Can I Fly with a Pit Bull In Cabin 2023?

According to the TPG and reader survey, the most popular reason travelers fly with a pet (40.7%) is because they can’t leave their pet at home. Moving to a new location came in second, with 27.4% of the vote. For 21.9% of travelers, it’s the need for emotional support.

And, for some of us cargo is not an option! We want or need to be able to fly with our PitBull In Cabin, on board with us.

Some airlines allow you to purchase an adjacent seat for Dogs, including Pitbulls, who are too large to fit under the seat in front of them.

You can purchase extra space on some airline and an extra seat on others.

Airlines such as JSX Airline, Chartered Air Travel with Pets, United Airlines, Alaska Air, JetBlue Airlines, WestJet Air, Elite Airways and Frenchbee Airlines. that allow you to purchase an adjacent seat makes them a much more a PitBull friendly airline.

Airlines that Allow Pit Bull Dogs In Cabin

Airlines That Allow You to Buy Extra Seat or Extra Space for a PitBull Breed Dog
PitBull on a Plane
Extra Seat or Extra Space
JSX Airlines
Cost: Regular Seat Fare
Medium and Large Dogs
In Cabin will Travel on
the Floor Space of Your Seat
Chartered Air Travel with Pets
Cost: Large Dog In Cabin: Average of 5k to 8k
You will have 1 luxury Human
seat plus one large dog or 1-2
small to medium sized dogs
United Airlines
Extra Seat Fare
+125 per Dog or Cat
Your Pet May Sit on Your lap 2nd
Pet Must Remain
in a Carrier under the seat
in front of the extra Seat.
Extra Seat Fare
+$125 per Dog or Cat
Your Pet & Carrier May Sit on Your Lap
If you Buy a Seat–Pet & Carrier Can
Be On the Seat
Alaska Air
Extra Seat Fare+$100
One Way
2 Carriers Allowed. Carriers & Pets
Must Remain in the Carrier under the
seat in front.
WestJet Airlines
You can buy Extra Space for a
“Working Dog”
Working Dogs are Allowed In Cabin
in the Foot Space of your Seat or Buy an Extra Seat
International Flights for $65 each way Pet Fee
International flights: US to Canada, Pet Can Be in the Foot Space of the Seat & Not under the seat in front. International Flights for $65 each way
Elite AirwaysLarge Dogs are allowed on the floor in front of the window seat. You can purchase a seat for extra floor space Chart of Airlines that Allow Pit Bull Dogs In Cabin On Board a Plane

For Details on each airlines see Can I Buy a Seat on a Plane for My Dog?

Most airlines do not allow the Pit Bull to actually sit on the seat. Usually, to fly with a Pitbull or any large Dog, they must remain on the floor space of their human’s seat or the adjacent (empty) seat purchased by you.

Still, this is an opportunity to make flying with a Pit Bull easier. Pit Bulls, in addition to their loving nature, are naturally very strong and finding a carrier to travel in cargo is problematic.

See also, Amazon Pet Travel Finds Under $25

Airlines may not ban PitBull Breed Dogs from Airline Pet Travel

The Department of Transportation (DOT) of the United States issued a ruling prohibiting airlines from denying boarding to Dogs based on their breed.

This includes Pitbull breeds or other pitbull-type and mixed Pit Bull breed Dogs.

The ruling was part of the, then, growing issue regarding the widespread abuse of Emotional Support Animals (ESAs), and as of January 2021, airlines are no longer required to treat ESAs as Service Animals.

Nonetheless, in the same ruling, the DOT stated that airlines may not prohibit a Dog based solely on its Breed.

According to the ruling effective Jan 11th 2021, any breed of dog may accompany passengers on a plane.

Can an Airline Deny my Pit Bull to Fly?

Airlines cannot deny your Pit Bull to fly based on its breed, but can deny any Dog that is a threat to the safety of other travelers or airport workers.

Airlines may deny your Pet to Fly if they violate Safety Requirements set be each airline. This usually applies only to Dogs.

If your Pitbull is too big, too heavy, is ill-behaved (excessive barking, growling, jumping, lunging, nipping or biting) or appears unhealthy or unclean, the airline can deny you to board a plane at the gate or ticket counter.

