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Travel with Pets/few questions about travelling with 4 cats


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hello lisa,
this July iam planning to travel from Beirut,Lebanon to France. i've got 4 cats ,parents (6years each) and 2 offsprings (5 years each), .
so far iam not worried about vaccination or airline tickets.. know what they need from the vet and will fly with Air France. What iam scared about is transporting my cats with best kennels in safe way.
Iam bit terrified as I read a lot of bad experiences through the net of cats being lost or dead. At the airport in my country, sometimes they treat pets as normal bags for travelling.
I’ve got some questions and hope you can help me. will sort them as point to make things easier

1-   For cats that are allowed in the cabin, will the agent of Air France at the airport check for the weight of cats allowed onboard. As I know Air France allows cats under 6KG in cabin. Father cat I have is around 4kg. all other 3 are 6-9KG . my vet told me that he can cheat a bit about weight of another cat on the papers so I can have 2 cats in cabin (iam travelling with someone else,so I can have 2 onboard). I don’t want to believe the vet , take a heavy cat and then get into troubles if they weight the cats inside the cabin. In case they don’t weight it as bags to see if tts under 6KG…then that’s GREAT
2-   My cats are talkative a LOT..and sure afraid when they are outside home in carriers. The vet suggested to give them some medication to calm down. As far as I know, airlines don’t allow this especially for cats in the hold . should I believe him?
3-   I’ve attached photos of my carriers I usually use for my cats. My vet said they are airline approved by IATA. Iam a bit skeptic about this, if one of the carriers felt down or mistreated by airport staff,  its very easy to break down . is it enough if I secure it with plastic cable ties on door and sides or do you advise to buy a huge kennel, put 2-3 cats all in one so that one big carrier is better than 2-3 little ones
4-   Is it advisable to ask the airline if I can have all the 4 cats in the cabin in small carriers or they can consider it rude. I know that AF allows 5 cats in each class (first,business,economy) at a time. So if iam the only one at the day of travelling, would be the best and easier to watch out for the cats

I hope I didn’t annoy by my questions ;) but iam indeed worried about this part of my travel and would like to ask experts and collect as much info as I could before travelling
I thank you in advance for your reply and help
Hope you have a good day

To be honest I really can't say what Air France policies are like. Even in the US it really depends on which agent is assisting you. I do know many clients print the rules from the airlines emails or websites because many agents are clueless. So that could work for you or against you. They may not know the weight rules.

But I can say the carriers you have are not allowed for cargo travel in the USA because of the plastic latches. You can modify them by drilling holes in the corners of the crate and adding metal nuts and bolts and many airlines here in the US will then accept them. BUT I would never fly my pets in those crates without modifying them first. You can watch a video on how to do this at and watch the MODIFY clip. Watch the whole video it has lots of great tips.

As far as sedating your cats... If they are flying in cabin it is not against the rules here. But if they are flying in CARGO DO NOT SEDATE them it can be very dangerous and many airlines will not accept pets in cargo or luggage compartment who are medicated.

As far as the rest of the questions I really would not be able to answer I am very familiar with US rules and airlines but I have not had any experience with AIR FRANCE and I would be just guessing. Good luck with this it really is very rare that pets get lost or loose just be sure you use metal hardware and cable tie the door shut!!! Be sure and use Releasable cable ties as the airline may need to get the crate open in an Emergency and they usually require no tools are needed to open the door.

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Lisa Kelly


My main focus is teaching pet owners how to choose and properly prepare an airline carrier kennel for a safe and comfortable trip. I can answer any questions on the subject of purchasing an airline approved carrier or kennel. I can also answer questions on how to modify or prepare an existing pet carrier kennel to be safe and considered airline compliant. Also any questions on how to ship a pet domestically in the USA. I can not answer questions on required paperwork for importing or exporting pets internationally.


My experience includes owning and running a Luxury Cat Care Facility since 1997 - Kitty Cat Condos. While running the facility I have used my daily pet experiences to invent and develop many pet travel products, many of which are Patented. The most well known is DryFur® Travel Pads. I now run a blog dedicated to sharing free information to pet owners who are often overwhelmed with the task of traveling on airlines with their beloved pets.

ABKA - 1997-2002 IPATA 2005-2010 Presently not an active member of any Organization

Most of my articles are published on my blogs at and I have been interviewed as cat expert for an article in Animal Wellness on the subject of Choosing the right Cat Carrier for traveling. Also interviewed as pet expert on Animal Radio on the subject of how to travel with your pet safely on airlines.

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Awards and Honors
1. Disposable absorbent pet transport cushion-United States Patent 7231888 2. Awarded Best Cat Boarding 3 times by CatFancy Magazine in 2005-2007-2010 3. Awarded Best Pet Product by CatFancy for DryFur® Travel Pads 2005 4. Awarded Product of the Year Pet Product News for DryFur® Travel Pads 2005-2006 5. Awarded Editors Choice Product of the Year DogFancy DryFur® Travel Pads 2006 6. Awarded Best Pet Product for Airline Kennel Securing Hardware 2010

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