New luxury airline for dogs faces lawsuit shortly after its first flight

Dog looking up at plane overhead
(Image credit: Getty Images)

Do you travel with your pups? Not everyone does, but often dog parents will take their dogs on vacation with them. Meanwhile, there might come a time when you need to travel with your dog to move somewhere new, or to visit family. 

If you've already filled your bags with the best dog treats and you’re going to one of the best travel destinations for dogs, you might be thinking about getting there by plane. But which airline should you choose?

While many airlines offer you the chance to fly with your dog, there’s a new luxury airline for dogs in town. However, it’s already facing a lawsuit.

BARK Air operates out of Westchester County Airport in New York, and on May 30 was handed a lawsuit by the county for allegedly violating county law. This came not even a week after the airline’s first flight set off, on May 24.

Per legal documents obtained by Fox News Digital, Westchester County Airport rules state that the airport’s private jet section can only accommodate jets with no more than nine passenger seats. However, BARK Air uses a Gulfstream Aerospace GV jet, which has 14 passenger seats. 

As a result, Westchester County seeks an injunction against the airline. This would force them to leave the airport altogether, or at least move from the private jet area to the regular passenger terminal. So, if you want to know how to travel with a dog by plane, it’s worth bearing in mind that you may have to share the busy, regular terminal!

BARK Air’s maiden “white paw experience” flight went from Westchester County to Van Nuys Airport in Los Angeles. The price for one passenger and a dog came to $6,000.

The company describes itself as "the world's first air travel experience designed specifically for dogs first, and their human companions second."

At present, the airline flies between New York, Los Angeles, and London. But, it’s hoped that more destinations will be added, with eyes reportedly on Chicago, Seattle, Florida, Arizona, Paris, and Milan. 

Last month, the airline’s Chief of Staff Katharine Enos told Fox Business that the first trip was a “great success,” adding, “There were a mix of breeds onboard including chihuahuas, a golden retriever, and dachshunds. Happy to report there was no dog drama, some dogs played in the aisle while the smaller dogs took nice long naps.

“All dogs snacked on BARK cereal treats for dogs, dog-friendly cupcakes, chicken flavored puppuccinos, and doggie champagne (chicken broth). The humans onboard all got along as well and felt connected in their shared obsession with their dogs.”

Interested? You can find out more about BARK Air on their website.

Update: After this piece was published, PetsRadar was contacted by BARK Airlines and informed of the following: “Dogs can and will continue to fly first aboard BARK Air! On Monday, Westchester County voluntarily dismissed its lawsuit, which at no time impacted BARK Air's operations. BARK Air will continue to operate flights to and from HPN.” - BARK Spokesperson

Adam England
Freelance Writer

Adam is a freelance journalist covering pets, lifestyle, health and culture, and he has six years' experience in journalism. He was senior editor at, and has written for The Independent, GoodToKnow and Healthline

He's also spent the last few years studying towards undergraduate and postgraduate degrees in journalism. While a cat person at heart, he's often visiting his parents' golden retriever, and when he's not writing about everything pets he's probably drinking coffee, visiting a cat cafe, or listening to live music.