Kitten death on Delta -- Important Please Read | Page 6 | Sphynxlair

Kitten death on Delta -- Important Please Read

Discussion in 'My Sphynx Cat Tail' started by doriansmomma, Jan 23, 2011.

  1. Mews2much

    Mews2muchV.I.P Lairian V.I.P Lairian

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    I am bad with names.
    Snickers Story

     

  2. dreaming_in_colour

    dreaming_in_colourBanned

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    I can only begin to fathom the pain you and your family are experiencing. I am so terribly sorry. My Amaryllis was shipped to me via Air Canada and this could have been her! when I read this she was sitting with me and I looked at her and remembered picking her up that day and how tiny and scared she was with her big blue eyes looking up at me from the carrier and I just scooped her up in my arms and bawled into her soft skin.

    When I read about this I felt like throwing up. Made me just sick. I hope you can get Delta to acknowledge and take responsibility for what they allowed to happen. I hope that they will prevent this from happening to others. Somehow I am not confident that this will happen. I do thank you and Snickers for fighting for other pets that may fly cargo, for alerting and educating us to what can happen when we entrust our family members to these airlines.

    I just can't take anymore crying tonight. Too much sadness.

    RIP sweet Snickers. You will have good friends in Shiva and Baby Yule at the Bridge.

    Hugs and Purrs,

    Kris, Gable, Amaryllis and Butter Jones
     
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    • Jennifer

      JenniferSenior Lairian Senior Lairian

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      No- Snickers was her name! Snickers the sphynx kitten. Unless Facebook wont let you put that in.

      What about Oprah's site? She is an animal lover. I posted the USA Today on her posting.

      I will help you with what ever I can.
       
    • brnsugarbaybie

      brnsugarbaybieLairian

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      I have seen your sad experience posted on a dog site that I am a member of. This terrible thing may produce some good if it makes people more aware of the things that can go wrong in shipping. I don't know, I think the airline should be held to some responsible.
       
    • Mews2much

      Mews2muchV.I.P Lairian V.I.P Lairian

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      I can tell Wrinkles story.
      It had a happened ending but I was so scared she would be found dead.
      It is posted on the lair.
       
    • doriansmomma

      doriansmommaLairian

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      Hey Guys, I just wanted to post a link to the article People Magazine did for their Pet Website!

      Weeks-Old Kitten Dies After Freezing in Plane's Cargo
      CATS, PETS IN THE NEWS

      Courtesy Linda Preece
      On Saturday, Heather Lombardi was flying high. The Connecticut mom — also parent to two rescue dogs and three cats — was awaiting the arrival of her newest furry family member, a Sphynx cat named Snickers, who was en route from a Utah breeder. The trade broker packed up her kids and drove to the airport, camera in hand, and met Delta Airlines officials at baggage claim, where her cat was to be delivered.

      But Snickers didn't appear.

      At 9:30 p.m., 50 minutes after the cat's flight had safely landed at Hartford's Bradley International Airport, where the outside temperature was a bitter 7 degrees — and after Lombardi had already inquired about her missing pet — a Delta representative appeared with the cat's carrier, which was ice-cold. The plane's cargo hold latch had been stuck, the representative explained. Lombardi opened the carrier to find Snickers freezing, limp and unresponsive.

      "I immediately put her into my coat, grabbed my kids by the hands and ran out of the airport," Lombardi tells PEOPLEPets.com. "I cranked up the heat [in the car], putting all the vents on her as I rubbed her, trying to warm her up." She rushed Snickers, just 11 weeks old and not much more than 1 lb., to an emergency veterinarian.

      On the drive to the vet, Snickers "had a blank stare in her eyes, and she let out a 'meow,' as if to say, 'Help me, please,' " Lombardi recalls. "I was devastated."

      The kitten was pronounced dead on arrival at the veterinarian's office. As the vet explained to Lombardi, once a plane lands, the cargo department depressurizes and loses climate control. "She told me [Snickers] didn't stand a chance in this freezing weather," Lombardi said, adding she had paid $290 extra for the cat to fly in the climate-controlled cargo area. "Nobody told me that. If I'd had known, I would've rescheduled the flight [to a warmer day]. I could've flown to Utah for that price, and flown back with the kitten in my lap."

