Greta, a two-year-old golden Labrador mix. (Manitoba Mutts Dog Rescue via The Canadian Press)

‘Very upset:’ Escaped dog shot at Canadian airport to avoid aircraft mishap

Airport official says dog ran onto runway and forced a flight crew to abort landing attempt

A frightened rescue dog that escaped from a plane and scampered onto a runway at Winnipeg’s airport was shot dead by wildlife control after officials feared the pet might cause an accident.

Winnipeg-based Manitoba Mutts Dog Rescue says the two-year-old golden-Labrador mix, named Greta, fled from a Perimeter Aviation plane Monday after a flight from Shamattawa First Nation.

Airport spokesman Tyler MacAfee says the dog ran onto a runway and forced the crew of a WestJet flight from Las Vegas to abort a landing attempt.

READ MORE: Dog dies after airline worker has it placed in overhead bin

MacAfee says the dog started to run back toward the runway a second time and, despite efforts by two officers to coax Greta in, the dog could not be corralled and was shot to avoid another conflict with an aircraft.

Rebecca Norman, a Manitoba Mutts director, says Greta had been placed in a standard plastic kennel, but it appears she chewed through the side and jumped from the plane when the door opened.

Norman says the organization plans to meet with airport officials to discuss ways to prevent similar incidents.

“It was a bit of a shock for all parties involved,” said Norman. “I think everyone did the best that they could, given the scenario. The outcome was as it should be.”

Greta was considered a community dog that ran loose, she said, although she wasn’t feral and was still approachable.

“Dogs don’t take well to taking trips on airplanes. Any dog would be quite fearful after a flight.”

Norman said a standard metal kennel had been provided for Greta’s transport, but a volunteer in Shamattawa decided the weight was too heavy to load onto a truck, so the dog was left in the plastic kennel.

She said the rescue group has flown many dogs in plastic carriers before.

A member of a foster family that would have taken Greta before possible placement in a permanent home was waiting at the airport.

“They were very upset. This was their first foster dog with us so it was pretty traumatizing. Thankfully, she was able to take another dog that was on the flight.”

MacAfee said pets have escaped from their crates before, but this is the first time the airport had to shoot an animal.

He said they’ve looked at the option of using a tranquillizer gun.

“My understanding is that there are no airports in Canada which use that technique, but … if it’s practical and makes sense and works then, absolutely, we would look at it as an option.”

Norman said it’s wonderful the airport has offered to meet with her organization, but she’s not sure much will change “in terms of protocol.”

“Tranquilizer darts take quite a long time to work and it’s a guessing game on how much the dog weighs and how much medication to give.”

Norman also said wire kennels don’t always meet airlines’ size requirements and Manitoba Mutts has spoken to Perimeter Aviation about using carriers with heavier plastic.

There was no immediate reply from Perimeter to a request for comment.

The Canadian Press

Just Posted

Bike helmets, tools donated to Santa’s Workshop

Cross Canada Cycle Touring Society and Canadian Tire embraced the season of giving

Annual labyrinth walk welcomes the festive celebration of lights season

Take a break from the commercial activity of the holiday season and… Continue reading

Strong winds to hit B.C.’s south coast

Western regions may see winds of up to 80 km/hr

Courtenay family looking for help after baby born two months premature

A GoFundMe page has been set up as a difficult pregnancy and a long stay in Victoria have left the family struggling to get by

Story of the Year: Deadly Humboldt Broncos bus crash

The Canadian Press annual survey of newsrooms across the country saw 53 out of 129 editors cast their votes for the Humboldt Broncos bus crash.

Imminent need for housing money: Blaney

North Island-Powell River MP concerned about short-term

Trump signs order to create US Space Command

President Donald Trump signs an executive order to create a U.S. Space Command.

Groups preparing new pipeline legal challenge, argue government’s mind made up

A Vancouver-based environment charity is readying itself to go back to court if the federal government reapproves the Trans Mountain pipeline expansion.

Notorious Toronto triple killer gets third consecutive life sentence

Dellen Millard gets third consecutive life sentence for father’s death.

‘Subdued’ housing market predicted in B.C. through 2021: report

The Central 1 Credit Union report predicts “rising but subdued sales” over the next three years, with little movement in median home prices.

A journey through 2018’s top pop culture moments

Was there any pop culture this year? Of course there was.

‘A stronger Alberta:’ Ottawa announces $1.6B for Canada’s oil and gas sector

Price of Alberta oil plummeted so low that Alberta’s Premier said Canada was practically giving it away

Wicked weather, including heavy snow, rainfall, hammers southern B.C.

Environment Canada has posted winter storm warnings for the Coquihalla Highway, Highway 3

Most Read