An incident took place this week on a United Airlines flight that resulted in a dog dying after a flight attendant ordered the owner to put the animal in an overhead bin.
The aviation website “The Points Guy” reported Tuesday, March 13, that a passenger boarded United flight 1284 from Houston to New York’s Laguardia airport. The passenger, carrying a dog inside a TSA-approved carrier, was ordered by a flight attendant to place the carrier in the overhead bin.
“The passengers reported hearing barking for part of the flight,” the story stated. “By the end of the trip, horrified passengers found the dog had died in flight.”
Maggie Gremminger, a passenger on the flight, claimed the flight attendant denied knowing a dog was inside the carrier. However, she recalls another passenger saying he heard the flight attendant say, “You need to put your dog up here.”
“The passenger adamantly pushed back, sharing verbally that her dog was in the bag,” Gremminger said. “The flight attendant continued to ask the passenger to do it, and she eventually complied. By the end of the flight, the dog was dead. The woman was crying in the airplane aisle on the floor.”
Gremminger later posted a photo of the devastated pet owner sitting alongside her children at the terminal, next to a soft-sided dog carrier on the floor.
After the event, the Chicago-based airline issued a statement expressing regret about the incident.
“This was a tragic accident that should never have occurred, as pets should never be placed in the overhead bin,” United Airlines stated to NBC 5. “We assume full responsibility for this tragedy and express our deepest condolences to the family and are committed to supporting them. We are thoroughly investigating what occurred to prevent this from ever happening again.”