Entries in Pets (8)


JetBlue Offers $299 Unlimited Flights for Pets

Scott Olson/Getty Images(NEW YORK) -- Frequent fliers by the name of Fido, your time has come.

This fall, JetBlue will offer unlimited flights for cats and dogs accompanied by their owners for $299.

The "All Your Pet Can Jet" pass allows the purchaser to add one pet to an unlimited number of JetBlue flight bookings for travel between Sept. 7 and Dec. 31, 2012, without paying the JetBlue standard pet fee. There are no blackout dates -- good news for those traveling over the holidays.

The pass allows pets to travel everywhere the carrier flies with the exception of Jamaica, St. Lucia and Barbados.

The All Your Pet Can Jet pass went on sale Wednesday and will be on sale through Sept. 5, 2012 or "while supplies last." The carrier did not specify how many passes will be on sale.

Holding a pass does not guarantee your pet will get on the flight. The carrier allows only four pets per flight. The combined weight of the pet and carrier can't exceed 20 pounds, and the carrier must fit under the seat in front of you.

The fee for having a pet fly is typically $100 on one-way trips and $200 on roundtrip flights. Passes can't be shared among travelers, but the pass holder may take different pets on multiple flights.

Also on sale Wednesday -- for humans -- is the JetBlue Go Pack. It allows people to pay one fare -- between $699 and $2,499, plus tax -- for 10 roundtrip tickets among airports in Boston, New York, Long Beach, Calif., and San Juan, P.R.

The Go Pack is available for purchase now through Sept. 6 for travel through Dec. 19. Unlike the All Your Pet Can Jet pass, there are blackout dates -- Nov. 20-26, 2012.

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio


Pet Ownership Declines: Is the Economy to Blame?

iStockphoto/Thinkstock(NEW YORK) -- The number of American pet owners declined last year – and researchers believe the economy could be to blame.

A new survey by the American Veterinary Medical Association shows the dog population declined by about two million, to 70 million nationwide, while the cat population fell by about eight million, down to 74 million. It's the first time dog or cat ownership has declined since 1991.

“[Pets] are expensive and so we can only speculate that part of this is due to the economy,” said Ron DeHaven of the AVMA.

Pets are also more common in family households, the number of which has also declined.

DeHaven also suggested that the high costs associated with pet ownership may have kept some from replacing older pets that passed away.

The survey is published in the 2012 U.S. Pet Ownership and Demographics Sourcebook.

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio


Delta Increases Pet Travel Restrictions

Delta Airlines(NEW YORK) -- If you have a ticket on Delta Airlines and you're planning to bring a dog along, you may have to find other arrangements.
Delta is no longer allowing pets as cargo or checked bags on its Boeing 767 planes.  The airline plans to add bunks below the passenger cabins for crew members to rest on long overseas flights, filling the cargo area where dogs fly.  

The company contacted the affected customers offering alternative options such as moving to earlier or later flights or making use of its airline partners, according to The Seattle Times.

Delta, which has around 95 Boeing 767s, has already banned carrying dogs on international flights. The airline installed lie-flat seats in business class restricting the amount of space available for pets and their carriers.

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio


United Airlines Lifts Ban on Pit Bulls, Other Breeds

Jessie Huart and her dog, Slaw, a pit bull mix. (Courtesy Jessie Huart)(NEW YORK) -- An online campaign to lift a ban on certain breeds of dogs on United Airlines has succeeded.  A total of nine breeds, including pit bulls, had previously been banished from the airline.

The banned breeds (and breed mixes) were pit bull terriers, American Staffordshire terriers, preso canario, perro de presa Canario, dogo Argentino, cane Corso, fila Brasileiro, Tosa (or Tosa Ken) and ca de bou.

The effort to lift the ban on the breeds began when Jessie Huart was making plans to move from Hawaii back to the mainland in December 2011. When she and her dog, Slaw, a pit bull mix, had moved to Hawaii, they flew on United. That was before United had adopted Continental’s Pet Safe  program as part of the carriers’ merger.

