Photo of the Day

New York’s JFK Airport Builds World’s First Animal Terminal

Paradise 4 Paws Artist rendition of Paradise 4 Paws (Photo: ARK Development/AP)
25 / 30

Flying with your four-legged friend can be a stressful affair for both you and the animal, whether he's traveling in the cargo hold or in the cabin. But a new facility just for animals at New York's JFK airport could soon turn Fido into a real travel hound.

The facility, scheduled to open in 2016, will be called The ARK, after Noah's famous floating menagerie. In addition to a veterinary hospital and quarantine facilities for both domestic and wild animals, it will offer everyday travelers the option of leaving their pooch, kitty or other pet at day care, or simply stopping by for a grooming or to let the animal stretch its legs during a long layover. 

For $50 a day dogs will be able to enjoy a luxury resort complete with bone-shaped splashing pools, "pawdicures" and massage therapy. Cats will have trees to climb, and all the creatures will be under the care of a 24-hour vet clinic led by Cornell University. While you're away, you can keep an eye on your pet through The ARK's webcams. 

Animals waiting to travel as cargo will also spend time at the ARK before departure and while they eagerly await their owner after landing.

“The Port Authority is proud to partner with ARK to make air travel at JFK more humane for animals and convenient for pet owners,” said Port Authority Chairman David Samson in a press release back in 2012.

Aaron S. Perl, MD, managing director of The ARK, said in May, “With demand for pets and animals of all kinds transported by air escalating year on year, we recognized the need for a more humane and efficient model for this significant segment of the air travel industry."

Horses, cattle and birds will find state-of-the-art accommodations here, too. There's even a special facility planned for penguins to mate in privacy.

The facility is being built on the site of an unused cargo terminal. Planes will have direct access to the building for loading and unloading.