Air Canada Pilot Turns Plane Around to Save a Dog

An Air Canada pilot is possibly responsible for saving the life of a French Bulldog after he diverted a flight that was traveling from Tel Aviv to Toronto when a heating system failed.

The 7-year-old dog, named Simba, was traveling in his crate in the cargo hold, and just as the plane was about to cross the Atlantic, the heating malfunctioned. This problem wouldn’t have affected the passengers in the pressurized cabin but would allow the cargo hold to drop to below freezing temperatures. Knowing Simba was in danger, the pilot diverted the flight to Frankford, Germany. “The pilot is responsible for all lives on board whether it be human life or even canine life,” aviation expert Phyl Durby told Canada’s City News (scroll down for video).

The decision cost the airline up to $10,000 in fuel and landing fees and caused a 75-minute delay for the approximately 260 passengers, but if not for the pilot’s actions, Simba likely would have frozen to death. Simba and his grateful owner boarded another flight to Toronto. “It’s my dog, it’s like my child. It’s everything to me,” the owner said.

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Learn more about the French Bulldog here: