Delta Airlines alarmed owners of several show dogs on a flight leaving from JFK International Airport after the Westminster Dog Show in NYC. According to KOMO News, the dogs were never loaded onto the Boeing 737 heading non-stop to Seattle.
The animals’ owners on the plane noticed that their carriers were never loaded onto the cargo section of the aircraft. Greg Gorder was responsible for getting a standard Poodle named Paris back home, but the dog wasn’t even aboard the aircraft. Flight attendants reassured passengers on the Delta plane that the show dogs were on the plane.
One of the dog owners used a DeltaFly app to find out where the crates were. Luggage tags allow passengers to track movement of their luggage. The tracking in this instance revealed that some of the dogs weren’t loaded onto the plane. When it was discovered the show dogs weren’t on the plane, owners were given the choice to fly without them or take a later flight until Delta could find the dogs. All of the owners exited the plane.
It took airport personnel up to four hours looking for the dogs. One dog had flown out on another flight without her owner, Jennifer Dawson. She was furious with the airline for their error.
Delta Airlines spokesman, Mike Thomas, tells KOMO News that there was “limited space in the cargo compartment.” This allegedly prevented the dogs from traveling all on one flight.
Thomas continues that Delta looked after the show dogs because they “remained in Delta’s constant care while the airline worked to re-accommodate both the customers and their animals.”
Delta’s show dog mishap resulted in the airline apologizing to the dog owners and offered a free overnight stay at a hotel near JFK in addition to a $200 refund on dog fees, and VIP service at the airport. The dogs even got their own seats on the cabin flying back to Seattle. Paris was pictured sitting in her own airplane seat from JFK to Seattle.
According to Westminster Kennel Club spokesman, David Frier, this is a horrible thing for owners of prestigious dogs to go through. He tells New York Daily News that it may not seem like a big to some, but it’s catastrophic for dog owners.
“It’s not as tragic as it seems unless it’s your dog,” Frier says.
Delta’s handling of the show dogs didn’t go over well with the owners. Thankfully, the owners were reunited with their prize show dogs.
[Photo by Andrew Burton/Getty Images]