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- A dog owner is searching for answers after his pet was found dead during a Delta Air Lines layover at Detroit Metropolitan Airport. "He's a member of our family". "That's exactly what happened, and someone has to be responsible for it", Dellegrazie said. "He was in their care and they didn't take care of him".

Alejandro the Pomeranian was sent on a Delta Airlines flight from Phoenix to Newark, New Jersey, where his owners are moving.

In a statement to HuffPost, Delta said it was thoroughly investigating the incident. Delta says it's reviewing what happened to Alejandro.

We all know a nervous flyer - let's face it, who hasn't had a cheeky relaxing pint before a 6am flight? "He was alive. Then between 8 a.m. and 8:30 a.m. he was checked on again and he was dead", said Dellegrazie's attorney, Evan Oshan.

There have been previous incidences of man's best friend being left on the tarmac for hours by airlines, while in March another dog died on a United Airlines flight after its carrier was placed in an overhead bin.

Later that week, a flight was diverted to Akron, Ohio, after the airline realized a pet was loaded onto the flight in error, airline spokeswoman Maggie Schmerin told CNN. Airline representatives said they are working with Alejandro's owners and offered them a free necropsy to determine the cause of Alejandro's death.

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Michael Dellegrazie and his girlfriend say their Pomeranian, named Alejandro, isn't just their pet, he's a member of their family.

A Delta Air Lines spokesman told Fox News the dog was seen in good health after the flight and brought to the staging area.

"We are disappointed that we were not allowed to have a necropsy performed immediately following this unfortunate situation", the spokesperson added.

United said in May it would only accept dogs and cats.

United later changed its pet policy to make sure nothing like that ever happens again.

According to the Department of Transportation, 506,994 different animals were flown on USA airlines in 2017.