Cargo area for bags, not Fido

Published Oct 23, 2013 at 6:00 am (Updated Oct 23, 2013 at 10:34 am)

The incident in which Air Canada reportedly lost a dog named Larry between flights and then informed its employees—via a leaked email—that they should “just ignore” the situation is a reminder of why we should never ship our animal companions like luggage.

Every year, animals are lost, injured and killed on flights. Cats and dogs have escaped after their carriers were damaged in transit and become lost inside airplanes and hangars. Others, like Larry, have apparently bolted, never to be seen again, after airline employees let them out during layovers. And many have been cooked alive or died of hypothermia inside planes' cargo holds, which can quickly reach deadly temperature extremes because they are designed for luggage—not living beings.

If you must fly with your animal, always take him or her in the cabin with you. If your animal is too large or unsuited for flying, it's far safer and less stressful to drive your pet to your destination or leave it at home with a trusted caretaker.

Visit for more tips on traveling with animals.

Lindsay Pollard-Post

The PETA Foundation

Norfolk, VA

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