Airport scanner with pet?
November 22, 2010 1:39 PM   Subscribe

Can you go through the new airport scanner machines holding a pet?

I'll be flying from La Guardia in NYC in late December, and I'm bringing my dog in cabin with me. So, as I've done plenty of times before, she'll be coming through security with me. I've carried her through the metal detectors, but what happens with the new scanners when you're traveling with an animal? Are you prevented from going through the machine, and therefore guaranteed a pat-down?
posted by ThePinkSuperhero to Travel & Transportation (12 answers total) 4 users marked this as a favorite
Response by poster: And PLEASE tell me that they're not going to need to pat-down the dog. She is not friendly with strangers.
posted by ThePinkSuperhero at 1:40 PM on November 22, 2010

No experiential answer yet, TPS, but from all I've seen one doesn't go through the new scanner, but instead you stand up against it, hands and pockets empty, perhaps with arms outstretched. This seems to preclude holding anything. I'd imagine your dog will receive a private screening. When you find out what that entails, please let us know. And at many airports it seems most travelers are directed through the standard metal detector, rather than the new system.
posted by Rash at 2:00 PM on November 22, 2010

Response by poster: you stand up against it, hands and pockets empty, perhaps with arms outstretched.

Right, I've seen the pictures- don't think I could do that with the dog, unless they let me hold her over my head.
posted by ThePinkSuperhero at 2:01 PM on November 22, 2010

Best answer: I just flew from JFK with my dog a few weeks ago and I was able to carry her through the scanner with me like an infant. There was no pat-down.
posted by mochapickle at 2:01 PM on November 22, 2010

I would call the TSA and ask what their new procedures are with regards to the new scanners and pets so you can be as best prepared as possible.
posted by HMSSM at 2:05 PM on November 22, 2010

Best answer: We flew with our cats a few days ago and we had to carry them through. No patdowns for either humans or cats.

But the TSA employees just stood there as we both held struggling cats in our arms, watching as our stuff piled up on the conveyer belt (including the cat carriers, which were the last things we put through). Even though there were at least three or four TSA peeps who were unengaged at the time, I had to ask the person in line behind me to help shove things down the line so we could actually put the cats back inside their bags. The TSA employees weren't distracted, because they were literally watching us -- staring, even -- as this all went down. Argh.
posted by lhall at 2:06 PM on November 22, 2010

According to the folks over at Flyer Talk, you might be redirected to a WTMD or a pat down. No mention of the pet being patted down.
posted by somanyamys at 2:11 PM on November 22, 2010

Best answer: every single time i flew with my dog and got "randomly" selected to have my body and carry-ons extra searched, i had to remove my dog from his carrier so he could get patted down too, so if you do get selected for the pat down, your dog will get one too. you should bring a muzzle with you, just to be safe.
posted by lia at 2:39 PM on November 22, 2010

Dogs (and cats) are generally treated like anything else, subject to inspection, including manual manipulation - That is, exploring the animal for 'suspicious materials' or whatever. They'll also want to inspect the inside of the crate, if they feel particularly uppity.

Be prepared to deal with the dog being examined, manually or through x-ray/backscatter/whatever systems.
posted by Rendus at 2:48 PM on November 22, 2010

Best answer: When we went through La Guardia two weeks ago, there were no scanners, just the metal detectors. Flyer Talk indicates that they're currently in the process of installing scanners in some places - it may depend on their timing and also which terminal you're going through. But I don't know what the TSA's official stance is; a very quick look didn't turn up anything definitive on their website.
posted by nickmark at 5:41 PM on November 22, 2010

Best answer: No stylish cable-knit sweaters.
posted by gman at 8:12 PM on November 22, 2010

Response by poster: Final update: No scanning on either leg of the trip. We did have a minor run-in with an annoying TSA worker who was very butthurt my freaked out dog wouldn't play kissy-face with her (the woman went as far to complain about me to the next person in line- who happened to be my husband).
posted by ThePinkSuperhero at 7:11 PM on February 1, 2011

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