BOCA RATON, FL (BocaNewsNow.com) — Summer fliers be warned: the airlines are finally stopping the absurdity of fake emotional support animals in the cabin. Delta Airlines — which led the way with dramatic new rules and enforcements earlier this year, is now banning all pit bulls and limiting “emotional support animals” to one per customer.
Since Delta’s changes took effect in March, many carriers have followed suit. The new requirements support Delta’s top priority of ensuring safety for its customers and employees, while supporting the rights of customers with legitimate needs, such as disabled veterans, to travel with trained service and support animals.
“The safety and security of Delta people and our customers is always our top priority,” said Gil West, Chief Operating Officer. “We will always review and enhance our policies and procedures to ensure that Delta remains a leader in safety.”
The changes follow an 84 percent increase in reported incidents involving service and support animals since 2016, including urination/defecation, biting and even a widely reported attack by a 70-pound dog. Delta carries approximately 700 service or support animals daily — nearly 250,000 annually. Putting this into perspective, Delta carries more than 180 million passengers annually. Customers have attempted to fly with comfort turkeys, gliding possums, snakes, spiders and more. Ignoring the true intent of existing rules governing the transport of service and support animals can be a disservice to customers who have real and documented needs.
AMERICAN AIRLINES MEDIA ADVISORY
Animals must be able to fit at your feet, under your seat or in your lap (animals to be seated on lap must be smaller than a 2-year old child). For safety reasons, you won’t be able to sit in an exit row when traveling with your service or emotional / psychiatric support animal.
Emotional support and service animals cannot:
- Protrude into or block aisles
- Occupy a seat
- Eat from tray tables
Emotional support and service animals must be trained to behave properly in public; they must be tethered by leash and / or harness and under your control at all times. Animals won’t be permitted in the cabin if they display any form of disruptive behavior that can’t be successfully corrected or controlled, including but not limited to:
- Biting or attempting to bite
- Jumping on or lunging at people
If this behavior is observed at any point during your journey and isn’t corrected or controlled, the animal will be considered a pet and all pet requirements and applicable fees will apply.
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