Missing a flight can be quite a hassle for your average passenger, but for Pebbles — an emotional support dwarf hamster — it was downright deadly. Owner Belen Aldecosea flushed Pebbles down an airport toilet after her pet was denied passage on a Spirit Airlines flight and she could not figure out any other way to get home to south Florida. The 21-year-old college student said that she had been assured in advance that the hamster could travel with her and said that an airline employee advised her to either flush the animal or let it loose outside.
… After hours of indecision — and unsuccessful attempts to rent a car — the hamster owner chose the former. Aldecosea said, “She was scared. I was scared. It was horrifying trying to put her in the toilet. I sat there for a good 10 minutes crying in the stall.”
…A spokesman for Spirit Airlines acknowledged that the company had mistakenly told Aldecosea that the hamster was permitted to fly, but denied that killing the animal was their idea: “We can say confidently that at no point did any of our agents suggest this guest (or any other for that matter) should flush or otherwise injure an animal. It is incredibly disheartening to hear this guest reportedly decided to end her own pet’s life.”