Happy Tails Alerts

  • COVID-19 Travel Impacts

    Updated June 5th, 2020:

    Due to limited flights and increased demand for ground travel, we require at least 2 - 3 weeks from the date a signed contract is received to when your pet can travel.

    Domestic and International airlines continue to offer extremely limited options for pet travel in response to the Coronavirus. At this time there is no set date when air pet shipment will resume as usual. As such, Happy Tails Travel is only able to offer ground transportation services within the contiguous U.S. at this time.

    No flights -small     

    We at Happy Tails Travel, Inc. are closely following the Coronavirus updates across the country and around the world to be sure that your pets and their travel plans are taken care of appropriately.  If you are traveling with us via our By Ground Safe & Sound program, all routes are continuing as scheduled and currently have no delays. 

    Due to the limitations on domestic flights that accommodate pets, we can offer our By Ground Safe & Sound program as an alternative, which is subject to pricing based on the distance and mileage.  An advantage to our By Ground Safe & Sound program is that it limits your pets’ exposure to many factors including other humans and pets and could be a safer alternative to air travel during this uncertain time. 

    If you are not yet a client and need assistance with your pets' travel plans, please fill out our Pet Travel Form for more information.

    We appreciate our loyal clients, employees, and all of our furry friends.  We wish for everyone to be safe and healthy!

    To read a recent client testimonial and her excellent experience with us during the Covid-19 outbreak, click here


Popeye is really enjoying himself. He just looks very happy and comfortable being an island dog. The first day he was here we went to the beach and if he could talk I would bet he way saying “THIS PLACE IS SO COOL! THANK YOU FOR BRINGING ME HERE!!!” You helped make his trip very stress free and easy. I really appreciated the constant updates, immediately responses and hard work on your end. I felt confident the trip was going to be easy from day one having you on the case. Thank you so much for everything. You and your team really do a great job for people and pets that need help. 

-Anthony and Popeye
Sarasota, FL to Kailua, HI


Happy Tails did an excellent job transporting my high anxiety dog from California to Oregon as part of our family move.  Every detail was meticulously seen to, and the driver, Mia, went above and beyond to ensure that Little Joe was safe, happy and loved throughout the journey.  She was delayed due to weather, but communicated frequently and sent pictures to set my mind at ease that he was safe and comfortable and well cared for.  I highly recommend this service as a way to get your pet to its new home.

Betsey S. & Joe
Oakland, CA - Portland, OR

Hodges 2 (2)Hodges 1 (2)

The kitties are happy in their new private room and get lots of lovin’ from all of us, especially our little grandkids. Here is a pic of Smokey Lonesome and one of beautiful Bianca- she’s winking and trying to tell you she had a fabulous trip from KY to NH! Oliver was bring camera shy.  Thank you so much for the great service you provided. It was a huge relief to have the cats taken care of so well. We certainly will use your services again if needed, and of course will recommend Happy Tails!

Thanks again,
Karen H.
Lexington, Kentucky - Bradford, New Hampshire

Bohemian Rhapsody  Jumping Jack Flash (3)

Hi Bridget, thank you for the incredible amount of work you and your staff have done towards making the shipping of the two pups to Europe a reality. Now they are gaining weight and enjoying their new home. I have heard from Linda who says how thoroughly pleased she is with the soundness, temperament and quality of the two pups.Thank you again for seeing this through from initial contact to a satisfactory ending for all.

Phyllis Lockwood, Willowrun Great Danes
Clarendon NC to Frankfurt Germany

Kaya (2)

Happy Tails Travel was such a huge peace of mind for me during this pretty stressful move. Kaya arrived in Glasgow with no problems, and was so happy to be reunited with us. They answered dozens of questions to ease my anxious mind and made this process so much easier on me.I can't thank you enough! 

We are settling in nicely, and Kaya LOVES her new home and exploring all the beautiful scenery every day! 

Thanks again for all your help,

Mystie and Kaya
Houston, Texas - Aberdeen, Scotland 


Circe is settling in well in our new home thanks to Happy Tails Travel, Inc. They handled everything and guided me every step of the way. It was a very seamless and stress-free process. I was especially concerned because she's 19-years-old and was traveling from Chicago to Seattle, but Happy Tails got her to me safely.

Thank you so much Happy Tails Travel & Kim!

