To all animal lovers, the fate of little Loekie is indeed sad, but the trauma for Leo Koewe, who cared so much, is tragic.
It is unfortunate that he did not consult a veterinarian or even some humane group before the flight. The little dog could have been given a tranquilizer. Also, since he was not using a flight kennel, he should have been warned to secure the cage.
Most people do not take into consideration that the noises at the airports are greatly intensified to a dog's sensitive hearing. It must terrify the poor creatures.
Loekie simply bolted from the situation, no doubt in search of his owner.
I've mentioned what can be done to lessen the animal's fright, but at best such a flight is still an ordeal. Sometimes there are delays, and the animal is subjected to hours of the trauma, so if possible avoid flying your pets.