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Another new air-side pet relief area at New York’s JFK airport (T4)

Not too long ago, I described, with breathless excitement, the new T5 Rooftop (or “Wooftop,” per JetBlue’s cheerful goofiness) pet relief area at JFK. The excitement was partly because it’s such a lovely location, and partly because it joins a still short list of pet relief areas located on the “air” side of the security line (most pet relief areas are, inconveniently for travelers continuing to another destination, on the “land” side of security). Faithful reader Jenna left a comment telling me of another new air-side pet relief area at JFK, in Terminal 4, and on our most recent flight, we had a chance to check it out.

A quick recap of the JFK pet relief situation: Port Authority’s web site currently only tells travelers about its land-side pet relief areas — and precious little info it provides, too, saying merely that “These areas are located in the arrivals area of each terminal. Follow the signs in the baggage claim areas or ask a Customer Care Representative for information” (Port Authority positively affirms that “There are no pet relief areas beyond security checkpoints in any of the terminals at the Port Authority airports,” but that is obviously no longer true — there are indoor pet relief areas in T4 and T5). Dog Jaunt has more details about the land-side pet relief area at T5; if you visit the other land-side pet relief areas at JFK, please send me your notes and photos! There are six terminals altogether at JFK, so there’s plenty of information still to collect.

The new air-side pet relief area in Terminal 4 is located, largely speaking, between Gate B31 and the Hudson shop just to its, well, south (the direction away from Baggage Claim). More specifically, it’s located between the restrooms at the head (or foot, depending on your approach) of the moving walkway.

Here's what to look for, approaching the pet relief area from the north (or, heading away from Baggage Claim). The door is on the left, just before that sign for the men's restroom.

Here’s what to look for, approaching the pet relief area from the direction of Gates B20 to B31. The door is on the left, just before the water fountains and that sign for the men’s restroom.

Now you can see the door the pet relief area — or can you? Better signage is needed, JFK T4 folks!

Now you can see the door to the pet relief area — or can you? Better signage is needed, JFK T4 folks!

Here's the front door, from straight on.

Here’s the front door, from straight on.

And here's the view into the room. This is, in fact, the only way you can see the whole room at once. It. is. small.

And here’s the view into the room. This is, in fact, the only way you can see the whole room at once. It. is. small.

Taking it from left to right, there's a sink, source of poop bags...

Taking it from left to right, there’s a sink…

A source of poop bags and a trashcan...

A source of poop bags and a trashcan…

And a sliver of Astroturf, with Chloe for scale.

And a sliver of Astroturf, with Chloe for scale.

There is also, bless them, a very prominent sign (and massive paw print decals) inside the room. At some planning meeting, someone must have worried about Mistakes Being Made by travelers in a hurry.

There is also a very prominent sign (and massive paw print decals) INSIDE the room. At some planning meeting, someone must have worried about Mistakes Being Made by travelers in a hurry.

Yet again, I sincerely wish this pet relief area had a (small) bench to rest my belongings on. Extricating Chloe from her bag in mid-air is always fraught, and there are no good alternatives (the sink is hands-free, so you can’t put anything on its rim; the top of the trash can is a potential option, and it still seems fairly young and fresh, as trash cans go, but still — a clean bench would be helpful).

This post is part of an ongoing series of reviews of airport pet relief areas we’ve visited. To see others, visit Dog Jaunt’s handy guide to airport pet relief areas.

1 comment

  • Amy Love

    I am so thankful to have found this discussion on animal relief areas. The fact that it is a law that animal relief areas exist in airports in the United States of America (as I understand it) speaks to the miraculousness of our country.
    Currently, I am in the process of trying to figure out where in the world I can fly to overseas. I have discovered that there is an animal relief area in the Dublin airport in Ireland, yet it is in “Departures.” I am speaking with multiple individuals to make arrangements for my service dog to relieve herself after the long flight. Though I have been talking to the disability person at the airport, as well as several other people, we still have not found a solution. I hope that someone can meet me and walk to the “Arrivals” terminal animal relief area.
    Thus, if anyone knows of an airport in Europe or the Middle East that has an animal relief area in the arrivals terminal, could you please let me know. My beloved service dog is almost fifteen, so I am not going to fly until I find an airport which is respectful to animals.
    I am grateful to have found your blog so that I can write about this. Furthermore, thank you to everyone who is putting together the information about animal relief areas all in one place.

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