TSA Cutest Canines

TSA’s Cutest Canine + Airport Open Spaces


Dina wins TSA’s 2023 Cutest Canine Contest

The votes are in. And Dina, a three-year-old German Shorthaired Pointer (GSP) explosives detection canine at Harry Reid International Airport (LAS), is the winner of the Transportation Security Administration’s (TSA) 2023 Cutest Canine Contest.

The contestants came from a field of 92 dogs nominated by TSA handlers from airports across the country. TSA employees weighed in and narrowed the field to four finalists. The public then voted on social media (X, Instagram and Facebook) for the cutest TSA canine of them all.

You’ll next see Dina on the front cover of TSA’s 2024 canine calendar, which will be released later this year.

Where to find fresh air at an airport

The Stuck at the Airport team is pleased to share some thoughts about the past and present of outdoor observation decks at airports for this Wall Street Journal article (subscription may be required to access).

Once a feature of almost every airport, outdoor spaces – especially free to access open spaces – are hard to find at airport terminals nationwide.

But you can find them. And, we’re happy to report, some new ones are on the horizon.

We love the outdoor decks (one pre-security, one post-security) at San Francisco International Airport (SFO), the patios at Denver International Airport (DEN), the ‘wooftop’ at JetBlue’s Terminal 5 at JFK International Airport (JFK), and the outdoor gardens at Honolulu International Airport (HNL).

And we’re looking forward to the outdoor spaces that will part of the new terminal being built for Pittsburgh International Airport (PIT).

(SFO Airport post-security outdoor deck)

(Denver International Airport outdoor patio)

(Gardens at HNL, Honolulu’s Daniel K. Inouye International Airport)

Do you know of outdoor decks and public spaces at other airports? Share your favorites in the comments section below.

Airports have gone to the dogs

Thursday was National Dog Day and airports went all out to celebrate their favorite pooches.

First, let’s congratulate Alona, who works at Mccarran International Airport in Las Vegas, who is this year’s winner of the TSA’s Cutest Canine contest.

Here are some of the other working dogs at airports around the country who got some extra love and attention on National Dog Day too. All winners.

Did we miss the pups at your favorite airport? Let us know and we’ll add them to the list.

Vote for TSA’s Cutest Canine

Here’s something cute and furry for a Friday.

National Dog Day is coming up on August 26. And in preparation for that holiday, the Transportation Security Administration (TSA) is having a contest to pick the cutest canine from its roster of more than 1000 dogs trained to sniff out explosives.

Four furry finalists were in the running, chosen from those nominated by their handlers.

To narrow it down to a winner, the first match-up took place on Wednesday, August 19 between two of the finalists.

And it looks like Kajila from Honolulu’s Daniel Inouye International Airport (HNL) won that round.

On Thursday, August 20, the public was asked to pick their favorite between pup Lexa-Alexey from Dallas Fort Worth International Airport (DFW) and Ron, who works at Oakland International Airport (OAK).

Voting in this second round ends early Friday morning.

On Friday, August 21, the winners of the first two rounds will go head to head, with the overall winner to be announced on August 26, National Dog Day.

You can vote on TSA’s InstagramTwitter and Facebook.

TSA’s explosives detection canines have serious job descriptions.

They’re tasked with screening passengers, cargo, mass-transit, and maritime systems, and they support other security missions. Each dog is specially trained and paired with a TSA handler.

If you see these dogs at the airport, you may want to pet them.

Don’t do that.

TSA says that “While TSA canines are sociable, they are working dogs and they should not be petted or fed by anyone except their handlers.”