'Emotional support peacock' barred from United Airlines plane


A female traveller was recently banned from taking a large “emotional-support peacock” on board a United Airlines flight, it has emerged.

She had offered to buy the bird its own plane ticket, according to travel blog Live and Let Fly.

Nonetheless the airline refused to let the bird board at Newark airport in New Jersey, saying it did not meet guidelines due to its weight and size.

United says this was explained to the traveller before she arrived at Newark.

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

The images show the animal perched on an airport baggage trolley, as fellow passengers gaze at it in shock.

The peacock is reportedly called Dexter, a rescue pet of Brooklyn-based artist Ventiko who documents the animal’s life on social media.

Airlines have allowed some passengers with emotional or psychiatric problems to take therapy animals with them on board.

But the number of emotional support animals has been rising in recent years, sparking suggestions that people are abusing the system.

In 2014, a woman was escorted off a US Airways flight when her pig, named Hobie, defecated and squealed before the plane took off.

Had it made it onto the plane, the peacock would have joined a flock of jet-set birds.

Traveller Jodie Smalley, from Seattle, made headlines after taking her turkey on a pre-Christmas flight home in 2015. Cynics were surprised to hear that the bird made the return trip back in one piece – and wearing a special bird nappy.

A year ago, a photo of 80 birds of prey was captured on board an airliner in the Middle East, promptly going viral online. The falcons were being flown from an unknown destination to Jeddah in Saudi Arabia, for what was believed to be a hunting trip.

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Source: BBC World News
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