The two-year-old dog died while in the cargo hold of a United fight from New York City to San Francisco.
According to a necropsy by her veterinarian, heat stroke was the cause.
Rizer said both Bea and her other dog, Albert, had been cleared by a veterinarian just four days before she flew home about two weeks ago to California after vacationing on the East Coast.
When Rizer and her husband, businessman Alex Mehran, landed in San Francisco, United workers told them Bea had died. One of them, she says, told her, ”This happens a lot.”
“I was completely hysterical, I’m surprised I didn’t get arrested,” Rizer told the New York Daily News.
Rizer also claims that workers lied to her, saying Bea had been taken for a necropsy when she was actually still in the cargo area.
Bea’s body was given to the family later that day, and an autopsy by a family vet showed she had died of heat stroke, said Rizer, a covergirl who modeled for Louis Vuitton, Versace, and Calvin Klein.
A United spokesperson said the airline has transported more than 550,000 pets, with less than .1% of those resulting in deaths.
“That said, I just want to make it clear this isn’t something we’re not sympathetic to, certainly when it does happen it’s devastating,” spokesperson Mary Ryan said.
United is reviewing the incident, and has returned the $1,800 Rizer paid to transport her dog.
(Photo: Maggie Rizer and Bea, via Twitter)
Posted by jwoestendiek September 24th, 2012 under Muttsblog.
Tags: airlines, animals, bea, cargo, dead, death, dies, dogs, flights, golden retriever, heat, heat stroke, hold, maggie rizer, model, pets, supermodel, united airlines
A Jack Russell terrier headed for Maine got lost in New Jersey, spent 10 days wandering in the woods, was found and returned to North Carolina, and is now destined to go back to New Jersey.
It’s a roundabout route to a forever home, but, for five-year-old Piper, it’s a far better fate than that awaiting her had she remained in the North Carolina shelter she was initially pulled from as her euthanasia date approached.
The pilots — among those donate their time to fly dogs facing euthanasia to friendlier locations — made a stop in New Jersey and were taking Piper for a walk when she got frightened by the noise from a nearby drag strip and, with her leash still attached, ran off, the Raleigh News and Observer reported.
She escaped through a hole in the airport’s fence and ran into the woods. Pilots and local residents searched, and they were joined by volunteers from A New Leash on Life, another North Carolina rescue group involved in transporting Piper and the other dogs to a place they might more likely be adopted.
After 10 days, a woman named Cyndi Albujar who lives near the woods spotted Piper while walking her own dog. She placed cat food in a trap. Piper went for it.
A few days later, Piper was on a plane returning to A New Leash on Life, based in Wake Forest, N.C.
But she hasn’t been listed for adoption.
That’s because Albujar, who took a liking to Piper, wants her back.
So, one day soon, Piper will be flying back to New Jersey again — this time for good.
(Photo: Cyndi Albujar (left), with Danella Anderson of A New Leash on Life, volunteer pilot Terry Friedman and Piper; courtesy of Ruf Creek Ranch)
Posted by jwoestendiek June 4th, 2012 under Muttsblog.
Tags: a new leash on life, adopted, adoption, airport, animals, Cyndi Albujar, dog, dogs, euthanasia, flights, flown, forever home, found, home, jack russell, jack russell terrier, kill, lost, maine, new jersey, north carolina, pets, pilots n paws, piper, pulled, rescue, rescued, ruf creek ranch, shelter, terrier, transport, transported, trapped, woods
Pet Airways — viewed as salvation for those who hoped to avoid their dogs traveling, luggage-like, in cargo holds — has hit some turbulence.
Created in 2009 by a California real estate developer, the airline in recent months has canceled flights, leaving dogs and cats stranded and their owners inconvenienced and angry, the New York Times reported Saturday.
“Dog and cat owners are angry about canceled flights. Travel sites are abuzz with complaints, including customers who claim they have not received refunds for paid-for flights. And the company is burning through cash at a rapid rate.”
Alysa Binder, the co-founder of Pet Airways, acknowledged in an e-mail to theTimes that the airline has had some problems procuring planes from contractors and needed to cancel “some flights during the holidays and into the new year.”
“We are a very new company that is pioneering, just as FedEx pioneered the overnight packaging business,” Binder told the Times. “We have ups and downs, but we are keeping our eyes on the long-term goal of providing a safe and comfortable transportation option for the pets.”
The company, which says it has flown more than 7,000 cats and dogs, is still taking reservations, according to its website.
Pet Airways offers service to nine cities. Flights run from about $100 to more than $1,000 each way, and roughly 40 pets can sit in crates in the main cabin (the airline carries pets only), monitored during the trip by a pet attendant.
The airline was a welcome alternative to the major airlines, some of which ban pets in the cabin entirely. Most typically store animals in the plane’s cargo hold, where temperatures can vary wildly and have contributed to deaths. According to the Department of Transportation, 122 dogs died in cargo holds on U.S. airlines between May 2005 and July 2010.
