Spirit airlines refused to let a person board the plane with their certified spirit comforting animal, though this dwarf Hamster is allowed by the U.S. Transportation Safety Administration. She said airline personnel suggested that she flush it down the toilet. Lawsuit pending, of course. I wonder if one can take a comforting cricket on a plane flight?
My simple solution:
Staying as far away as possible from things which remain aloft ONLY while consuming tonnage of fuels.
As long as one doesn't fall out of the sky & land on top of me - its all good !!
What a sad story. Sad for the young lady, sadder yet (and terminal) for the hamster, who did nothing wrong. And regarding the probably-pending lawsuit, without anything in writing to document what the first airline employee told her, she will likely have a very hard time convincing a judge (and/or jury) that that was indeed what happened, even though many (all?) of us have had our issues with airline service at one time or another.
We seem to see more and more emotional support animals wherever we go, which on the whole is probably a good thing; after all, most animals give love and loyalty unconditionally, which must be just the ticket for those who need a little extra companionship.
Emotional support pokemon. ;p
Elsewhere on the internet, I've seen some predictable responses about this.
It's interesting that those responses come from the same people who say gun violence can only be addressed by better mental health policies and who also call people with emotional support animals, "snowflakes".
Firstly, the support animal is a consequence of addressing mental health issues, so why now voice derision about it?
Secondly, a little hamster is not going to bother a fellow passenger, so why does it bother internet commentators so much? Who is really the "snowflake"?
The problem with emotional support animals is that people take advantage of the situation. You can get the documents on the internet, if you want. Some people just like to bring their pets along without paying $100, each way, to ship them in the cargo hold-- so they get fraudulent emotional support documents and try to take them into the cabin.
It can be hard to tell the honest people from the fakers.
I'm sure you saw the article about the problem with the emotional support peacock, last week. I would definitely call that person a snowflake.
What if someone brought an emotional support boa constrictor and had the proper paperwork? Should the other passengers have to fly with that?
I think it's all going to come to a head when I try to fly with my emotional support alpaca, next month...
Of course people take advantage of situations. This is America!
But obviously a hamster is different to a peacock, boa constrictor, alpaca etc.
And airlines are allowed to restrict unusual animals so there goes that strawman.
I don't think a hamster is that unusual.
I fly with my dog (< 20lbs.) quite often. Generally speaking, if the animal fits in an airline approved carrier that is able to be stowed under the seat, it's deemed ok (with prior notice and proper paperwork).
Flying boa constrictor? Did you mean a dragon?