Many people worldwide, let alone the US, struggle with silent conditions such as depression, anxiety, phobias, and PTSD. And while these conditions can take a toll on someone physically and mentally, they often go unnoticed. To this effect, the severity of these conditions intensifies, and when left untreated, could lead to the loss of life.
There are multiple medical approaches to treat these conditions, or at least alleviate the associated symptoms. But from the list of approved medication, some have side-effects that complicate things.
As such, doctors look for alternative methods to better help their patients deal with their symptoms. One of the recommended approaches is to have an Emotional Support Animal (ESA).
Professional counselors are now looking for ways to improve their patients’ lives. And after the US Department of Housing and Urban Development started recognizing the role of Emotional Support Animals, they have become a regular prescription to mental health patients.
So, what exactly are ESAs, and what do they do?
Airlines, colleges, and housing owners let their clients have pets on their property. Even so, there has been considerable debate centering on whether these animals are necessary—with some sections of the population considering the animals a nuisance. Do you need an Emotional Support Animal to travel on a plane? What do they do exactly? Which species can you use as your ESA comfortably?
Let’s try to answer some of these questions today!
What Is an ESA?
An Emotional Support Animal is no ordinary pet. Well, they are not pets per se, but you can pet, cuddle, groom, and care for them like regular pets. The main difference lies in their role. These animals provide therapeutic benefits to people diagnosed with disabilities.
But unlike service animals, Emotional Support Animals do not undergo any special training to equip them for their role.
Which Roles Do ESAs Play?
Research has shown that animals could play a crucial role in patients’ healing process with certain psychological conditions. And although we are far from concluding their full potential in benefiting patients with PTSD and overall stress, ESAs are proving their worth as a complementary treatment plan.
Emotional Support Animals provide emotional support and companionship to patients with psychological disorders. These therapeutic benefits offered then help patients alleviate their symptoms. By their actions and natural habits, ESAs can help patients to:
Have you ever interacted with a patient struggling with anxiety concerns, and the person attending to them asks them to focus on their breathing? The concept is to help them concentrate on something other than what is triggering their reactions.
And that is what Emotional Support Animals do for you, full time. Now, how do Emotional Support Animals help you recover?
They offer beneficial long-term affection and companionship that kicks out the loneliness.
Also, taking care of ESAs provides a sense of responsibility to patients, making them feel needed and important.
As mentioned, focusing on the care and upbringing of an ESA helps mental health patients draw attention from the triggers causing their anxiety or stress.
What Kind of Emotional Support Can ESAs Offer?
Caring for an ESA involves many activities, like taking walks and playing at the park or on the lawn. These physical activities play a crucial role in the healing process of mental health patients.
Generally, having to take care of an ESA boosts positivity and creates a sense of purpose.
If you want to receive unconditional love and feel connected, then ESAs are perfect for that.
Dealing with each day as it comes is one of the mantras people live by, and an ESA helps you achieve that. They help you regulate your emotions and handle each day better.
ESAs also offer social support- if you think of your ESA as a family member, you are in good hands. The animal serves the role of social well-being as good as any other person.
Finally, if you are under intense emotional distress, having an ESA could help you relieve these feelings without going into a frenzy.
While they may be tiny animals covered in fur, Emotional Support Animals play a huge role in treating medical conditions. By being there, offering unconditional attention and companionship, day and night, you might find yourself benefitting a lot from having an ESA.
Get your ESA’s to cope up with anxiety by clicking the button below!
The benefits of having an ESA as a mental health patient are clear from above. However, not everyone promising to help you get one is legit. At EZCare Clinic, we help you get a legitimate Emotional Support Animal letter from a licensed mental health professional in your state.
Having a need for an ESA to help deal with symptoms of a condition is hard on anyone’s emotional and mental health. What you don’t need is to encounter a fraudulent website claiming to charge a small fee, just to put your ESA on a ‘registry.’
However, there are more fraudulent websites out there than you could ever imagine, and they are taking advantage of ESA-owners for not having accurate information.
When dealing with a few select mental health conditions, specialists are looking for ways to help their patients cope with their symptoms. Treatment is, of course, the first option, but there are moments where patients fail to benefit from prescription medications.
At such moments, doctors look for alternatives or complementary treatment forms to help their patients live better lives. One of the popular and so far effective options issued by doctors is an emotional support animal.
