LAX PUPs program celebrates 10th anniversary.

A Ten-Year Tail

Story and photos courtesy Airports

At the PUPs program’s tenth anniversary celebration May 10 in Terminal 1.

Just in time for summer holiday travel, the LAX Pets Unstressing Passengers (PUPs) held a paw-ty May 10 to celebrate the program’s tenth anniversary. A pup parade and special giveaways for passengers marked the day.

The celebration took place in Terminal 1 in partnership with Southwest Airlines.

The LAX PUPs program is a division of LAX Guest Services and began in April 2013 to enhance the passenger experience at the airport. The program has served as a model for more than 90 airports which have started similar programs nationally and internationally.

The program launched with 30 therapy dogs ten years ago. To date, the program has grown to 80 canine participants and handlers who volunteer their time to meet and greet passengers in every LAX terminal and help relieve some of the stress and anxiety that is often associated with flying.

Dogs of all sizes and breeds are welcome to apply to join the program as long as the animals and handlers meet the program’s requirements, including serving at least one year with a recognized pet therapy organization. All the dogs are privately owned, and the majority come from local shelters or rescue groups