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A recent study conducted by Upgraded Points revealed the most pet-friendly airports in the U.S.
The study was conducted using an assigned points system. Pet-friendly airports earned accolades for facilities that went beyond just providing the rudimentary services outlined in a federal mandate.
Many pet facilities use artificial grass and are out of the way. Airports earned extra points for providing pet parks with real grass, faux fire hydrants, ease-of-accessibility and ample space for pets to run and play. Airports also received points if they offered fully-fenced areas, available water fountains or onsite boarding and daycare facilities and more.
“From Denver to JFK, there were many outstanding airports featured in our article. Though required by law, many airports choose to offer services beyond what is necessary. They go out of their way to accommodate not just necessary service animals, but also beloved pets of all types,” said Upgraded Points founder Alex Miller.
1. John F. Kennedy International Airport (JFK)
New York City’s JFK airport received the top spot in the study. It offers multiple terminals that have access to post-security pet relief areas and a 4,000 square foot outdoor garden patio that is open to both passengers and pets in one of its terminals. The patio has seating for 50 people as well as tables and chairs. The airport also provides numerous “pet bathrooms” with fire hydrants, sinks, drainage and waste receptacles.
There is also 24-hour animal care and veterinary services for all kinds of pets.
2. Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport (ATL)
Atlanta has a 1,000-square-foot dog park pre-security as well as indoor post-security relief areas in every concourse.
Pet Paradise is an onsite 24-hour boarding facility.
3. Sky Harbor International Airport (PHX)
Sky Harbor in Phoenix has nine pet areas with drinking water—three of which are post-security. Pre-Security areas are located outside terminals 2, 3 and 4 and include the Paw Pad where pet areas are decorated with native plants.
4. Los Angeles International Airport (LAX)
LAX has eight post-security pet-relief stations and three pre-security, outdoor pet-relief stations, the most of any other U.S. airport.
5. Minneapolis St.Paul International Airport (MSP)
Minneapolis‘ MSP Airport has pet and service animal relief stations at both terminals. Each terminal offers both an indoor post-security pet relief area as well as an outdoor facility. The indoor stations offer faux grass, a fire hydrant and a sink.
Now Boarding is an on-property boarding service affiliated with the Animal Humane Society. They offer boarding, training, and grooming services for your pet as well as pick-up service to return you and your pet to your vehicle.
6. Austin-Bergstrom International Airport (AUS)
Austin welcomes pets to the “Dog Walk,” a landscaped and lighted area that includes a pet drinking fountain, dog waste pick-up bag, and trash bins. The area is located pre-security but there is also an outdoor pet station and patio post-security.
AUS also teams up with a local wellness company to offer events where travelers can pet therapy dogs in the airport.
Bark and Zoom, located on property, is like a vacation for pets where they can swim and enjoy outdoor play yards. They also shuttle pet owners to the terminal and provide reasonable valet parking.
7. Reno-Tahoe International Airport (RNO)
Reno-Tahoe has two outdoor “Bark Parks” pre-security as well as an indoor pet relief area located post-security.
The Bark Parks offer ADA accessibility, running water, mutt mitts to clean up after dogs, a fire hydrant, and a canopy for inclement weather.
The airport is also home to the Paws for Passengers program that features 25 service dog teams to help welcome and send off passengers.
8. Dallas Love Field Airport (DAL)
Located at the end of the Baggage Claim Hall on the upper level, travelers to Dallas will find the Pet Park. There is a smaller pet area on the lower level and a space for furry friends past security.
9. Denver International Airport (DEN)
Denver offers pet-relief areas in the centers of concourses A, B, and C, post-security. Each room has a mural of Colorado’s outdoor areas. There is also Paradise 4 Paws, offering spacious 24-hour boarding on site.
10. Dallas/Ft. Worth International Airport (DFW)
The airport offers four pet relief areas located inside security as well as several outside entry doors on the lower level.
Paradise 4 Paws also operates a premier pet resort for dogs and cats.