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22 July, 2024
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Woman charged with animal cruelty for abandoning dog at airport

French bulldog left behind due to airline's boarding regulations

Source: Euronews

A woman abandoned her dog at a Pennsylvania airport before flying to a resort, officials say.

A woman accused of intentionally abandoning her dog at the airport has been charged with animal cruelty and related charges.

Allison Lyn Gaiser, 44, tried to bring her French bulldog with her on a flight departing from Pittsburgh International Airport, USA, on 4 August.

But the dog was denied boarding by the airline because it did not meet the criteria for an emotional support animal and did not have a proper kennel as required.

Gaiser boarded her flight to a resort in Mexico, leaving her brown-and-white dog behind in its stroller.

The abandoned dog is now in a foster home
After leaving the ticket counter, Gaiser was seen on surveillance cameras pushing the dog in the stroller back toward a moving walkway enclosure, next to glass exit doors in the airport's short-term parking lot.

She was later seen heading to an area where a county police officer found the dog unattended in the stroller about 40 minutes later, authorities said.

The dog - who was unharmed - was licensed and had an identification microchip. It was turned over to an animal care facility and is now staying in a foster home, where authorities said he is doing well.


Dog's owner charged on return from holiday
A county police sergeant was waiting for Gaiser when she returned to the airport at about 12:30 am on 10 August.

Authorities said Gaiser admitted leaving the dog behind because the airline wouldn't allow it on the plane but said she made arrangements with her mother to pick up the animal at the airport.

Gaiser allowed police to review text messages between her and her mother, but authorities said it was apparent that no immediate arrangement was made for Gaiser's mother to pick up the dog.

Gaiser's mother told county police that she only found out about the incident when Gaiser’s ex-husband shared a news story about the dog being left at the airport.

A telephone number for Gaiser could not be located Thursday, and there was no attorney listed for her in court records. Her initial court hearing is scheduled for 16 October.

For a dog to be permitted to fly, most airlines require it to be microchipped and have a valid health certificate for travel completed by a vet. Some countries may also require additional documentation as well as specific jabs or a rabies test.

Owners of emotional support animals must also have documentation from a licensed doctor showing they need their pet for health reasons.

If a pet is flying in the cabin, it must travel in a carrier that fits beneath the seat in front. Pets over a certain weight must travel in the hold in a crate that meets the airline's requirements.

Typically, it needs to be large enough for the dog to sit, stand and turn around. It should also include food and water, as well as absorbent bedding.

Many airlines do not permit snub-nosed dogs, such as bulldogs, or brachycephalic breeds, such as pugs, to fly due to the risk posed by breathing issues.

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