DOCUMENT: Animals, Crime

Cops: Nurse Abandoned Dog At Airport

Woman, 44, dumped pooch, flew off to resort

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Abandoned Dog

AUGUST 24--Pennsylvania police have filed criminal charges against a woman who, unable to take her dog on a flight, allegedly abandoned the pooch at the Pittsburgh airport before boarding a plane to a Mexico vacation resort, according to court records.

Allison Lyn Gaiser, a 44-year-old nurse, is facing cruelty to animals, neglect of animals, and animal abandonment counts, according to a criminal complaint detailing the bizarre August 4 incident at Pittsburgh International Airport.

According to investigators, an unattended French Bulldog was discovered sitting in a stroller next to a short-term parking lot. The seven-year-old dog was unrestrained and could have exited the stroller, cops say.

A subsequent probe determined that Gaiser--bound for Mexico--attempted to bring the dog on her flight. However, an airline employee told Gaiser she could not travel with the animal since “the dog did not meet the criteria for an emotional support animal and did not have a proper kennel as required,” according to the complaint.

Police allege that, upon her return from vacation on August 10, Gaiser “freely admitted she left the dog behind because the airline denied the dog boarding.” Gaiser showed cops a text message in which she asked her mother to “call the airport and tell them to take the dog to the local pound and she would get him when she gets back.”

In response, Gaiser’s mother warned her daughter that, “You will be arrested for dog abandonment,” adding, “You are not above the law.”

Karen Johnson, Gaiser’s mother, told police she was concerned for her daughter’s welfare “due to recent unusual behaviors.” Referring to the abandoned animal as her “Grand doggie,” Johnson said she first learned that the dog had been left behind when Gaiser’s ex-husband shared a news story a day after the pet was left behind.

Gaiser, who lives in Kittanning, a borough 35 miles outside Pittsburgh, is pictured at left.

When cops examined Gaiser’s Facebook page, they found photos of her with the French Bulldog (like this image).

The dog is “doing well and is still being fostered,” according to a statement today from the Allegheny County Police Department.

According to online profiles, Gaiser--who has been licensed as a registered nurse since 2001--specializes in caring for cardiac patients. She recently started a “heart-based business specializing in trauma" that combines “nontraditional activities that you enjoy to create a calm environment. These activities include: movement, pet therapy, and art therapy.” (2 pages)