In response to an 86 percent increase in the number of furry travelers over the past two years at VistaJet, the global charter operator is building upon its VistaPet program with enhanced training of its cabin crew. The company said its more than 200 cabin attendants have undergone training in providing basic emergency and behavioral care for the furry companions to the company’s human clients, one in four of whom now travel with their winged and four-legged pets.
“The fast increase in [the number of] pet adoptions is paired with a habit of having pets as daily companions,” said Matteo Atti, VistaJet executive v-p of marketing and innovation. “Rabbits are a recent new breed of pet flown by VistaJet, and while dogs continue to make up the majority of animal passengers, the number of cats spiked 357 percent from 2019 to 2020.”
The enhanced cabin crew training includes:
• Performing pet CPR procedures, such as checking circulation, identifying the location of the heart, and measuring the ratio of compressions to breaths
• Recognizing the warning signs of choking and the best maneuvers to dislodge whatever is blocking a pet’s airway
• Checking vital signs such as heart rate, body temperature, and mucous membrane and capillary refill time to determine circulation and oxygen levels
• Identifying the indications of ingested or topical—spider or insect bites—poisoning and the best treatment for each
• Understanding pet behaviors through reading body language, such as recognizing the difference between a dog’s rapidly twitching tail and a friendly wag or gaining clues from a cat’s eyes, ears, and whiskers
The enhanced training for cabin crew adds to the services of the VistaPet program, which also includes a four-week-long preflight training course for dogs to help them adjust to the sounds of jet engines, air pressure, and turbulence; inflight meals designed in collaboration with a veterinarian to keep animals healthy and hydrated; sleep mats for pets; inflight amenity kits that include treats and water-free shampoo and wipes; and rope toys for entertainment during flights.
“It’s important to continually evolve our services to offer best-in-class travel solutions to all our passengers, making them feel safe and cared for at all times,” Atti added.