By air

There are different requirements for domestic and international travel. You should start preparations a long time in advance. Requirements on international flights depend on the airline and the destination country. Different airlines may have different requirements.

Within India, Air India, Jet Airways and Spice Jet will carry animals (subject to rules, aircraft type and commander’s discretion).

Further down the page are the rules for taking pets on Emirates international flights.

But first, here are Air India’s guidelines for taking pets on domestic flights:

Air India (domestic)

Small inoffensive domestic pets such as dogs, cats and birds, accompanied by valid Health and Rabies vaccination certificates, will be accepted on Air India domestic flights in the cabin or in cargo hold at owner’s risk and subject to requirements of the carrier.

Such carriage is subject to approval of the commander of the flight.

The pet must be properly carried in soft ventilated bags/kennel in the prescribed size (kennel size not to exceed 18” x 18” x 12”).The weight of the pet including the container should not exceed 5 kgs. for carriage in the cabin. Pets of larger size / weight will be carried in the cargo hold.

Maximum of 2 pets are permitted per flight and passenger accompanying such pet will be seated in the last row of booked cabin class.

A label will be affixed on the container showing the name of the pet.

A moisture absorbent mat must be placed in the container .

The pet dog must be properly muzzled and leashed

The Pets/Guide Dogs will not be allowed to occupy a passenger seat.

Pet animals can be carried as an accompanied baggage or shipped as Cargo. Bookings can be made for pets as Accompanied Baggage / Excess Baggage through Air India Reservations.

Pets will be carried at an additional charge and will not be included in the Free Baggage Allowance, even if the passenger has no other baggage.

Normal Excess Baggage Charges, would be applicable for carriage of accompanied pets on domestic journeys within India. Weight of the pet plus container as also food carried per container will be charged.

However, a Trained Guide Dog when properly muzzled and leashed and with health /vaccination certificate, may be carried free of charge if the dog is trained to lead the a passenger with impaired vision /hearing and the passenger is dependent on such dog.

From the Air India website (accessed on 25 November 2016) 

Here are the rules for taking pets on Emirates international flights:

Emirates (international)

Animals are not permitted in the cabin of Emirates flights, with the exception of falcons between Dubai and certain destinations in Pakistan, and Guide Dogs for the Blind – please see our information on passengers with special needs.

All other animals must be transported according to regulations specific to your route:

  • For all itineraries terminating in Dubai, animals must be transported as cargo, due to UAE government regulations.
  • For more information on shipping animals as cargo, please contact Emirates SkyCargo or your local cargo agent.
  • For all other itineraries, falcons, cats, dogs and pet birds can be transported as checked baggage in the hold, provided the total journey time (including any transit time) is less than 17 hours, and all appropriate conditions are met. Please contact your local Emirates office well in advance of travel for more information.

For all routes, the charge for the animal(s) and container will depend on the weight and size of the animal plus cage combined. These charges will apply in all cases, even when no other checked baggage is being carried.

Please take note of the following weight and size restrictions for animals travelling as checked baggage:

Animal + cage Price
When the animal and cage combined do not exceed 23kg and 59 inches / 150cm USD 500
When the animal and cage combined weigh between 24 – 32kg and dimensions between 59inches /150cm and 118inches / 300cm USD 650
When the animal and cage combined weigh over 32kg and dimensions between 59inches /150cm and 118inches / 300cm USD 800
When the cage dimensions exceed dimensions 118inces / 300cms. Cargo

If your itinerary includes flights operated by other airlines, different baggage rules may apply for these flights – learn more.

There are no restrictions on the number of pets you can carry on Emirates flights. However, please be aware that some countries do impose restrictions on the number of pets that can be carried into or out of the country. For example, the import of animals into India is restricted to two pets per customer. We advise you check your destination’s rules before travelling.

A maximum of two adult animals of comparable size weighing up to 14kgs each may be shipped in the same container, providing they are used to cohabitation. Animals weighing over 14kgs each must travel in separate containers.

Additional information for transporting animals with Emirates

Please book and pay for the transportation of animals as checked baggage before your departure date.

There are some restrictions as to which animals can be transported with Emirates.  All animals listed under CITES, including pets, must be transported as cargo.  Further restrictions, including import bans, apply to certain species of cats and dogs – please contact your local Emirates office for more information on restricted species.

Animals, which can be accepted as baggage as per the rules above, but with a total journey time exceeding 17 hours must also be carried as cargo. Due to high heat and humidity in the UAE, no birds (except some falcons) can be accepted for transit via Dubai as checked baggage or cargo between 1st May and 30th September.

The minimum connecting time for animals transiting Dubai and carried as baggage may be no more than six hours; if the minimum connecting time is more than six hours animals will be accepted for transportation as cargo only.

All animals accepted for transportation with Emirates must have a valid Import permit issued by the destination country and a valid health certificate (including any applicable vaccination records).

Certain countries, however, restrict importation of animals as baggage. Please contact your local Emirates office for more information.

For animals travelling with Emirates a 24-hour emergency contact number and the optimum temperature requirement must always be shown on the animal’s travel container.

Emirates will not accept a pregnant animal for transportation if it is beyond one third (1/3) of its normal gestation period or has given birth within 48 hours of travel.

From the Emirates website (accessed on 25 November 2016)