Family upset with Air Canada

Alana Simonelli was flying from Smithers to Toronto when her dog Niyah escaped from her crate while she was being loaded onto the plane.

A Smithers family is devastated after they say Air Canada mishandled the transportation of their Boston terrier French bulldog cross Niyah, leading to its death on the side of a runway at Vancouver International Airport.

Alana Simonelli was flying from Smithers to Toronto, via Vancouver, on May 19 when Niyah escaped from her crate while she was being loaded onto the plane at YVR.

Initially, Alana was not allowed to assist in finding Niyah but eventually was escorted by airport security onto the tarmac and runway to see if the dog could be located.

Alana was driven around the airport property until after midnight but was still unable to locate Niyah.

It wasn’t until the next day they discovered the dog’s carcass, presumably mutilated by eagles, Alana’s brother Jim said, adding he was speaking on behalf of his sister because she was too devastated to speak about the incident.

The family is upset with Air Canada for not making sure the dog was properly secured in its crate prior to travel and for taking nine days to complete their investigation.

“No compensation, no nothing,” Jim said of Air Canada’s response.

“Sorry about your loss and I hope you fly with us in the future.”

Air Canada spokesperson Angela Mah told The Interior News in an email after further investigation they determined the two clasps on the kennel became unlatched, which enabled Niyah to escape.

“Air Canada takes the utmost care in the handling of animals, and our employees are also pet lovers and owners,” Mah said.

“We ship thousands of animals, a great many of them dogs and cats, through both our baggage services and our cargo services annually and escaped animals are very rare.”

Mah also said while s Air Canada is not required to compensate the family, out of compassion, they paid for two nights accommodation for Alana as she searched for Niyah, flew Alana’s sister down from Smithers to aid in the search and paid for her accommodation, upgraded Alana to business class when she continued her trip toToronto, paid for Niyah’s cremation and personally delivered the remains to the family and are in the process of refunding Alana’s pet fee.

“People need to know if they do choose to fly with an animal, which a lot of people do, Air Canada assumes no responsibility even if they mishandle the kennel,” Jim said.

“They were supposed to strap [the kennel closed] and they didn’t do that and [the kennel] broke and the dog got out.”

 

Just Posted

CT scanner officially open in Smithers

As of noon on July 12 the machine had scanned 45 patients, five of which were emergency CT scans.

Musical collaboration comes together at Midsummer Music Festival

The project was done to acknowledge a potential for harmony among otherwise disparate communities.

WATCH: Mip performs at Bulkley Valley Brewery July 12

Catch two songs from Mip’s nearly three-hour set at the brewery on July 12.

Northern B.C.’s Ridley coal terminal sold, Canada divests, First Nations to own portion

Ten per cent of shares transferred to the Lax Kw’alaams Band and the Metlakatla First Nation

VIDEO: Woodchuck rescued from under car on Main Street

Angelika Langen, co-founder of the Northern Lights Wildlife Society, made the rescue.

VIDEO: Reports say Lashana Lynch is the new 007

Daniel Craig will reprise his role as Bond one last time

ICBC insurance renewals get more complicated this year

Crash history, driver risk prompt more reporting requirements

High-speed rail link would run from Vancouver to Seattle in under 1 hour: study

Annual ridership is projected to exceed three million

B.C. man dies from rabies after contact with Vancouver Island bat

Last known case of human rabies in B.C. was 16 years ago

U.S. tug firm to be sentenced for 2016 spill in B.C. First Nation’s territory

The Nathan E. Stewart spilled 110,000 litres of diesel and heavy oils in October 2016

Asylum figures show overall slower rate of irregular crossings into Canada

Between January and June 2019, a total of 6,707 asylum seekers crossed irregularly into Canada

Youth seen with gun at Nanaimo mall, suspect now in custody

Woodgrove Centre shut down during police incident

Crown recommends up to two-year jail term for former Bountiful leader

Crown says sentence range should be 18 months to two years for Bountiful child removal case

B.C.-wide police efforts identify Vancouver Island robbery suspect

Warrant issued for arrest of North Vancouver man for TD Bank robbery

Most Read