A support animal is supposed to offer comfort, but for a veteran taking a flight Saturday, her pit bull mix emotional support dog led to a confrontation with a flight attendant.
Veteran Janae Fowler says she has flown with her support dog, Ziggy, several times and has had no issues. This included her recent flight out to Denver on Spirit Airlines, according to KTRK. But on the return flight to Houston this weekend, a flight attendant took one look at Ziggy and stopped her.
Fowler told KTRK that the flight attendant basically said, “Oh hell no,” then asked the breed of the dog. Fowler explained that the support dog, which she has certified paperwork for, is a pit bull-chocolate Labrador retriever mix breed.
The flight attendant discussed the situation with another flight attendant. Fowler overheard the flight attendant say that an emotional support animal is not a service animal, because a service animal is for someone with “real disabilities.”
Veterans who have PTSD use emotional support animals in stressful situations such as flying.
Fowler, her boyfriend and Ziggy were removed from the plane and placed on a United flight.
Spirit Airlines told KTRK that it was looking into the situation, but that generally only a captain can order a passenger removed from the plane, not a flight attendant.
For updates to this story, visit KTRK.