Miniature Horses Are Allowed on Board Southwest Airlines, per New Policy

Yes, really.

Miniature Horses Are Allowed on Board Southwest Airlines, per New Policy

Miniature horses are actually allowed on several airlines, as long as they’re trained service animals.

Courtesy of Shutterstock

Ever since the great emotional support peacock debacle of January 2018 (and a few other much less amusing incidents), airlines have been updating their service animal policies to specify exactly what kind of animals are and aren’t allowed on board as emotional support and service animals. But here’s one that might surprise you.

Starting on September 17, 2018, Southwest Airlines will only allow three types of species into their cabins: dogs, cats, and miniature horses.

Miniature horses, you say?

As long as they are a fully-trained psychiatric service animal, the tiny equines will be one of only three species allowed on board after the new policy kicks in next month. The new policy also says that passengers can also fly with an emotional support dog or cat as long as they have a doctor’s note. Each passenger is only allowed to travel with one animal on each flight.

However, unusual or exotic animals, including rodents, ferrets, insects, spiders, reptiles, hedgehogs, rabbits, or sugar gliders, are no longer welcome on Southwest planes.

According to the Americans with Disabilities Act, miniature horses are recognized as service animals and generally stand between 24 and 34 inches in height and typically weigh between 70 and 100 pounds.

The new Southwest policy states that all service animals and emotional support animals allowed in the cabin must be under their owner’s control at all times and will be denied on board if they display disruptive behavior, including growling, biting, whining, or going to the bathroom outside of designated animal relief areas.

Southwest isn’t the only airline that allows miniature horses on their planes. Jetblue and American Airlines also allow the animals on board, too.

But let’s get to the question I know you’re all asking. What does a miniature horse look like on a plane?

Here’s a miniature horse on a plane — James Kelleher (@etienneshrdlu) October 22, 2016

Absolutely delightful, of course.

>> Next: Dog-Friendly Hotels Where They Treat Your Pup Like a VIP

Lyndsey Matthews is the senior commerce editor at AFAR who covers travel gear, packing advice, and points and loyalty.
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