It's been a rough couple of months for United Airlines when it comes to issues surrounding animals: First, the infamous peacock kerfuffle, in which a performance artist was prohibited from boarding a flight with her "emotional support peacock" Dexter led the airline to change its support animal policy. Last April, a famous pet bunny died in transit. (And that was during a slew of bad PR during the same period for the airline, which saw teens in leggings barred from flying, and a viral video showing a bloody passenger being dragged forcibly off an overbooked flight).
And now, United has to contend with another animal-related tragedy in flight.
The Points Guy reported that a flight attendant forced a passenger flying United from Houston to New York to stow her dog in the overhead compartment. The dog did not survive the flight.
The company is not standing behind the flight attendant's decision. The airline's policy requires pets to be placed in a hard or soft sided kennel and placed under the passenger's seat for the duration of a flight.
A spokesperson for United told the publication in a statement, "This was a tragic accident that should never have occurred, as pets should never be placed in the overhead bin. 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."
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