Every public space needs a proactive plan for handling incidents and accidents that may occur. As a pet-friendly place, it’s critical that pets and service animals be explicitly incorporated into your plans and procedures.
Consider including these elements:
- Incorporate pets and service animals into airport emergency and resilience plans and training.
- Have a specific, dedicated resource – a phone number or QR code – for animal-related accidents and incidents that is visible and promoted throughout the airport.
- Have a formal procedure for reporting and tracking animal-related accidents and incidents and review regularly to identify any ways to reduce them.
- Have information readily available for airport personnel, volunteers, ambassadors and guests about nearby emergency veterinary services.
- Make sure walkways and sidewalks are wide enough to safely accommodate those traveling with a service animal or pet, an assistive device such as a walker or wheelchair, and baggage.
- Add paw-cleaning stations near entrances for pets and service animals arriving in inclement weather, both for their comfort and to help avoid slip/fall issues related to water or mud they might leave behind.
- Have cleaning kits and supplies readily available in known issue areas of the airport.
- Recognizing that issues like weather can occasionally cause extended delays, make sure airport personnel, volunteers and ambassadors are aware of at least one nearby airport hotel for travelers with pets.
- Consider making available an onsite or on-call veterinary service for emergencies.
- Provide training and educational resources to airport personnel, volunteers, ambassadors and vendors on interacting with service animals and working dogs, interacting with pets, and handling common animal-related issues.
Check these resources from our Pets Welcome toolkit for further planning tips:
Want more tips? Check out the full Pet-Friendly Airport Toolkit for how-to’s and best practices to help plan pet-friendly policies, amenities and programming for airports.