“I had heard great things about Pet Safe and was making plans to fly on Continental. But then I saw that pit bulls were on the banned breed list,” Huart said. She filled out an email form online and then made reservations on another airline. But in late January, she recounted the story to a friend who suggested she start a petition on, the same site that got Bank of America to lift its proposed debit card fees. She did, with the goal of getting 1,000 signatures.

Nearly 46,000 signatures later, Huart is “thrilled” the airline has changed its policy.

“As a result of feedback, United will now accept previously restricted breeds of dogs traveling in a nonplastic, reinforced crate meeting International Air Transport Association Container Requirement #82. All IATA Container Requirements can be found on Information on breeds and other policies can be found on,” United Airlines said in a statement to ABC News.

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio


United Airlines Policy Change Could Cost Pet Owners Thousands

Tim Boyle/Bloomberg via Getty Images(NEW YORK) -- On March 3, United Airlines and its subsidiaries will change the way they transport pets. And although the airline’s fees for transporting animals are in line with what other carriers charge, the change could end up costing pet owners thousands of dollars.

The change in policy means pets will now be transported as cargo rather than checked luggage. In certain countries, like Japan, it is required by law to pay a third party to ship cargo.  And that’s where the real cost lies: While the one-way fee for transporting your pet on United from Japan to the United States is about $300 for a 10- to 50-pound pet, per United’s website, the additional fee means the consumer will pay an additional $1,440 to  $3,869, according to Stars and Stripes, the newspaper of the U.S. military.

The additional shipping cost has the greatest impact on military pet owners who live overseas. United is a federal contract carrier.

United fees are based on the size of the pet and the destination, as are the third-party costs. United told ABC News it does not collect any additional money from the third party.

Shipping pets as cargo rather than checked luggage will lead to a better experience for pets, company spokeswoman Mary Ryan said, adding that pets will now have a dedicated staff and temperature-controlled vans instead of the inhospitable baggage compartment. The change is an adoption of an existing Continental Airlines program called PetSafe. United and Continental merged into one airline,  United, in October 2010.

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio


Introducing DOGTV: Television for Your Pooch

iStockphoto/Thinkstock(SAN DIEGO) -- Television is going to the dogs in San Diego with DOGTV, a new 24-hour channel for pooches that is meant to keep your dog company while you are gone.

According to the people behind the channel, the combination of devouring programming and pet treats will lead to “a confident, happy dog who’s less likely to develop stress, separation anxiety or other related problems.”

DOGTV, which launched on Cox and Time Warner digital cable systems in San Diego this week, is intended for dogs that are left at home during the day.

“If you are leaving your dog everyday and you feel bad about it and you’d like to do something that would improve the life of your dog…then this is a great, great opportunity,” Gilad Neumann, CEO of DOGTV, told ABC News. “Dogs that are left home alone for a few hours everyday tend to be very lonely, they develop behavioral issues, they are bored, they are stressed and leaving the TV on with proper content gives them comfort. It relaxes them, it stimulates them at times…basically it’s a little like a companion when they are left home alone.”

Sample programming includes a video of dogs playing with balls to give your pet stimulation, dogs sleeping to help soothe them, and a dizzying dogs-eye view out the car window.

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio


Commercial Meant to Appeal to Dogs?

iStockphoto/Thinkstock(NEW YORK) -- Nestle Purina created an interactive commercial now airing in Germany and Austria featuring different high-pitched squeaks and tones meant to appeal to the furriest of family members.

After consulting with experts in pet behavior based in St. Joseph, Mo., the folks at Nestle Purina learned that dogs’ hearing is twice as sharp as humans’.

“They can pick up frequencies which are beyond our range and they are better at differentiating sounds,” said Dr. Georg Sanders, a nutrition expert and consumer consultant at Nestlé Purina PetCare in Germany.

The commercial, made specifically for Beneful, first uses a squeak similar to the sound a dog’s toy makes, something that both the pup and its owner will be able to hear. The commercial also has the sound of a high-frequency tone -- much like a dog whistle -- that dogs respond to but humans can hardly recognize.

