When a woman was packing her suitcase earlier this week, she didn’t notice that her 7-year-old Chihuahua had hopped inside it.
As U.S. security agents were inspecting checked baggage for an American Airlines flight from New York’s La Guardia Airport Tuesday, an alarm went off. They expected to uncover something like a gun, knife or perhaps a gas-filled chainsaw (it’s happened).
Instead, they found the Chihuahua, alive and well, and staring up at them.
“TSA worked with the airline to identify the owner, and the two were happily reunited,” reads the caption of a photo posted by the Transportation Security Administration on Instagram, with the appropriate hashtag #TSAGoodCatch.
When TSA contacted the Chihuahua’s dog mom, “she was just as surprised as the TSA officer who found it,” spokeswoman Lisa Farbstein said in a statement today.
While pets are sometimes allowed in the cargo hold of airplanes, they need to be in airline-approved crates — not in hard-sided suitcases with no breathing holes.
As the TSA noted in the photo caption, “It’s always important to double check your bags before traveling, especially to make sure your Chihuahua hasn’t stowed away inside one of them.”
The Chihuahua’s dog mom called her husband, who came and got the little stowaway, and took him home.
Photo via Instagram