My Dog Died Under Delta's Care, And Airline Blows Me Off

Deserved or not, Delta is garnering an unfavorable reputation in regards to pet care, most recently after a dog it lost in between flights in Atlanta was found dead. Before that, Delta lost a dog belonging to one of our readers in Mexico City.

Michelle said her bulldog, Guinness, died on a flight from Germany to Atlanta, and that Delta has not taken responsibility for the death.

She writes:

I just saw your story about Nala that you wrote. I can completely sympathize. Last month on November 4th, we flew our dogs (Guinness our 6 year old bulldog and Lola our shih tzu) back from Germany, where we were working for the Army and now moving home. We were notified after the first flight (into Atlanta) that Guinness didnt survive, when he had made the flight a year an a half earlier. The next day they put Lola on two wrong flights, making her fly over 12 hours and on 4 different flights alone in cargo and putting our family through even more hell waiting for her to arrive and wondering if she would survive all the stress.

We are still fighting Delta, they are not taking any responsibility for either of the dogs and claim they are not at fault because Guinness’ necropsy came back with “inconclusive” findings. After talking with the delta claims agent, he informed us that an embargo was placed over 3 months ago, stating any bull breed is not allowed to fly cargo if they are over 6 months old or over 20 pounds. We had no knowledge of this embargo since it is only released online in very fine print. In Germany, you cannot book live animal flights online, and you have to go through a Delta contracted Freight carrier, which Delta gave us the phone number while talking to them trying to schedule the travel arrangements. The only restrictions we were made aware of were the seasonal travel rules, that snub nosed dogs cannot travel from may until October 1st, according to the freight agent. Guinness should never have been allowed on the flight in the first place, Delta didn’t follow their own policy and procedures and then mis-routed Lola twice after the death of her companion.

We brought Michelle’s story to the attention of a Delta spokesperson, who responded:

Guinness’ death is currently under investigation and a necropsy is being conducted. We are in contact with the owners and will share the findings with them as soon as they are available.