Family Says 5-Year-Old Dog Died In United Cargo Hold

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A Houston family claims United Airlines is responsible for the death of their 5-year-old King Charles Spaniel.

United Airlines said in a statement that it was investigating the incident.

Following the early April incident at Chicago's O'Hare International Airport, in which video of the passenger being roughly removed from the aircraft went viral, there was an outcry from consumer advocates who charged that United and O'Hare were acting improperly. United stated that they are "deeply upset" when an animal suffers an injury while travelling with them. They said they would be "reaching out" to the family to assist and that they are running a thorough investigation into the incident.

The Rasmussens have not determined whether they will take legal action. Lulu, they said, was cleared for travel by a veterinarian before they dropped her off at animal cargo at George Bush Intercontinental Airport. In June, airlines also reported two tarmac delays of more than four hours on worldwide flights compared to no such tarmac delays in May.

The Humane Society also discourages transporting pets in the cargo hold of a plane. Based on National Weather Service records, Sunday's high temperature in Houston was 94 degrees with rain.

"We all know that when airlines overbook, they offer passengers incentives to volunteer to give up their seats; United should never have escalated the situation and should have offered sufficient incentives to avoid this awful outcome", National Consumers League executive director Sally Greenberg said in an April news release.

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"There were significant problems with the air conditioning in the main cabin where we are sitting, so we are deeply concerned about the conditions in cargo... and anxious that there was significant negligence on the part of #UnitedAirlines", the family posted on Facebook.

Lulu was found lifeless upon arrival in San Francisco.

Another dog that belongs to the family, Ginger, arrived in good health, The Washington Post reports.

A Houston family is blaming United Airlines for the death of their five-year-old King Charles Spaniel.

The rate of ticket-holders on 12 USA carriers denied a seat from April to June declined to 44 per million passengers, according to the Department of Transportation's Air Travel Consumer Report released Tuesday. The report revealed that 53 animals died on United flights from January 2012 through February 2017.

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