Dexter the emotional support peacock barred from flying

02 February, 2018, 00:58 | Author: Shannon Aguilar
  • Emotional support peacock hits the road

While the woman offered to pay for the peacock's ticket, United would not let the animal onto the flight.

Video shows the bird's arrival at the terminal at Newark Liberty International Airport, along with photos - replete with visible bird droppings, some online commenters suggested - of the grounded peacock.

Just a few days after United Airlines made headlines by telling a passenger that she couldn't bring her emotional support peacock on a flight out of Newark, the company has issued strict new rules for all emotional support animals - just like Delta Air Lines did recently. United already had been working on the new policy, and Dexter wouldn't have been allowed to fly as an emotional support animal under United's existing rules for reasons including his size, something United had told his owner before they arrived at the airport, he said.

"Year-over-year, we have seen a 75 percent increase in customers bringing emotional support animals onboard and as a result have experienced a significant increase in onboard incidents involving these animals", the airline said in a statement.

"No, I don't think they should have denied her because it's an unusual animal".

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Pictures of the striking bird and its owner, attempting to travel to Los Angeles, emerged via The Jet Set, a travel-based talk show.

Federal laws require airlines to permit passengers with disabilities to travel with service and emotional support animals in the cabin, though airlines can require a statement from a licensed mental health professional documenting the passenger's need for an emotional support animal. The latter - like seeing-eye dogs for blind passengers - are not subject to the new regulations, and do not require any documentation or advance notice from passengers, United said, since those animals are "individually trained for public access".

There are all sorts of things that provide emotional support, from a cross hanging on a chain to a lap dog desperately barking whenever a stranger comes around, and it can be genuinely distressing when we have to part with them, even for a couple of hours.

Similarly, traveler Jodie Smalley brought a turkey on a holiday flight in 2015, according to the BBC.

There are some animals that airlines do not have to accept as emotional support animals, including reptiles, snakes, and spiders. But airlines are not always clear about what qualifies as an emotional support animal.

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