Airline Pilot Adopts Puppy Abandoned At San Francisco International Airport


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When a 6-month-old German Shepherd was abandoned during an international trip, a pilot stepped up to offer the puppy a new home.

According to the Washington Post, the dog’s owner was traveling with the pup from China and didn’t have the proper documents to bring his pet into the U.S. The CDC requires certain paperwork for dogs entering the U.S. from China and the dog’s owner couldn’t provide that paperwork.


Instead of working to fix the situation, he simply left the pooch at San Fransisco International Airport and continued on his trip to New York.

The Washington Post further reported that the puppy’s prospects were looking grim at first: euthanasia when he returned to China or euthanasia locally in San Fransisco.


Staff at United Airlines kept the puppy, who they named Polaris, while they figured out what to do. They didn’t want to see the dog euthanized and they bargained with the CDC to allow the pup to enter the country.

Thankfully, the agency eventually relented and allowed Polaris to live – but only if he underwent a four-month quarantine first.


The San Francisco SPCA shared in a press release that they helped choose who could adopt Polaris from the United Airlines employees. In the end, they chose United Captain William Dale and his family.

Vincent Passafiume, Director of Customer Service at United, said in the press release: “It’s a great feeling to see this story come full circle and that Polaris will have a loving home with United Airlines Captain Dale and his family—just in time for the holidays.”

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