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My dog was not well treated by air canada cargo,need your comment

February 21st, 2006, 10:07 AM
Here is my wife`s statement.:mad: :mad: What can we do?your advice is very important to us.

I had a reservation for my pet dog on Feb.20 , 2006 by flight AC030 from Beijing to Vancouver and AC100 from Vancouver to Toronto.
I brought the dog to the Beijing Airport for clearing custom, inspection, quarantine and etc.
In the morning , the dog entered into the restriction area for loading on aircraft on 10:30 AM (eg. He can not see his owner) I was informed by my forwarder that the dog was loading to the aircraft already on 2:30 PM. So we assume that everything is going well, but just to pick him up in Toronto by 11:30 PM Feb.20 2006 local time in Toronto.
We were informed by Air Canada Cargo live animal desk in Toronto at 7:30 PM on Feb. 20 when we actively called in that the dog was still in Beijing. Then we contacted my forwarder and Air Canada in Beijing at 8-9AM on Feb.21, 2006 and were informed that the aircraft was postponed and schedule to take off at 3:00PM on Feb.21, 2006 due to mechanic problem. Air Canada cargo had not contacted the owner about the delay neither in Beijing nor in Toronto.
My dog was moved to the so called Pet Hotel (a dark room) in Beijing Airport.
Finally at 10:30 AM on Feb.21, 2006 in airport I was allowed to see my dog with companion of air Canada staff in Beijing airport after several difficulty conversations with the administrators.

l My dog was in a dark room (the light was not turn on)
l My dog was still in the cage.
l No water, no food left there.
l No evidence of discharge
l Miserable barking when heard my voice while I negotiated with those administrators.
l The dog was quite frightened condition.

The dog had been left un-attentioned for 24 hours in the airport. No food, no water, not discharged .

Lucky Rescue
February 21st, 2006, 11:07 AM
Poor dog! I know I'd be very angry and distressed if my dog were treated this way.

However, since the dog is alive and didn't suffer any injury or illness that cost you money as a direct result of this treatment, I really don't know what can be done about it, other than to lodge a complaint and get an apology.

Maybe someone else has better advice...?

February 21st, 2006, 11:14 AM
A lot of dogs get lost, released from their cages by employees or they just die some other way on planes, so thank your lucky stars that your dog made it ok. It is very rare that an airline will take as good care of your pets as you'd like them to.

February 21st, 2006, 06:14 PM
I would never send my pet via cargo but I do realize there are times ppl have little choice. Still there are some horror stories included in reportafter report and many breeders make arrangements with the better airlines (better as in how they care for pets - AC in NOT one of them). Pets have been killed, lost, run over, killed by larger animals who got out of their inadequate carriers. Many breeders recommend Delta which does seem to do a fairly good job. My thinking is that dealing with a foreign country (China - or are you from there) that does not value pets as much as North America - or at least values the differently - may also be an issue but I do not really know - it's entirely possible some Chinese airlines are even better than AC.

As LC says, since the dog is alive and not ill, you probably have little vause for say a lawsuit. I would however write a letter of complaint that they did not inform you - when you could have taken your dog home or to where you were until he actually left.

doggy lover
February 21st, 2006, 06:41 PM
I know that some AC employees have taken dogs out to do their business and water and fed them but some have gotten away I have heard too. I guess it depends on what is asked and if you can trust the dog not to bite the person handling it. I wouldn't want to have to take a scared dog out of a safe cage, who knows what it might do. Thankfully your dog is safe and alive.

