United Airlines 'cremated giant bunny without owner's consent'

The owner of a giant rabbit who died while in the care of United Airlines says he has been cremated without her permission.

Continental Giant rabbit Simon was being flown from the UK to Chicago's O'Hare Airport to a new home in the US when he mysteriously died.

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United says the bunny was alive when he was taken out of the cargo section of the plane in Chicago, but he passed away in a kennel facility at the airport.

Owner Annette Edwards, 65, says she now will never know how he died.

According to The Sun, she said: "I had been asking United over and over again for his body so that I can have him examined here in Britain but they never got back to me. All I want to know is how he died.

"He was fit as a fiddle when he left my house, and then 24 hours later he's dead."

The airline has denied allegations that Simon died after an airport worker mistakenly left him in a freezer overnight.

According to the NY Post, a spokesman said: "The assertion that Simon died in a freezer is completely false. Simon was cared for at the PetSafe kennel facility which is kept at room temperature (on average 70°F).

"He arrived at Chicago O'Hare airport in apparent good condition at 10.25am (local time).

"He was seen by a representative of the kennel facility moving about within his crate about 11.00am.

"Shortly thereafter, a kennel representative noticed Simon was motionless and determined that he passed away."

An airline spokesman told the Metro: "We were saddened by the loss of Simon and have worked with Annette Edwards to reach a satisfactory resolution."