When the fur flies: airports are used to handling canine cargo traffic, and they’re getting better at it: some even have nice doggy hotels. The latest is the big Twin Cities airport, Minneapolis/St. Paul, where the operators are considering a luxury kennel. The Metropolitan Airports Commission, which runs the airport where Northwest Airlines has a hub, is looking for businesses that want to set up and ran a luxury on or next to the airport, near a park that’s popular with dog-people (owners) who like to let their guys run off leash. The MSP kennel would be open 24 hours, have parking and a shuttle that gets humans to their planes. MAC is looking at a long lease with about $48,000 in annual rent. If that doesn’t make for distinctive doggy digs, the pampering may have to stop! But someone may find a bone to pick with the MAC guys.
But MAC may face some opposition from private operators who have kennels near the airport. That’s happened at other airports that have kennels, including Denver, New Orleans and Jacksonville, Fla., Seattle and San Diego. Private companies operate kennels near other airports including Washington Dulles, Seattle, Portland, and others. And at Houston’s big Bush Intercontinental, Continental, the dominant carrier, operates a new and much-praised kennel for its quadruped passengers.
Airplanes are a little hard for dogs to understand unless you explain it to them the right way. Our late and still-lamented pal Special (an Afghan-Setter) was perplexed when he would look out the window and see the lights of planes landing at Washington’s National Airport until it was put in terms he understood: “they’re jet airplanes, Specky. They help people get home quickly so they can feed their dogs.”