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Norwegian changes direction over dog ban on flights

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Norwegian changes direction over dog ban on flights
Photo: photobac/Depositphotos
18:32 CEST+02:00
A ban on bringing certain breeds of dog on flights with low-budget airline Norwegian resulted in complaints from customers. Now the company is reversing its policy.

But Norwegian said dogs brought onto aircraft, where they travel in the cargo hold, are done so at owners’ responsibility, broadcaster NRK reports.

A number of dog owners took issue with the ban on bringing certain breeds of dogs on flights after it was announced by Norwegian.

The policy change was a shift from the airline’s previous rules, whereby all dogs were accepted for travel in the cargo hold on flights to and from Svalbard and within the Schengen zone.

The now-reversed ban would have seen certain snub-nosed breeds including Bull Mastiffs, Boxers, Bulldogs, and Shih Tzus barred from flying with the company.

“We have received a lot of responses to this and they are the reason we are changing our position on this issue. We can see that there are many grey areas here, especially when it comes to mixed breeds,” spokesperson for Norwegian Astrid Mannion-Gibson told NRK.

Despite the lifting of the ban, the airline still advises dog owners not to take their four-legged friends with them when travelling by air, Mannion-Gibson added.

The dogs can be prone to respiratory problems when under stress, she said.

“We introduced this rule with support from a number of places, including The Norwegian Veterinary Association. The change was made with the best intentions, since air travel for short-nosed dogs is associated with increased risk of respiratory problems and overheating,” she said.

Instead of being prevented from checking their dogs onto flights, owners will now be required to sign a disclaimer form absolving Norwegian of responsibility for the animal during air travel.

“If you have a dog or cat that is included in this definition you will be asked to sign a form in which you recognise the risk and that Norwegian is absolved of responsibility should anything happen,” Mannion-Gibson told the broadcaster.

READ ALSO: Norwegian loses billions in first quarter of 2017

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