do NOT sedate or tranquilize the puppies in any way. They ship awake, alert, well fed, hydrated, & comfortable. Some do prefer to take a nap while in transit & simply wake up in their new owners arms.

These rules are set forth by the Federal Aviation Administration for the safety of live animals, not 'made up' by me, and are STRICTLY ADHERED TO & ENFORCED by the United States Department of Agriculture during airport quarterly inspections and a yearly inspection here at my facility so do NOT ask me to bend these rules in any way.

Because we are centrally located here in the US flying out of Tulsa, OK, our puppies are typically only in transit for about 6 hours or less depending on destination. I'm happy to confirm a flight schedule & convenient location for you to pickup BEFORE you commit to purchase. With the number of airports available that accommodate live animal transport most of our buyers only have to travel an hour or less for pickup. Due to my extensive experience with transporting live animals via Priority Parcel Service I am a known shipper with the airlines and can assure you your puppy will arrive safe and sound in just a few hours. I spend an enormous amount of time planning and preparing each puppy for air travel as well as educating the buyer on the process.

THE COST OF AIR TRAVEL via Priority Parcel Service for the continental United States, Alaska, Puerto Rico, & US Virgin Islands is $700 and includes the cost of the MADE IN USA crate with all required labeling, food/water dishes, collar/leash, vet visit, fecal, health papers, Rabies for older puppies, airfare, parking, & transportation to/from the vet sometime during the week prior to shipping & to/from the airport the day of shipping. We also offer shipping for two puppies FLYING TOGETHER (age 8 or 9 weeks only) for one $700 charge. Here is the breakdown for the $700 cost we charge for air travel:

  • $100 for the crate, food/water dishes, & collar/leash
  • $150 for health papers & fecal
  • $50 for Rabies if applicable
  • $25 to $100 for transportation costs (depending on the airport we have to utilize) 
  • $387.50 to $500 for airfare (and more for adult dogs)

So you see ... we do not make ANYTHING on the shipping costs and sometimes lose money.

Live animals are transported via PRIORITY PARCEL SERVICE ONLY with the airlines and are handled with the best of care. Only aircraft equipped to transport live animals are utilized. The animals get the same pressurization and air as the passengers. Puppies are NOT put in a box with air holes poked in it and in transit for 3 days. They are NOT transported via UPS or FEDEX. Anyone with a bad shipping experience needs to examine the practices & experience, or inexperience, of the breeder/shipper who made the arrangements ... NOT the airline. We have NEVER had a bad shipping experience. ALL of my buyers and myself have a 100% satisfaction rate with the airlines.

All of our puppies have arrived in the same condition they were in when I put them in the crate that morning. I can assure you that the airline staff are well trained & knowledgeable in the care & proper handling of our animals. It is also ALWAYS the same staff at dropoff and ONLY staff specifically trained for the checkin and handling of live animals are allowed to assist the shipper at time of checkin. I couldn't be more pleased with my experience regarding the shipping process and handling of my animals.

The pickup place is different at each airport so I will include your pickup place when the flight is scheduled at age 6 weeks & a detailed confirmation email is sent to each buyer regarding flight information, pickup, and immediate aftercare info. Pickup is either at cargo, where available, or at the baggage claim or ticket counter inside the airport for airports that do not have a cargo facility for the specific airline your puppy is booked on. You will be advised ahead of time where to go for pickup. You will need to be prepared to show two forms if ID like a drivers license & credit card at pickup and provide your signature. NO additional charges or fee's will apply at time of pickup. I handle all arrangements & payments.

The crate’s used for shipping are the hard plastic type that bolt together on the sides and are assembled with required additional hardware by me. If you plan to crate your puppy at home, you will need to be prepared with the black wire crate size Large. Those crates get much better airflow than the hard plastic shipping crates & the crates we send them in are just big enough for a ONE TIME USE. Your puppy will outgrow the shipping crate in a week so plan to list your crate on craigslist, or other venue, and get some of your money back or donate it to a rescue or shelter in your area. Sending the crate back is not an option because it cost about ten times more to return the crate than what it is worth.

