PHOENIX (CBS) – A passenger aboard a Southwest Airlines flight says a support dog on the plane bit a young girl during boarding Wednesday night. Todd Rice said the girl went across the aisle to pet the dog, which bit the girl across the forehead.

Southwest said in a statement, “initial reports indicate a support dog’s teeth scraped a child’s forehead as the young passenger approached the animal, causing a minor injury.”

dog photo credit tr411 Southwest Airlines Responds After Support Dog Bites Young Girl

(credit: Todd Rice)

“EMTs evaluated the child, who was cleared to continue on the flight” that was heading from Phoenix to Portland, the airline said. “The dog and its owner remained in Phoenix as the aircraft departed approximately 20 minutes behind schedule. As always, the safety of our Customers is our highest priority. ”

Rice said the passenger with the dog didn’t fight the decision to be removed. He said the child “was screaming and crying, and as a father, it breaks your heart.”

Rice took to Twitter about the ordeal saying “flight 1904 allows a support dog on the plane, bites kid, paramedics now on plane. Why are dogs on the plane?! Never again will I fly SWA.”

Southwest responded.

Several airlines, including Delta and United, recently announced more stringent rules on support animals after an increasing number of incidents and complaints, including a dog attack on a Delta flight last year.


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