A woman took her 'emotional support squirrel' onto a flight. Things went... pear-shaped.


There are two things America has that Australia desperately needs.

1) Emotional support animals on planes
2) Squirrels

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.

Yes, that's a peacock at an airport. Image: The Jet Set.

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.

According to WFTV, Cindy had notified the airline she would be bringing her support animal. But, ah, she hadn't mentioned the teeny-weeny detail that her animal was a squirrel. And unfortunately for Daisy, she is classified as a rodent - which is not allowed on Frontier Airline flights. Shucks.

"The passenger noted in their reservation that they were bringing an emotional support animal," Frontier Airline said in a statement. "But it was not indicated that it was a squirrel."

How can you say no to a face like this? Image: Getty.

But a world where a woman can't have a squirrel as an emotional support animal is a very sad world indeed, so Cindy did not give up without a fight. The entire flight had to be evacuated and delayed for two hours so police could deal with the squirrel situation (very important police matter, obviously).


Eventually, officers managed to escort the woman away in a wheelchair, believed to be holding her squirrel inside a carrier on her lap.

In a video posted on Twitter, she was heard yelling "shut up, bitch" and flipping the bird at passengers cheering over her exit.


Now, Cindy - bless her soul - wants revenge because how dare anybody lay a finger on her squirrel. 

"They said, 'Either you walk off the plane or I'm going to arrest you for trespassing, and we will take that squirrel'. I said, 'You're not taking my squirrel. Sorry, you're not. I refuse. You will not take my baby from me'," she told Fox8.

"I'm going for blood. I'm going all the way. I'm contacting an attorney."