A dog reportedly died earlier this week on a United Airlines flight from Houston to New York after a flight attendant allegedly told a passenger to place the animal’s carrier—with him still inside—into the overhead bin.

A woman, who says that she witnessed the incident, tweeted that the passenger tried to refuse but eventually put her dog in the overhead bin after the flight attendant insisted that she do so.

If reports are true that a United Airlines flight attendant insisted that this dog’s guardian put him in the overhead bin, then he or she should be fired and charged with cruelty to animals for this dog’s horrific, terrifying death.

United has issued a statement apologizing for the dog’s death and has said that it’s conducting an investigation into the matter. The dog, whose name was Kokito, was in a TSA-approved carrier and the passenger had paid the airline fee to bring him on board, according to reports.

Today, I boarded my first United Airlines flight.On my way, I saw a Frenchie that looked identical to my own precious…

Posted by June Lara on Monday, March 12, 2018

This isn’t the first time that United has been in the news for harming animals—both human and nonhuman. According to the U.S. Department of Transportation, the airline has the highest number of animal deaths in cargo holds. Last year, a giant rabbit died on a United flight and we all remember the incident that occurred last year when staff had a passenger dragged off an airplane that was overbooked.

Airline officials and employees have an ethical obligation to keep all their passengers safe, but this can’t happen as long as they continue to treat living beings like suitcases and stow them in an overhead bin or cargo hold. Animal companions belong where their guardians can see and reassure them throughout the flight.

The witness tweeted that she and other passengers felt that something wasn’t right, but they kept quiet because they didn’t think that the flight attendant would break the rules.

If you ever witness or hear about someone harming an animal, speak up, try to stop the action, and alert local authorities. If authorities are unresponsive, contact PETA.

When traveling—or any time—do what you need to do to keep your animals safe. Never allow someone to put them in harm’s way. No trip is that important.

SHARE TO SPREAD THE WORD