Air Canada pilot diverts flight to save dog

An Air Canada pilot is being lauded for diverting a Tel Aviv-to-Toronto flight to Germany, a move that may have saved the life of a passenger’s French bulldog riding in the jet’s cargo area, according to Canadian outlet CityNews. So, as the plane was preparing to pass over the Atlantic Ocean, where the cargo area would experience a sudden temperature drop, the pilot diverted the flight to Frankfurt so Simba the dog could switch to another, less life-threatening, flight.


Aviation expert Phyl Durby said the temperature outside the plane would have been about minus 50 or 60 degrees – and would have probably been below freezing inside the aircraft despite the insulation. The 7-year-old French bulldog was taking his first flight holed up in cargo, and the pilot recognized the dangerous situation the canine could be in.

German Kontorovich, Simba’s owner, was reunited with him at the airport in Frankfurt.

“The captain is responsible for all lives on board, whether it’s human or K-9”.

“It’s my dog, it’s like my child”, said Kontorovich.

The flight eventually touched down in Toronto just 75 minutes behind schedule.

“While we recognize this was an inconvenience for our customers, the overall reaction was positive, particularly once people understood the dog was in potential danger but safe as a result of the diversion”, Fitzpatrick said in an email to the Toronto Sun.


“I would think that today’s airline [industry] is so profit driven, and Air Canada is no exception, and it costs a huge amount of money for a diversion of an aircraft, that this is something that a captain does not do lightly”, Nance said.

Pilot Diverts Plane to Save Dog. Internet Goes Awww