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American Humane Pushes for Independent Oversight of Airlines in Wake of Pet Deaths

CHICAGO, ILLINOIS, September 3, 2020

American Humane, the country’s first national humane organization, is calling for independent oversight of airline travel in the wake of persistent animal welfare lapses within the industry. Last week, eighteen dogs languished in a warehouse at O’Hare International Airport for three days without food or water, ultimately resulting in the tragic death of one animal.

“Whenever animals travel, their owners should not have to worry about whether or not they will arrive at their destination safely and securely,” said Dr. Robin R. Ganzert, president and CEO of American Humane. “It is high time for airline companies to adopt independent, humane oversight of their practices”

American Humane is the largest certifier of animal welfare in the world, and steadfastly believes in independent audits of animal operations and standards set by the world’s leading scientists and welfare experts. To that end, in 2018 American Humane developed a comprehensive set of protocols for the safe transport of pets. Last month, the organization released A New Deal for Animals, People and the World We Share, a 10-point policy proposal that calls for independent oversight of animals in transit.

Animals being subjected to inhumane care and handling while traveling is not an isolated event. In June, 38 French bulldog puppies were found dead on a plan at Toronto Pearson airport. Surviving puppies were suffering from dehydration, weakness and vomiting.

“Without truly independent, third-party oversight of airline protocols, policies and procedures for transporting animals, the industry will continue to put its animal passengers in harm’s way on a regular basis,” said Dr. Ganzert. “The persistent inhumane treatment of animals in transit cannot be tolerated.”

About American Humane
American Humane is the country’s first national humane organization, founded in 1877. For more information, please visit

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