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The best pet-friendly airports in the world

Over the last decade pet travel around the globe has grown exponentially. A recent survey showed that Australia’s pet ownership stands at 63 per cent and is amongst the highest in the world. In the US, 68 per cent of all households own a pet, and about 37 per cent of pet owners travel with their pets every year.

With the increase in the number of pets travelling every year, airlines and airports are committed to ensuring animal travel is as comfortable as possible for your precious pets. With exclusive amenities for your pets and speedy animal processing, the world’s best pet-friendly airports have certainly nailed the pet-friendly brief.

JFK International Airport, New York City, Unites States

Considered the best airport for animals, JFK International has state-of-the-art amenities for pet travellers. From 24-hour veterinary care, post-security pet relief areas, onsite boarding and daycare facilities to dog parks and dog fountains, this airport has it all. The airport even has a 4000-foot outdoor garden patio for doggies to run around while they wait for their flight.

The ARK at JFK is said to be the world’s first privately owned animal terminal and provides 24/7 care to a wide variety of animals including pets, birds, horses, exotic animals and livestock. Animals flying into JFK are brought to the ARK directly where they receive care or begin their quarantine in a climate-controlled facility where the staff is experienced and compassionate.

Calgary International Airport, Calgary, Canada

The Calgary International Airport is one of the first airports in Canada to have an in-terminal pet relief area in addition to the dog relief areas located outside the terminal buildings. The airport also has a therapy dog programme where travellers in the airport can pet and play with adorable therapy dogs in the waiting lounges.

The International Animal Lounge is a 10,000 square feet facility that provides boarding and daycare for pets, horses and other travelling animals at the airport. The Calgary Airport also houses a 20,000 square foot Special Cargo Facility for loading, offloading and short-term boarding of small and large animals.

Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International, Atlanta, United States

The Hartsfield-Jackson International Airport in Atlanta has several pet-friendly amenities. Despite being the world’s busiest airport, Hartsfield-Jackson hasn’t forgotten its four-legged passengers. The airport has several post-security relief areas and pre-security dog park, Poochie Park, for your dogs to run around before boarding the flight.

Every concourse has indoor pet-relief stations with fake hydrants for your pooches to feel at home. The arrivals level of the international terminal has pet relief areas as well. The airport houses a 24/7 pet boarding facility called Pet Paradise for those times you want to fly without your pets.

Frankfurt Airport, Frankfurt, Germany

The Frankfurt Airport houses the Animal Lounge, which is considered as one of the best facilities for animals travelling by air. All animals arriving and departing at Frankfurt will pass through the Animal Lounge.

The 4000 square metre facility is equipped to care for dogs, cats, birds, horses, fish, and even rhinos and polar bears. Considered the world’s busiest animal airport hub, the Animal Lounge provides round the clock care for all the animals that pass through its doors.

Los Angeles International Airport, LA, United States

The Los Angeles International Airport is extremely pet-friendly with several pet-relief stations all over the airport. You can find eight indoor pet-relief stations beyond the security checkpoints in the terminals and three outdoor stations at the airport. The pet-relief stations have synthetic grass, a fire hydrant, fresh water and bags for waste disposal.

Heathrow International Airport, London, United Kingdom

The Heathrow Animal Reception Centre cares for all animals arriving and departing from Heathrow. The facility is along the Southern Perimeter Road of the airport and is equipped to care for pet dogs and cats, horses, birds, reptiles, fish and zoo animals.

Officials from the Animal Reception Centre receive your pet from the aircraft and check the documentation for compliance before relinquishing your pet. Pets transiting through Heathrow are also boarded here till their next flight. Open 24 hours a day, the Animal Reception Centre ensures that all EU and UK animal movement regulations are upheld.

Flying with your pet?

Pet travel to different destinations across the world has become safer and more common over the years. However, the process of pet transport remains complicated and time-consuming, especially for international travel. If you are planning to fly with your pet dog or cat to a different country, get in touch with our team at Petraveller for more information on zero-harm pet relocation.