Best Airline to Travel with Basenji

  • Hi -- Anyone have a reco for the best airline for traveling with a 4 month old puppy? I'll be traveling from Boston to Sacramento. Thanks!

  • My husband flew on United from DC to pick up our 10-week old puppy from Tampa. We paid $125 (I believe) for a pet and she had to stay in the sherpa bag during the flight. We didn't have any problems, she slept the whole time!

  • We used delta jersey to detroit, sherpa bag. Was just great. On my lap the whole way...not allowed to take him out ANY where in airport. There was a potty station available for service dogs and pets, very small but useful. Sherpa allows you to see,pup at all times. I flew with my hand in side sherpa and had absolutely no problem. He slept most of the way.

  • I don't have a lot of experience but here are my thoughts: If you're bringing the puppy in the cabin, which is what you want, then the airport terminal setup may be more important than the airline. Some terminals make having a dog easier than others with special areas where you can let them out and so forth. (Think I'd rather be going Sacramento to Boson rather than vice versa).

    The other thing is you have to take the pup out of the carrier when you go through security. This can be frightening for the pup so the more used to you they are the easier this will be. Obviously you aren't there but if possible I'd schedule a day so you can just hang out with the pup. Even a day will likely make this less frightening.

    Yet another thing is that a four month pup might not be able to hold off peeing for this long so you'll want some extra stuff to handle that. Finally, I wouldn't let them out of the carrier during the flight.

    Good luck with your new dog. Exciting!

  • in Australia we are not allowed to have animals inside the cabin, they have to go in airconditioned cargo. I have flown quite a few times with dogs of all ages, and never had a problem. With cats, that is another story - but I don't like cats, so it didn't bother me. Make sure on a long flight, that they have something to drink, but not too much otherwise floods may occur. It is best to not feed them immediately before the flight, otherwise you can use the airline supplied sick bags. Make sure they empty everything before the flight, and they will be more comfortable. I had a dog fly from Sydney to Honolulu (about 12 hours), and no piddles! Yay! He did have a big piddle when he arrived though, and I did take him for a long walk before. Air travel is not too bad, but prior preparation, prevents piss-poor performance!

  • Thanks everyone! Definitely will pick up a Sherpa carrier. She's riding with me in the cabin. Was supposed to receive her by cargo but felt the pup would be very distressed after such a long trip. I worry a little about going through security, since she won't know me very well yet.

  • Good for you...keeping her close to you. Just an amusing moment about going thru security. Took him out of sherpa hubby carried him through...not the xray, just let them pat you down. One of the security guys came dashing over practically shouting. Is that a basenji....yep he is, 4 months old. Hubby replyed He said. I had one when i was nine years old and boy did i love that dog. He kind of gestured to our screener and we zipped right thru. As for taking him out of the sherpa, read the airline attachment to your ticket. They will tell you what you are allowed to do and not. There is a spray available at pet shops to calm puppy down. Just spray lightly in sherpa. I cant for the life f me r emember the name of it. Perhaps someone will drop a note here. Dont spray heavily or on puppy and once will do. Good luck

  • I have always used American Airlines with the pup(s) in a sherpa bag in cabin. Never had problems. And some terminals have potty places for pooches... SFO has one.

  • We moved overseas a year ago and Ruxin came with us. Figuring out how to get him here was nerve-wracking to say the least. Unfortunately, he was too big to fly in cabin with us and had to go as checked baggage.

    The recommendations are great, but please check each airlines website to read their rules, as they all vary and are subject to change. Make sure your carrier fits the dimensions specified by whichever airline you decide to go with. Your dog should be able to both lie down and stand up with enough room, ie feet not going over the edges, head not hitting the top.

    I'm in a Facebook group for flying pets so I see questions like this very frequently! Some airlines do have age restrictions, FYI! Pretty sure I'm giving you more info than you need, but I'm used to international flights and all the fun stuff that comes with that. Good luck!

  • Yes, and some airlines only allow a set number in the cabin, whether they fit or not. So like El Air, if you have 10 dogs and cats that COULD fly in the cabin... tough luck. They take the first 3 only.

  • Thanks! Has anyone carried on a Large Sherpa? The pup will be 4 months when I take her and I'm worried about whether she'll fit in a Medium carrier. Medium carriers are guaranteed accepted on American, though I'm guessing they might take a large if she'd still under the weight restriction (20 lbs) and there's room?

  • @annblackwood - I have always used the large with no problem on American. Note that since American lets you have two pups to a sherpa so large is a must.....for one or two

  • @tanza thank you!!

  • Looks like I've been scammed by this guy
    He flaked on having pup transported and was a no-show when I traveled to pick her up. Met the pup and the guy in person initially but he's probably sold the dog a few times now.

  • @annblackwood - sorry to hear...

  • Have you tried breeders on the West Coast? Sounds like you are from the West Coast?

  • @tanza hi not yet. This connection happened by chance -- I met the dog and the person with the dog because he was walking the pup's mom in California and didn't understand at first that he was based on the east coast. I'd be interested in reputable breeders in California. thanks!

  • @annblackwood - You can search for breeders by state at While we have not for sure decided to have a litter for 2019, we are considering. You can visit our website, link below. By the way, you will find that all responsible breeders know each other, so be wary if a breeder tells you they are not or do not know of a person. And always check out health information for yourself along with pedigree. Here is also a link to find/screen breeders.

  • @tanza Thanks. I'd love to know about an upcoming litter if that comes to fruition. I can be reached by text at 916.298.4811 or email at

  • If you paid with anything but cash, you may be able to file a complaint and at least get your money back.

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