A student named Zachary Smith says he has been stranded in Arizona after he was denied boarding on his Delta flight due to his emotional support Pit Bull mix named Kaimani, or Kai. Previously, the same airline had allowed Kai during the initial flight from Cincinnati to Phoenix.
Zachary says that the airport officials called his well-behaved dog “a dangerous and aggressive” breed, and outright denied him the return trip. This is in direct contradiction with a recent Department Of Transportation law that makes it illegal to impose breed-based ban on dogs.
However, the law also states that any animal can be “banned” if the officers consider it a direct threat to safety. In Kai’s case, Zachary feels that the officers misused their power as his certified emotional support dog isn’t remotely a threat to anyone.
The Delta authorities later issued a statement saying that they prioritize safety and stand by their decision to not allow Kai. They also called “allowing Kai” on the earlier trip a “mistake”
Update: Zachary has updated that Kai was subsequently allowed on a United flight, while the Delta airlines refunded his fare. The pair is back home, but Zachary feels unsettled because of airlines’ case-to-case dealings with dogs.