Monday, 18 February, 2019

Another Airline Is Cracking Down On Emotional Support Animals

Another Airline Is Cracking Down On Emotional Support Animals Another Airline Is Cracking Down On Emotional Support Animals
Nellie Chapman | 15 May, 2018, 18:46

The airline revised its guidelines Monday for the emotional support and service animals it allows on its flights after it said it saw more than a 40 percent increase in the number or passengers using them from 2016 to 2017.

American Airlines will ban a number of animals, including hedgehogs, sugar gliders and goats, from its flights, beginning July 1. However, snakes, reptiles, ferrets, rodents and spiders are not allowed due to health and safety risks. "Unfortunately, untrained animals can lead to safety issues for our team, our customers and working dogs onboard our aircraft".

Oh, but mini horses are okay, as long they are properly trained as a service animal.

Earlier this year United Airlines tightened its service animals' policy after an incident in which a passenger tried to bring a peacock on a flight as an emotional support animal.

About American Airlines Group American Airlines and American Eagle offer an average of almost 6,700 flights per day to almost 350 destinations in more than 50 countries.

The airline worked with several disabilities groups, including the American Association of People with Disabilities, Paralyzed Veterans of America, American Council for the Blind and My Blind Spot, to develop the new rules. While it now intends to to enforce the existing 48-hour advanced notice and pre-clearance policy, the airlines said, it also will have procedures in place for emergency travel booked within 48 hours of departure.

There are new restrictions on which types of animals are permitted on American Airlines flights. Richard Burr (R-N.C.) introduced new legislation in April to correlate the definition of a "service animal" under the Air Carriers Access Act with that of the Americans with Disabilities Act.

"We support the rights of customers, from veterans to people with disabilities, with legitimate needs for a trained service or support animal", the airline said in a statement.

In order for an animal to qualify, the passenger must provide a letter from a mental-health professional describing the mental or emotional disability that shows the need for the animal, and proof of the professional's licensing. If an animal seems particularly violent or aggressive, it will also be prohibited from boarding a plane with its owner.