Houdini Dog Escapes After Breaking Cage On Runway

Story ByAna LacasaSub EditorJoseph GolderAgencyCentral European News 

The owners of this ‘Houdini’-style dog have launched a desperate search for the pooch after it broke out of its cage moments before boarding a flight in Spain and ran across the runway to freedom.

The incident took place at Ezeiza Airport in the Argentine capital Buenos Aires as Grisel Ortiz boarded a flight with Spanish national carrier Iberia to Barcelona in the eastern Spanish region of Catalonia.

Local media report Ortiz, her mother and Ortiz’e three dogs were all scheduled to board the flight.

Picture Credit: CEN/Buscamos a Mona

The owner told reporters: “I put my three dogs in their cages myself, I was with them until the moment the cages were closed and I saw that Mona (the missing dog) was also well locked and closed off.”

She then boarded the plane and said: “We were already sitting down when an airline worker came up and told me that one of my dogs had escaped. He showed me a picture of a shadow and I recognised Mona immediately.”

Grisel’s mother said that she saw Mona running away across the runway airport and three lorries following the pooch.

Ortiz said: “I got desperate, I wanted to leave (the plane) but I was not allowed. Minutes later, an air hostess told me that she (Mona) had been caught and asked me for a phone number to contact to come to the airport for her.”

Christian, her brother, went to the airport to pick up the pooch but when arrived he was reportedly told that the dog had escaped again.

Owner Ortiz said: “I was told when I landed in Barcelona and since then every day is agony. We do not have any kind of answer from the airline, Iberia is not telling us what happened in Argentina, and there is nothing we can do from Spain.”

Her brother is searching for the dog in the surroundings of the airport but the runaway pooch has not appeared.

Iberia told local media: “We truly regret that Mona escaped before boarding. Since she disappeared, Iberia and the company in charge of the management of the airport, AA2000, have been involved in trying to find the animal, especially warning all the people working in the area.

“The animal was travelling with her owner and before boarding, she broke one of the parts of the cage and escaped. Before boarding any cage with an animal inside, we close the doors in order to avoid the animal being able to open them and escape.

“However, Mona broke the opposite part of the cage and therefore she escaped. We have sent pictures to the owner of how the cage was left after Mona escaped. The plane took off from Ezeiza and minutes later airport authorities informed us that she had been caught. She was taken to cages in the perimeter of the airport and her family was called so that she could be picked up.

“Some hours later, authorities called again saying that Mona had attacked one of the people guarding her, biting her in the arms and face and had escaped.”

The dog has not yet been found.

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Ana Lacasa

I am a senior writer and journalist and editor of the Spanish desk for the Central European News agency.

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