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Delta passenger mauled by 'emotional support' dog

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Posted at 8:52 PM, Jun 06, 2017
and last updated 2017-06-06 23:52:53-04

A Delta passenger was 'badly injured' after an emotional support dog attacked a passenger on a flight about to depart Atlanta's Hartfield-Jackson Airport on Sunday, Fox 5 reported. 

The dog had to be removed from the flight from Atlanta to San Diego before departing, and was placed on another flight. 

The injured passenger's condition is unknown. 

Another passenger who witnessed Sunday's incident told Fox 5 that the dog weighed roughly 50 pounds, and appeared to be a lab mix. The injured passenger was reportedly sitting in the window seat, while the owner and their dog sat in the middle seat. 

“The gentleman’s face was completely bloody, blood in his eyes, cheeks, nose, his mouth, his shirt was covered in blood,” passenger Bridget Maddox-Peoples told Fox 5.

EMS crews helped the injured passenger off of the flight. 

"Prior to pushback of flight 1430, ATL-SAN,  a passenger sustained a bite from another passenger's emotional support dog," Delta said in a statement to Fox 5. "The customer who was bitten was removed from the flight to receive medical attention. Local law enforcement cleared the dog, and the dog and its owner were re-accommodated on a later flight; the dog will fly in a kennel."

The dog's owner was reportedly a veteran, and was visibly upset by the incident, Fox 5 reported. 

According to Delta, the airline has the following policy regarding emotional support animals:

Customers with mental health-related disabilities must provide a letter from their mental health professional to verify service, an emotional support animal/psychiatric assistance animal provides. The professional’s letterhead must include mailing, email and telephone information. Failure to provide documentation may result in denial of boarding for the emotional support animal. Emotional support animals are expected to respond to the direction of the owner.