Poorly behaved Pets is the primary reason ESAs (Emotional Support Animals) are now no longer given the same priority on planes as qualified Service Dogs.


There are more reasons, but ill-behaved Dogs is the primary reason.

Your Dog must be well-socialized to be around people in crowded spaces. Airlines are allowed to observe your Pet in the Airport, particularly at the ticket counter and while waiting at the gate.

The Department of Transportation (DOT) of the United States recently issued a ruling prohibiting airlines from denying boarding to dogs based on their breed. This includes pitbulls or other pitbull-type breeds. 

According to the ruling effective Jan 11th 2021, any breed of dog may accompany passengers on a plane. 

See also, Pets in Airports: Everything You Need to Know

Can I Bring a Pitbull Dog Breed to England UK?

No. According to England UK does not allow pit bull and pitbull mixed breeds including In the UK, it’s against the law to own or import/bring certain Breeds of Dog. These Breeds are:

  • Pit Bull Terrier
  • Japanese Tosa
  • Dogo Argentino
  • Fila Brasileiro

See also, Dog Muzzles for Traveling: Why, How and Buyer’s Guide

Are Pit Bull Breed Dogs banned in Australia?

In Australia, there is a ban on aggressive dog breeds. Dogs that are bred specifically for fighting. These breeds include American Pit Bull Terriers (APBTs) and other Pitbull breeds. The intention of the ban is to protect other people and their Pets although the research and data is insufficient many countries still impose a ban.

Can you Bring a Pitbull to Europe (EU)?

Yes, you can bring a Pit Bull to Europe. When traveling to Europe, you must align your pitbull with the EU European regulations by getting an international standard microchip and making sure it’s up-to-date on its shots. This needs to happen at least 21 days and no more than 12 months before your trip.

France has restrictions on what they define as “dangerous breed” Dogs.

Category 1: Banned breeds in France

France has two classifications for dangerous dogs. Category 1 dogs are defined as attack dogs without pedigree papers. These dogs are considered dangerous, and the import of these breeds are prohibited in France. They are not allowed to be transported in the cabin or as cargo in an aeroplane to France.

According to the Ministry of Agriculture, Food and Forestry in France, Category 1 attack dogs are defined by their morphology and physical affinity to the following breeds:

  • Staffordshire Terrier
  • American Staffordshire Terrier (Pitbull Terrier)
  • Japanese Tosa Inu
  • Boerbull Mastiff

Buying and selling of these breeds are banned, and it is compulsory to desex these dog breeds in France. They must always be on a lead and muzzled in public, and they do not have access to public transport, public places and common areas in apartments.

Category 2: Restricted breeds in France

The dogs classified under this category are purebred or pedigreed guard dogs. These dogs are allowed to be imported into France with restrictions. Only dogs registered with a pedigree recognised by the Ministry of Agriculture, Food and Forestry in France are allowed to be imported into the country. They are allowed to be transported on flights in the cargo hold of the aeroplane.

Category 2 breeds are:

  • Pedigree Tosa Inu
  • Pedigree Staffordshire Terrier
  • Pedigree American Staffordshire Terrier
  • Rottweiler (Pedigree and Non-pedigree)

Pet parents of these breeds must apply for a license. Pet parents must participate in a training course and prove that they are competent to handle the dog safely. Pet owners must also have insurance to protect against liability from dog attacks. The dog must be vaccinated and sterilised. They must be on a lead and muzzled at all times when out in public and on public transport.

Flying with Restricted Dog Breeds

Airlines restrict Dogs based on two issues: if they are brachycephalic or considered a “dangerous” breed such as a Pit Bull. In 2022, you have two choices for pet travel flying with a restricted breed: you can fly with your Dog on board the plane in cabin or your Dog can fly in Cargo.

However, there are exceptions, Lufthansa Airlines only allows Pit Bulls in the hold. PItbulls between 3 and 6 months can fly in cabin.

This article shows airlines that allow Pit Bulls in cabin. If you are flying with you Dog in Cargo or the Hold, ensure you have a proper IATA compliant crate.

Do airlines accept Pitbulls? Can PitBulls fly on airplanes?

In 2022, the airlines that accept PitBulls In Cabin are: JSX airlines, JetBlue, Alaska Airlines, Elite Airways, WestJet, Chartered Air Travel with Pets and Frenchbee Airlines.

