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More ways to relieve holiday stress! Just as you are dashing to the airport with dread, here is one way to add cheer. In past years at Washington’s Dulles International Airport passengers were being greeted by Rugi, a Great Dane-Lab mix decked out in festive holiday attire. Part canine-carnival and part therapy, these pets are helping passengers take the edge off their hectic travel. Not to be bested by other airports, Dulles has had its own form of “petting zoo”, an indoor dog park accessible at Concourses C and D. Unlike working police dogs, these romping K-9’s are actively looking to be petted and cuddled. That dog park was a feature of United (Airlines) Paws program. This will likely catch-on more and more as adults and children alike are looking to de-stress after heavy traffic, long lines and increased security. United, working with DC PAL’s (People Animals Love) and beyond Metro Washington, has previously had 200 dogs in 7 airports spreading holiday cheer.
Denver and LAX are among the 30+ US airports which have had comfort dogs available at varying times. To learn more, contact LAX Airport Volunteers, which is tracking these US programs.
No word yet on whether airport bar receipts are down as dogs replace daiquiris to allay pre-flight stress!
Tell us about what’s happening at your local airports.