February 21st, 2006, 08:20 PM
Another A/C live drama, we shipped our puppy from the US to Tronoto. After the flight landed we waited at the counter and was told there is no dog on that flight. After phone calls to the US we were sure the dog was on the plane. After insisting that they check the plane again, and another hours wait, we got called to the counter an was asked which dog is yours. There were two kennels. Just happy go get our pup after hours of red tape we left. Delta maybe better, but they really dropped the ball with the westminster whippet Vivi, who is still loose @ JKF

February 21st, 2006, 08:37 PM
When shipped Joey here AC from Anchorage to Vancouver. We got everything arranged with air canada and got a confirmation number. When Joeys former owner got to the airport they apparently had no record of the confirmation number and told her Joey couldnt get on the flight. Apparently she freaked at the people working at the desk and said "there is two boys under 8 years old and their parents waiting in Vancouver for this dog that just drove 6 hours to pick up Joey - so find a way to get him on the flight"
She called us from anchorage after she had gotten Joey on the flight - very distraught.

Joey arrived fine - we had to actually leave him there in the kennel and get clearance from customs. The guy at the Vancouver end said he couldnt find the dog - which immediately made my start panicking - then another worker brought Joey out in the crate. We kept him in the crate until we got to my parents house then brought him out right of way to have a pee.

February 21st, 2006, 09:01 PM
I onl;y cite Delta because out of a study conducted by an vet or SPCA (I actually forget who now) into the various airlines regarding who had the most accidents and provided the best care, I think it was them that came out on top. There was naother US airline cited as good - and I know some of the Siamese breeders only book their kittens on those flights(where they are cared for IN the cabin - not sure how they worked that arrangement out or whether thet still can since there have been changes by several airlines with reagrd to how animals are treated.) I know Delta was the airline in question but we do not yet know the whole story there (not that I work for Delta or even have shares in them, lol) but sometimes people (even expeinced dog ppl ) will utilize older carriers and some dogs are escape artists regardless of how well they were placed in their carrier. And it is anectodal evidence. Would you go to a suregon who had one fatality in his entire career yet had completed 75 sucessful kidney transplants a year with his or her patients still doing well 10 yrs later or would you go to the one who had a 65% success rate but with a few major sucesses? You need to look at the research and not just anectodal evidence is what I am saying.

It's too bad you could not have found someone to go in the cabin with the dog or is the dog too large for the cabin?

And I am sorry you had to experience this but dogs in cargo on airlines is really a bad experience for dogs no matter how "good" the airline is. I must note tho that we (Siamese Rescue) managed to have a family of five cats sent from Pakistan to Texas (they stayed for few days in London, England with a volunteer to have some calming time) and the flight attendents actually cared for them - they were excellent. This of course is an anectodal observation, :) Someone had rescued this family from the streets and wanted to find them good homes. (They did too - people lined up to adopt them!!)

February 21st, 2006, 09:56 PM
I just came back from airport.Thank god,my dog is healthy as normal.

thank you for your opinion from which I learnt a lot.

February 27th, 2006, 08:24 AM
I would never use A/C ever again. They're horridly rude to people and they're horrible at handling pets. I have had bad experinces with this airline, my aunt decided to fly air canada from California to Alberta (my home) and bring her rough collie with her, the dog had to be kept in the cargo because of it's size. First there was a delay that caused A/C to fly the dog on another airplane, then there was another delay when the plane landed (they had trouble finding the dog), and then after they had got their dog back it was terrified and thirsty(A/C didn't refill the water).
There are alot of A/C pet cases, most of the pets end up dead or lost.

February 28th, 2006, 11:19 AM
I hope this isn't considered thread-jacking, but...

Suppose a blind person needed to take a flight to go somewhere, does his/her blind guide dog get on the plane beside him? or do they still go to the cargo bay?

