A dog died during a layover in Michigan on a Delta Airlines flight from Phoenix to Newark, New Jersey.
According to a CNN report, Alejandro, an 8-year-old Pomeranian, died in a cargo facility at Detroit Metropolitan Airport during the flight’s layover. Airline officials immediately notified the dog’s owners.
Alejandro’s owners, Michael Dellegrazie and his girlfriend, traveled from Phoenix to Newark, and they planned to pick their dog up at the end of the flight.
“There was a stop in Detroit at 6 a.m. Alejandro was checked on. He was alive. Then between 8 a.m. and 8:30 a.m. he was checked on again and he was dead,” according to Dellegrazie’s attorney, Evan Oshan.
Not surprisingly, Dellegrazie and his family are heartbroken at the loss of their beloved pet.
“The family is very upset. This is essentially their family member who died. To say they are upset is a gross understatement,” their attorney said.
Alejandro was found dead with fluids and vomit in his cage, as well as blood stains on the blanket when the airline checked on him again, according to a Fox News report. Delta is investigating what led to the pet’s death, and have offered to have the dog’s body examined to help determine the cause of death, but the family declined.
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“We know pets are an important member of the family and we are focused on the well-being of all animals we transport. As part of that review, we want to find out more about why this may have occurred to ensure it doesn’t happen again,” the airline said in a statement.
Alejandro’s owner spoke to WDIV-TV.
“We lost a family member. That’s exactly what happened, and somebody has to be responsible for it. He was in their care and they didn’t take care of him.”
While Delta isn’t sure what led to the dog dying in their custody, the airline wants to figure it out so that it does not happen again in the future.
Unfortunately, this has been a rough season for animals on flights. In fact, in March, United Airlines also had a dog death occur.
Attorney Evan Oshan, who represents Alejandro’s owners, also represented the family who owned a French Bulldog that passed away on a flight from Houston to New York. In that instance, the flight attendant told the family to place the dog in the overhead bin where the dog ultimately died. The airline said the flight attendant did not realize that the crate contained a dog, and the situation was a terrible miscommunication.