Miltary family calls for change after $12K airline pet fee - KUAM.com-KUAM News: On Air. Online. On Demand.

Miltary family calls for change after $12K airline pet fee

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Receiving military orders to relocate to Guam might mean leaving their pets behind.  

As the policy to bring dogs on board United Airlines changes, one stateside couple scrambles to find over $10,000 for their furbabies to travel to the island.

Kenneth and Emily Sanders live in Norfolk with their two dogs. We spoke to her via Skype.   

"This is Phoenix.....where you at Nadia...And this is Nadia she came to say hello," she said. They're a little lazy in their old age now, but they're happy and healthy and part of our family most importantly."

When the family received military orders to relocate to Guam back in December, they were surprised by the price tag to take their two fur-babies with them.

"We were expecting maybe $1,500 a dog," she said, "We knew it was going to be a lot more expensive we had some money already saved for this purpose because we knew the process to Guam is a little bit more difficult.
When we started looking into it and we realized just how different it is after all these changes, we were floored."

Due to recent policy changes at United Airlines, the only flight to Guam from the mainland, it would cost $6,000 a dog, or $12,000 total for her two oversized dogs. That's because United's new pet policy does not allow larger dogs who's height and snout are too large for the approved kennel.



"I looked at my husband and I was like we might have to re-home Phoenix," she said. "And he said no, there's not a chance. And I looked at him and I'm like I can't rehome Nadia so neither one of us was willing to go through that. At that point we were like the policy needs to change, there needs to be different rules that can help families do this type of stuff especially when we're already being forced to do it in a sense."

Though with generous donations, and fronting the costs, they expect both pups will make the trip to Guam, Emily has since signed a viral petition for United Airlines to change their policy.

As she worries, for the financial burden bringing a pet home can place on other families.

"Some families cannot come up with that type of money," she said. "Some families don't have that type of credit limit, some families have other priorities, so it's a lot to ask to be able to keep your family together."

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