      Since the incident, Lombardi has been playing phone tag with Delta officials, whom she says have so far been fairly unresponsive to her situation — and haven't yet offered a refund. "I can't believe there's not someone in charge of animal welfare," she says. "Nobody to check and see if your pet is OK. The whole thing amazes me."

      This isn't Delta's first animal-related issue: last spring, the airline lost a passenger's new pup, and in December, an Army officer's dog escaped from the Atlanta crew and turned up dead on a nearby highway days later.

      Delta spokeswoman Susan Elliott tells PEOPLEPets.com that the company is "extremely empathetic with the customer. We've offered our support to her, and we've been doing everything we can to work with her." In a statement, she mentioned that the airline has worked with Snickers' breeder for 10 years without issue, and that the company is assessing "all the factors associated with the animal's transport to determine if there was a process failure on our part or if circumstances were beyond our control."

      Regardless, Lombardi is left with a hole in her heart. "I wonder if I could've driven a little faster," she says, through tears. "I wonder if there's anything else I could've done. If I'd walked into the clinic and they'd said, 'For $5,000, we'll bring that kitten back to life,' I would've done it. But she was too far gone.

      "I just want to turn the negative into a positive," she adds. "Because my Snickers died, maybe another animal won't."


      The reporter Kate Hogan did a really nice job, its a nice article. Check it out.
       
      Last edited by a moderator: Jan 26, 2011
    • dreaming_in_colour

      dreaming_in_colourBanned

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      What is the Blogosphere?
       
    • kiennasmom

      kiennasmomV.I.P Lairian V.I.P Lairian

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      Here is a copy of what I sent the Ellen show. I only had a certain number of characters, so had to edit. I also attached Snickers' picture to the email to them.


      I belong to a forum for Sphynx(hairless cat)owners. One of my fellow members, Heather Lombardi, lost a kitten this week due to hypothermia on a "climate controlled" Delta flight. She assumed, as most people probably do, that meant the cat would be comfortable throughout the flight. However, upon landing, the cargo latch stuck & it took 50 minutes to fix. What Heather assumed, and most others would too, is that the compartment would remain heated. What the airlines do not openly disclose is ONCE A PLANE LANDS, THE CARGO COMPARTMENT DEPRESSURIZES & THERE IS NO LONGER CLIMATE CONTROL. The kitten was in 7 degree temps for almost an hour. When the owner finally got the kitten, she rushed her to a vet. Sadly, Snickers passed from hypothermia.

      Here is a link to Heather's story:
      http://www.sphynxlair.com/f5/kitten-death-delta-important-please-read-6644/

      As you can imagine, Heather is devastated. I'm writing on her behalf, with her consent. She is hoping to spread her story and help other pets avoid the same tragic fate. We are hoping that airlines will reassess their protocols. A good place to start would be to EXPLICITLY STATE EXACTLY WHAT CLIMATE CONTROL ENTAILS rather than implying to the public that it's safe and comfortable. They could also tighten up their allowed temperature ranges for accepting animals as cargo.

      Being the animal lover that she is, we are hoping Ellen can help in some way.
       
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      • Mews2much

        Mews2muchV.I.P Lairian V.I.P Lairian

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        I just posted a link on my fb for you.
        Snickers looks like my Wrinkles in that pic.
        She was such a pretty cat.
         
      • Sleepyheadkitten

        SleepyheadkittenSenior Lairian Senior Lairian

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        I don't know- my blog follow-up is Tears for Neala. Snickers the Sphynx Supporters- a Facebook page for those following the tragic loss of Snickers, the Sphynx, due to Delta airlines...
         