Records indicate Pet Airways had no flights between Dec. 16 and Jan. 16, and it is unclear if it has had any flights since then, according to the Times.
“We are working toward being in the air as soon as we can be assured that the planes are ready for our use,” Binder said.
In a recent regulatory report, the company said it did “not currently have sufficient cash on hand to meet our financing needs … Our auditors have raised substantial doubt about our ability to continue as a going concern.”
Posted by jwoestendiek February 13th, 2012 under Muttsblog.
Tags: air, airlines, alysa binder, angry, animals, canceled, cargo holds, cats, complaints, customers, dog friendly, dogs, financial, flights, new york times, news, pet airways, pets, problems, reservations, stranded, travel, traveling with dogs, traveling with pets
Bulldogs, pugs, and other short-of-snout breeds accounted for about half of the purebred dog deaths on airplanes in the past five years, the data shows.
Overall, 122 dog deaths — 108 of them purebreds — were reported between May 2005, when U.S. airlines were required to start disclosing them, and May 2010, the Transportation Department says.
All the dogs died while being shipped as cargo, as opposed to flying in the cabin.
English bulldogs accounted for the highest number, with 25 deaths. Second highest were pugs, 11 of which died. Seven golden retrievers, six French bulldogs and four American Staffordshire terriers died while flying as cargo in that period. And boxers, cockapoos, Pekingese and Pomeranians accounted for two deaths each.
You can see the full list here.
The Department of Transportation says dog owners should consult with veterinarians before putting their dogs on planes. It believes that the deaths represent a tiny percentage of the pets shipped on airlines.
Short-nose breeds — known as “brachycephalic” — in addition to being less tolerant of heat, have a skull formation that affects their airways, Dan Bandy, chairman of the Bulldog Club of America’s health committee, told the Associated Press.
“The way all dogs cool themselves is basically through respiration, either just panting or the action of breathing in or out, is a method of heat exchange for them,” Bandy said. “A dog that has a long snout or a long muzzle has more surface area within its nasal cavity for that heat exchange to take place. So breeds like labradors or collies or those types of dogs with the long muzzles have a more efficient cooling system.”
Bandy said that in addition to trying to cool themselves, dogs may also pant excessively in the cargo hold because of stress or excitement. But he believes dogs shouldn’t be given tranquilizers before flying because that makes them less able to manage their own cooling process. In addition, airlines generally do not want pets tranquilized, he added.
In all, 144 pet deaths were reported by airlines over the past five years, along with 55 injuries and 33 lost pets.
Posted by jwoestendiek July 18th, 2010 under Muttsblog.
Tags: air, air travel, airline, animals, boxers, bulldogs, cargo, deaths, dog, dogs, federal, flight, flights, flying, government, health, length, news, nose, pekingese, pets, pugs, purebred, risk, safety, short, snout, transportation, travel
Pet Airways — the animal-only airline we told you about last month — has added Baltimore to the list of cities it will serve.
The flights, which will start in July, will travel to Los Angeles, Denver, Chicago and New York.
Pets will fly in kennel crates in the main cabin of the aircraft, watched over by a flight attendant, and tickets will start at $149 each way.
For a list of the airports served, click here.
Posted by jwoestendiek May 1st, 2009 under Muttsblog.
Tags: air travel, airfare, airline, animals, baltimore, cats, chicago, denver, dog, dogs, flights, fly, new york, pet, pet airways, pets, travel
Pet Airways, of Delray Beach, said Thursday it will begin operating weekly flights July 14 between New York, Washington D.C., Chicago, Denver and Los Angeles.
The airline will use commuter planes operated by Suburban Airlines and the average fare will be about $250 each way, said Alysa Binder, founder and executive vice president.
There are tentative plans to expand to Fort Lauderdale Executive Airport and other major cities by the end of the year, according to the South Florida Sun-Sentinel.
The start-up of Pet Airways comes as major commercial airlines have increased their pet travel fees and tightened restrictions to discourage pets flying in cabins. Pets flying Pet Airways will not travel in the cargo hold.
“For us, it’s all about the safety and the comfort of the pets,” Binder said.
Pet Airways “pawsengers” – as Binder calls them – will fly in a 19-seat turbo-prop passenger plane, the Beech 1900. The seats will be removed and planes will be fully-lit and climate-controlled. The airline will have pet check-in lounges and a Web site where customers can book reservations and track their pet’s travel progress.
Posted by jwoestendiek April 20th, 2009 under Muttsblog.
Tags: air travel, airlines, airplane, alysa binder, cabin, cargo, cat, cats, chicago, delray beach, denver, dog, dogs, fares, fees, flights, fly, los angeles, new york, passenger, pet airways, pets, plane, suburban airlines, washington