Belen Aldecosea, 21, of Miami Beach, flushed her hamster down the toilet at Baltimore Washington International Airport after she claims officials at Spirit Airlines (SAVE) told her to do so.
Aldecosea says she called the airline twice ahead of time to make sure that flying with the hamster, which she classified as an "emotional support" animal, was permitted. Despite being told twice that it was fine, when she arrived at the airport Spirit Airlines employees told her that she could not fly with the animal, according to Aldecosea.
She then says an employee told her to flush the animal down the toilet. After much soul-searching, Aldecosea did just that.
"She was scared. I was scared. It was horrifying trying to put her in the toilet," Aldecosea said. "I was emotional. I was crying. I sat there for a good 10 minutes crying in the stall."
Spirit has denied telling her to kill the animal.
"To be clear, at no point did any of our agents suggest this guest (or any other for that matter) should flush or otherwise injure an animal," spokesman Derek Dombrowski said.