Kenyatta B.
Chicago, IL - Seattle, WA

My family and I were moving to LA and so we needed to fly our labradoodle, Emma. We were moving from Miami and with all the temperature restrictions for flying pets in hot temperatures, we knew that it would be tricky. The folks at Happy Tails were great! They booked Emma on a flight and kept us updated on the temperatures. At the last minute, the temperature soared past 85 degrees and the airport folks wouldn't let Emma on the flight. There were no other flights out in the next 24 hours and my family and I were scheduled on our own flights early the next morning. We were freaking out! Kim, at Happy Trails organized for Emma to be picked up in Miami and driven to Orlando, where she found a flight leaving very early in the morning for LA. She saved us a ton of aggravation! And now Emma is a California dog;) Thanks, Happy Tails!

Diane M. & Emma
Miami, FL - Los Angeles, CA

Moose (2)

Our return was a breeze and we settled back into our home life quickly. Pamela was a huge help and made our departure and return so pleasant - thank you again for recommending her to us! The whole process with Happy Tails Travel was so easy on my end and made our travels stress-free. Both times I picked up Moose from the flights he was safe and sound with his tail wagging. I can’t tell you how thankful I am that he was safe and happy throughout our travels. It means the world. 

Thank you so much for everything you did to help us, we are so appreciative. We will not hesitate to use you guys again for any future travels!

Gabi M. & Moose
Round-trip from Seattle, Washington to Newark, NJ

Why can’t my Pet Travel on Any Available Flight?

By: Bridget Monrad, R.N. | Aug 07, 2015

Pet shipping is much more complex than most people think. It is not as simple as people travel where you can just buy a ticket and go.  There are many more considerations when it comes to live animal shipments such as the airline, the type of aircraft, and the size of your pet. 

Not all airlines have the proper policies and equipment to ship pets. Some have restrictions which only allow pets to fly in the cabin and not as cargo.  This greatly restricts which type of pets can fly (please refer to our Cabin vs. Cargo Blog for more information).  Any aircraft which is able to ship pets as cargo must have a designated live animal section which is temperature controlled, pressurized, and oxygenated.  This ensures that your pets can breathe normally and are comfortable during transit.  This area is also separate from the traditional cargo or luggage hold of the aircraft, so you do not have to worry about your furry family member simply being treated as a piece of luggage.  At Happy Tails Travel we work only with airlines with the very best pet policies in place, who treat your family member as a VIP (very important pet)!   

Another aspect of the VIP service is how your pet is handled before, during, and after the flight.  With our pet-approved airlines we ensure that your cats, dogs, and other furry friends are handled with care throughout their entire journey.  This means that before flight, during any layovers, and after flight, your pets are kept in a heated or air-conditioned building, given more water if needed, and are transported around the airport in temperature controlled vehicles.  Pets are also always the last ones loaded onto the aircraft and are the first ones taken off.  This helps ensure your pets’ safety and comfort so that they are not waiting on the tarmac longer than necessary. 

While an airline and aircraft may be pet-friendly, there are further restrictions which depend on the size of the aircraft and the size of your pet.  Just as different pets require different size crates, each aircraft is built differently and has different size cargo doors.  The size of the cargo door and weight of the aircraft, limits the size of the crate and the number of animals, which may fly on an aircraft at any one time.  Many airlines simply use a “first come, first serve” rule if you are shipping your pet yourself where you have to make sure you are first in line so that your pet gets onboard, however if you work with a pet travel specialist, you can guarantee your furry family member a spot on a specific flight. 

Another challenge faced by many pet owners arises when shipping large pets to smaller cities or shipping pets internationally from a smaller city.  This becomes a challenge as smaller cities or non-international airports often use smaller aircraft, many of which are not pet-friendly.  Additionally, if you need to ship your pet internationally from a small city, they will first be required to travel to a large international airport before they can make the trip across the pond! Again these domestic flights do not always use pet-friendly aircraft, and if a route is possible, there is a good chance your pet will have to change airlines from a domestic to an international airline, which incurs additional costs.  Come back next week for a new blog describing in more detail the challenges of remote locations!

When you hire a professional pet agent, such as Happy Tails Travel, you are hiring someone who knows each airline and will ensure that your pet will travel on the safest, most pet-friendly airlines.  Please fill out our Pet Travel Form for more information or a quote today!

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