Delta Relaxes Emotional Support Animal Rules for Long Flights but still Bans Pit Bulls
After much pressure Delta Airlines is revoking ban on bringing emotional support dogs on flights longer than 8 hours. But, it still left in place a ban on pit bull dogs for service and emotional support dogs even though federal guidelines forbid breed restrictions on service dogs.
The company recited they had over 40 cases of “aggressive animal behavior” on flights in 2018 though the company didn’t say how many were related to Pit Bull incidents.
“We continue to work with the [U.S. Department of Transportation] to find solutions that support the rights of customers who have legitimate needs to travel with trained animals,” said John Laughter, senior vice president of corporate safety, security and compliance.
Passengers who require service dogs — defined as those trained to work or perform tasks for a disabled person, such as a guide dog — are allowed to bring dogs, cats and miniature horses for free on U.S. commercial flights. Rules may apply to the animal’s size and weight.
Emotional and psychiatric support animals fall into a different category. Airlines will require earlier check-in and emotional support animal letter of medical necessity need for a support animal before you show up for your flight.
Delta said it backed off restricting support animals on long flights because it found “a solution to protect the health and safety of those onboard.”
But the airline says it’s still struggling when it comes to allowing pit bulls.
Department of Transportation guidelines updated in August says it views “a limitation based exclusively on breed of the service animal to not be allowed under its service animal regulation.”