(WSVN) - It was supposed to be a simple four-hour flight for their four-legged friend, but one South Florida couple’s dog ended up 4,000 miles away. It’s a strange story that spans three continents.
7’s Brian Entin has our special report “‘Ruff’ Ride.”
Jessica and Sebastian got married last year. They met in Colombia, where Sebastian lived, but he moved to Miami to be with Jessica.
Married life was great, but one thing was missing: Sebastian’s Labrador retriever, named Yorkie, was still back in Colombia.
Jessica Dominguez: “So for Christmas, I figured that was the perfect Christmas present.”
To surprise her husband, Jessica paid $1,200 to have Yorkie shipped from Bogota to Miami on Avianca Airlines.
But when she got to Miami International Airport to pick him up…
Jessica Dominguez: “That’s not the dog.”
Worker: “Are you sure?”
Jessica Dominguez: “Yeah, I’m positive!”
The dog inside the crate was not Yorkie the Lab.
Worker: “That’s the number I have here.”
Jessica Dominguez: “Nope. That’s not the dog. I am 100,000 percent sure.”
Jessica says she waited at the airport all night, worried about Yorkie.
Jessica Dominguez: “Finally, like at almost 6 o’clock in the morning, they told me, ‘Oh, we have good news and bad news. Good news is we found your dog. Bad news is he’s about to get to Spain.'”
Yep, you heard that right: Spain.
Jessica had to break the news to her husband.
Sebastian Alvarez (translation of): “I was in shock and desperate.”
Yorkie was accidentally put on a nine-hour Avianca flight from Bogota, Colombia to Madrid, Spain.
Then he was flown back to Bogota on another nine-hour flight … before he was finally put on an almost four-hour flight from Bogota to Miami.
Jessica Dominguez: “How many times a day did they feed him, did they walk him? Who knows?”
After three days of traveling, Yorkie finally made it to South Florida.
Luckily, Yorkie was fine.
But Jessica and Sebastian wanted a refund for all the trouble. They say they got no response from Avianca.
When we contacted the airline, they told us they didn’t do anything wrong and that the shipment was coordinated by a freight company that “…faced an operational situation with another shipment on the same day, resulting in each cargo being transported to different destinations.”
Jessica used a Colombian company that specializes in pet shipments, and Avianca says that company was responsible for the mix-up. After a lot of back and forth, Jessica was refunded her $1,200.
Jessica Dominguez: “He’s our baby. Literally, he’s our baby.”
Yorkie has adjusted to life in Miami and especially loves the dog beach.
Avianca says the dog that was supposed to go to Spain but ended up in Miami is also safe with its owner.
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