A woman claiming to have a deadly dog allergy was forcibly removed from a Southwest Airlines flight after demanding that two dogs onboard the plane – one emotional support dog and one pet – be removed.
The woman, 46-year-old Anila Daulatzai, was seated toward the rear of the plane when she complained to flight attendants of a deadly dog allergy and requested the dogs, one emotional support dog and one pet, be removed from the flight.
The confrontation became heated when flight attendants told the woman the dogs would not be removed from the plane and asked her to provide the medical certificate necessary to continue with the flight. When she could not provide the certificate, she was asked to deplane at the request of the captain.
Southwest spokesman Chris Mainz said she then became uncooperative and demanded an EpiPen, while refusing to deboard the aircraft.
According to a Southwest Airlines policy, passengers with disabilities or special needs, including severe allergies, can be accommodated or seated far away from animals if the airline is notified in advance, either at the time of booking or, at the very least, at the departure gate.
Despite what she called a severe, potentially deadly allergy to dogs, Daulatzai did not proactively notify the airline of her needs.
Passenger Bill Dumas, who recorded the incident on his cell phone, questioned the legitimacy of the woman’s claims, saying “If I had a life-threatening allergic reaction to dogs, I would certainly check with the airline to make sure there’s no dogs on that flight.”
Other’s shared his sentiment.
I have a deadly pet allergy, but NO! I will NOT get off the plane. https://t.co/5RKmKfFYIc
— Brian McIver (@bmciver) September 27, 2017
If I had a true “life threatening” allergy to a pet, and saw one on the plane. You couldn’t get me off the plane fast enough. Not buying it
— Joe Coppola (@thor82405) September 27, 2017
Although passengers onboard sympathized with the woman, they also felt she gave airline employees and police no alternative than to forcibly remove her from the plane.
Southwest Airlines, “disheartened by the way the situation unfolded,” reiterated their policy that “a customer (without a medical certificate) may be denied boarding if they report a life-threatening allergic reaction and cannot travel safely with an animal onboard.”
After being removed from the aircraft, Daulatzai was taken into custody and charged with disorderly conduct, failure to obey a reasonable and lawful order, disturbing the peace, obstructing and hindering a police officer and resisting arrest. She was transported to the Anne Arundel County District Court, where she was released on her own recognizance.