These are special animals that provide emotional support and companionship to their owners. And all you need to do is inform your doctor and get a valid ESA letter from them.
What is an ESA Letter?
Once a doctor recommends having an emotional support animal, it becomes necessary for you to have them around you for as long as possible. That means in your house when going out and even during travels.
However, some residential houses and apartments have strict policies on pets living on the premises. And for air travel, the rules are even harsher. That is where an ESA letter comes to play.
A document issued by a licensed mental health professional proving that you have a genuine reason for carrying around your pet is called an ESA letter.
Not everyone offering the service is legit. That is why it is crucial you know what to look out for in an ESA. Some of the most crucial details you can pick from a legit ESA letter include:
License number, type, and date the license was issued
Date of issuing of the ESA letter
A signature of the LHMP
The official letterhead from the mental health professional
On your part as the client, the letter states:
That you have a condition, which requires an emotional support animal as part of your prescription
The specific animal and breed you have as an ESA
That the LMHP issued the recommendation
Now, Who Are US Support Animals?
Once you visit a website claiming to offer animal registration services, you can tell a lot from the home page. And luckily, we did so when we visited the US Support Animals website.
As stated before, there are a lot of fake emotional support animal letter services online. And unfortunately, US Support Animals seems to be among them. Why do we say so?
1. They claim the existence of a registry
Let’s make one thing extremely clear, when registering your emotional support animal, there is no official database that keeps track of any ESAs. On the contrary, you only need the recommendation from a licensed mental health professional, most preferably registered in your state.
So, when you visit an emotional support animal letter online service provider, and the first thing you notice is their claim to register your animal in a particular ‘registry,’ then that should be the brightest red flag calling out their fraud.
Unfortunately, US Service Animals claim to place your animal in the official US Service and Support Animal Registry Database, a registry for service animals trained to assist handlers living with disabilities.
2. Lifetime registration
An ESA letter remains valid for only one year from the date an LMHP issued it. However, scrolling through US Service Animal’s website reveals that they offer registration services valid for the animal’s lifetime.
That is a clear indication that they are not truthful in their services. They claim to offer a one-time fee service for a lifetime registration, which contradicts the necessary information provided in your ESA letter, stating that it is valid for one year.
3. Suspicious discounts
Imagine browsing through a catalog, and you find that the product you need is almost 76% off. You wish to pay for it immediately and get it done. However, it’s essential to take a step back and analyze the discount.
The same goes for US Service Animals. They have many services, which include, but are not limited to a consultation with an LMHP, all for $79.98. However, reading through their prices, you notice that they promise a $60 discount on the consultation.
Paying $19.98 for a consultation with a licensed mental health professional-just doesn’t add up.
So, Why Choose EZCare Clinic Instead?
Licensed medical doctors, a physical address that you can visit, and a valid ESA letter that you can use for housing and travel are some of our top marketing points. Also, you get to have a physical consultation with a doctor, either in their office or through telehealth services. Then, and only then, can you receive a recommendation after approval.
Anyone who owns pets understands the pain that comes with leaving them behind when leaving home. This is usually the case when flying. Leaving a pet at home when you go for a trip is the same as traveling without your family. Indeed, your pet is one of your family members. Thankfully, you don’t have to stress over this issue anymore. JetBlue pet policy has made it possible for pet owners to fly with their animal companion on board.
This is quite interesting given that most airlines have not-so-friendly pet policies. So, if you have had challenges flying with your pets, now you know that there is a partner who understands your problem.
In this guide, we will take a deep dive into several aspects of JetBlue policy to eliminate any obstacle that may have prevented you from going for that trip with your pet. Before we get into the real details of the policy, let’s have a look at a snapshot of what we will cover in the guide.
1. JetBlue Pet Travel Policies
JetBlue pet travel policies are very straightforward. In fact, you will be surprised with their policies if all you know is the normal struggles associated with booking a flight for pets. Moreover, the airline allows you to travel with different types of emotional support animals in the cabin. In the next section, we have discussed the different types of ESAs allowed on board, as well as the luggage limits. Besides this, we have listed different animals that are strictly prohibited by the airline.
Pets that are allowed in the cabin
The only pets allowed in the cabin flights by JetBlue are dogs and cats. Another thing that you should note is that only small dogs and cats are allowed. Basically, you can have an animal that you can hold in front of you without causing a disturbance in the cabin. You should place the animal in his/her carrier.