Can PitBulls fly on airplanes?

In 2022, you have 2 Options, You Dog is allowed In Cabin or they must fly IN THE HOLD in an IATA CR 82 crate.

These crates are a lot stronger than commercial plastic crates. In fact, most Pet Shippers make their own crates from wood or metal.

This is because these breeds have the strength and when stressed, determination, to chew their way out of plastic crates.

Because of this, CR 82 crates have become a requirement for flying Pit Bulls and other dog breeds on most airlines that will fly them.

This article above shows airlines that allow Pit Bulls in cabin.

If you are flying with you Dog in Cargo or the Hold, ensure you have a proper IATA compliant crate.

IATA stands for the International Air Transport Association. IATA is responsible for important industry policies and standards.  Most Pet Shippers and Airlines follow IATA requirements.

“Some rigid plastic containers may not be suitable for large dogs, or dogs that are aggressive. Specially constructed containers of hardwood, metal, plywood or similar material, with two secure door fasteners on each side, are acceptable.”

For Example, Lufthansa Airlines Pit Bulls and other “fighting” or strong breeds:

Special transport containers, which must comply with IATA regulations, are required for fighting dog breeds.

The container or crate must be constructed of wood, metal, synthetic materials, weld mesh or wire mesh.

Additional design principles regarding the frame, sides, floor, top and opening also apply.

No part of the crate may be made of plastic.

The opening must be made of heavy-duty wire mesh, metal or reinforced wood and must have a secure means of fastening that cannot be opened accidentally.

The container openings must be small enough to ensure that the animal cannot get any part of its body through them and the container must ensure protection against bites or scratches by the animal.

After years of collecting statistics on and incidents of dog bites, some dog breeds and their mixes have been classified as “dangerous” or “aggressive” by airlines.

IATA CR 82 pet crate requirements for “dangerous”, “aggressive”, “strong”, “flighting” Dogs:

Your dog’s crate must be measured properly, allowing your dog to stand up with head extended and turn around in the crate easily without touching the sides or top of the crate. Snub-nosed breeds such as Boxers will need additional room for extra ventilation.

Your Dog’s crate must allow for easy handling with a minimum of 2 inch (5 cm) thick forklift spacers on the sides that allow for lifting, whether manual or forklift.

Food and water containers must be provided and either attached to the door or fixed inside the crate with access for refilling by airline staff.

Your dog’s crate must have adequate ventilation on three sides (domestic flights) and 4 sides (international flights) which is not blocked in any way.

The ventilation openings should be 1 inch (2.5 cm) in diameter and cover the top third of the sides and the entire back of the crate, spaced 4 inches apart. Openings must not allow any part of your dog to protrude from the crate.

The door of your Dog’s crate must be constructed of metal mesh and it must be escape-proof and include a lock that cannot be opened by your Dog.

No part of your Dog’s body can be able to protrude between the bars of the door–paws, lower jaw. A sliding piece of wood or metal with larger (4 inch – 10 cm) and smaller ventilation holes (1 inch – 2.5 cm) that can raise and lower should cover the door.

The frame of the crate must be solid wood or metal and all parts must be bolted or screwed. Additional metal bracing must be added if the weight of the crate and your dog will exceed 132 pounds (60 kg).

There can be nothing protruding on the inside of the crate (nails, screws, etc.) which could cause injury to your dog.

The crate must be extremely sturdy and rigid. It must be able to withstand freight damage. All joints must be secure and gnaw-proof.

The crate must be able to fit in the cargo door of the aircraft that serves your route. It is extremely important that you contact your airline to confirm that your dog’s CR 82 crate can fit through the cargo door of the aircraft that serves your route.

You can see that if your Pit Bull were to fly in cargo or in the hold, airlines often require the crate to be more especially stronger and therefore heavier and much more expensive.

Sometimes, this pushes the maximum weight beyond what is feasible for the Dog’s size–not to mention the fee. Being able to purchase the seat next to you is a step forward–even if your furry friend has to remain on the floor space. See, Airline that Allows All Large Dogs In Cabin

Now that you know there are airlines to fly you PitBull, check out Pets in Airports: Everything You Need to Know