Lilou therapy pig

Image via SFO

Dogs have been easing travel anxiety at airports since Mineta San Jose International Airport introduced them after 9/11. An estimated 30 airports across the US now have therapy dogs on duty – there is even a dedicated airport therapy dog Twitter account. In this “fluff” piece, we look at some of the other species that have migrated to airports to give travelers a warm and fuzzy feeling.

LiLou the Pig at SFO

LiLou pig

Image via @lilou_sfpig on Instagram

LiLou, the first known airport therapy pig in the US, joined San Francisco International Airport’s (SFO) team of certified pets, the Wag Brigade, in 2016. She often sports costumes and panted nails, and enjoys hogging the limelight by playing her piano.

Stitches the Cat at MSP

No we’re not kitten, there really is a tabico cat at Minneapolis-St. Paul International Airport (MSP)! The airport welcomed its first-ever therapy feline via Twitter last Friday. Stitches is 11 years old and has been working as a therapy animal for three years, visiting nursing homes. Her idea of a purr-fect way to relax is watching Law & Order: Special Victims Unit, according to her owner.

Miniature Horses at CVG

Image via Seven Oaks Farm on Instagram

Mini therapy horses from Ohio’s Seven Oaks Farm began trotting into Cincinnati/Northern Kentucky International Airport (CVG) in 2016. – and it looks like there here to st-hay! According to Seven Oaks Farm’s Instagram account, the horses visited CVG as recently as August. Lisa Moad, Seven Oaks Farm owner, said it behooves her to bring her mini horses to the airport, as travelers are very grateful. “The passengers love seeing the horses,” she said. “A lot of them thank us for being there at that time because they needed that little bit of support before they get on the plane.”

Baby Alligators at MSY

baby alligator MSY

Image via Louis Armstrong New Orleans International Airport

Baby alligators started welcoming travelers arriving at Louis Armstrong New Orleans International Airport in November of last year. Each Friday afternoon, the Audubon Nature Institute brings baby alligators to the baggage claim area to post for selfies with travelers, before saying “see ya later” and continuing on to their final destination.

Miniature Goats at DEN

goat yoga DEN

Image via Denver International Airport on YouTube

Denver International Airport brought a holiday surprise to travelers in 2017 in the form of goat yoga. “We believe there’s so much more to the airport experience than you expect. It should be relaxing, fun and unexpected,” the airport explained. “I feel like I just walked into another world, like I’m not in the airport anymore,” was one traveler’s response.