We used to deliver our kittens via United Airlines PetSafe program. When we inquired about their services, we were told the crates are in a pressurized, temperature controlled setting. They also said that there are employees dedicated to care for the animals when in their possession.
That couldn't be further from the truth. How did we find out? One of our crates was crushed. It turns out that animal crates are stacked with the luggage at the underside of the plane. They are kept in the dark, in the cold, they are alone, and they are scared. Once the baggage handler stacks the crates along with the luggage, the belly of the plane is closed. The animals aren't unloaded until the plane has landed and all the luggage is removed.
I've seen many people say they ship with an airlines. Many of them packed in shredded newspaper with an ice cube for water. This is not humane nor acceptable. We now deliver the kittens by hand. If flying across the U.S., we purchase airfare a month in advance, take advantage of deals, use airlines miles, and charge nothing for our time. Our goal is to get your kitten to you safe, sound, happy and healthy,
Picture of the crate that revealed the truth. ALL pets sent with an airlines are stacked as cargo unless they're traveling in hand with a passenger in the cabin. This is what United Airlines did after one of my crates was crushed when luggage shifted in the belly of the plane. The dark, loud, cold, belly of the plane.