JetBlue passenger’s pet opossum gets him kicked off flight: ‘Frustrating beyond belief’
A California man is claiming he was unfairly booted from a recent JetBlue flight over his pet opossum after airline employees reversed a prior promise and said the small marsupial could not travel with him for the second leg of his journey.
Gerald Tautenhahn alleges that he received permission from both the Department of Transportation and JetBlue before flying with his “awesome” opossum Zatara to visit his mother for Thanksgiving, jetting from the Golden State to Austin, Tex. without issue.
“We did all of our homework about a month in advance. I called the Department of Transportation, cleared it with them. Cleared it with JetBlue, they said it was fine,” Tautenhahn told Fox 7.
The trouble began on the return flight, however, when a seated Tautenhahn was approached by a JetBlue crew member and informed that Zatara was not allowed on the flight.
“Already boarded on the plane sitting on the seat and one of the crew members came up and said ‘Hey can I speak with you outside?’” he recalled. “They said ‘Hey, either you can leave her here or you can stay with her but she can’t fly.’ The feeling was insane, it was frustrating beyond belief because they let me come here with her but now I can’t return with her.”
According to the New York Post, Tautenhahn had no problem flying with his opossum for the first leg of his journey, as JetBlue staffers told him the pet was OK in the cabin “as long as she is in an approved carrier that fits under the seat.”