As first reported by Live and Let Fly, a woman recently attempted to bring a peacock — a flippin’ peacock! — aboard a United flight departing from Newark Liberty International Airport. She, of course, claimed it was an “emotional support animal.” United, thankfully, denied her request.
The issue — and by issue, I mean abuse — of service animals on flights has clearly reached absurdity. Can you even imagine sitting next to a peacock on your flight?! If you live-tweeted that experience, you’d go viral instantaneously.
It seems I can’t go more than week without reading about some ridiculous exotic animal being claimed as an emotional support animal. I’m honestly not even thrilled about dogs serving that role, as you just know many are simply using that designation as a loophole to avoid pet fees.
While, overall, I am very skeptical of service animals, I can tell you they are very, very good at one in-flight service: diverting flights! I’ve actually been on one such flight, where the diversion costed us about 4 hours. How does an emotionally unstable person deal with the stress of diverting and delaying over 200 people? Don’t mind me. Just throwing rhetorical questions out there.
Delta to the Rescue
The good people at Delta recently introduced new restrictions on service animals in an attempt to curb some of this abuse. And if I know anything about airlines — and I think I do — the others will eventually follow in suit. Copying others policies is their favorite thing to do.