Airline loses pet dog at Atlanta airport after owner is deported from the US

Ceri Breeze / / miguismalls / Twitter

“Where is Maia?” This is the question Paula Rodriguez and many other concerned social media users are asking Delta Air Lines.

The airline allegedly lost Rodriguez’s beloved pet dog Maia at Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport (ATL) when she was denied entry to the US.

Rodriguez and Maia flew Delta Air Lines on August 18, 2023 on a flight from Las Américas International Airport in Santo Domingo (SDQ) Dominican Republic, to San Francisco International Airport (SFO), with a stop in ATL airport. 

However, things did not go as planned when they reached ATL airport. 

The US Customs and Border Protection at ATL airport did not find Rodriguez’s travel documents sufficient, and she was denied entry into the US. 

Rodriguez was told by officials that she needed to fly back to Santo Domingo as soon as possible. The next available flight was the following day, so Rodriguez spent the night in a detention center without Maia. 

In a video that has now been posted on multiple social media platforms, Rodriguez said that she explained to Delta Air Lines that Maia must travel with her back to the Dominican Republic because she is an emotional support animal. 

“The agent promised me that my dog will be taken care of, and that I was going to see her the next day,” Rodriguez recounted in the video.

However, when Rodriguez was ready to take her flight back home the following day, Maia could not be found. 

Rodriguez had no choice but to fly to the Dominican Republic without Maia. 

Rodriguez said that the airline did not give her any response or answers despite her trying to reach them for more than two days.

On the third day, she said she was contacted by Delta Air Lines who confirmed that Maia broke free from her crate ,“escaped” and got lost on the runways of ATL airport. 

Communication stopped after the update, and the airline is allegedly no longer responding to any of Rodriguez’s questions.

Lost dog fliers have now been posted all over Atlanta, with other concerned citizens also taking to social media demanding that Delta provide answers regarding Maia’s whereabouts.

Delta Air Lines released a statement to various US media outlets, saying that it is “committed” to ongoing search efforts to locate Maia.

“Delta teams have been working to locate and reunite this pet with the customer and we remain in touch with the customer to provide updates. Delta people feel deeply concerned for the customer and the dog and we’re committed to ongoing search efforts, working closely with the City of Atlanta Department of Aviation and other stakeholders,” the statement said.

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