Search for Missing Vivi Continues (Updated 03-23-06)

The search for Vivi reaches its 5-week mark.

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The airlines
As mentioned earlier, Jils lawyer Joyce Randazzo has received an inquiry from Delta Airlines concerning suggestions we may have for improving the procedure of shipping dogs. We take their offer to make some changes very seriously and want them to apply not only to Delta but to all airlines. Many have strong feelings about what should be required, but nobody has all the answers, so we would like the airlines to form an educated opinion after talking to a sufficient number of experienced pet shippers before making any decisions. It is almost impossible to find crates that stay closed even in an accident, yet are easy to open quickly in an emergency; that are warm enough in cold weather and cool enough in hot temperatures; light enough to be useful, etc.

We are very pleased that Delta has asked for our input in this matter. We are, however, also still awaiting information that was promised several weeks ago about the internal investigation that reportedly took place concerning what happened to Vivis crate.

I am indebted to Rudolph H. Auslander, of the Japan Airlines Management Corporation, a 37-year veteran of the airline industry, a dog lover and a volunteer with an English Springer Spaniel Rescue group, for the following information. He writes: "Since 9/11 and the implementation of the Transportation Security Regulations that we now operate under, unaccompanied baggage is carefully screened by TSA behind the scenes after you give it to the airline for check in. In the case of live animals, TSA does a visual screening of the crates in your presence. Is it possible that TSA agents opened the cage again to check the contents and failed to properly secure the lock after looking inside?"

Here is what Delta says about shipping pets on their web site: "At Delta, we take the time and care to ensure every animal travels safely and comfortably with our Delta Pet First™ service." "Rest assured that your pet will be treated with the same comfort and care you have come to expect from us."

The following are Government Regulations: "Your pet must remain inside the kennel (with door secured) while in a Delta boarding area (during boarding and deplaning), a Delta airport lounge, and while onboard the aircraft."

Here is what the Department of Transporation says about Transporting Live Animals: "Over two million pets and other live animals are transported by air every year in the United States. Federal and state governments impose restrictions on transporting live animals. In addition, each airline establishes its own company policy for the proper handling of the animals they transport."

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