By Erika Owen
April 10, 2015
delta dog monitor
Credit: Instagram user @LovelyLaura123

Let’s play it straight: there’s nothing fun about traveling with a pet. But Sendum Wireless Corp is looking to set pet parents’ minds at ease—using a device previously used to monitor the temperature of seafood. Starting April 1, Delta Airline flyers have the option to shell out $50 to use the device to check in on a pet in a crate in the cargo hold.

Here’s how it works: A device is placed on the animal’s crate that tracks location, temperature, and crate position. If a temperature rises above 85 degrees, the crate topples over, or falls out of the baggage area, a notification is sent to Delta’s call center. Pet owners can check up on their precious cargo online.

To use the service, pet owners must bring their pet to a Delta Cargo facility—not just a checked baggage area. Only 10 participating airports have this facility, which the system’s first caveat.

The other catch? The device can only send alerts while on the ground, since in-flight communication is restricted. Most of the accidents this device is hoping to avoid happen before the plane leaves the runway—think runaway dogs, unintentional crowding while the baggage is being loaded, and the like.

Erika Owen is the Audience Engagement Editor at Travel + Leisure. Follow her on Twitter and Instagram at @erikaraeowen.