Irgo the dog is finally home!
Kara Swindle and her two young children got the shock of a lifetime this week when United Airlines accidentally sent their German shepherd, Irgo, to Japan and instead delivered a Great Dane (who was supposed to take the 6,000+ mile trip) to the Kansas City airport in his place.
On Friday morning, Swindle was finally reunited with her pet, according to a video on CNN.
“This is absolutely amazing to finally have him back,” she told the news outlet as she walked Irgo to her car. “It’s been a long four days. He instantly jumped up and was just crying. When he’s super excited he cries.”
In a statement to PEOPLE, United said that after discovering the mixup, they “notified our customers that their pets have arrived safely and will arrange to return the pets to them as soon as possible.” The airline reportedly then offered to send the 10-year-old dog back to the States in the cargo area, which Swindle refused.
“We told them ‘absolutely not,’” she told CNN on Friday. “He is to be flying in the cabin, and honestly we don’t care how it happens.”
United then arranged for Irgo to be flown home on a corporate jet. He was returned safely to his family, who was relocating from Oregon to Wichita, Kansas.
“They had no idea that the dogs were messed up. It was only until I got there saying, ‘Uh, that Great Dane’s not mine,’” she said in a video posted by local news channel KWCH12. “We’re just happy he’s here and that’s all that matters now.”
In addition to it being his first time flying, Irgo was also suffering from an ear infection and hadn’t had his medication in three days, CNN reported. He was examined before making the trek back, but Swindle also plans to get her beloved pet checked out herself..
“We’re going to go take him to a vet right now and just make sure. But as you can see, he seems like he’s perfectly fine,” she told the local outlet. “I’m just very happy about that.”
This is the second scandal for United this week. On Tuesday, a passenger’s French bulldog died after a flight attendant reportedly demanded a traveler place the animal in an overhead bin, where it suffocated. United has since apologized for both incidents, and said they are working to find out how Irgo’s issue occurred.
“An error occurred during connections in Denver for two pets sent to the wrong destinations,” the statement read. “We apologize for this mistake and are following up with the vendor kennel where they were kept overnight to understand what happened.”