Yesterday I wrote about the new animal relief areas in airports. I hope that the added comforts don’t entice more pet owners to take their pooches on airplanes for leisure trips. 

In the first ten months of 2015, 29 pets died while many others were injured or even lost by the airlines. A former airline employee says: “My expert advice: do not fly pets unless it’s an emergency!”

Pets are often injured because they are frantic and hurt themselves trying to escape. Deaths occur from heat strokes or suffocation. Others break out on the tarmac and are hit by vehicles. It is an ugly list. 

Obviously those flying with their animals place great importance on them to incur the expense of air travel. And while 29/2,000,000 is only a mere fraction, if one of the 29 was your beloved pooch it would be little solace.

The dilemma has no easy answers. Passengers want to fly their pets, and some have no driving alternatives. Airlines are not equipped to handle them without incident, so they struggle with procedures and keep 1,999,971 alive, but it is not enough.

What in your organization poses a similar challenge? Where is the cost of failure too high, even if by percentage it is low? You may be doing the majority of things right, but in select situations your goals need to fly higher.

beth triplett

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