Canada grieves rescue dog who escaped from plane and was shot on runway

An investigation has been launched after a rescue dog ran loose from its kennel and was shot dead as it ran on to a runway at a Canadian airport, forcing one plane to abort its landing.

The two-year-old golden Labrador mix named Greta is believed to have chewed through her plastic kennel and bolted from the plane transporting her at Winnipeg Airport.

The directors of Manitoba Mutts Dog Rescue said airport authorities had done everything possible to avoid using lethal force but were left with no choice as a second plane prepared to land.

“We are incredibly devastated that this was the outcome for Greta and that she never got to live the life we wanted for her,” they said in a joint statement.

“In over seven years of our operation, and transporting hundreds of dogs in the same manner, this is the first instance of this kind and we are going to work to ensure it’s the last.”

They added they hoped to talk to the Winnipeg Airports Authority to ensure there could be no repeat of Monday’s episode.

Greta was travelling to a foster home in Winnpeg and was known to be friendly.

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Her fate has provoked outrage in Canada, with a slew of questions about why a tranquiliser dart could not have been used.

Tyler MacAfee, the authority’s director of corporate communications, told the national broadcaster CBC: "It was a tough day for everyone.

"It’s certainly not the outcome anyone wants to see, and it’s a really tough decision for someone to make to use force in that way on an animal… But at the same time it’s that balance of aviation safety."

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