United Airlines is one of the major airlines and also a member of the Star Alliance. It is headquartered in Chicago, it operates more than 5000 flights per day from 376 airports.

We all love to take along our pet wherever we go, United airlines also allows its passengers/customers to bring their pets along while travelling but you must gain total knowledge of the United Airlines pet policy before doing so. Passenger must read all the details mentioned under the United Airlines pet policy to avoid any unexpected situation, you should cover all the aspects of the policy. only 2 dogs are allowed in the cabin of the United Airline’s flight, so the passengers/customer must remember to contact the pet reservation department of United Airlines in advance. Passengers are allowed to make reservations in United Airlines for their pet at least 5 days prior to their original flight departure.

Rules as per the United Airlines Pet Policy

  • The carrier/cage of the pet must be ventilated properly.
  • There should be enough space in the carrier/cage for the pet to stand and move around without touching the top.
  • The carrier must be strong enough to withstand the travelling in the flight, it should be leakproof and have proper locks.
  • No passenger is allowed to carry more than one adult pet(dog, cat) or two puppies/kittens in a single carrier/cage.
  • Both dogs and cats are not allowed in the same carrier/cage.

There are many different rules and regulations for taking along pets in the cabin of the international flight. 

United Airlines Pet Travel in Cabin

Allowed pets:

United airlines pet travel in-cabin policy states that only small dogs, cats, household birds, and rabbits are accepted to travel inside the cabin of the United aircraft for the flights within the continental United States (excluding Hawaii).

Age criteria:

All pets must be at least 4 months old to be eligible to travel and the carrier of pets must fit completely under the seat of the passenger. The pet carrier/cage will be considered as a piece of checked baggage. Only one pet is accepted per carrier/cage but there is an exception for the small birds as two small birds are allowed to be in a single cage. United Airlines also provides a provision to purchase extra space for the second pet to be in the carrier if required.

Restricted routes:

Pets travelling to the destination of the United Kingdom are not accepted in the flight’s cabin except service support animals. United Airlines does not welcome pets in the cabin of flights for Hawaii, New Zealand, Guam, Australia and some more countries that only allow pets to travel as cargo. No pet travel services are offered for the locations of Nigeria, Dubai, and Lagos. Pets cannot be in the first or business class of the Boeing 757, 747, 777, and 767 aircraft as there is not sufficient space for the pet carriage to fit under the seat.

United Airlines Pet Carrier Size/Dimensions Requirement

If your pet is eligible to travel along as per the United Airlines pet policy, you must purchase an approved carrier/cage for your pet. The pet carrier must be strong and flexible with the leakproof base, strong locks, and proper ventilation. The permissible maximum dimensions of the pet carrier are 17.5in*12in*7.5in(44cm*30cm*19cm). For the soft-sided carriers/cages, the maximum acceptable dimensions are 18in*11in*11in(46cm*28cm*28cm).

United Airlines pet in cabin reservations

Passengers must inform the staff members of United Airlines in advance if they wish to travel along with their pets. You get two options for the in-cabin pet reservation with United airlines, one is online and the other is through calling on the . We strongly suggest that you make the reservation for your pets as early as possible because the setas are limited per flight.


You cannot check-in from the curbside as animals are not accepted there. The fee for the pet reservation will be collected at the same time as you check-in. United airlines counts the pets as a piece of carry-on luggage.

United Airlines Emotional Support Animals

The trained service animals can be in the cabin of the aircraft with the disabled passengers. Only dogs, cats, and miniature horses are considered as service animals.

At least 48 hours prior to your scheduled departure of the flight, you must present before all the following documents if you wish to travel with your emotional support animal: immunization and health certificates, authorization letters signed by a mental health professional or licensed doctor.

From 8th Jan 2019, United Airlines does not accept any puppy or kitten under the age of 4 months as an emotional support animal. Other than cats and dogs, no other animal is accepted as an emotional or service support animal. 

The therapy animals do not come under the category of emotional or service support animals. Thus, they are not accepted in the cabin of United Airlines flight.    

United Airlines Pet Cargo 

United Airlines pet cargo service is offered for those pets that are not eligible to travel inside the cabin of the aircraft. United Airlines have a dedicated PetSafe program for pets transportation through the cargo hold. 

Allowed pets

Only cats and dogs can be booked as cargo as per the United Airlines pet policy.

Restricted routes

The United Airline’s cargo pet transportation service is not offered for the flights to/from India, Nigeria, Dubai, and Australia or Lagos. The United Airlines pet shipping service states that no live animals are allowed to be transported out of Chengdu, Seoul or Beijing and they also cannot be transported inside or outside Shanghai if the temperature does not fall.

Restricted aircrafts

United Airlines only accepts advance booking for the pets to travel in the cargo section of Boeing 787 aircraft.


All cargo reservations of the pets will only be accepted if you make reservations between 5 to 30 days prior to the travel date. The international flight cargo booking service for pets requires an IPATA agent for the procedure. You can call on the  United Airlines pet cargo phone number for booking a cargo space for your pet in advance.


As per the United Airlines pet policy, only one dog/cat is accepted per carrier/cage. But two kittens or puppies may be in a single carrier/cage if they are below the age of six months and are of the same size and breed. 

Age criteria

All kittens and puppies travelling domestically must be at least 10 weeks older and should weigh 2 pounds at least. United Airlines will not accept any pet prior to the 30 days of rabies vaccination for all its international flights.

