Amtrak's allowing cats and dogs on trains disses people with allergies
Thanks to Amtrak’s new policy, Mark Ferrante now takes Lucky along on his trips. Photograph by Andrew Propp, Washingtonian Magazine.
I am surprised that none of the articles I've seen (e.g., "Dogs and cats can now go choo-choo: Amtrak tests pets," Washington Post; "Want to take dog on Amtrak train? Next month you can," Detroit Free Press;" "You Can Take Your Dogs (or Cats!) on Amtrak Now," Washingtonian Magazine) about Amtrak's new policy allowing people to bring cats and dogs on board trains--albeit with restrictions such as that they have to stay in carriers, and the carrier+pet can't be more than 20 pounds--fails to consider that 15% of the US population is allergic to cats and dogs, especially cats.
Remember that most seats are unreserved. Amtrak's new policy is that someone with an allergic reaction should ask to be re-seated.
But over time, all the cars likely will be "tainted" with dander. It's not like Amtrak will designate certain cars as "no pets" just as they do "Quiet Cars."
Labels: transportation planning