Flying with your dog tips... - Havanese Forum : Havanese Forums
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post #1 of 23 (permalink) Old 04-21-2013, 08:29 AM Thread Starter
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Flying with your dog tips...

There might be a thread on this but thought it might be helpful for those of us who fly with our furballs to have a place to lend our experiences to those of you who might be on the fence about doing it.


Tip #1
Don't wash your hands with soap before you go through security! I never thought about this, and perhaps I never used the bathroom before a flight but yesterday I did. When you go through security you have to take your dog out of the carrier, which goes through X-ray and then you carry your dog through the X-ray walk through thing. After that a TSA agent escorts you and your carried dog to a station where they swab your hands and run it through a sensor machine. After the scan comes out clean you're good to go on your way... unless they find something on your hands! YIKES!!!! Picture this, I'm holding Timmy as usual while the male TSA agent swabs and I'm preparing to get Tim back in he's bag and go my merry way, when all the sudden he gets on his radio and starts talking in code and very quietly 3 to 4 agents come over and I'm like "huh?". I asked what was going on and he said they found something on my hands. I was asked to put Timmy back in his carrier after they inspected it and coudn't touch anything not even my whimpering puppy in his bag. I was taken to a little room where I was searched by a couple woman TSA agents very respectfully, and I totally understood them having to do this but I was so freaked out. After all was said and done, after about 20 minutes, I was cleared. I asked one of the TSA agents afterwards what they found on my hands and she explained they not only test for explosives but chemicals as well, which is what they found on my hands, probably due to me using soap on them after I used the bathroom.

I don't think I'm going to be using the bathroom before flying again. Lord know I could never use the bathroom and not wash my hands. Sad thing was I went to the bathroom because it was raining outside and I was waiting for it to slow down so I could take Tim out for a last pee before we started to the gate, it never stopped raining so Tim had to hold it. He was such a good boy through all of this, he definitely knew something was going on but he layed down in his bag and just quietly watched what was going on. The TSA agents were very nice and said he was such a good boy. The flight home is a whole different thread... I'll have to get started on that one.

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post #2 of 23 (permalink) Old 04-21-2013, 10:39 AM
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As someone who knows there will be at least one flight in my future with Indy I really really appreciate this thread.
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post #3 of 23 (permalink) Old 04-21-2013, 11:49 AM
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Me too! Thanks for posting all your travel details.
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post #4 of 23 (permalink) Old 04-21-2013, 12:12 PM
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I had not heard of the swabbing of the hand thing. Do they swab everyone's hands? Or just those with dogs? I would think if it was the soap, they would have more people with positive swabs??? And that they need to be looking at the soap as a possible culprit and change soaps. Did you have a lotion on? Or maybe you touched a surface where there was a chemical that reacts to the swab procedure? What a good boy Timmy was!

Linda, Augie & Finn's Mom
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post #5 of 23 (permalink) Old 04-21-2013, 12:25 PM
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Thank you. I hope to flying with my little guy too unless he turns out to be not so little. How big can they be and still fly with you?
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post #6 of 23 (permalink) Old 04-21-2013, 01:03 PM Thread Starter
Jen, Timmy and Mae
 
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They only swab the dog holder, thank goodness or it would be a security nightmare!

Timmy weighs in at about 15 pounds, but my cousin has a 20 pound Cav King that she flies with. All depends on how comfy your dog is being confined, I started Timmy early.


Sent from Petguide.com Free App

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post #7 of 23 (permalink) Old 04-21-2013, 01:06 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by motherslittlehelper View Post
I had not heard of the swabbing of the hand thing. Do they swab everyone's hands? Or just those with dogs? I would think if it was the soap, they would have more people with positive swabs??? And that they need to be looking at the soap as a possible culprit and change soaps. Did you have a lotion on? Or maybe you touched a surface where there was a chemical that reacts to the swab procedure? What a good boy Timmy was!
The only time I've ever been swabbed is when I have my Hav with me. In part (I think), it's because you can't go through the fancy x-ray machines and only go through the metal detector.

I think it's a secondary screening measure if anything triggers the first screening system (bag x-ray, etc)
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post #8 of 23 (permalink) Old 04-21-2013, 02:24 PM
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The same thing happened to me when we flew in December. I never thought about soap being the possible culprit, but good to know for next time. It's certainly disconcerting to be told you've tested positive for explosives (that's what they said to me).

Linda and Zoey
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post #9 of 23 (permalink) Old 04-21-2013, 03:03 PM
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I've had the swab done, I thought it was a random thing. Mine was negative. I always use the bathroom after going thru security but not for that reason.

RITA
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post #10 of 23 (permalink) Old 04-21-2013, 07:36 PM
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They started swabbing for explosives with everyone flying with a dog. I guess there are crazy people in the world who would use the dogs little belly to get explosives on the plane. Sick! My kids say it's just me but I know it's not. They don't want to go through security with me anymore.
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