Dog dies on United Airlines flight after being placed in overhead bin


United Airlines has “assumed full responsibility” for the death of a passenger’s dog after it was placed in an overhead bin.

ABC News reported that a passenger made a graphic post on Facebook about the incident. According to June Lara, the passenger, a mother and two daughters were boarding a flight with a black French bulldog when a flight attendant said the dog would need to be in the overhead bin.

>> Read more trending news 

“I sat behind the family of three and thought myself lucky - who doesn't when they get to sit near a puppy? However, the flight attendants of flight UA1284 felt that the innocent animal was better off crammed inside the overhead container without air and water,” the post said. “They INSISTED that the puppy be locked up for three hours without any kind of airflow. They assured the safety of the family's pet so wearily, the mother agreed.”

Related: ‘She took him out and he was dead:’ Owners of dog that died in United overhead bin speak out

Another passenger, Maggie Gremminger, told People a flight attendant told the dog owner to move the carrier her dog was in.

“The flight attendant told the passenger that her bag was blocking part of the aisle. I could not see it, as I was already in my seat, but it sounded like it was somehow not completely fitting beneath the seat in front of her,” according to Gremminger. “After the flight attendant asked her to move it above, the woman adamantly refused, communicating her dog was in the bag. There was some back and forth before finally the flight attendant convinced her to move the carrier to the bin above.”

Gremminger said the dog was barking from the overhead bin for at least 30 minutes but was dead by the time the owner went to get the dog when the plane landed.

According to social media posts from Laura and Gremminger, the flight was from Houston’s George Bush Intercontinental Airport to LaGuardia Airport in New York. The flight was nearly 4 and half hours. 

United Airlines issued the following statement about the incident:

“This was a tragic accident that should have never occurred, as pets should never be placed in the overhead bin,” United said in a statement. “We assume full responsibility for this tragedy and express our deepest condolences to the family and are committed to supporting them. We are thoroughly investigating what occurred to prevent this from ever happening again.”

The Department of Transportation lists United as having the highest rate of airline reports on incidents involving loss, injury or death of animals during air transportation. Of 40 total incidents involving animal loss, injury or death in 2017, 18 incidents involved an animal’s death on United Airlines.

A spokesperson for United could not say if anyone had been disciplined in relation to the incident.


Reader Comments ...


Next Up in Nation World

FDA, local schools take steps as teen e-cigarette use surges
FDA, local schools take steps as teen e-cigarette use surges

E-cigarette use by high schoolers increased 80 percent in the past year, prompting the Food and Drug Administration to propose new measures against flavored nicotine products that have spurred the rise. More than 3.6 million American middle and high school students admitted to being e-cigarettes users in 2018, up 1.5 million from last year, according...
Opinion: Break up Facebook

The New York Times revealed last week that Facebook executives withheld evidence of Russian activity on the Facebook platform far longer than previously disclosed. They also employed a political opposition research firm to discredit critics. There’s a larger story here. America’s Gilded Age of the late 19th century began with a raft of...
Washington teacher dies in childbirth - husband now suing hospital
Washington teacher dies in childbirth - husband now suing hospital

When Jane Chang arrived at Highline Medical Center in Burien, Washington, on Sept. 29, 2017, the healthy 28-year old woman was 41 weeks and three days pregnant. According to a civil complaint recently filed in King County Superior Court, Chang's "labor was induced" and "a cesarean delivery was discussed."  The complaint alleges...
2 senior Chihuahuas found in box on side of the road in Pennsylvania
2 senior Chihuahuas found in box on side of the road in Pennsylvania

The Beaver County Humane Society in Aliquippa, Pennsylvania, is asking for help finding the person or persons responsible for abandoning two senior Chihuahuas in a cardboard box on the side of the road. The dogs, determined to be approximately 8 and 10 years old, were found yesterday in Monaca Heights. They appeared to be in need of extensive...
Police: Florida woman tries to grab officer's gun, stabs him with pen
Police: Florida woman tries to grab officer's gun, stabs him with pen

Police said a woman tried several times to grab a Daytona Beach officer's gun, and when that failed, she tried to stab him with a pen she had grabbed from his pocket.  Investigators said the woman also tried to strangle her live-in girlfriend and threatened to kill a 9-year-old girl.  Police body camera video shows the moment backup arrived...
More Stories