Now that you know about the pets that can accompany you in the cabin, perhaps we should also touch on animals that you can fly as cargo.
Important Note: You don’t want to fly with a smelly animal. So make sure your pet is thoroughly cleaned before the trip.
Pets allowed as cargo
JetBlue prohibits animals as cargo. Take note that you may not persuade the airline to bend this rule. So, it is important that you don’t request to travel with your pet through JetBlue Cargo.
Emotional support animals that are allowed to accompany their owners in the cabin
While the airline only allows dogs and cats to accompany you in the cabin, they may treat emotional support animals differently. The airline will allow you to travel with miniature horses. So, if your emotional support animal is neither a cat nor a dog, then you can easily sneak in with your miniature horse into the cabin.
Sometimes, people assume that they can negotiate their way to have a restricted animal to fly with them in the cabin. Unfortunately, JetBlue takes its policies very seriously. In short, no part of the policy is open for negotiation.
Pets that are disallowed by some countries through JetBlue
While JetBlue allowed several animals to fly with passengers, there are a few exceptions. Even if you are sure that your dog or cat will meet all the requirements to travel with humans on board, you may not travel with the pet if it doesn’t meet other policies. For instance, the airline prohibits pets from flying to some countries such as Jamaica, Barbados, Trinidad and Tobago, and Grand Cayman Islands. So, if you are looking forward to visiting any of these destinations through JetBlue, then you might have to go alone; otherwise, you will have to make alternative transportation arrangements for your pet.
2. Directions To Fly With Your Pets In JetBlue
To this point, you are fully aware of the animals that you can or cannot bring on a JetBlue flight, it is a good time to learn how to take care of the booking arrangement for your animal. This way, you won’t have to plan for a major adventure without your pet in the picture. But you still need to keep in mind that only small dogs and cats can fly in the cabin. The reason why only small pets are allowed is that you can place them under your seat without worrying about where to place your legs.
With that said, here are key points you should know when booking your pet on JetBlue.
Before you book any flight, it is always essential to understand the charges. This way, you can easily capture these costs into your budget before you start the trip. Typically, airlines charge about $125 for a one-way trip to have your pet in the cabin. But you can still confirm the cost from JetBlue. Also, fill out the details of the pet in the ‘Extras’ section.
Now here is something that might calm you.
JetBlue does not charge additional costs for service and emotional support animals. The only thing that you need to do is to prove the service that you are getting from the animal. If everything is okay, then you can go ahead and have an enjoyable trip with your companion without adding a coin.
According to the JetBlue pet policy, you can only have one pet with you while in the cabin. Besides this, the airline has a limit on the number of pets that are allowed on board. Each flight can have up to 4 pets. That’s why it is advisable to book your flight as early as possible. The first 3 can be booked through online platforms or via phone. The 4th pet can be booked at the ticket counter. So, if you cannot book it early, you should take your pet with you to the counter at least 24 hours before leaving.
Some airlines may restrict the breed of the pet you can book on a flight. These may include cats and dogs with short noses such as Bulldogs, Pugs, and Persian cats, among others. Thankfully, JetBlue doesn’t have such restrictions when it comes to the breed of your pet. With that said, you may need to consult the airline if you are flying with a snub-nosed dog or cat. This way, you will be able to sort out all your ambiguities.
As stated earlier, JetBlue only allows you to fly with small pets. Besides this, your pet should not exceed a maximum allowable weight. So, if you are planning to fly with your pet on board, make sure that its weight doesn’t go beyond 20 pounds otherwise, you will have to travel minus the pet.
To avoid any last-minute inconveniences, it is safer to weigh your pet inside the carrier before heading to the airport.
Ban on Mint
No one will deny how much you love your pet, but you should also be aware that the airline will not allow it in Mint. If you are hearing Mint for the first time, it is a premium package offered by JetBlue on some of its flights.
We have stated severely that you should keep your pet in a carrier when flying in the cabin. It is also important to make this clarification. You should keep your pet in its carrier while at the airport, during the takeoff and during the flight, and when the plane is landing. In other words, do not leave your pet roaming freely within the airport or on the flight.
According to JetBlue’s policies, anyone who is flying with a pet in the cabin can only take a window or aisle seat. You will not be allowed to occupy a seat with a bulkhead, seat at exit row, or even a Mint seat. The main reason for this restriction is to reduce the disturbances for passengers as well as the pet owner.
