Xiaohwa is physically frail. She has a weakened immune system due to feline immunodeficiency virus, and her owner was advised to put her to sleep after a difficult kitten birth a few years ago.
In a statement, the TSA told the New York Times:
T.S.A. officers screened the pet and its carrier properly. It is unfortunate that the pet is missing at the airport. But, as a reminder, passengers are responsible for their pets throughout the screening process.
A year ago, Jack the cat fell through the ceiling 61 days after American Airlines baggage handlers let his crate fall open at JFK airport. The extended period without food took too much of a toll, and he was euthanized. The Facebook group organized to get word out about his cause is still active, now posting bulletins about other pets missing in airports in the hope that they won’t suffer the same fate.