He didn't care that it cost $10,000 extra in fuel to save the dog. He just did what was right.
A lot of times, we hear bad stories about airlines. Terrible wait times while stuck on the plane, bad customer service. But this time, the story (originally reported by CityNews) is sweet.
A dog's first flying adventure almost goes horribly wrong.
Simba, a 7-year-old French bulldog, was taking the first flight of his life, from Tel Aviv to Toronto. He was hanging out in the cargo hold in his carrier, as over 2 million pets per year do on airlines. Minutes before heading out over the Atlantic Ocean (where temperatures can really freeze things up on a plane) the pilot noticed a problem with the heating system in the cargo hold.
Going out over the Atlantic could prove fatal to animals in the cargo hold without heat.
So the pilot decided to reroute and land in Frankfurt, Germany. The decision likely saved the dog's life.
His owner, German Kontorovich, is so grateful.
"It's my dog, it's like my child. It's everything to me." — Simba's dad
And, of course, many of the 260 passengers really didn't mind the 75-minute delay, either, given the very important reason it had to happen.
"While we recognize this was an inconvenience for our customers, the overall reaction was positive, particularly once people understood the dog was in potential danger but safe as a result of the diversion." — Peter Fitzpatrick, spokesperson for Air Canada
"I'd probably have been upset, but if it saved the dog..." — airline passenger
Phyl Durdy, an aviation expert, told CityNews that it probably cost around $10,000 in fuel and other costs for the diversion, but it was the right thing to do.
Crisis was averted, and Air Canada is probably going to curry favor with animal lovers and pet owners everywhere. Somebody needs to give that pilot a raise!