Meet the jet-setting travel-influencer PUG: ‘Kuma’ has travelled more than most people,


The term ‘international jet setter’ might not immediately evoke images of dogs, yet it’s exactly how to describe Kuma – a dinky hound who has been on around 250 flights.

This New York-based pug is better travelled than most people – and has become something of a travel influencer, attracting nearly 100,000 followers on Instagram and 77,000 on TikTok.  

His antics are documented online by proud owner Sid Henderson, who spoke to MailOnline Travel about his furry flight companion. 

The 38-year-old travels frequently for his job in warehouse automation and brings Kuma with him. 

‘I started travelling with Kuma when he was a puppy, probably five months old,’ Sid says.  

The jet-setting antics of pug Kuma have won him over 170,000 followers on social media. Owner Sid Henderson, from New York, spoke to MailOnline Travel about his flight companion

The jet-setting antics of pug Kuma have won him over 170,000 followers on social media. Owner Sid Henderson, from New York, spoke to MailOnline Travel about his flight companion 

The jet-setting pug began travelling when he was a puppy, and has since been on around 250 flights

The jet-setting pug began travelling when he was a puppy, and has since been on around 250 flights

The two mostly fly with Delta Air Lines from New York airports, including LaGuardia, Newark and JFK. 

Sid says Kuma has visited ‘basically everywhere’ in the U.S, Montreal in Canada, and has even ventured as far as Seoul in South Korea.

He also has flown to several places in Europe, where he perused the streets of Paris and Porto and enjoyed the beaches in Lisbon. 

How does Sid do it? It’s surprisingly easy.  

He says: ‘I’m really discreet with him on the plane. I don’t make a big deal that he’s there, and he just sleeps.’

The seven-year-old pug fits into a small bag and slots underneath Sid’s legs for the entire flight. 

Kuma has visited several cities in Europe, including Paris, Porto and Lisbon (pictured)

Kuma has visited several cities in Europe, including Paris, Porto and Lisbon (pictured)

Kuma is pictured in Seagull Method Café in Lisbon, which Sid says is his 'favourite brunch spot'

Sid revealed that his pug has an amenable temperament while flying: 'I've never noticed any difference with him. He's just as happy.' Kuma is pictured here in Lisbon's Seagull Method Café

Kuma is pictured here in Seagull Method Café in Lisbon, which Sid says is his ‘favourite brunch spot’. He revealed that his pug has an amenable temperament while flying: ‘I’ve never noticed any difference with him. He’s just as happy’

Sid continues: ‘At the end of the flight, I’ll take him out, and usually people are like “I didn’t know there was a pug on the plane”.’

While some dogs may not take to the skies as easily as Kuma, Sid says: ‘I’ve never noticed any difference with him. He’s just as happy.’ 

Sid attributes this to Kuma growing up in a city. He explains: ‘When you grow up in the city, there’s so much craziness around, you get mellowed out a bit.’

Despite Kuma’s calm temperament, Sid says he doesn’t often take him on flights for longer than six or seven hours. That way, ‘if something delays us for a couple of hours, he’s still going to be okay’.

One thing to bear in mind when travelling with pets, Sid says, is to get to the airport early. 

He says: ‘You want to make sure that you have plenty of time to do all your things and have a little bit of extra time in case something slows you down.

‘I let him run around and get rid of his energy first.’

Sid says that airport security searches Kuma for suspicious items before he heads to a ‘pet relief’ area for a bathroom break and to stretch his legs. 

The seven-year-old pug fits into a small carry-on bag and slots underneath Sid's legs in plane cabins

The seven-year-old pug fits into a small carry-on bag and slots underneath Sid’s legs in plane cabins

Kuma mostly flies with Delta Air Lines and is checked by airport security before boarding

Kuma mostly flies with Delta Air Lines and is checked by airport security before boarding

Kuma is pictured here at the Kimpton St Honoré Paris

Kuma is pictured here at the Kimpton St Honoré Paris

Although these aren’t always easy to come by in international airports, Sid says outdoor smoking areas work just as well. 

One of his favourite parts of owning a travelling pug, Sid says, is ‘seeing a wave of smiles’, when Kuma passes by. 

From those travelling and waiting to fly, to cabin crew, pilots and airport security, Sid says that ‘everyone’s natural reaction is a smile’.

But while the reaction to Kuma’s travels has been overwhelmingly positive, Sid says: ‘Kuma doesn’t care that he’s in Paris or Korea, or anywhere else.

‘He really just likes smelling new places.’ 

To see more of Kuma visit him on Instagram www.instagram.com/pugkuma.





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