The government is telling airlines and passengers how it will enforce rules governing animals that people bring on planes.
The Transportation Department said Thursday that airline employees can bar any animal they consider a safety threat. Airlines, however, can be punished if they ban an entire dog or cat breed, such as pit bulls.
The department’s enforcement office said that it doesn’t plan to stop airlines from asking passengers “reasonable” questions about a service animal’s vaccinations, training and behavior. Airlines can require advance notice if passengers plan to bring an emotional support animal — several already do — but can’t impose the same requirement for service animals such as guide dogs for the blind.
The number of animals on planes rose rapidly in recent years as more people began bringing a companion for emotional support. Most flying pets are tame, but there have been some well-publicized instances of animals biting passengers or airline employees and…
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