DENVER — A University of Colorado student is missing her pet fish after she claims Southwest Airlines forced her to abandon it at the airport.
According to KGTV, Lanice Powless was about to board her Denver to San Diego flight when a Southwest airline employee told her she couldn't take her pink male beta fish Cassie onboard.
Powless had gotten her fishy friend during freshman year to curb her loneliness, and ended up falling in love with him.
According to TSA guidelines, live fish are allowed as a carry-on, but Southwest policy only allows small dogs and cats in the cabin.
Powless asked if she could leave her pet on the counter for a friend to pick up in 30 minutes, but the airline refused.
She frantically looked around for someone else, and ended up handing him to a traveler on a more fish-friendly airline. But airport staff separated the two of them before she could get the stranger's name.
Powless claims security kept following her afterward, and made her feel like a criminal. She got on her plane and made it home for winter break, but is still desperately searching for her little beta.
She's aware everyone's laughing at her for her fishy dilemma, but says her pet fish is just as important as any dog or cat.
Southwest confirmed the incident to USA Today, claiming they offered to rebook Powless so she can make plans for her fish, but that option was refused.