February 28th, 2006, 11:48 AM
I am sure that guide dogs and aid dogs are allowed on the plane, this may have changed in the last few years so you might want to check further. I abhor AC we have a running joke about how you have to be rude and ignorant to get a job there. They treat everyone badly except first class or business class. We only fly cast 1st class or business if we have to use AC. I have heard more horror stories about flying your pets especially with AC. If I ever had to fly my dog I would contact breeders that do a lot of importing and ask for there opinions they would probably be the best people to ask. I am glad your dog made it safely no thanks to the crew of AC did they not think an dog might need water and to go out. I understand them not feeding the dog. Only because after the flight they still might be upset. But please water but then again have you ever tried to get an AC flight attendant to do anything out of their way forget it or you get a heap of attitude. I have also heard that AA is okay for handling pets but do your research before you fly your pet.
PS I would write a letter and cc: it to customer service and the VP of customer relations and the president. I know that sounds like a bit much but my last letter of complaint to AC got me free air fare to New York. I have learned over the years when I am not satisfied with something I am paying for I complain nicely but I do get my point across. Stress how your dog was treated and how nobody really seemed to know what was going on. Let them know you will not be using them again for your dog or yourself if this is the way paying customers are treated, there are lots of other airlines out there. Remember they almost went under once you would think they would care about customers.

June 19th, 2006, 03:32 PM
guess American Airlines isn't much better :(

June 19th, 2006, 07:31 PM
Man, if I ever have to fly anywhere with my cats, they're going to be in the cabin with me, that's all I have to say. Reading this stuff scares me to death.

June 19th, 2006, 08:38 PM
I've said it before, and I'll say it again: the horror stories are just that, they are not the norm.

June 23rd, 2006, 08:03 PM
Man, if I ever have to fly anywhere with my cats, they're going to be in the cabin with me, that's all I have to say. Reading this stuff scares me to death.

good luck with that.
They don't allow pets on board unless the cage fits under the seat. So unless it's a small guinea pig/hamster cage, it won't be allowed with the owners.

doggy lover
June 24th, 2006, 12:14 PM
I've heard of people carrying on puppies in soft sided cages, my dad use to work in AC cargo, he always felt sorry for the doggies traveling.

June 24th, 2006, 04:38 PM
Regarding seeing eye dogs and helper dogs, I believe that they are allowed anywhere. Planes restaurants etc.

June 25th, 2006, 12:17 AM
My kitty carriers are small enough to fit under the seat in most major airlines. :) The only trick would be getting permission to carry two carriers. But it must be possible on some airlines because when I flew back from San Diego there was a lady with THREE daschunds, each in its own carrier. She had one on her lap, one in front of her feet, and one under her seat. Alternatively, I guess I could put both cats in one carrier, if it were big enough. I know American Airlines allows that, as long as both animals are the same species.

June 26th, 2006, 12:47 PM
I know you are saying that it is not generally the norm. But I showed this thread to dh and we both agree that if we can't drive to our destination, Melei will not be joning us. We will not take the chance that anything bad would happen to our furbaby.

June 29th, 2006, 06:23 AM
Just adding my notes to this experience.
I'm from the USA and live in Holland, Europe.
When my pup (Westie) was 6 months I flew him from Mpls to Holland on a connecting flight via Newark on Continental Airlines. He was small enough to take on board (Sherpa bag under seat in front of me) to Newark, then I put him in his carrier and he went underneath from Newark to Amsterdam. In Amsterdam I had a :evil: of a time getting to him and then getting him out of customs! It took me 4 hours of running around from building to building and paying import tax, etc. Horrible experience for me more than for my pup. He had to hold his little bladder 10-12 hours!
I was told that if I'd flown with KLM that I could have gotten him immediately. I didn't understand why but last year I flew with KLM/Northwest Amsterdam to Mpls and then Mpls back to Amsterdam. Absolutely NO problems! Picked him up as easy as pie in Mpls... tho he certainly was thirsty. From Mpls to Amsterdam the PriorityPet people from Northwest took very good care of him. They boarded him 15 minutes before takeoff (I watched) and then came and told me personally when I was on board, giving a little progress report. I picked him up in Amsterdam with no problems or paperwork! He was a bit overheated and thirsty from the trip but otherwise, fine.
Very happy with Priority Pet from Northwest! :thumbs up
Maybe this will help someone else.