If you’re planning a summer vacation and bringing your emotional support animal on the plane with you, you may want to do some research first.
American Airlines is making it very clear: Insects, goats and hedgehogs cannot be brought on planes as emotional support animals.
The airline revised its guidelines for comfort animals on flights. Those who want to bring such an animal on board now have to file paperwork 48 hours before a flight, and there are new restrictions on which types of animals are permitted.
In a statement, American Airlines said they support the rights of customers, from veterans to those who are disabled, with legitimate needs for a trained service animal or support animal. Unfortunately, untrained animals can lead to safety issues for employees, other customers, and working dogs aboard the aircraft.
Emotional support animals provide comfort to those suffering from emotional or psychological conditions such as anxiety, depression and panic attacks. They’re typically allowed to fly on planes for free if they meet certain requirements.
American Airlines said that between 2016 and 2017, the number of customers transporting service or support animals aboard their planes rose by more than 40%.
Ferrets, spiders, and non-household birds, like chickens and hawks are also banned. Unclean animals, or animals with an odor, are unwelcome, as well.
This one may be hard to believe, miniature horses, meanwhile, remain okay, so long as they’re properly trained as service animals.
The airline’s revised rules go into effect on July 1, 2018.