Shocked Woman Learns Delta Airlines Lost Her Dog on the Run Way
Paula Rodriguez entered a nightmare situation while on a layover at an Atlanta airport. She was approached by border force officials who informed her that she "didn't meet requirements" to fly into the United States; Rodriguez had traveled to the U.S. via a tourist visa.
DID NOT MEET REQUIREMENTS
Rodriguez was ordered to immediately return to the Dominican Republic on the next available flight. However, the next flight was a day away and she was forced to sleep in the on-site detention center.
Rodriguez was informed her dog could not stay with her in the detention center and was forced to hand Maia over to an employee, "They called a Delta agent, who took Maia from me," Rodriguez told CNN.
HANDING OVER HER DOG
The exchange made Rodriguez incredibly uneasy because of how distressed Maia was due to the flight. "I started asking questions about where she'd be spending the night," Rodriguez added that Maia was so distressed she had puked and had diarrhea after they landed.
Reluctantly, she handed over her 6-year-old dog, "He told me not to worry, that she'd be taken to a facility with staff trained for that. That they'd give her food and water and take care of her. It wasn't my wish, but I understood. There was nothing I could do, and I trusted him."
REALIZING SOMETHING WAS WRONG
The following day Rodriguez was taken to the gate to fly back to the Dominican Republic and was told her dog would be waiting at the gate; however, she quickly realized something was wrong.
When Rodriguez arrived at the gate, passengers were already boarding, but Maia was nowhere to be seen. "The gate staff started making calls. A manager came and said they were looking for her, that she should be in the facility but they didn't have time to look and I should get on a plane," said Rodriguez.
Rodriguez refused to leave her dog, "I started panicking and said, 'I'm sorry, I can't get on when you're telling me you don't know where my dog is.'" She was pushed back to another flight that would be leaving an hour later.
FORCED TO LEAVE WITHOUT HER DOG
Confident that it was just a simple mix-up, Rodriguez was frantic when Maia was still not located when the second flight was ready to board. Boarder agents informed her that she couldn't be in the U.S. without a visa and was forced to leave without her dog.
When she arrived back in the Dominican Republic she began making frantic calls trying to locate her dog, "I was in agony for two days with no answer," said Rodriguez. However, just a few days later, she was contacted by a Delta representative in Santo Domingo who gave her devastating news.
"He said that she was being transported [to the plane] on the runway, and staff had opened her kennel, and she had got out of the car and escaped into the middle of the runway," Rodriguez said.
"I'm in agony," she said. "I've been living a nightmare...All kinds of thoughts come into my head and I can't do anything. Every minute feels like a day."