      • Nofuratu

        NofuratuV.I.P Lairian V.I.P Lairian

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        The cat blogosphere is a webring for feline bloggers. It is amazing how many cats blog all over the world! If you are a cat that blogs you can join their webring and post a link on your blog. They also have "real" feline reporters.
        Nofuratu is a blogosphere member and has a link to the blogosphere on his blog
        Adventures of A Naked Cat
         
      • Sleepyheadkitten

        SleepyheadkittenSenior Lairian Senior Lairian

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        I've been up all night with a puking baby, but everytime I sign onto Facebook, I see another Sphynx breeder bashing Snickers' breeder. First- I don't remember Snicker's Momma ever releasing that information and whoever did release it- it wasn't PERTINENT to this situation. Second- THE BREEDER HAS NOTHING TO DO WITH THIS. Unless she put that kitten on the plane with blankets soaked in ice water- she has NOTHING to do with this. Some people have said, "Oh, well, the kitten is 11 weeks old and good breeders don't ship until 16 weeks..." Really? REALLY? Show me TICA/CFA guidelines on that fact! Because I can show you a heckuvalot good breeders- including JUDGES- who will ship at the 12 weeks mark (and we don't know- Snickers may have been 11 weeks, 5 days- she might have been big for her size, etc, etc). REGARDLESS- if the airlines say 8 weeks can ship- then TWELVE WEEKS IS FINE.

        I'm really in a mood at this point in time. Stop negating Heather's loss, PEOPLE, with this need to BASH OTHER BREEDERS.
         
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        • Gadzukz

          GadzukzV.I.P Lairian V.I.P Lairian

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          I agree, I hate to see the breeder bashing going on.
           
        • doriansmomma

          doriansmommaLairian

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          Tell me about it, she had ZERO to do with Delta's negligence. I didn't think for a second it would cause problems for her, DELTA screwed up. DELTA killed poor Snickers.

          Unbelievable.
           
        • pooner

          poonerBanned

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          I support the breeder, I don't know who she is but I can imagine she is as heartbroken as everybody else. I hope people will channel their bashing energy into positive energy to try and change the way Delta does business, in fact all airlines for that matter!!

          I am very glad that this story is getting so much internet publicity. I hope Ellen speaks about it.
           
        • doriansmomma

          doriansmommaLairian

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          Hey Guys, my good friend Billy has replied to my email from yesterday! Working on my response now.

          From: Freeman, Billy [mailto:Billy.Freeman@delta.com]
          Sent: Wednesday, January 26, 2011 2:39 PM
          To: 'Heather Lombardi'
          Subject: RE: FW: Sphynx Kitten Death

          Dear Ms. Lombardi:

          Thank you for your offer, however, your involvement is not necessary. As we previously advised, we are conducting an internal investigation and will take any corrective measures which may be deemed warranted.

          As matters now stand, every indication is that this unfortunate incident was the result of a mechanical problem which necessitated opening the cargo bin door manually, instead of mechanically, resulting in a delay in accessing the contents of the cargo bin. Such unforeseen and unpredictable mechanical problems are, as you can well appreciate, difficult to anticipate or prevent.

          On another note, when we spoke on Monday, you indicated that you would provide us with a copy of the vet's paperwork which recommended that a hairless cat not be shipped when temperatures were anticipated to be under 20° degrees Fahrenheit. We would appreciate your sending this document to us, for our records. If you consider making a claim, we would also appreciate receipts for amounts requested. Claim # 11 52738 has been assigned to our correspondences.

          Respectfully,

          Billy S. Freeman

          Claims Manager

          Delta Cargo
           
        • Bella07

          Bella07Banned

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          Just my thoughts, but please don't send Billy any documents/vet records without consulting a Lawyer first! They could turn this case against you in one quick second, making it seem like your fault, even though we all know the truth...And "...resulting in a delay in accessing the contents of the cargo bin." Since when are living, breathing animals, contents? :Angry:
           
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          • marlene

            marleneV.I.P Lairian V.I.P Lairian

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            I agree with Bella07. Time for an attorney to step in.

            Have some other things I want to say also but am leaving for work and don't have time right now, will post later. Just wanted to quickly say that it's made front page news over at the Cat Blogosphere.
             