Pet carrier specifications
Besides the size of the pet, the airline has also given specification in terms of the size of pet carriers. You cannot just pick any carrier and stick your pet into it and head to the airport. That is why it is crucial to understand all the requirements, especially restrictions, before you can head to the airport with your pet.
JetBlue has given the following carrier size restrictions that pet owners must observe:
In terms of length, the carrier should not exceed 17 inches
For width, the maximum size allowed is 12.5 inches
As for height, it should be taller than 8.5 inches
Since you are carrying a small pet, the animal should be able to stand and move freely inside the carrier. Also, remember to keep the pet in the carrier through the journey, not just when you are at the airport. The only time that you can remove the animal from the carrier is when the carrier is going through the security checks. At that time, you can walk with your pet.
Recommended material for pet carriers
Perhaps you will be happy to learn that the carrier can be both soft and hard-sided. But you should ensure that the bottom of the carries is made of a waterproof material to minimize leakages. On top of this, the carrier should be well ventilated to make the pet comfortable during the flight. In any case, you will also be uncomfortable when your pet is uncomfortable.
Before you can bring your pet into a flight, make sure you have all the documents required to book a flight.
Documents need to book animals on JetBlue
Here are the relevant documents that you must provide if you want to book your pet, ESA, or service animal into a JetBlue flight:
a. ESA letter
An ESA letter is only applicable if you are traveling with an emotional support animal through JetBlue. But the airline doesn’t just accept any ESA letter. It should not be more than a year old. Another thing that you need to note is that the ESA letter needs to have the letterhead of the ESA doctor or clinic.
Information regarding the type of emotional support animal that will accompany you on the flight
The license number of the ESA clinic or doctor
The claim mentioning that the letter was issued by a certified professional
Information about the license of the issuer
Statement about when the issuer got the license, including date and where it was issued
b. Veterinary health form
The veterinary health form is compulsory for any animal that accompanies you during the flight, be it an emotional support animal, a pet, or a service animal.
To ensure your companion animal is in perfect health, you should look for the veterinary form. The good thing is that you can find this form online. So, you can just download, fill it, and forward it to the airline.
c. Record of vaccinations shots
All pets, service animals, and emotional support animals allowed on a flight need to have a record of current vaccination shots. So, make sure that your animals have a record of vaccinations of deadly diseases such as rabies (in dogs). But don’t worry if you don’t have a current record, as you can ask your vet to provide one for you.
Usually, pet vets have a database of vaccinations and treatments of all the animals they handle. When you get a record from the vet, create a copy, and forward it to the airline for processing.
d. Animal behavior testament
This is also required for all types of animals that accompany passengers in the cabin.
When you provide the testament about your animal’s behaviors, what you are doing is confirming that your companion animal will behave appropriately when he/she is in public. This way, the airline will be assured that your animal will not cause an issue once it gets into the plane. Like the vaccination record form, you can also seek this information from your vet. Alternatively, an animal trainer could write one for you.
e. Other forms that are required for some destinations
These forms are only required for service and emotional support animals.
Some destinations may inquire for additional information about your emotional support or service animal. So, if you are heading to those destinations, you may be asked to fill some forms before leaving. These destinations include Puerto Rico, Hawaii, and the American Virgin Islands, among others.
So, if you want to avoid any uncertainty, you can ask the airline or relevant authorities to provide you with all the forms or recruitments of paperwork before the journey.
Steps for booking pets on JetBlue
Once you have secured all the relevant documents, you can go ahead and book a flight.
Here is the process for booking a pet in JetBlue:
Talk to your vet to ensure that the pet is healthy to fly
Make sure that the pet carrier and the weight of the animal is within JetBlue’s limits
Collect the relevant forms and complete the paperwork in time
Visit jetblue.com and book your flight. Alternatively, call the airline and book your animal to a flight
That’s it. Enjoy your trip with your constant companion
Not long ago, dogs and cats could only be flown as cargo or in the baggage. But things have changed for the better, as you can now fly with your pet inside the cabin, thanks to airlines such as JetBlue, who have friendly pet policies. But before you can jump into a plane with your companion animal, you can take a look at these tips, which can help you get the most out of your trips.
Talk to your vet
Whether you are traveling with an emotional support animal, a pet, or a service animal, it is always advisable to consult your vet before the flight. The professional will be able to advise whether the animal is physically and emotionally fit to fly. Both you and the airline are interested in reaching your destination without any issue.
