Student said Spirit Airlines told her to flush her pet hamster down toilet

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A college student said Spirit Airlines told her to flush her pet hamster down the toilet because she would not be allowed on the plane with the tiny animal. Belen Aldecosea, 21, told her story on Thursday, and said the incident occurred while at the Baltimore-Washington International Airport as she was heading home to Miami Beach on November 21.

According to Fox News, Belen had called the airline twice to make sure she could take her pet dwarf hamster named Pebbles on the plane. She was allegedly told there would be no problem, but once at the airport the situation changed and not towards the benefit of tiny Pebbles.

Pebbles, by the way, was an “emotional comfort animal” and had been doctor certified. In Belen’s freshman year at Wilson College in Pennsylvania, she had a cancer scare and the tiny little furry creature had provided comfort to her.

“She was so loving. It was like she knew I needed somebody,” stated Belen.

And now it was only hours until Belen’s flight was to leave and even after having been ensured previously Pebbles could fly home with her, she didn’t know what to do. Belen ever rescheduled her flight trying to convince the airline to let the hamster fly in the cargo area.  There was no one around to take custody of the hamster, and that’s when a representative for Spirit Airlines allegedly told Belen to flush the hamster down the toilet.

When Belen was too young to rent a car to drive home or find a bus headed her way, she did it.  She thought about letting Pebbles outdoors, but stated she couldn’t bear thinking of the tiny animal freezing to death. Here are her words:

“It was horrifying trying to put her in the toilet. I was emotional. I was crying. I sat there for a good 10 minutes crying in the stall.”

Belen is considering suing Spirit Airlines for pressuring her into a decision after telling her Pebbles was able to fly home with her. Rodents of any kind are not allowed on board on Spirit even if they are emotional support animals. A Spirit Airlines stated Belen had been given the wrong information about the hamster accompanying her in the plane, however denies anyone would have told her to flush the tiny rodent.

The U.S. Transport Security Administration says hamsters are welcome at airports and are permitted to pass through security. Emotional support animals are companion animals, and typically most airline carriers allow the pets on board. Last week when a woman wanted to board a flight with her emotional peacock, the passenger was denied – but that bird posed a danger to other passengers. What in the world could a tiny hamster that could fit into the palm of a person’s hand be a danger to anyone Belen’s attorney asked?

What would you have done in a similar situation? Should Belen be charged with animal cruelty? Why didn’t she just call the nearest animal shelter – surely someone could have helped or called a local rescue organization?

Rest in peace little Pebbles. You certainly were failed by humans every step of the way.

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22 replies
  1. Darla says:

    I can’t believe she did that, she should have called her parents for help. She needs to be hit with an animal cruelty charge and the airline needs to be fined big time. This shit has to stop. She was old enough to think of another way instead of killing the poor thing by flushing it down the toilet, absolutely disgusting. It was there for her when she needed it but she killed it when it needed her. Never allow her to have any other pets or kids for that matter.


    she flushed her pet down the toilet whoa, what the hell is going on here. I’d tell whomever told me to do that, I would rather flush them down the toilet. this is horrible.

  3. Ilona Brost says:

    That girl is deranged! No matter what any airline said (even if), no person in a right mind can do what she did to poor Pebbles. DEFINITELY animal cruelty charges and banning her from owning animals!

  4. Adrienne says:

    If this is true and the airlines told her to do this, she should get a lawyer and sue them. Unless she misunderstood what they told her to do and she got confused and did this thinking that’s what they told her to do (she could have contact animal control and they would have retrieved the hampster. Hope we find out more of this story so more passengers know their rights with animals on planes.

  5. Mary Ann Clark says:

    YES she should be charged with animal cruelty! She should have called the press,called a lawyer and stood her ground! Murdering her pet should have never been an option and any and all airline personnel that suggested this should be fired and put in prison too!

  6. pennysdachshunds says:

    I think this YOUNG woman thinks she is going to make a bundle off a lawsuit!!! Come on 18 and she didn’t think to call an animal shelter … a pet store… cancel her flight and go home and find someone to care for the little hamster till she got back …Miami Beach to a Spring Break PARTY!!! “F” her. cried While she flushed her ::

  7. Red says:

    I hate this story. 1. That the airline said such a terrible thing 2. That this girl ACTUALLY DID IT??? REALLY?
    If that is all the loyalty you have toward a pet, is to just destroy it because it is an inconvenient problem, DO NOT GET A PET!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
    I detested Spirt Airlines BEFORE this story, now I really hate them telling a person to kill their pet. Not real fond of the girl who followed their direction. RIP sweet little animal, you are no longer around IDIOT HUMANS!

  8. J. Martin says:

    What kind of fucked up people do they have working for this airline??? What cold assholes; They are both stupid & ignorant
    That fuck tried saying that to me … and that “person” … would be VERY SORRY INDEED!!!!!

  9. Nancy Raymond says:

    She actually flushed this innocent little being down the toilet???? What the fuck is wrong with her? She was ‘so upset’ BUT did it – Hell no! If this hamster meant so much to Belen she would never have complied – both Spirit and Aldecosea should be held responsible – BUT personally, I think this cruel bitch just wanted her 15 minutes of fame at the expense of an innocent defenseless animal. SHE should have her bleached blonde head stuffed in a toilet and flushed over and over.

    • pennysdachshunds says:

      I agree with YOU Nancy:: this is a publicity gamitt for this Pretty Person who wants a chance of Social Media all across the World… She is a Wolf in Sheep’s Clothing hoping for her fame to get her on the batchelor , CNN with Robin Meade , or Fox News or a change to get into a Swimsuit Cover !!! what a little B!!!

  10. Pamela Bolton says:

    No she shouldn’t be charged it she should sue the hell out of the airline and the person who told her to flush it That hamster wouldn’t have caused the first problem. Can’t believe she did it.

  11. Stephanie Valletti says:

    Whatever the stupid ass Spirit Airlines told her, she did NOT and should NOT have flushed that poor little hamster. So much for being her support animal-just flush her!
    Now, Spirit Airlines should have their policies investigated and clarified as to what animals are permitted. Third, that girl is just a stupid fucking asshole for not using one brain cell in her head to come up with a better solution than flushing her pet.

  12. Pamela Garlisch says:

    She’s in college?????? Exactly what has she learned through college? Waste of money paying for college for her, she hasn’t got a brain in her head! Stop paying for college, she can get a job at McDonald’s. An “emotional support animal” for her? Now what’s she going to do without the “emotional support” this animal gives her, she’s a joke. Arrest her for animal cruelty!

    • Bunny Peters says:

      Exactly!!!!!!!! The ONLY being I feel sorry for is Pebbles…… this little treasure was failed by humans in every way possible….. NO WAY would I have killed my pet…… she should NEVER have any other animals, ever…… except for a small stuffed polyester toy…….

      She could have followed any or all of these options, for example: I would have 1) called my parents and asked for help, 2) called an animal control agency and asked for help, 3) called a priest (or other trusted clergy) and asked for help, 4) called EVERY news agency in the area and asked for help, 5) since flying IS a choice, demanded this POS airline reschedule my trip on an airline that allowed my pet……

      She had lots of options and didn’t pursue any of them (@ least from this report)……


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