SAN ANTONIO – San Antonio International Airport partnered with Animal Care Services to share some travel tips ahead of the holiday weekend.
SAT says it is expected to see its busiest Fourth of July weekend this year, with around 93,000 travelers between Thursday and Tuesday.
Fur baby or not, SAT reminds everyone to arrive at least two hours early before boarding times, print or download their boarding pass early and track their flight status online.
TSA Spokesperson Patricia Mancha said traveling through a security checkpoint with your pet can be easier when you know what to expect.
“Becoming familiar with the screening procedures and how to clear security quickly and easily is the first step to embarking on a great trip with your pet,” said Mancha.
When going through security, owners are reminded to remove their pets from the carrier before the screening process, placing empty carriers on the conveyor belt while carrying their pets or using a leash.
TSA officers will then give the pet owner’s hands an explosive trace detection swab to ensure there is no explosive residue on the owner’s hands.
Once the screening process is complete, owners should return the pet to the travel carrier at the re-composure area away from the security checkpoin. This location helps ensure the safety of the pet, as well as other passengers.
Lisa Norwood, public relations manager for ACS, said it’s also a good idea to plan for exercise and toilet breaks.
“SAT’s pet relief areas are perfect for all animals,” she said. “As much as possible, try to keep routines such as walks or feeding times the same as at home. Pets thrive on familiarity.”
Norwood shared additional travel tips for parents below:
Always make sure your pet has a properly fitting collar, tags and microchip with your cellphone number.
Get a clean bill of health from your vet (and ask about calming medications).
Pack a copy of your pet’s health records (including vaccinations).
Use a collapsible bowl for food and water.
Bring any needed medications/supplements.
Familiarize yourself with your airline’s pet-related restrictions and requirements.
Take a secure, comfortable crate and all of their supplies (including water).
Include a favorite blanket, toys and something with your scent (such as a T-shirt) to help calm your nervous pet.
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