A family who flew from Houston to NY made a horrifying discovery when they landed Monday night after a United Airlines attendant told them to store their 10-month-old French Bulldog in the overhead bin. She initially placed the dog under the seat in front of her.
"There was no sound as we landed and opened his kennel", passenger June Lara writes in a Facebook post. "We assume full responsiblity for this tragedy and express our deepest condolences to the family and are committed to supporting them". This poor family paid $125 for their pet to be murdered in front of them.
But Gremminger said the flight attendant, whose name she did not know, appeared distraught after the flight in NY when she learned that the dog had died. She said the owner was instructed to put her dog there shortly after she boarded with two children, one of whom was an infant.
United said it was taking responsibility for the incident on the Monday night flight, saying pets should never be put in the overhead storage compartment.
However, Gremminger said a flight attendant came by, and told the woman she would need to put the bag in the overhead bin because it did not fit properly under the seat. 'I held her baby as the mother attempted to resuscitate their 10 month old puppy.
A spokesperson for United said the airline will investigate the dog's death "to prevent this from ever happening again". Lara claimed that flight attendants said the dog would be safe inside the compartment for three hours during the flight. "My heart is broken", Gremminger tweeted along with photo of the passenger.
The airline has said it will refund the cost of the tickets and pay for an autopsy as well.
According to the AP, 18 animals died on United flights previous year, compared with six on all other USA carriers combined.
According to United's website, its policy for onboard pets is: "A pet traveling in a cabin must be carried in an approved hard-sided or soft-sided kennel".
And last February, USA Today reported 53 animals had died between January 2012 and February 2017 on United flights, according to the Transportation Department's Air Travel Consumer Report.