Susan Revis - William Raveis R.E. & Home Services


More and more frequently, travelers see animals on board airplanes—in the cabin, rather than as special cargo. According to the Air Carrier Access Act, a service animal is: “any animal that is individually trained or able to provide assistance to a person with a disability; or any animal that assists persons with disability by providing emotional support.”

Which animals qualify?

Service animals and emotional support animals, not pets, must fit the description of an animal which, as determined by a qualified medical professional, provides individuals with a benefit to a physical or emotional disorder. Benefits of emotional support animals might include keeping the individual calm or providing relief from anxiety during travel. 

Service animals, such as guide dogs for the blind, or those trained in medical detection for a pending epileptic seizure have more specific benefits, but emotional support animals range from a wide variety that includes dogs, cats, birds, miniature pigs, lizards, and even kangaroos.

The difficulty for airlines is determining which animals are for emotional support and which are merely a pet. While each airline determines its own qualifications, the Act allows airlines to prohibit any animals already banned from entering a foreign country where the flight terminates. Also prohibited is any animal that is too heavy or a size that cannot be accommodated safely in the cabin, any animals that pose a threat to the health or safety of other passengers, and those that might be disruptive to the flight. Airlines flying to and from the United States are only required to accept dogs as service animals.

Airlines may reject reptiles (including snakes), rodents, ferrets, spiders, and sugar gliders at any time.

Is documentation required?

While requirements for each airline may differ, in general, airlines may require any of the following:

  • A current (within one year) document indicating that the passenger has an emotional disability recognized by the DSM (Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders); and
  • That the passenger needs the animal for emotional support;
  • The provider of the document is a licensed medical or mental health professional;
  • The jurisdiction of the medical professional, and the issue date of their license.

Airline employees may determine the validity of a service animal via verbal assurance, physical indicators such as tags and harnesses, or requiring documentation. Before assuming an emotional-support animal may board with you, check with your airline(s) since some request a 48-hour advanced notice to accommodate your animal.

If you're moving to a new city and need to transport your pets, do not assume they can board the aircraft with you. Ask your local real estate agent to help you locate a certified pet transport service to bring your pet safely to your new home.


If rain arrives on moving day, there is no need to panic. In fact, there are many quick, easy ways to protect your belongings against rain and ensure that these items can reach your new home without delay.

Now, let's take a look at three tips to help you protect your belongings during a rainy moving day.

1. Park the Moving Truck Close to Your Home

Ideally, you'll want to limit the distance between the moving truck and your house. This will enable you to prevent large amounts of rain from drenching your personal belongings.

You also should try to keep your home's walkways clear on moving day. Because if you're forced to deal with lots of walkway clutter, and lots of rain, it may be tough to carry your belongings from your home to your moving truck.

2. Lay Towels or Blankets Down in Your Home

Let's face it – a rainy moving day likely will cause you and your entire moving day team to walk in and out of your home with wet, muddy shoes. Fortunately, if you lay down towels or blankets in advance, you can reduce the risk of making your floors messy on moving day.

Remember, when it comes to moving, it is always better to err on the side of cause. If you have plenty of towels and blankets at your disposal, you should have no trouble keeping your home's floors clean as you move your belongings into a moving truck.

Don't forget to have extra towels available for your moving team too. That way, all members of your moving team can dry themselves off as needed.

3. Cover Your Furniture

Excess rain can quickly cause substantial damage to chairs, couches and other furniture. Thus, you'll want to cover these items before you move them from your house to your moving truck.

In most instances, covering furniture with moving pads and bubble wrap will help protect your furniture against water damage. Also, you should always ensure that there are no leaks inside of your moving truck to further reduce the risk of property damage due to rain.

If you're uncomfortable moving all of your belongings in the rain, it may be better to postpone your moving day. This will enable you to let the rainy weather pass and resume your move when improved weather conditions arrive.

Furthermore, if you need extra help on moving day, you may want to hire a professional moving company. This business employs friendly, professionally trained moving specialists who know how to move items in any weather, at any time.

Of course, if you need help finding a moving company, you can always contact a real estate agent for assistance. In addition to helping you buy or sell a residence, a real estate agent can help you get in touch with the top moving companies in your area.

Take the guesswork out of a rainy moving day – use the aforementioned tips, and you can streamline the process of transporting your belongings to your new house.




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