Documents and Certificates Required

  • The documents and certificates will be required for international travel as per the country of destination.
  • The latest rabies vaccination certificate must be provided at least 30 days prior to the original travel date.
  • The picture of the pet carrier/cage to confirm if it is an IATA-compliant one or not.
  • A Health certificate of the pet that must be issued within the 10 days of the original travel day.
  • Acknowledgement form with the signatures of the respective pet owner.
  • A close picture of the pet’s face to identify the breed.

Pick up and drop off

You can visit the official website of United Airlines and refer to the list of all pick-up and drop off locations in the United States. The pick-up and drop off location for the international destinations depend on the nearest airport and you must seek this information in advance by contacting United Airlines. United Airlines has stopped the service of allowing passengers to collect their pets from the baggage claim section for all the flights to Mexico; your pets will be transferred to the cargo facility where the customs officials will check. Passengers will have to pay the fees and charges for picking up their pets. Pets should not fly to Mexico during the weekends as the customs is closed at that time. 

United Airlines Dog Breed Restrictions

The United Airlines dog breed restrictions imply to the following banned breeds of dog: Affenpinscher, American Domineering jerk, American Pit Bull Terrier/Pit Bull, American Staffordshire Terrier/”Amstaff,” Belgian Malinois, Boston Terrier, Fighter, Brussels Griffon, Bulldog, American Bulldog, English Bulldog, French Bulldog, Early English Bulldogges, Shorty Bulldogs, Spanish Alano/Spanish Bulldog/Alano Espanol, High handed Lord Charles Spaniel, Chow, English Toy Spaniel/Ruler Charles Spaniel, Japanese Jawline/Japanese Spaniel, Lhasa Apso, Mastiff, American Mastiff, Boerboel/South African Mastiff, Bullmastiff, Ca de Bou/Mallorquin Mastiff, Stick Corso/Italian Mastiff, Dogo Argentino/Argentinian Mastiff, Dogue de Bordeaux/French Mastiff, English Mastiff, Fila Brasileiro/Brazilian Mastiff/Cao de Fila, Indian Mastiff/Alangu, Kangal/Turkish Kangal, Neapolitan Mastiff/Mastino Napoletano, Pakastani Mastiff/Menace Kutta, Pyrenean Mastiff, Presa Canario/Perro de Presa Canario/Dogo Canario/Canary Mastiff, Spanish Mastiff/Mastin Espanol, Tibetan Mastiff, Tosa/Tosa Ken/Tosa Inu/Japanese Mastiff/Japanese Tosa, Pekingese, Pug, Dutch Pug, Japanese Pug, Shar-Pei/Chinese Shar-Pei, Shih-Tzu, Staffordshire Bull Terrier/”Staffys,” and Tibetan Spaniel. 

Temperature restrictions

Pet reservations on the following airports are not accepted during the period of May 1  to Sep 30 due to high temperatures: Phoenix(PHX), Tucson(TUS), Las Vegas, and Palm Springs(PSP). Pet reservations are not accepted for the itinerary that includes Shanghai or Chengdu during the period of June 15 to September 15.

United Airlines Pet Carrier Size/Dimensions Requirement

Passenger can carry along two kittens or puppies in a single carrier/cage if they both are under the age of 6 months and of the same species and size. United Airlines does not accept the series 700 kennels. 

The pet carrier/cage must have proper metal locks both at the top and bottom. Clips on the top or bottom of the carrier/cage are not acceptable. The carrier/cage should have a proper ventilation system at 3 sides for all the domestic flights and 4 sides for all the international flights.

United Airlines only accepts the wood, metal or hard plastic made carrier/cage. There should be enough space in the carrier for the pet to stand and move around without touching the top. Carriers/cages which have height more than 34” and the Series 700(giant) crates are not allowed for any of the routes with United Airlines.

United Airlines Pet Fee/Cost

The United Airlines pet fee/cost for travelling in the cabin is $125USD per pet. The fee and charges for the pet travel in the cabin need to be paid during the check-in process. There is an additional charge/fee of $125 for the flights with more than 4 hours layovers within the United States or more than 24 hours for the regions outside of the United States.

The pet cargo shipping cost depends on the different aircraft and destinations, there is no fixed charge for this service. Passengers can visit the official website of United Airlines for gaining complete knowledge of the pet cargo shipping cost for different destinations.  

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5 thoughts on “United Airlines Pet Policy
  1. Aminah Santos on Reply

    If my pug is an emotional support animal, is it allowed to be in the cabin with me if I’m flying to Guam?

  2. Jessica Ward on Reply

    I called your contact number provided to obtain further info about booking my dog on your airline to St. Croix via cargo (she is 50lbs and too big for cabin). I was told only in-cabin pets are allowed on United. This is contrary to the information on your page here. Can you please clarify your policy?

  3. celestino feliciano on Reply

    i trying to boo my pet dog on one of your cargo flights from puerto rico to the state of texas. he is a lab. retriever mix
    his name is negrito feliciano and his weight is 60 lbs and combined with the kennel the total weight is 95 lbs
    he is 36 L x 30H.

  4. celestino feliciano on Reply

    HIS HIGHT IS 30″H X 36″L

  5. Jeannie on Reply

    Hi, we would like to know if united pet cargo is back up and running since Covid shut down.
    Looking at importation from Springfield, MO to Edmonton Canada 🇨🇦 end of August. If so, what would the cost be? For an 8-10 week Schipperke puppy.

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