Southwest Airlines LUVS its pets and is known as being the pet friendliest airline. Recently, Southwest Airlines announced a change in its policies for trained service and emotional support animals. Customer service is at the airline’s core and they want to make sure their guidelines are clear and easy to understand, while providing customers and employees a comfortable and safe experience.

Emotional Support Animals (ESAs)

  • ESAs will be limited to only dogs and cats
  • ESAs will be limited to one per Customer
  • ESAs must always remain in a carrier or be on a leash 

Customers traveling with ESAs will still need to present a complete, current letter from a medical doctor or licensed mental health professional on the day of departure.

Trained Service Animals

  • Southwest will accept only dogs, cats and miniature horses
  • For health and safety, unusual or exotic animals will not be accepted.
  • Customer with the disability must be able to provide credible verbal assurance that the animal is a trained service animal.

Formally Recognizing Psychiatric Support Animals (PSAs) 

  • PSAs are individually trained to perform a task or work for a person with a mental health-related disability. 
  • A credible verbal assurance will be needed to travel with a PSA


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