Hamster flushed down rest room after school pupil’s pet denied flight on Spirit Airways


A beloved pet hamster that was flushed down a bathroom has grow to be the newest controversial case in airways versus individuals looking for to journey with emotional help animals.

Belen Aldecosea, 21, on Thursday accused Spirit Airways of inflicting her to tearfully flush Pebbles the hamster down a bathroom in an airport lavatory after the corporate refused to let her carry the pet on a flight as an emotional help animal, in line with lawyer Adam Goodman.

Belen Aldecosea holds her pet hamster, Pebbles.Courtesy Belen Aldecosea

Aldecosea made the selection after Spirit staffers allegedly informed her earlier than her journey that she may carry her pet and later refused to let the animal on her flight at Baltimore–Washington Worldwide Airport on Nov. 21, Goodman stated.

“It is a horrible state of affairs. We hope that nobody ever has to undergo a state of affairs like this,” he informed NBC Information Thursday. “It is a actually tiny, small innocuous animal that doesn’t trigger issues. Actually, the airways and TSA shouldn’t have given her any issues about it if she had the suitable medical documentation.”

Goodman stated that Aldecosea was informed by cellphone by an airline worker that she may fly with Pebbles as an emotional help animal, however then wouldn’t let her on the flight along with her hamster.

Aldecosea is alleging that an airline consultant then advised she flush the animal down a bathroom, in line with Goodman. The faculty pupil had some ongoing medical points and wanted to catch a flight dwelling to Florida, he stated. Aldecosea had a benign, however painful development on her neck and was touring to Florida as a result of she was withdrawing from college and having the expansion checked out by a health care provider, he stated.

Image: Belen AldecoseaBelen AldecoseaCourtesy Belen Aldecosea

She was a pupil at Wilson Faculty in Pennsylvania on the time and is now a pupil in Texas, he stated.

She tried to search out alternate modes of journey, however Aldecosea is simply too younger to lease a automotive on her personal and there was a scarcity of different choices due to the Thanksgiving vacation, Goodman stated, leaving the younger girl with a “horrendous” choice to make.

“Spirit informed her what to do. She thought she was following the foundations,” he stated. “Finally, the airline didn’t present what they stated they have been going to supply for her.”

Spirit Airways strongly denied the allegation that an worker advised she flush the hamster.

“After researching this incident, we will say confidently that at no level did any of our brokers counsel this Visitor (or some other for that matter) ought to flush or in any other case injure an animal,” airline spokesman Derek Dombrowski stated in a press release to NBC Information.

“It’s extremely disheartening to listen to this Visitor reportedly determined to finish her personal pet’s life,” the assertion added.

Associated: Emotional help peacock denied flight by United Airways

Spirit’s spokesman stated {that a} reservation consultant “sadly, did misinform the Visitor {that a} hamster was permitted to fly as an emotional help animal on Spirit Airways.”

The airline stated when Aldecosea confirmed as much as the airport with the hamster brokers gave her the chance to take a later flight “so she had time to search out different lodging for the animal.”

Spirit Airways says on its web site that it “doesn’t settle for snakes, different reptiles, rodents, ferrets, and spiders.”

Dombrowski stated Aldecosea was initially scheduled to take a ten:39 a.m. flight on Nov. 21 however ended up taking a flight at 7:42 p.m. as an alternative.

Aldecosea took the later flight with out additional incident, he stated. Dombrowski added that the airline provided Aldecosea a voucher, however by no means heard again from her.

Goodman stated he and Aldecosea have been “going to look into all authorized treatments and decide.”

Aldecosea informed the Miami Herald that the entire ordeal was “horrifying.”

“I used to be emotional. I used to be crying. I sat there for a great 10 minutes crying within the stall,” she stated.

Associated: Delta units new tips on service animals allowed on board

The hamster incident got here after a separate airline turned away an emotional help peacock at a New Jersey airport final month. United Airways stated the fowl didn’t meet its tips.

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Additionally in January, Delta Airways issued new necessities in terms of emotional help animals.

The Division of Transportation’s tips for air journey with service animals states “uncommon animals are evaluated on a case by case foundation” and that airways might exclude animals which can be too giant or heavy to accommodate within the flight cabin, pose a direct menace to the well being or security of others, may trigger a major disruption of service or are prohibited from getting into a international nation.

Airways are additionally by no means required to just accept snakes, reptiles, rodents, ferrets, or spiders.


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