You’ve probably heard more than one story about people bringing unusual animals on planes by saying that they provide emotional support. Animals like monkeys, iguanas, even snakes! (Despite Samuel L. Jackson’s strongly worded opposition.)
But it looks like The Department of Transportation is planning to narrow it down — a lot. They’re proposing new rules that would greatly restrict the types of emotional support animals allowed on airplanes. Under the new proposal, only dogs that are specifically trained to aid humans as service animals would be allowed on flights. All other animals would have to fly under the normal rules for pets. The DoT says too many passengers “falsely claim their pets are service animals”.
So under the proposed new rules, if you need an emotional support animal on a plane, it probably needs to be the stuffed kind. Here’s a Washington Post article about it: https://www.washingtonpost.com/transportation/2020/01/22/department-transportation-proposes-ban-emotional-support-animals-planes/
It doesn’t really bother me, though I do feel bad for all the penguins, chickens, and turkeys who had dreams of one day flying.