The new 3,750-square-metre (40,000-square-feet) hangar has 42 stalls for large animals like the huge number of polo ponies and racehorses that pass through continental Europe’s biggest hub every year, or even for the odd rhino or elephant.
There are also 39 smaller boxes, special aviaries and 12 individual, temperature-adjustable climatic chambers providing space for a variety of species, said the firm behind the facility, Lufthansa Cargo.
Every year 14,000 dogs and cats pass through Frankfurt Airport, as well as 1,500 polo ponies and racehorses and 3,000 tonnes of tropical fish. There is even the odd tiger or penguin.
To prevent any bruised trunks, the new facility is fitted with non-slip asphalt floors which are “more pleasant and comfortable for animals than traditional concrete,” the firm said.
Not only that, but built-in partitions ensure no unwanted contact between guests, and if any jet-lagged orangutan does not want to hear the hyenas in stall 17, further sound-proof subdivisions are possible.
The facility even caters for mothers and babies – or rather mares with foals for example – and surveillance cameras ensure no prize chihuahua or pricey koi carp is stolen.
The new facility replaces two older hangars and will have 25 vets and 60 caretakers on hand.