There are circumstances when a person can legally bring an animal on a flight. Some airlines allow you to fly with your pet, either in the cabin or as checked baggage. All airlines are required to allow service animals to fly with their disabled humans.
But in all circumstances, there are specific rules that apply, for the safety of you, your pet, and the other passengers and crew. Rules that Mikhail Galin did not consider or give a flying flip about when he decided to try to sneak his cat (who was over the kitty weight limit) on board.
The saga began when Aeroflot, a Russian-based airline, refused to let Galin’s cat, Viktor, fly home with him the cabin. Galin was worried about putting his little buddy in the cargo hold, though, because he knows that Viktor gets nervous in unfamiliar settings and also that the pressure changes are hard for him.
So, instead of taking no for an answer, Galin took to social media in search of a cat who looked like Viktor, except skinnier.
Once the perfect match was found, Galin checked in with the skinnier cat, then simply traded it back for Viktor to a friend who took the littler guy (or gal) home (where can only assume he had a treat and then got on his kitty treadmill).
Galin and Viktor boarded the flight without issue, but he was busted by airport surveillance footage, which showed him swapping the cats.
The old switcheroo was caught, and for Galin (and Viktor), the jig was up.
As a penalty, the airline stripped Galin of his frequent flyer status and removed his 400,000 saved miles.
But I mean, he seems to really love his cat, so I’m guessing it’s a small price to pay.
Next time, though, maybe just hire a pet sitter.