Well, yesterday I had the pleasure of talking to my friend Brian on the phone, and he told me the absolute WORST shipping story I have ever heard.
Let me summarize.
He ships with X shipping company, and has been certified to ship reptiles with them for years.
He ships out a box with one animal in it, in a standard reptile shipping box with "Live Harmless Reptiles" clearly marked on the box.
It arrives at the middle hub with no problems, ready to get sent on its final flight to its destination.
X Shipping company decides to freak out about the box and offload the whole plane that had already been loaded up to remove the box with the harmless reptile in it.
The box with the harmless reptile in it gets sent to a Veterinarian for care.
Brian does not know any of this is happening, and therefore is unawares that the box is not in route to its destination.
After a few hours AFTER the expected arrival time, he calls up X shipping company to ask what the problem is in terms of tracking his package.
X shipping company tells him: "Sir, you are not allowed to ship live harmless reptiles, and we have sent your animal to a Vet for care."
Brian has been certified, mind you, for several years!!!
X shipping company, after several hours of arguing and calling and discussing, finally admits that it was in the wrong, after finally calling the Live Animal department of X shipping company, and gets immediate response saying that Yes, Brian is certified and has been for several years.
Now the main problem with this is that the call to the Live Animal department should have been done FIRST, and prevented this issue to begin with.
The package with the live harmless reptile has arrived at its destination without any more problems.
X Shipping company admitted fault, after all is said and done, but... what to do if this happens to you???
-Make sure you have your representatives number handy in case of problems like this.
-DO NOT give up!!! Just letting things happen when there is a problem could lead to even more problems (aka being placed in a home from a Vet)
-If something seems wrong, don't wait too long to see what is going on. CALL THEM AND FIND OUT WHAT IS HAPPENING.
The problem I always have with shipping is that it is completely out of my hands. I cannot drive to po-dunk town nowhere 2000 miles away to get my snake back if there is a problem. You need to have a resource to help you in terms of this, so do your research and track those resources down.
These animals DEPEND ON YOU to fight for them. They cannot speak for themselves in terms of being jostled around in a box by Joe Shmoe who doesn't care that there is a perishable item in the box. Do not let the ignorance and stupidity of others kill an animal out of your care. Cause if you do, it is on YOU to fix the problem.
The reason I wrote up this blog, on top of having a great discussion with my friend, Brian, is to keep you on your toes in terms of shipping. Most people don't have issues with shipping, but there are issues that can happen. Be prepared.
I hope I didn't scare you in terms of ever shipping an animal. It should be fine.
I want to add that I have been shipping for a while now as well, and I have never had any problems other than delays due to weather, and ALL of my animals have arrived safe and sound so far. (Knock on wood)
Just keep a watchful eye, my friends. Take care of your animals...