BUSINESSMEN and holidaymakers can now fly into London Oxford Airport with their furry friends after it became one of the few airports approved as a UK entry point for pets.

It has been authorised by the Government to handle the transport of dogs, cats and ferrets under the Pet Travel Scheme.

Staff at the airport in Kidlington have been trained to meet pets and their owners on arrival and carry out pre-disembarkation checks, such as checking pet passports and scanning animal microchips.

It is only the second business aviation centre able to offer pet travel services, following Biggin Hill, in Kent.

Heathrow, Gatwick, Manchester, Bristol and Doncaster airports offer the service on airline flights.

London Oxford Airport’s head of customer services, David Surley, said: “We’re thrilled to be only the second business jet centre and one of only a handful of UK airports that’s fully equipped to handle inbound pets from overseas.

“The regulations are some of the most rigid in operation worldwide, but they’re a lifeline for those who wish or need to travel with their furry friends.

“This development is an unusual but extremely well-liked diversification from the airport’s standard business aviation activities.”

Four aircraft operators have so far been given consent to fly pets into or via london Oxford Airport by the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, including Air Med, which is based at the airport.