United joins rivals in dropping emotional-support animals

More and more airlines are saying “No” to emotional-support animals

After that, United said, only trained service dogs can fly in the cabin while not being in a carrier. Owners will have to submit a government-approved form attesting to the dog’s training, vaccines and disposition. Therapy animals trained to visit nursing homes and other settings don’t count as service dogs, United said.

Owners may be able to transport other animals in the cargo hold or in carriers that fit under a seat in the cabin. Either way, the owner will pay a pet fee, which starts at $125 per flight.

For many years, thousands of passengers relied on a previous regulation to bring an animal on board for free by claiming that it provided emotional support. Airlines and flight attendants believed some passengers abused the rule to avoid pet fees.