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emotional support animals

Delta to No Longer Accept Emotional Support Animals

Effective Jan. 11, Delta will no longer accept emotional support animal bookings on any Delta flight. Delta’s updated policy follows a final rule issued last month by the U.S. Department of Transportation, which states carriers are no longer required to recognize emotional support animals as service animals.  

“We applaud the DOT for making this change and acknowledging the concerns that Delta and many other stakeholders have raised for the past several years,” said Allison Ausband – S.V.P., In-Flight Service. “The DOT’s final rule enables airlines to put the safety of all employees and customers first, while protecting the rights of customers who need to travel with trained service animals.”  

Delta’s updated policy includes input and guidance from our frontline teams, as well as recommendations from Delta’s Advisory Board on Disability.  

“Delta’s updated policy follows a nearly 85 percent increase in animal incidents since 2016, including urination, defecation and biting,” said David Garrison – S.V.P. Corporate Safety and Security. “Our top priority is the health, safety and comfort of Delta customers and our people. We strongly believe this policy change will enhance the overall travel experience for everyone.” 

 Service animal policy changes effective Jan. 11, 2021: 

  • Delta will no longer accept new bookings for emotional support animals. 
  • Customers who hold a ticket with their emotional support animal(s) confirmed for travel prior to Jan 11. may still travel as planned on Delta. 
  • Trained service animals are defined as dogs regardless of breed, specifically trained to assist a person with a disability. 
  • Delta will lift its ban on pit bull type dogs that meet documentation requirements for trained service animals; however, in line with Delta’s current policy, pit bull type dogs will not be allowed to travel as emotional support animals for those customers ticketed and confirmed before Jan. 11. 
  • Customers traveling with a trained service dog(s) should submit DOT documentation via Delta.com attesting to the dog’s health, training and behavior 48 hours prior to departure. If travel is booked less than 48 hours prior to departure, a customer may present the documentation at the ticket counter or at the departure gate.  
  • Customers traveling with a trained service dog on flights scheduled for eight hours or more must also submit a DOT Relief Attestation form available on Delta.com attesting that the dog will not relieve itself in the aircraft or can do so without causing health or sanitization issues. 

Delta will continue to deny boarding to any trained service animal that poses a threat or demonstrates aggressive or inappropriate behavior in a public setting.

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