There are two things America has that Australia desperately needs.
1) Emotional support animals on planes
Usually, these two things don’t go hand-in-hand. But one woman achieved the extraordinary. Almost.
However let’s go back a step before we delve into this dramatic tale. In case you weren’t aware, in the US, emotional support animals (also known as ‘comfort animals’) are permitted under federal regulations to travel with their owners in airplane cabins. These aren’t the same as service animals which are raised specifically to help people with emotional or physical disabilities, like seeing-eye dogs.
Cats, dogs and even miniature horses (brilliant) are usually permitted by the airlines to fly. But while any type of comfort animal is technically allowed, US airlines have the right to turn away the more… unique pets. Like the ’emotional support peacock’ one woman tried – but failed – to bring on a flight with her earlier this year.
Anyway, back to the squirrel.
Cindy Torok boarded a flight in Orlando on Tuesday, bundling her trusty 11-week-old squirrel named Daisy with her as her emotional support animal. And while squirrels don't exactly bring to mind the idea of 'comfort' with their jittery nature, it's each to their own, eh? This squirrel has places to be.
Alas, things went a bit pear-shaped. Daisy's big journey to Cleveland was cut short. She and her owner were forcibly removed by police from the Frontier Airline flight before take-off.