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World's first "dog-centric" airline, BARK Air, takes off on maiden voyage

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BARK Air, a pioneering airline catering exclusively to dogs and their owners, has officially taken to the skies.

The innovative airline, launched by the dog toy company BARK in collaboration with a jet charter service, is designed to offer a luxury travel experience for dogs of all sizes and their human companions.

BARK Air announced the details of its inaugural flight from New York to Los Angeles on Instagram, stating, "Right now, at an altitude of 30,000 feet, there is a flight filled with dogs."

In the Instagram post, BARK Air emphasized the unique nature of its service: "Unlike any flight before it, these dogs are not merely an afterthought, nor are they treated as cargo or a burden to the crew and fellow travelers. Here, dogs are the foremost priority. Every single detail of this flight experience has been crafted with a 'dogs-first' mindset." The company revealed that the project had been a decade in the making, adding, "But we are finally confident that we can provide all dogs with the air travel experience they deserve: one that puts them first."

The post received a positive response from users, with one commenting, "This is so exciting. As a veterinarian, I would never put my dog in cargo!" Another user praised the initiative, saying, "Safe travels, pups and peeps! This really is the pawfect flight! Thank you for creating a happy place in the sky where dogs of all breeds and sizes can fly peacefully with their adult humans."

According to its official website, BARK Air is the world's first airline designed primarily for dogs, with their human companions as secondary passengers. The airline offers "white paw service," which includes treats, earmuffs, and beverages for canine passengers. There are no restrictions on the size or breed of dogs allowed on board.

The aircraft are designed with a "dog-centric" layout, enabling dogs to socialize and make friends during the flight. Each ticket purchased includes one human to accompany their dog, and additional tickets can be bought for other passengers if necessary. However, the airline does not allow anyone under 18 years old to fly.

BARK co-founder and CEO Matt Meeker explained the airline's philosophy: "It's a first-class experience for the dog, a business-class experience for people. We... we cater everything to the dog, trying to lower their anxiety and their stress, so they have the most comfortable, fear-free experience on an airplane."

Currently, BARK Air offers one-way and round-trip flights between New York and Los Angeles, as well as between New York and London. The company plans to expand its routes soon. Each flight accommodates 15 dogs and their humans.

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