Alaska Airlines Partners With Banfield Pet Hospital For Fur-St Class Pet Care


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Alaska Airlines Partners With Banfield Pet Hospital For Fur-St Class Pet Care

By Shane Nolan

April 10, 2012 - Alaska Airlines announced an exclusive partnership with Banfield Pet Hospital, the nation's largest general veterinary practice, to help travelers prepare their pets for takeoff.  

With more than 800 hospitals in 43 states, Banfield Pet Hospital is offering Alaska Airlines customers traveling with or shipping their pets a free office visit, travel consultation and $10 discount on a health certificate, which is required for all pets traveling in the cabin, as baggage or as air cargo. 

"We know pets play an important role in our lives and we share Alaska's commitment to fostering the human-pet bond by being one of the leading airlines for pet travel," said Dr. Karen Johnson, vice president and client advocate for Banfield Pet Hospital.  

"When it comes to pets, there is nothing more important than ensuring their health and safety whether at home or on a trip. We're proud to partner with such a well-respected organization that has a great track record of pet safety during travel." 

Alaska Airlines employees receive specialized training in safely transporting pets and follow strict guidelines established by the U.S. Department of Agriculture in conjunction with the Animal Plant Health Inspection Service and the Consumer Division of the Department of Transportation.

The carrier's pet-friendly practices were recognized by the website Smarter when it named Alaska the "Most Pet-Friendly Airline" in 2009. 

In addition to allowing customers to travel with their pets in the cabin through its Fur-st Class Care service, the airline also offers PetStreak Animal Express service for shipping animals via air freight in a safe and caring environment when their owner isn't traveling with them. To celebrate the new partnership with Banfield Pet Hospitals, Alaska Air Cargo is offering a 10 percent discount on PetStreak Animal Express shipments through June 9, 2012. 


"Alaska is one of few airlines that still welcomes pets onboard both in the cabin and the cargo hold and we're committed to pet care and safety," said Torque Zubeck, managing director of Alaska Air Cargo. "We are proud to partner with Banfield Pet Hospital to provide our customers a professional resource for ensuring their pet is prepared, safe and comfortable during air travel." 

To further enhance pet well-being, Alaska Airlines is implementing new kennel standards for animals traveling in the airplane hold, starting May 1, 2012. Kennels will require nut-and-bolt locks to ensure the animals remain safely in their kennel throughout their travel. Alaska Airlines flew nearly 83,000 pets throughout its route system last year. 

"We also believe it is very important to acclimate pets to their kennel well in advance of the travel day to help reduce stress," Dr. Johnson said. "We recommend pet owners begin by putting the carrier in a common area in the house and gradually begin giving treats and feeding their pet inside the crate so they associate it as being a safe and positive place."

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