Take note of your pet’s temperament
Some pets are comfortable in crowded or new places, while others are not. So, you should find out how your pet responds to unfamiliar places before booking him on the flight. This will reduce unpleasant behaviors when on the plane. Most airlines are strict when it comes to the behavior of animals in the cabin. So, if your companion gets irritated or cranky while in the crowd, you should reconsider the decision to book your pet on JetBlue.
Carry all items that your pet may need
Just as you pack your items or your kids’ stuff, your pet also needs to be taken care of during the trip. So, make sure to pack everything that your pet might need during the trip. In most cases, you will need to carry food, cleaning stuff, and anything that may comfort the pet. If you are worried your dog might bark while in the cabin, don’t be quick to tranquilize the animal. Talk to your vet first because it may cause several health issues for the pet. Just as much as you care for the trip and companionship, your pet’s health also matters.
Go through all the requirements
If you want to avoid unexpected conveniences that could ruin your trip, it is always good to double-check what is needed to book your pet on JetBlue. Remember that most of its pet’s policies are non-negotiable. You should also take note that some of the policies keep on changing, so you should assume anything. Confirm all the policy clauses.
Particularly confirm the following crucial questions before booking your pet on JetBlue:
These questions are more critical when it comes to preparing for a trip involving a pet. Just verify them in advance, and you will have the best time with your pet.
Arrive at the airport early
The screening process for passengers with companion animals is generally different. So, you may want to arrive at the airport early so that you are on the safer side. JetBlue usually has enough space at the terminal that gathers for people flying with their pets. Unfortunately, some airports may be slow because of a lack of space at their terminals.
Leaving for the airport early will give your time to familiarize yourself with the environment. This is specifically beneficial for dogs that tend to get scared in unfamiliar places.
Your pet should not take a lot of water before the journey
One of the challenges of flying with pets is that you cannot relieve them one in the plane. So, if your pet consumes excess water, this might lead to excessive urination. This situation may cause leakage in the carrier.
While a healthy pet may be able to hold the bladder for many hours, it is better not to give a lot of water to the pet before the flight. If this is impossible, you can provide pee pads so that the pet relieves himself when it is impossible to hold the bladder.
Use the most appropriate pet carrier
One of the ways of ensuring that our trip with your pet is smooth is to choose the right carrier. So, when shopping for the carrier, make sure to test the sitting. What you need to pay attention to is the space for the pet. You want to ensure that there is room for the pet to lay and turn within the carrier. Apart from this, choose a carrier that has soft padding to ensure your pet is comfortable during the flight.
Teach your pet how to use the pet carrier
Shopping for a comfortable carrier for your pet is only half the solution. You should also ensure that the pet knows how to use it. After all, there isn’t harm in teaching your pet to be familiar with the carrier before the journey.
An easy way to train dogs or cats to use the carrier is to keep some of their favorite treats or toys in the carrier. Do this for a number of times. You can also let the pet stay in the carrier for a longer time to be comfortable in it.
Fly in the evening
Flying with pets in the cabin comes with some uncertainties. So, if you want to avoid stressful circumstances, book an evening flight. This will increase the chances of your pet sleeping during the flight. The longer your pet sleeps during the flight, the smoother the journey.
JetPaws™ exclusive carriers are ideal
If you really care about the comfort of your pet during the flight, make sure to buy JetPaws™ exclusive carriers. They are not only comfy, but they are also designed to fit well under the seats in JetBlue planes. The good thing is that they weigh only 2 pounds and are made of soft fabric. Such carriers usually sell for about $50 and can be found at the airport.
Familiarize yourself with JetPaws™ Travel Guide
If you’re clueless about flying with pets on JetBlue, then you need to go through the JetPaws™ Program. This will eliminate confusion and unexpected errors during your flight with your emotional support animal or pet. The guide covers a wide range of information, including the animals allowed in JetBlue flights, as well as the points you can earn by flying with JetBlue Airlines. Basically, you will have most of the details that you need to make your flight with your companion animal a smooth one.
That was a lot to digest, but at least you will appreciate that JetBlue has one of the friendliest travel policies, especially when it comes to flying with your emotional support animal, pet, or service animal. All you need to travel anywhere with your companion is to provide all the requirements. Also, make a note of the state exceptions.