Based on this bug report.:
I'm able to spawn the walk.dae model using the same sdf setup from this tutorial
Following the same format, I created a simple mesh with minimum animation using various 3d softwares. The following is the result of the error message received upon loading it into Gazebo.
1) Exported from 3ds max
[Wrn] [ColladaLoader.cc:241] <instance_controller> without a <skeleton> cannot be parsed [Wrn] [Actor.cc:170] Collada file [test.DAE] does not contain skeletal animation.
2) Exported from the beta version of blender. Take note that there was a previously reported bug that is fixed in the new version.
[Err] [Connection.cc:546] Connection Closed during Read [Err] [ConnectionManager.cc:141] Unable to read from master [Err] [gazebo_shared.cc:83] Unable to initialize transport. [Err] [gazebo_client.cc:62] Unable to setup Gazebo
Attached are the files used for testing. They have been renamed to the appropriate software.