United Airlines mistakenly sends dog to Japan instead of Kansas City

Posted at 9:24 PM, Mar 14, 2018

KANSAS CITY, Mo. — A 10-year-old German Shepherd named Irgo should be settling into his new home in Kansas but instead he's overseas. 

Irgo's odyssey began Monday when his owner, Kara Swindle, dropped him off at the airport in Portland, Oregon ahead of the family's move to Wichita. 

Swindle said Irgo flew United Airlines to Denver where he spent the night. The next day Irgo was scheduled to land at Kansas City International Airport to be reunited with his family at United Airlines' Cargo facility.

"They took us back to the warehouse, they showed me the kennel, and the minute I said 'Irgo', out pops this Great Dane," Swindle said. "So I instantly burst into tears just wondering where my dog was. I was confused, upset and just in utter shock that this was not my dog."

According to Swindle, it took several hours for United to figure out where Irgo was. 

The Great Dane provided a clue.

"His paperwork on his food said Japan so at that point they realized that's probably what happened and it got switched up somehow," Swindle said.

Swindle received a call from United Airlines early Wednesday morning, that Irgo was, in fact, in Japan.

Swindle said United Airlines told her that they're investigating how this happened, but they have offered her a theory.

"One thing they're thinking right now is that somehow at the pet resort in the Denver airport, when they got taken out of their kennels, to go potty — or whatever they do — they somehow got switched," Swindle said.

United Airlines is working with Irgo's family to get him back home. 

Swindle said Wednesday evening, United has told her they plan to send Irgo on a flight that will land Thursday night in Wichita.

"They've been sending us updates like crazy. We've been so adamant that they send us pictures every hour letting us know how he is because I don't want anything happening. This dog is our baby," Swindle said.

Scripps station KSHB in Kansas City reached out to United Airlines for comment, as of Wednesday evening, they have not answered.