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Dog Bites Two On US Airways Flight, Forces Early Landing

Not an actual photo of the event.

You can add dog bites to the list of things passengers and flight attendants have to contend with at 30,000 feet.

That was the case this morning on board US Airways flight 522 when a small dog travelling in the passenger cabin was let out of its carrier by its owner. The dog promptly bit a passenger and a flight attendant. An airline spokesperson could not confirm whether the bit passenger was also the dog’s owner.

US Airways said that the passenger was expressly told not to open the carrier door.

According to flight tracking website the plane was west of Pittsburgh when the pilot of the Airbus A319 decided to divert the Phoenix-bound plane to Pittsburgh International Airport because of the canine bites. A US Airways spokesperson described the diversion as precautionary and said the captain did not declare an emergency.

Upon landing in Pittsburgh the plane taxied to a US Airways gate where it was met by law enforcement officials and the fire department. An airport spokesperson tells ABC News the dog, whose breed was not immediately known, and its owner were deplaned and interviewed before being released.

Once the dog and its owner were off the plane the flight continued to Phoenix without them. JoAnn Jenny, a spokeswoman with the Pittsburgh International Airport, said the dog and its owner were later released to board another plane to Phoenix.

Airlines, including US Airways, United, and American Airlines, limit the number and type of pets allowed in cabins. Those banned from carry-on travel in the belly of the plane, where kennels are placed in a special pressurized and temperature-controlled section of the plane. In the winter, airlines may require documentation certifying that your pet is acclimated to temperatures lower than 45 degrees.

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12 years ago

Bad owner! Not so bad dog – she was probably freaked out!

12 years ago

Temps lower then 45*………planes should have a section like coach for pets……no way would I let my dog ride in the belly of a plane..they have feelings too!

Terri Williams
12 years ago

They make it sound like carrying your pet in cargo is acceptable. It is not. Many dogs and cats have died from this treatment. It needs to stop.

10 years ago

My husband & I have traveled with our 2 lb. Chinese Crested on board a plane. Before boarding, while boarding and after boarding I am always asked by someone if they can see and hold him I just politely say “He’s not allowed to come out of his carrier”. With all the excitement at the airport you never know how even the friendliest dog is going to react and I would never want anyone to be accidently bitten or my little “Steve” accidently hurt. You just have to use common sense. I am always told when we buy his ticket, he must be kept in his carrier under the middle seat at all times! I hope this incident does not cause airlines to change their rules and not let the dogs that have always flown in the planes with their owners not be able to, if so I will be driving!

10 years ago



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