Now more than ever, you are needed to donate your old blankets, towels, and sheets to your local animal shelter. With financial cut-backs, repairs on shelters are often put off, so if it's drafty, the animals suffer. I know my shelter uses rags to stuff under doors. No kidding! Empty out those closets... this is your chance to get rid of stuff and do something useful!

Friday, November 4, 2011

Remember Issues With (Certain) Dogs Flying On Planes, and, Delta Still Sucks

Short snouted dogs have trouble breathing (and panting, which cools them) during stressful situations, like flying in an airplane. See this old post I did on the subject.

But as the subject has been studied and more evidence shows that not only short nosed dogs don't fare well, but that any dog in the cargo hold of a plane could easily die from extremem temperatures and stress caused by any number of factors.

Recently, this poor dog died unnecessarily. I feel bad for the soldier whose dog it was.

The problem is so widespread it led to a study by the U.S. Department of Transport which analyzed the death of cats and dogs during flights from May 2005 to May 2010. Their results showed that flat-faced canines such as pugs, bulldogs, boxers, Boston terriers and cats such as Himalayans and Persians were extremely susceptible to the stress of flying in the cargo hold.
The study also found that English bulldogs, like Buster accounted for more deaths than any other breed.
Animals with snub-noses are at a higher risk because “their breathing is more restricted” than cats and dogs with a longer muzzles. This restricted breathing makes it harder for them to cool themselves by panting.
Since the study many airlines have banned these animals from flying unless they are seated in the climate controlled cabin of a plane, like human passengers.
I would add that flying in cargo is no picnic and many animals have been frozen to death (like this one) as well as having died of excessive heat. It's better to leave your pet home, frankly, or use a pet friendly airline.

I do not even fly Delta Airlines anymore, since they have lost three passengers' dogs in recent years. Here is a bit from the kitten article I linked above, about Delta's poor record:
This is not the first time Delta Airlines has been in the news for the death of a pet they were transporting. Between November 2009 and October 2010 the airline reported 12 deaths, four injuries and one loss.

There were a total of 33 animal deaths reported during that time from all of the airlines combined – placing Delta with a far greater number than their competitors.
Another article over at Dogster about Delta losing people's pets.
And some of my old posts about Delta, here and here.