Unfriendly Skies for Animal Companions

Posted on by Ashley Fruno

I received an e-mail recently, and sadly it describes a situation that we see too often. On May 29, the proud guardian of a 7-month-old puppy received a call from his sister with heartbreaking news: His beloved dog Sasha, who was flown from Manila to Los Angeles International Airport (LAX) via Philippine Airlines, had died en route.

Sprightly and spunky when he left Manila, Sasha was provided with plenty of food and water, and the staff of the Philippines’ flag carrier fastened Sasha’s traveling crate with supposedly tamper-proof tie wraps. Nevertheless, by the time the plane touched down on the LAX tarmac, Vasquez’s beloved companion was no more than a lifeless corpse.

Philippine Airlines simply handed Sasha’s body—along with the dog’s carrier, which had showed signs of serious tampering and a lack of secure fastening—to Vasquez’s sister.

Shipping an animal in the cargo hold of a plane is extremely dangerous, and fatal incidents such as this one are not uncommon. Since cargo holds generally have no air conditioning, they can reach extreme temperatures—especially if the plane is delayed or has to make multiple stops.

To prevent these tragic incidents from occurring, please never put an animal in the cargo hold of a plane. If you can’t take your animal companion into the cabin with you, then think about a road trip. If that’s not an option, think about leaving your loved one at home.

You can learn more about the dangers that animal companions face during airline travel by clicking here. Remember: The last thing that you’d want is for a family member to be treated like a piece of luggage!

Posted by Jason Baker