A Pennsylvania healthcare worker blamed Southwest Airlines of being negligent and ultimately causing the death of her three-year-old French bulldog when a flight attendant denied her request to open the bag carrying her support dog.
Courtney Cipar, a traveling X-ray technician who has worked around the country during the COVID-19 pandemic, said she is heartbroken after the dog named Charlie died during a Southwest flight on December 21.
‘It’s been five days since the flight attendant working the front of my Southwest Airlines flight from Nashville, TN to Philadelphia murdered my baby…Little did I know three hours after this picture was taken I’d be clutching his dead body as we flew over West Virginia,’ Cipar wrote in a heartfelt Facebook post on December 26.
Cipar is accusing Southwest workers of ‘letting Charlie die’ by refusing to let her open his carriage while he suffered heatstroke and a seizure mid-flight.
‘Charlie has been my travel companion from day one, been on 20 plus flights, driven cross country, summited several mountains. As a traveling X-ray tech he has been my support system on the road and in life,’ the grieving woman wrote.
‘His goofy antics and cuddles have kept me going through some truly horrific things. He is irreplaceable and I am heartbroken, living a nightmare,’ she added.
Courtney Cipar said Charlie had been aiding her and her patients while she traveled across the country during the COVID-19 pandemic
‘His goofy antics and cuddles have kept me going through some truly horrific things. He is irreplaceable and I am heartbroken, living a nightmare,’ Cipar said about Charlie
According to the healthcare worker, she became aware that Charlie was having trouble breathing during her connecting flight from Nashville to Philadelphia.
Cipar told TMZ she believes Charlie started suffering heatstroke during the first flight, so she asked a flight attendant to turn up the AC.
During the second flight, Cipar reportedly tried to open Charlie’s carriage as he gasped for air, but a stubborn flight attendant didn’t allow it and threatened to turn the plane around, Cipar said.
The woman said the sudden loss of her beloved pet just before Christmas had been ‘brutal.’
‘For those of you wondering how my healthy happy three and a half year old little boy died i can assure you it was brutal. He over heated and suffered heat stroke and seizure. I felt the seizure but it was too late he was gone,’ Cipar wrote on Facebook.
Courtney Cipar, a traveling X-ray technician who has worked around the country during the COVID-19 pandemic, said she is heartbroken after her support dog, Charlie, died during a Southwest flight
Cipar blamed Southwest Airlines for Charlie’s death in Facebook post
While she said Charlie died of a heat-induced stroke, a necropsy on the animal has yet to confirm the cause of death.
‘I was told either close [the carriage] or the whole flight will turn around and you will lose your ticket and the whole flight will be delayed despite me trying to explain that if he kept breathing like that he would die, the flight attendant just talked over me,’ Cipar recounted.
Charlie’s owner is now suing the airline over the loss of her French bulldog and the trauma and pain she has endured after the incident.
She is also demanding the airline fire the flight attendant who allegedly threatened to turn the plane around and disregarded Cipar’s attempts to save her dog.
‘This is why laws need to be changed for animals on board air crafts. I should have been allowed to attend to his basic needs instead I had to attend to his dead body,’ Cipar wrote.
‘This unfortunately happens way too often and almost always the situation could have been avoided with a little compassion from the airline.’
The airline defended the flight attendant, saying the crew member was following protocol.
‘This is why laws need to be changed for animals on board air crafts. I should have been allowed to attend to his basic needs instead I had to attend to his dead body,’ Cipar said
Cipar is being represented legally by attorney Evan Oshan, who often takes cases of personal injury and instances in which his client’s pets have died due to a company’s negligent policies. ‘Once again, the airlines have not taken our four-legged family members into account,’ Oshan said on Tuesday
‘We are disheartened to learn about the passing of this Customer’s pet and have been in contact with her to learn more. Tens of thousands of Customers travel with cats and dogs every month on Southwest,’ the airline said in a statement.
‘While onboard the aircraft, pets must remain in their well-ventilated carriers at all times for the comfort and safety of fellow customers.’
Cipar said the airline only offered to refund her the cost of the tickets.
She is being represented legally by attorney Evan Oshan, who often takes cases of personal injury and instances in which his client’s pets have died due to a company’s negligent policies.
Several of Oshan’s clients have denounced how airlines’ disregard the safety of four-legged companions.
In August, a Seattle dog owner claimed his two-year-old pit bull died during a Hawaiian Airlines flight.
Randall Carpio, a naturopathic doctor, said Louis was set to become an emotional support dog for his patients before the dog died.
Hawaiian reportedly performed a necropsy but did not send Carpio the results. They then sent Louis’ ashes to his workplace.
In September 2020, Oshan took legal action against Emirates after a client’s two dogs, Panda and Beluga, died on a flight from Dubai to Washington, DC.
The pet owner was visiting Washington to receive cancer treatment and had brought her dogs for emotional support.
‘Once again, the airlines have not taken our four-legged family members into account,’ Oshan said on Tuesday. ‘Charlie was a paying passenger and desired to be allowed to breathe.’