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Airport security X-ray detects live cat stashed in passenger's suitcase

Claire Reid

| Last updated 

Airport security X-ray detects live cat stashed in passenger's suitcase

Security staff at John F. Kennedy International Airport were shocked to discover a rather unusual item stowed away inside someone’s luggage.

Working at such a large airport it’s fair to assume that security staff have seen more than their fair share of weird items inside people’s bags - but even they must have raised an eyebrow after spotted a live cat stretched out inside someone’s case.


The discovery was made after the bag passed through the airport X-ray machine and the outline of the kitty could be clearly seen.

After spotting a cat-shape in the bag, the member of staff whisked the case to one side for further investigation where the cat was found safe and well - although I can imagine the would-be traveller's clothes are absolutely ruined with cat fur.

The orange cat had somehow managed to stash itself away inside the bag and go unnoticed the entire time until the case arrived at airport security.

The cat was having a bit of a lie down in the case. Credit: TSA
The cat was having a bit of a lie down in the case. Credit: TSA

The bag, with the cat inside, had been destined for Melbourne Orlando International Airport in Florida, and it was lucky it was spotted as had it made it onto the plane there’s a good chance the poor feline would have died due to being stored inside the plane’s pressurised cargo hold.

TSA spokesperson Lisa Farbstein told NBC News: “The cat did not belong to the individual with the suitcase, it belonged to someone else in the household.” The plot thickens.

Thankfully, all's well that ends well and the cat was safely reunited with its owner; while the guy whose bag it was missed his flight, but was able to rebook for the following day.

Credit: Twitter
Credit: Twitter

And I dare say it’ll make him more likely to check his belongings before he travels in future, which can only be a good thing, eh?

It's unclear why the cat got inside the bag, with Farbstein suggesting the moggy may have seen its chance and took it.

Cornell University professor emeritus and animal behavioural expert Katherine Houpt said: “I think one reason is that it’s like a cat bed. Cats like spaces with barriers around it.

“And presumably it smells like the owner and I think they associate it with an impending loss. They might not necessarily want to prevent that owner from going, but perhaps at least they want to signal stress.” Or else it just wanted to cause a bit of a scene at airport security - I guess we’ll never know.

Featured Image Credit: TSA

Topics: Cats, Travel, US News, Weird

Claire Reid
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