The December, 2005 Airline Pet Travel Report contains pet incidents for the month of October, 2005.
Detail of the Incidents
American Airlines, Death - Boston Terrier: Dog was found deceased in San Francisco, CA, flight originated in Dallas, TX. The necropsy results reveal the dog died of a pre-existing heart condition and the stress of flying caused the dog to hyperventilate and triggered a cardiac episode. American Airlines, Death - French Bulldog: This dog died shortly after being unloaded from a Tulsa, OK to a Dallas, TX flight. The necropsy results revealed evidence of acute cardiovascular collapse, but the cause was not apparent. The airline noted that there were no irregularities and other animals traveling in the same compartment arrived safely.
Horizon Air, Death - Birds, Pocket Parrots: Birds were flown via Goldstreak (small package express) from San Diego, CA to Portland, OR on Alaska Airlines. Birds were then placed on a connecting flight, on Horizon Air to Eureka-Arcata, CA. One bird was found deceased inside its kennel upon arrival of the aircraft in Eureka-Arcata. One more bird died within one hour of leaving the airport. The cause of the deaths is unknown.
United Airlines, Death - Beagle: Two dogs in separate kennels on a flight from Idaho Falls, ID to Orlando, FL. Upon arrival in Orlando one dog was motionless and appeared to be deceased. No necropsy was performed as owner opted to take the animal home. The kennel was in good shape with no evidence of damage.
Though deaths are always unfortunate there does not seem to be any negligence with the airlines in any if the incidents that happened in October. We also get a little more insight from the first American Airlines incident where we found out that hyperventilating from the stress of flying lead to the cardiac incident. Further proof that you need to make sure your pet is comfortable in their kennel and that you do your best to evaluate if your pet will be able to handle the stress of flying (with no implication that this did not happen in this case).