Yesterday, a flight left the London Gatwick airport late. The news would be almost the opposite, but in this case the reason was the presence of two french bulldog touched with tutus. They were in the hand luggage of their owners and according to a spokesman for the airline – Norwegian Air – the dogs showed signs of « suffering. » That is to say, a scandal of barking and grunting, far from what can be expected of someone in « ballet » clothes. The dogs and the rest of the suffered passage had nine hours of hell ahead of them: the destination was Austin (Texas), USA, a country where it is already common currency to find such passengers on airplanes: the so-called «Emotional support animals» (ESA). The company decided to leave the dogs and their owners on land.
US authorities generally allow entry into the cabin of support animals. Any internal or destination trip to or from the country has the obligation to admit them, with the justification that their owners need them for psychological or emotional reasons. The breadth of the regulations will make the planes become authentic Noah’s flying coffers. First, because to take an ESA a doctor’s certificate is hardly necessary (and the doctors sign them generously). And because it is not limited to dogs. An ESA does not need to be trained – as is the case with service animals that assist people with disabilities – and can be almost any domesticated animal.
An example of this is Hamlet, a Vietnamese pig that has its own Instagram account, and whose owner, Meagan Peabody walks through the air on her travels in the USA. « I wouldn’t say I’m afraid of flying, » Peabody told CNN. «But I do have concern and anxiety with flights. And Hamlet is a distraction. Also for his travel companions – although perhaps not positive – who can be believed transported to the mountains of the Sierra de Huelva, instead of an airplane.
Hamlet surprises where he goes, unlike dogs and cats, become habitual presences in aircraft. There are also some miniature horses, which have won the favor of Americans in recent years. But there have been passengers who have discovered that a monkey, a duck or a turkey was traveling in the next seat. All as emotional support of their owners. There are animals that they can’t be ESA – reptiles, tarantulas, birds outside their cages– but in some cases its category is not clear and the airline must decide. A few years ago, United Airlines prevented a peacock from entering a flight to Los Angeles, despite the owner’s insistence that he provided emotional support.
More and more passengers do not pray because they do not touch a baby next to them, but not to be attacked by a companion animal. Incidents on ESAs in airplanes include cases such as «bitten passenger while sleeping»,« Dog barking fiercely »or« passenger had to control the dog with force ».
Peabody is among those who support airlines charter exclusive flights for passengers with animals. Finally, Noah’s ark.
The breadth of the standard on the so-called ESA converts airplanes in Noah’s coffers.