The safety of dogs being transported as cargo by British Airways came under scrutiny after a dog's crate was classified as too small by airline staff. British Airways has launched an investigation after the discovery was made at Heathrow Airport in London. During the investigation, British Airways will not be allowing passengers to book cargo passage for dogs. The ban will not affect the transport of any other animals.
British Airways allows passengers to carry animals on-board either in the cabin or as cargo. Emotional support dogs and assistance dogs are allowed in the cabin along with passengers only after they provide the proper paperwork. Passengers intending to carry any other animal have to transport them as cargo.
Passengers can be charged up to £700 to transport animals as cargo. Owners need to provide the crate in which the animals are to be transported. However, the airline has set regulations regarding the type and size of the crate. For dogs, the crate needs to be big enough for the animal to stand, lay down, and turn around.
When a passenger brings a dog in a small-sized crate, the staff at the airport are supposed to prevent the animal from flying. The details of the incident have not been revealed by the airline. A source informed The Sun that the incident was seriously concerning. The airline is responsible for the safety of the animals being transported.
British Airways spokesperson assured that passengers who had booked their trips before the ban will not be affected by the airline's decision. Assistance dogs will continue to be allowed on-board in the cabin. Animals other than dogs will also be allowed as cargo. Once the investigation has ended, the airline will revisit the ban.
British Airways partners with wildlife charity Born Free, which helps travellers avoid holiday experiences that involve animal cruelty. Carrying an animal in a cramped condition contradicts the airline's anti-animal cruelty image.