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Reuters/Mike Segar
Rough ride.
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Some of the most popular dog breeds in the US are now banned from flying with United

By Lianna Brinded

When United Airlines accepted full responsibility for the death of a dog on one of its flights earlier this year, it prompted a major review of the US carrier’s policies for transporting animals. The company said this week it is working with the country’s oldest national humane animal organization, American Humane, to improve the well-being of pets that fly with the airline, and will resume transporting them as cargo from July 9—but it has also decided to ban 25 pet breeds from its aircraft.

The Chicago-based airline said the 21 dog and four cat breeds are being banned because they are prone to physical problems from heat or other travel stress. The four cat breeds prevented from flying with the airline are Burmese, exotic shorthair, Himalayan, and Persian. The dog breeds include some of the most popular ones in the US, including Boston terriers, bulldogs, boxers, and mastiffs. Short-nosed dogs from the brachycephalic breeds, such as small Pekingese and pug dogs, are also banned.

Many of these breeds are already barred from traveling cargo on several other airlines, or are restricted from travel at warmer times of the year, but a few carriers are more welcoming.

While the complete list is available on United’s website, here is how the 21 breeds rank in popularity in the US, according to American Kennel Club (AKC) data. A total of 190 breeds were ranked in 2017.

Dog breeds banned from United Popularity ranking by AKC
Affenpinscher 147
American Bully n/a
American Pit Bull Terrier/Pit Bull n/a
American Staffordshire Terrier/”Amstaff” 83
Belgian Malinois 44
Boston Terrier 21
Boxer 11
Brussels Griffon 94
Bulldog 5
Cavalier King Charles Spaniel 19
Chow Chow 76
English Toy Spaniel/Prince Charles Spaniel 134
Japanese Chin/Japanese Spaniel 108
Lhasa Apso 77
Mastiff 28
Pekingese 88
Pug 31
Shar-Pei/Chinese Shar-Pei 64
Shih-Tzu 20
Staffordshire Bull Terrier/”Staffys” 82
Tibetan Spaniel 121

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