          • Mews2much

            Mews2muchV.I.P Lairian V.I.P Lairian

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            I sent ML the Snickers fb page today.




             
          • doriansmomma

            doriansmommaLairian

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            Here is my email back to my dearest friend & confidant:

            From: Heather Lombardi [mailto:heather@bbu.com]
            Sent: Wednesday, January 26, 2011 5:35 PM
            To: 'Freeman, Billy'
            Subject: RE: FW: Sphynx Kitten Death

            Dear Mr. Freeman,

            I appreciate you doing such a thorough investigation. I will continue to have patience with you & anticipate reading the findings in said report.

            Yesterday I emailed you my formal complaint per your air bill requirements. Can you please confirm it was entered & received?

            I will be happy to provide any documentation you would like for your records. (Your statement that the veterinarian clearance stated that “hairless cats†not be shipped in temperatures was inaccurate, it was a direct reference to the victim on flight #738, not the breed) Additionally for my records, I require a full & un-redacted copy of the investigation including all witness statements & findings. Once I receive your report, I can “consider†making the claim you referenced below & if I so decide, I will furnish anything you may require to the extent I am capable.

            I prematurely sent you my purchase contract/receipt the other day. Did you not receive it?

            Although your email was very cold considering the referenced circumstances, I was very pleased to hear you plan on making the corrective measures warranted. While you claim you cannot prevent or foresee a mechanical issue, you must have them often. So while this specific issue may have been a surprise to Delta, they know they happen & should have the appropriate safeguards in place to prevent the death or injury of its human & animal cargo. With that said, I assume those are the corrective measures you are referring too – you plan on purchasing, creating & implementing the procedures & equipment necessary to deliver the animals & people safely without injury to their destinations.

            To be more specific, the cat was freezing due to no climate control, so you are going to purchase & implement the equipment needed to keep the cabin climate controlled during such mechanical failures. The vehicle in which they are transported in is open to the elements & certainly did not help her unstable condition, so you are going to purchase heated vans to properly take them to the terminal from the tarmac. And so on.

            Those are the type of corrective measures that are not only appropriate but quite obviously necessary & would have saved the life of an innocent animal. While you cannot foresee a mechanical error on a certain day or time, you know they will happen & quite apparently do not have the proper safeguards in place for when they do occur.

            Also, I looked on your website & cannot find any information on what you classify as climate controlled cargo. I think it is appropriate to explain that to me since I paid for it.

            I look forward to hearing a positive response from you on these corrective measures you have assured me will be taken so I can tell everyone it is safe for their animals to fly at all temperatures.

            Heather Lombardi
             
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            • Bella07

              Bella07Banned

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              Way to go Heather! Brilliant response and I completely agree. Thank You for keeping us updated...And I know that Snicker's case will be helping save the lives of any future animals that may pass through Delta's doors.
               
            • ckutkuhn7

              ckutkuhn7Banned

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              Awesome response Heather!!!! I'm still so torn over this entire thing. It deeply saddens me and I feel so bad for you and your breeder. I hear people are bashing her, people need to get a grip and realize the airline is at fault here. I'll back you in whatever you need! (((HUGS)))
               
            • kiennasmom

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              My two cents, not only for the people bashing the breeder but for Delta as well:
              In my opinion, it would not have mattered if the kitten was four weeks older or four years older. It would not have mattered if it had hair. Or if it was a dog, rabbit, or other small animal. Delta knowingly left a living being in 7 degree temperatures for almost an hour. I don't even know that a human being could've gone unaffected unless they had good outdoor clothing on (imagine being locked out your house in just jeans, t-shirt, & tennies for an hour at 7 degrees!).
               
              Last edited: Jan 26, 2011
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              • marlene

                marleneV.I.P Lairian V.I.P Lairian

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                Who is ML?
                 
              • Mews2much

                Mews2muchV.I.P Lairian V.I.P Lairian

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                ML runs the Blogs.
                She is on my fb look her up.