Family’s Dog Mistakenly Flown to Saudi Arabia Instead of Nashville: ‘An Absolute Nightmare’

A family flying to Nashville was shocked after landing to discover their dog was over 7,000 miles away in Saudi Arabia.

James and Madison Miller were moving from London to Tennessee on December 1, and were bringing their mixed 5-year-old Labrador named Bluebell with them.

Unfortunately, Bluebell’s cage was nowhere to be seen when the couple landed after moving from London to Tennessee on Dec. 1.

The Miller’s were told over an hour later by airport staff that the for was mistakenly flown from London Heathrow to Riyadh instead of Tennessee.

It took three agonizing days and three flights before Bluebell was finally reunited with her owners. The owners said they observed that Bluebell was noticeably different as she ‘bolted’ upon arrival.

“I anticipated kind of like the reunion you see on YouTube,” Madison Miller told Nashville NBC affiliate WSMV 4. “Like she comes out of the crate, she’s wagging and licking your face. It was the opposite.”

“We had to go and grab her because she was so horrified and that’s when we knew something was wrong,” she added.

The family added that her behavior did not change when she arrived home, saying Bluebell would cry when left alone and even started chewing on a door. The Millers noted Bluebell did not behave like this before and is demanding answers as to what happened during those three days of separation.

“We did everything right moving Bluebell to America with us, and it’s been an absolute nightmare,” James Miller told NPR. “We don’t know if she’ll ever be the same. It’s breaking our hearts.”

British Airways — the airline the Millers flew with — referred WSMV 4’s request for comment to IAG Cargo, where a spokesman apologized to the family about the mix-up and said it was investigating the incident.

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“Whilst Bluebell’s route was longer than it should have been, we ensured she was on the first flight back to Nashville from London Heathrow,” the IAG Cargo spokesman said. “During her time with us she received refreshments frequently and had time outside to stretch her legs — including regular walks and eight hours with the team at the Heathrow Animal Reception centre who cared for her.”

“Despite these measures, we understand that this has been an upsetting situation for Bluebell and her owners and remain in contact with them to resolve the situation,” the spokesman added.

NPR reported that an IAG Cargo spokesman also said they cannot give the family financial compensation, adding that “all costs associated with the journey are absorbed by the airline.”

The Millers are requesting that British Airways compensate them for approximately $9,810 due to the costs incurred from behavior therapy, Bluebell’s anxiety medication, a new crate, and the destroyed door. The family also cited damages caused by separation anxiety.


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Ella Ford is a mother of two, a Christian conservative writer with degrees in American History, Social and Behavioral Science and Liberal Studies, based in the Tulsa, Oklahoma area.


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