An American woman has been left "devastated" after Etihad Airways reportedly lost her cat following a flight from Abu Dhabi to New York.
Jennifer Stewart and her husband Joseph Naaman were flying back to America with their cat Felix, two, after living in the UAE for three years.
The couple flew on 1 April, landing at JFK Airport, where they were told by Etihad Airways that Felix had managed to get loose. And, unfortunately, it was not an April Fool's joke.
The couple spent $1,200 on shipping Felix to the US in the 14-hour flight. Jennifer said: "People assume you pay extra to have your pets taken care of, but they're treated no differently than a free piece of checked luggage."
The couple were called into an office by airline staff at JFK and told the cat's carrier had been crushed, and it had left a hole in the top of it, from which Felix must have escaped.
He is still missing a week later.
Speaking to CNN, Jennifer said: "For them to take a cat and ship him like he was cargo, not a live animal, makes me sick.
"You trust that people care and are doing the job well, and then this happens."
"We will review our pet handling procedures in the wake of this incident, as the safety and care of pets travelling with Etihad Airways is a top priority."
Jennifer said she would keep on searching the airport, adding: "We just want to find Felix. But I just don't know if we will."
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