WOODLAND PARK, N.J. — Only one kind of bird went in the air at Newark Airport this week, after an airline did not allow a passenger to bring her "support" peacock on a flight with her.
The woman said she bought an extra ticket for the peacock but it was not allowed on the United Airlines plane. Andrea Hiller, a spokeswoman for United, said the customer was told three times before she came to the airport that the peacock would not be able to take flight with her.
@kumathedestructor took this great shot of me at #newarkairport today. Spent 6 hours trying to get on my flight to LA 😤🐣Tomorrow my human friends are going to drive me cross country! Keep an 👁out for us! 🌈 #bestroadtripbuddy #dexterthepeacock
"This animal did not meet guidelines for a number of reasons, including its weight and size," Hiller said in a statement sent to NorthJersey.com.
The peacock was halted in the lobby, Hiller said.
A representative from Newark Airport deferred comment to United.
Hiller stated United was "dedicated to providing convenient and comfortable service to all of our customers."
Department of Transportation guidelines state that some "unusual service animals" can pose a safety or health risk and that airlines are not required to transport them, according to Hiller.
"The release of such an animal in the aircraft cabin could result in a direct threat to the health or safety of passengers and crewmembers," the guidelines state.
Support animals provide owners "comfort, security, companionship, and love when suffering from a mental or emotional disability of illness," according to CertaPet, a company that specializes in support animals.