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Old 12-18-2019, 11:01 AM
Ed_Wischmeyer's Avatar
Ed_Wischmeyer Ed_Wischmeyer is online now
Join Date: May 2005
Location: Savannah, GA
Posts: 1,574
Default Flying with the dog: funny but serious

From NASA ASRS: I departed this morning on a Special Flight Rules Area (SFRA) flight plan, and my intention was to maintain 1,400 feet until [laterally] clear of [Class] B airspace, which would keep me clear of the Flight Restricted Zone and all [Class] B airspace. At approximately 1,200 feet in my climb, my dog, which had been harnessed in the back seat, leapt into the front passenger seat. In doing so, he hit the dash, somehow managing to clear my flight plan out of my Garmin 430. He pulled my GDL 39 out of the cigarette lighter (my backup navigation), he knocked my tablet (also my backup navigation) onto the passenger side floor, and he ripped the microphone port of my headset out at the connector. I didn?t initially realize that had happened, and I could still hear the radio because the listening port was still plugged in. In trying to keep my dog off of the controls, and flipping the autopilot off to hand-fly, I inadvertently made a climbing turn to 2,200 feet and may have broken into Class B airspace. Upon recognizing this, I immediately descended and made my initial radio call to Potomac. At the time, I thought they had acknowledged my call, but in retrospect, I don?t think they did. A few minutes later as I was still trying to re-trim the airplane, Potomac was trying to reach me, and it was clear to me they couldn?t hear me. It was at this point that I realized my microphone port had been unplugged, and the cord was now wrapped around my 50 pound dog, which was dead weight on top of it. I finally freed the cord and made contact with Potomac. In doing so, my concentration was broken, and when I looked at my position, I was either in or very close to violating the FRZ. I immediately turned around and again made contact with Potomac. At this point forward I stayed clear of Bravo and the FRZ.
RV-9A at KSAV (Savannah, GA; dual G3X Touch with autopilot, GTN650, GTX330ES, GDL52 ADSB-In)
Previously RV-4, RV-8, RV-8A, AirCam, Cessna 175
ATP CFII PhD, so I have no excuses when I screw up
Vaccines kept me out of the hospital but COVID still cost me a month of living, all told...
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Old 12-18-2019, 11:38 AM
fixnflyguy fixnflyguy is offline
Join Date: Jan 2006
Location: Winston-Salem, N.C.
Posts: 1,465
Unhappy Not always a good idea..

Similar story of distraction, different situation...lesson learned. A few years ago, I had bright idea to take a girlfriend and small mini dachshund for a ride in my 46' T-Craft. Hot, bumpy summer day..climbing for cool air, dog starts looking a little woozy, then hurls about 3 days of everything all over the place, which makes girlfriend equally as sick, she hurls out window, now pilot AKA me, is on verge of blowing cookies due to extreme visual and smelly observations. I immediately put the old T bucket into left hard slip to get fresh air in my window and return to my home strip. Notes taken, lessons learned. Done with that!!
Bill E.
8A7 / Advance NC
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Old 12-18-2019, 11:53 AM
Desert Rat Desert Rat is offline
Join Date: Aug 2018
Location: Wichita KS
Posts: 716

This reminds me of an article I read. I think maybe it was 'I learned about flying from that" in flying magazine?

It was about guy who had a cat in a t-craft or cub or something low and slow. The cat went berserk and he chucked it out over a lake, with associated injuries due to the cat objecting.

Cat survived, he needed a lot of band-aides.

Glad this had a happy ending, and thanks for sharing.
Terry Shortt
AGI, CFI, CFII, MEI, A&P, Janitor
RV7 Empennage & Wing done
Fuselage in process
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Old 12-18-2019, 12:37 PM
Bavafa Bavafa is offline
Join Date: Oct 2007
Location: Sacramento, CA
Posts: 3,639

Not a very effective harness I guess, glad you are both OK though.
N825SM RV7A - IO360M1B - SOLD
N825MS RV14A - IO390 - SOLD
N258SM RV14A - IO390EXP119 - in progress
Dues paid
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Old 12-18-2019, 01:32 PM
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dlloyd3 dlloyd3 is offline
Join Date: Jun 2005
Location: Locust, NC
Posts: 443

Several years ago we took our 15 pound mixed terrier with us to New Mexico in the RV7. After he calmed down and went to sleep on Penny's lap, all was good. Every now and then he would rouse, stretch and push the stick forward with force. Keep him wide awake on short final!

Last edited by dlloyd3 : 12-18-2019 at 01:40 PM.
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Old 12-18-2019, 03:17 PM
Ian Coates Ian Coates is offline
Join Date: Dec 2013
Location: Derbyshire UK
Posts: 49
Default IOWA 2017

Tragic accident in IOWA in 2017 where a very similar story unfolded.
VAF Donation 2020
RV7 Built and Flying
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Old 12-18-2019, 03:19 PM
David Paule David Paule is offline
Join Date: Dec 2009
Location: Boulder, CO
Posts: 5,066

Had a dog few years ago, now gone, unfortunately. I never took him flying. I figured that the possible bad things considerably outweighed the possible good things.

Kind of sorry now, though. Once he'd matured he probably would have been fine.

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Old 12-18-2019, 04:57 PM
daniel_hagan daniel_hagan is offline
Join Date: Oct 2007
Location: El Paso, TX
Posts: 11

Mine flew well ... she passed away this summer. She *HAD* to ride shotgun ... I was flying a Tiger before and she'd "cold nose goose" your right hip by slightly lifting your shirt if you had her in the rear ... awfullly cold nose!

Worse I had with her was her going after a rabbit chasing it from the T-hangars to the runway ... I had to jump in the truck to go get her.
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Old 12-18-2019, 05:02 PM
Girraf Girraf is offline
Join Date: Dec 2017
Location: Southern Maryland
Posts: 204

Took our dog flying for the first time a few months ago in my cherokee. He is quite spastic (Australian Shepherd), but with my wife sitting in the back seat holding him, he did just fine. Wasn't long before the drone of cruising lulled him to close his eyes. I would never have considered this solo, especially not without securing him. We've done this a few more times since then and results are consistent. Thankfully he doesn't get motion sick and is eager to hop in the airplane!
Vintage Cherokee 160
Empennage complete
SB Wings to QB stage
Fuselage in progress
Finish kit/Engine/Prop Ordered

Last edited by Girraf : 12-19-2019 at 05:57 PM. Reason: added photo
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Old 12-18-2019, 05:48 PM
moosepileit moosepileit is offline
Join Date: Dec 2010
Location: Louisville, KY
Posts: 747

I think this covers it...
RV-6, bought from builder.
O-320, slider, carb, mags, FP
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