Check Pet Travel Policy

Southwest Pet Policy

The Southwest Pet Policy has been designed to provide you and your pets a travel experience that is pleasant and hassle-free. The Southwest pet travel guidelines and requirements may vary with the origin and destination of the flight, the date of travel, and the ticket type.

Southwest Airlines Pet Policy - Southwest Flying with Pets

Southwest Airlines allows vaccinated, small, domestic dogs and cats on domestic flights and in a cabin, provided these pets are carried in a suitable pet carrier. Passengers traveling with pets have to abide by the in-flight seating policy, according to which those traveling with a pet cannot be seated in an exit row or without an under-seat stowage in front of them.

Southwest Airlines Pet carrier policy

Southwest Airlines authorities have the power to deny boarding to any pet that showcases disruptive behavior. Disruptive behavior by pets includes but is not limited to:

  • Excessive barking or whining
  • Growling, scratching, biting, or lunging
  • Defecating or urinating near the gate area or in the cabin

According to Southwest Pet Policy, all pets must be securely kept inside a suitable pet carrier at all times. This includes at the gate area, on boarding, during the entire flight, and on deplaning. Southwest Airlines allows one pet carrier per ticketed passenger and every pet carrier can contain a maximum 2 of the same species of a small dog or a small cat.

Please note, Southwest Airlines does not allow any pet travel to or from Hawaii.

Southwest Pet Policy - Southwest Pet Travel Requirements

Southwest Pet Travel - Vaccination Requirements

As per the Southwest airlines pet policy, all traveling pets must be vaccinated. However, no documentation is required against the same.

Southwest Pet Travel - Pet Carrier Requirements

  • The pet carrier should be able to fit properly under the seat in front of you during the flight
  • The pet carrier (soft or hard) should’ve been specifically designed for carrying pets
  • The pet carrier should be ventilated and leak-proof
  • The approved pet carrier dimensions by Southwest Airlines are 17”(length) x 10”(width) x 9.5”(height)
  • The maximum pet carrier dimensions allowed by Southwest Airlines on their flight are 18.5”(length) x 13.5”(width) x 9.5”(height)
  • You must ensure that the pet you’re traveling with can comfortably fit and move around inside the pet carrier

Check the baggage allowances on your Southwest flight ticket in the Southwest Baggage policy.

Southwest Airlines Pet Policy - Southwest Pet Fee

The Southwest pet fee is $95 per pet carrier, each way. This fee has to be paid on the date of your travel at the airport ticket counter. Southwest allows a maximum of 6 pet carriers on every flight.

This number may be subject to change on the discretion of the concerned authorities. These carriers are accepted on a first come-first serve basis, which is why it’s best to book your pet for travel soon after you book your flight ticket with Southwest Airlines.

The Southwest pet fee is refundable if your Southwest flight gets canceled or if you cancel your booking.

Please note, the Southwest pet fee is subject to change.

Frequently Asked Questions
As per the Southwest pet travel guidelines, you should hold your pet and walk through security. Your pet carrier will be scanned and searched before allowing you to proceed further.
No, Southwest pet policy does not allow pets to travel on international flights or on an itinerary that includes any international flight.
Yes, pet carriers are counted as a carry-on baggage or a personal item on a Southwest Airlines flight.
Yes, Southwest Airlines accepts a pet crate or pet stroller as checked baggage, over and above the regular free baggage allowed on your ticket, without any extra charge.
No, your pet is not eligible for earning the Southwest Rapid Rewards points.
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