United Airlines has been in the news quite a bit lately with its United Paws program. United has ‘hired’ trained therapy dogs to work in their major hubs for the hectic week of Christmas travel. @LCC K9 Comfort Dogs and PeopleAnimalsLove.org are two of the organizations that are helping and working with their handlers to greet passengers in order to help lower some of the stress of travel during the holidays. Now in its second season, the program began on a limited basis last year in smaller airports around the country.
The United Paws dogs are scheduled to greet travelers outside of security and will be scattered throughout the Chicago, Cleveland, Denver, Houston, Los Angeles, Newark and Washington-Dulles airports through today. United is also having a photo contest for people who follow @united on Twitter and/or Instagram (“Platform”) and (1) post an eligible photograph containing your dog in one of the following travel settings: airport, United Club environment or on a United plane and/or (B) wearing United branded gear or costume. Include the hastags #UnitedPaws and #UnitedContest with your tweet and will be entered to win two roundtrip tickets to anywhere United Airlines flies in the continental United States, Alaska, Canada and Mexico
United Airlines will also be donating $1 per post to local dog shelters and organizations. The official rules can be found at this link.
I think this is a brilliant move on the part of United Airlines which has definitely be receiving a heavy share of criticism since its merger with Northwest. Nothing brings out the best in people better than our furry four legged friends.
Keep your eyes peeled if you are traveling today to see if you can snap a picture with one of United’s Paws dogs!
Washington, DC – People Animals Love – PAL was founded by Dr. Earl Strimple, a Washington, D.C. veterinarian, who witnessed the bond between animals and humans and recognized its many benefits. In order to explore the many ways society could benefit from the human-animal bond, Dr. Strimple established PAL in 1982. The program has worked with both St. Francis Center and Lorton Prison, as well as being involved in area after school programs.
Los Angeles Airport – LAX P.U.P Program (Pets Unstressing Passengers) – The PUP program helps to provide an overall enhanced customer experience, providing stress relief and comfort to passengers through interaction with pets. All of the dogs are registered with Therapy Dogs Inc. and work with their handlers throughout the airport.
San Francisco Airport – SFO WAG Brigade – The Wag Brigade works to bring trained dogs to ‘work’ at the airport in order to help make passenger travel less stressful and more enjoyable. The dogs are supplied by the San Francisco SPCA and have been certified through its Animal Assisted Therapy Program. They are carefully selected for temperment and will be wearing vests that read ‘Pet Me!’.
Illinois – Lutheran Church Charities K9 Comfort Dogs – As an outreach of Lutheran Church Charities, the K9 Comfort Dogs provide comfort and care to those in need. One of their special pups, @RuthieComfortDog, spent her first mission comforting the families following the Sandy Hook tragedy.