When a passenger decided to travel with his beloved dogs, an adult and a puppy named Shon, he had no choice but to fly both animals in the aircraft’s cargo hold because of the airline’s regulations. He loaded each dog in a separate crate and watched with apprehension as they were left on the tarmac, along with travelers’ suitcases, when the flight was delayed. Both dog crates were allegedly handled roughly and exposed to the elements—and only the adult dog made it to end of the journey alive.
Every year, frightened companion animals such as Shon (pictured above) are lost, injured, or even killed after being flown in aircraft cargo holds. Airline employees sometimes let dogs out of their carriers during layovers—and many are never seen again. Some animals sustain fatal injuries when their carriers are jostled or banged by baggage, and others become lost when carriers are damaged and animals escape. Dogs and cats can be cooked alive when cargo-hold temperatures become deadly in minimally ventilated spaces meant to transport luggage, not living beings.
“This is not a lost suitcase or a broken iPad. This is a beloved dead pet,” says Shon’s guardian.
That is why PETA urges travelers to leave animals with trusted friends, family members, or “pet” sitters during vacations. If you must fly with your animals, find an airline that allows them to fly in the passenger cabin—the lives of your companion animals may depend on it!
Posted by Edwina Baier