Attached to the crate will be a sample of food & a clear plastic bag with your paperwork and a collar/leash inside. Remove him/her immediately & have a potty place picked out before entering your pickup place. Take him/her to potty right away. Bring water from home. There will be two dishes attached to the inside of the crate. Water your puppy immediately after potty time. Plan to stay at your pickup place for a few minutes to offer exercise & a bite of food (attached to the crate) before travel home. Puppies travel much better on a full tummy especially if you live more than an hour away from the airport. Send me a quick text when you have your puppy after potty and water needs are met then we can talk later in the day, or the following day, to address any questions/concerns you may have after you have had some time to observe & interact with your puppy.

You will find important paperwork attached to the crate. Inside the packet will be your registration paperwork, copies of lab reports for genetic health clearances for the parents, vaccination record & schedule to follow with a letter to your vet, one copy of the Contract for you to sign for your records & keep, & one copy of the Contract in an SASE for you to sign & return to me within a day or two after receiving your puppy into your care. This form with your information is what my AKC inspector wants to see at time of yearly inspection so be sure to send it back within a day or two. The paperwork is an important part of the presentation from me to your vet so be sure to take the entire packet, and its contents, with you at time of the next scheduled vaccination so your vet can make copies of the genetic health clearances for your puppy's file and see the vaccination and deworming schedule your puppy has incurred while here. If you forget to take this packet with you to the vet, he/she will not know what vaccinations your puppy has already received. My contact information is attached should your vet have questions at anytime during the life of your new puppy.

In addition, breeders are provided with ONLY ONE COPY of each puppy's registration paperwork from AKC & ASCA. DO NOT LOSE these. We have to pay money for these documents. They are NOT free. If you lose or misplace them "YOU" WILL HAVE TO PAY FOR NEW COPIES.

If I was not 100% confident in the airline personnel, care, handling, & safety of our puppies I would not transport puppies via air travel. No one cares about the safety of our animals more than I do. Shipping is very simple & safe. You show up at your pickup point on an agreed upon date/time, show two forms of ID, & go home with your beautiful healthy new puppy. It really is that simple when you choose a Fifteen Acre Farms puppy!

Any reservations you may have about purchasing a puppy site unseen can be eliminated with multiple video's of the puppy, his/her littermates, their parents and the breeders property. You will be able to see where the puppy comes from, how the puppies & their parents are housed, kept, & cared for & their interaction with me, as well as other puppies, in the video.

Furthermore, the United States Dept of Transportation Office of Aviation Enforcement & Proceedings produces a monthly Air Travel Consumer Report for Airline Animal Incidents that are viewable since 2005 for your review.

I'm sure you will agree after reading a few of these reports, and cause of injury or death, the majority of "losses" during air travel were NOT the fault of airline personnel. Many of the injuries & losses during transit are from self infliction by an {aggressive} animal, or "strong breed", not accustomed to his/her crate, or properly prepared by his/her breeder, or from underlying conditions the animal had BEFORE travel and was NOT disclosed to airline staff by the owner/shipper. Security measures are in place, and STRICTLY adhered to, for the protection, comfort, and safety of the animals just like they are for people. When the airline says they are not shipping live animal's today, there is a reason. In addition, shipper's are NOT REQUIRED to disclose underlying health issue's to airline staff at time of tender. I read a few reports where an animal escaped through an unlatched door. Airline personnel are not responsible for the assembly of the crate ... the shipper is. If the shipper does not check twice to be sure the door is latched BOTH at top AND bottom, of course there is potential for a bored or frustrated animal, that has not been properly prepared for travel BY THE SHIPPER, to escape. AGAIN, this is NOT the fault of airline personnel. It is also not the fault of airline personnel for dogs that chew through their crates and escape or injure themselves on rigid chewed up plastic on the inside of the crate or attached food/water dishes. The breed of dog and their age is also listed on each incident report. Be sure to read several of the incident reports in their entirety then determine your own conclusion for who is at fault regarding injury or loss during transit on the airline.