United Airlines Announces 21 Dog Breeds That Won’t Be Allowed on Its Airplanes

Brian Johnson & Dane Kantner

After the tragic death of a French bulldog on one of its flights earlier this year, United Airlines has updated its policy on what dog breeds it will accept on its aircraft.

It just announced 21 dog breeds will be banned from flying on its airlines, citing that they are more likely to experience physical ailments from the heat or travel-induced stress.

Related: The Pet Polices of Top Airlines You Need to Know About

The move comes after the enormous backlash United Airlines received when a flight attendant reportedly told a customer she must put her French bulldog in the overhead compartment during a flight. The dog, named Kokito, died as a result.

Image Credit: Instagram/kokito_the_savage

The airline took responsibility for the death, issuing this statement at the time. “This was a tragic accident that should never have occurred, as pets should never be placed in the overhead bin,” the statement reads. “We assume full responsibility for this tragedy and express our deepest condolences to the family and are committed to supporting them.”

Related: What Owners Need to Do to Keep Their Dog Safe While Flying on an Airplane

Since then, United Airlines has been working with animal-welfare organization American Humane to improve its pet policies. The airline will resume transporting animals on July 9, but the below breeds (some were already banned) will not be allowed on its flights. (There were also four cat breeds — Burmese, exotic shorthair, Himalayan, and Persian — prohibited.)

  1. Affenpinscher
  2. American Bully
  3. American Pit Bull Terrier/Pit Bull
  4. American Staffordshire Terrier/”Amstaff”
  5. Belgian Malinois
  6. Boston Terrier
  7. Boxer
  8. Brussels Griffon
  9. Bulldog
  10. Cavalier King Charles Spaniel
  11. Chow Chow
  12. English Toy Spaniel/Prince Charles Spaniel
  13. Japanese Chin/Japanese Spaniel
  14. Lhasa Apso
  15. Mastiff
  16. Pekingese
  17. Pug
  18. Shar-Pei/Chinese Shar-Pei
  19. Shih-Tzu
  20. Staffordshire Bull Terrier/”Staffys”
  21. Tibetan Spaniel

13 comments on “United Airlines Announces 21 Dog Breeds That Won’t Be Allowed on Its Airplanes

  • Because their flight attendants are idiots, they have to punish everyone else!?! Ridiculous. Well, I won’t be flying United ever again.

  • This is rediculous. Many of those breeds fly very well in cabin. I’ve flown with my Boston Terriers numerous times with no issues. The tragic death of the Frenchie lies firmly on the flight attendant who ordered him into the overhead compartment. If a pet were to fly as cargo this would be a different situation as far as banning, but in cabin to ban all those breeds is over-reacting to a situation created by an employee. Before the rest of the airlines try to follow suit, I would love to see the statistics indicating how many pets of each particular breed had problems flying.

  • if airlines can find time to make the seats smaller, bathrooms smaller,, it is time the found a way/ space that is safe for pets to fly safely. Pets are family members and in this day and age, there should be a safe place for pets.

  • This is so stupid!!!!!!!!! First of all I travel all over with my French Bull Dogs in Cabin and they do great. Of course I never dreamed of putting my FBD in the overhead bin because first of all it is dangerous and secondly it is a stupid idea. I would have been taken to jail rather than to let some idiot flight attendant bully me into placing my baby into an overhead bin. If she persisted I have to say she may have ended up in the overhead bin, I am very protective of my furbabies. So…. how about this united, instead of banning certain breeds from the cabin how about you give your flight attendants IQ tests before putting them in charge of the safety and well being of all those who fly your airlines. Clearly this one would not have passed. Secondly, provide better training for them, if you allow pets on your planes then make sure that you educate your flight attendants on treating the animals in a humane fashion and make sure that they understand basic safe handling and storage of the pets.

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