The marketing ploy follows another of the company’s campaigns, also launched in Germany, where dogs were able to sniff out the smell of Beneful dog food while on a walk with their owners on special posters. It seems the company hopes that by catching the pet’s attention they can also influence the people who make the shopping decisions in the household. But Nestle Purina says that the commercial is only meant to highlight the special relationship between owners and pets.

“We wanted to create a TV commercial that our four-legged friends can enjoy and listen to, but also allow the owner and dog to experience it together,” said Anna Rabanus, Brand Manager of Beneful for Nestlé Purina PetCare Germany.

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio


The Top Ten Pet-Friendly Hotels and Resorts

BananaStock/Thinkstock(NEW YORK) -- TripAdvisor recently identified the top 10 pet-friendly hotels and resorts in the U.S.  The list is based on feedback from animal owners.

Here’s a rundown of the locations, along with a brief description provided by TripAdvisor:

1. Affinia Dumont, New York City, New York, Average Nightly Rate: $192 -- $614
Amenities include plush dog beds and tasty treats. A $25 pet-surcharge applies per stay, and additional services, from grooming to a pet psychic, can be booked via the concierge.

2. Hotel Monaco Portland, Portland, Oregon, Average Nightly Rate: $126 -- $325
Complimentary dog beds and bowls will be at the ready, while travelers who select the “Portland Unleashed” pet package will receive a map of pet-friendly local breweries and restaurants, a doggie beer for their four-legged companion, and more.

3. Ocean Park Resort, Myrtle Beach, South Carolina, Average Nightly Rate: $57 -- $150
For travelers seeking to enjoy an oceanside outing with their furry friend, this Myrtle Beach property gets the thumbs and paws up.

4. Palomar Washington DC, Washington D.C., District of Columbia, Average Nightly Rate: $182 -- $557
This property provides an array of complimentary amenities, from pet beds to disposable pick-up bags. During the evening wine hour from 5 to 6 p.m., four-legged travelers can enjoy “The Dish”, a pet lounge complete with treats.

5. A Laughing Horse Lodge, Port Arkansas, Texas, Average Nightly Rate: $59 -- $239
Located just two blocks from the beach, the cottages at this property offer travelers and their dogs invigorating sea air and a welcome basket, featuring treats and a collar-tag, reading ‘Return me to Laughing Horse Lodge’. A dog surcharge applies for the duration of the stay, of $25 for one dog, $35 for two dogs and $50 for three or more dogs.

6. The Paw House Inn, West Rutland, Vermont, Average Nightly Rate: $135 -- $255
Canine comforts, from beds to bowls to hiking trails, are the order of the day at this country retreat – and such is the emphasis on dog-friendly fun, that a $10 surcharge applies for travelers without an accompanying four-legged friend.

7. Carmel Country Inn, Carmel, California, Average Nightly Rate: $195 -- $395
Pets of any shape and size are welcome at this charming Bed and Breakfast, for a daily surcharge of $20 per animal. Furry companions will delight in the knowledge that an unlimited supply of biscuits awaits in the kitchen, and their photograph will be taken for the pet display in the lobby.

8. Hotel Marlowe, Cambridge, Massachusetts, Average Nightly Rate: $204 -- $489
All creatures great and small are welcome free of charge at this 236-room property. For travelers wishing to put their feet up while someone else puts their dog through its paces, the concierge can assist with dog walking or pet sitting services.

9. La Quinta Inn & Suites, Valdosta, Georgia, Average Nightly Rate: $89 -- $128
This peach of a property for travelers visiting south Georgia with their furry companions features a large pet walk area, in which dogs can enjoy a spot of al fresco exercise.

10. Cypress Inn, Carmel, California, Average Nightly Rate: $150 -- $575
Fine foods and great company await pets at this property, which offers a doggie menu and nightly “Yappy Hour”, at which two-and four-legged guests alike can mingle. A nightly pet surcharge applies, of $30 for one pet, $50 for two pets and $70 for three pets.

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio

ABC News Radio