The Search for Paco — Dog Lost By Delta Airlines — Continues

Correction:  Happy Tails Acapulco is located in Acapulco and not Mexico City.  The group has been instrumental in getting answers from Delta Airlines regarding Paco and making them take responsibility for his disappearance.

 

Volunteers in Mexico City were on the ground combing the streets within 24 hours of being notified about the disappearance of Paco – the homeless dog rescued by a college couple visiting Puerto Vallarta and then lost by Delta Airlines while he was being transported to the U.S.  His disappearance has created an Internet sensation that has animal lovers calling for action against the airlines.

 

A group of 15 – 20 individual animal advocates and an animal protection organization called Happy Tails Acapulco have been on the dog’s trail since May 9.  They stay in close contact with each other and have developed a strategy to find Paco.

 

Josiah Allen and his girlfriend Erin Docking found the little stray dog on a beach in Puerto Vallarta in early May.  They fell in love with the white pup and decided to take him home with them.  They took Paco to a local veterinarian where he received the necessary vaccinations to allow him to enter the U.S. and they completed the required paperwork.  The first leg of their trip home went well, but once Allen and Docking switched from AeroMexico to Delta Airlines in Mexico City, a series of mistakes occurred that ultimately led to the disappearance of the dog.  

 

Marna Rojas is an American who has lived in Mexico for the past 22 years.  She is one of the founders of Happy Tails Acapulco, which is the only animal rescue and animal welfare organization in Mexico City – a metropolis of more than 1 million inhabitants and an estimated 5 million homeless animals.  Rojas and a small band of animal lovers have been the force behind the effort to find Paco.  David Valdes is one of those volunteers. He normally helps rescue and find homes for the street animals in Mexico City, but now he is leading the neighborhood search for Paco.  Rojas has focused her attention on getting answers from Delta Airlines.

 

These are the facts both Valdes and Rojas have uncovered about Paco’s disappearance. 

 

“Paco was loaded onto the luggage conveyer belt and moved to a vehicle used for transporting luggage from the terminal to the planes.  Aboard this vehicle, an ‘accident’ occurred and Paco’s kennel fell from the vehicle.  Upon impact with the pavement, en-route to the plane, the kennel door opened and Paco managed to ‘escape’ running onto the tarmac,” said Rojas.

 

“An immediate dispatch of a group of airport employees failed to recover Paco, who also, in his altered state attempted to bite one of the employees.  He continued to run, and eventually escaped through an opening in the fence surrounding the airport, and into the adjacent neighborhood,” continued Rojas.

 

Although Delta Airlines told Happy Tails Acapulco they would post fliers about the missing dog, they have not followed through.  So the rescue group took the initiative and sent out mass e-mails to animal advocates in the area.  That e-mail also included a You-tube video with photos of Paco. 

 

They contacted government facilities called Anti-Rabico in each neighborhood surrounding the airport and gave them pictures of the dog.  Volunteers have also handed out and posted more than 3,000 fliers, printed t-shirts with Paco’s face and a large banner.  They are trying to raise money to buy space on a billboard, as well.

 

On May 22, Paco’s story was highlighted in a citywide march for animal rights called the Peaceful Demonstration.  The march was widely covered by the media and Rojas hoped more people would see Paco’s face. 

 

Valdes explained the demonstration was organized to gather support for a law to protect animals from abuse.  There are currently no laws in Mexico to do this.  Animals, especially street dogs, are routinely abused and tortured and there are no laws to prosecute their abusers. 

 

Valdes is hopeful that Paco will be rescued.  He said, “Paco has been seen in a parking lot by an area with many apartments.  He has teamed up with two dog buddies.  It is only a matter of time before we can catch him.”

 

Rojas is also confident that Paco will be reunited with Josiah.  He has been communicating with her organization and through a Facebook page called Delta Loses Dog.  This ordeal has taken a toll on the college student and unfortunately some passionate Facebook fans have taken out their frustrations over Paco’s disappearance on him. 

 

Rojas is still trying to get all of the answers from Delta Airlines and is asking to see surveillance videos from the airport.  She is also asking for an American based animal welfare organization to step forward and deliver the Care2 petition to the Delta Airlines corporate office in Atlanta.  Click here for information on how to contact Happy Tails Acapulco and support their efforts.

 

Rojas said, “I am most hopeful that we will recover Paco.  I have worked in animal rescue for over 20 years, and have witnessed many miracles in the recovery of lost animals.  If Paco is found I will make every effort to return him safely to Josiah.”

 

photo credit: thanks to Josiah Allen for the image of Paco

227 comments

Philippa P.
Philippa P7 years ago

Let's hope Paco and his people are reunited soon.

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Marianne E.
Marianne E.7 years ago

I travel a lot. I will never ever ever fly Delta again!

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Marna R.
Marna N7 years ago

We who are involved in the Search for Paco in Mexico would like to know if there are any plans for this Petition with it´s 11,866 signatures to be delivered directly to the office of the Delta´s CEO, Richard Anderson. The petition contains a strong message of growing negative sentiment toward the airline and its negligence in all aspects of Paco´s case. It would be a shame for this Petition to not find it´s way to the CEO.........there are 30 different countries represented in the last 300 signatures alone! The petition will require 240 printed pages to contain all signatures...........is there a PLAN in place for this?

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Marna R.
Marna N7 years ago

We who are involved in the Search for Paco in Mexico would like to know if there are any plans for this Petition with it´s 11,866 signatures to be delivered directly to the office of the Delta´s CEO, Richard Anderson. The petition contains a strong message of growing negative sentiment toward the airline and its negligence in all aspects of Paco´s case. It would be a shame for this Petition to not find it´s way to the CEO.........there are 30 different countries represented in the last 300 signatures alone! The petition will require 240 printed pages to contain all signatures...........is there a PLAN in place for this?

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Nellie K A.
Nellie K Adaba7 years ago

Let Paquito be found where he belongs and needs to be.

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Shan B.
Shan Bramley7 years ago

I too would like an update! Fingers and paws crossed for a safe return xx

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Diane Wilson
Diane Wilson7 years ago

Perhaps they should have a pet & passenger only flight certain days of the week then the passenger is totally responsible for the pet and you know when you travel so you don't get on that flight - responding to someone's suggestion about pet allergies.

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Diane Wilson
Diane Wilson7 years ago

Please update this information. This has been the same for 2 weeks. Is there no new news or sign of the dog anywhere? I really want to see him get home, but I hope nothing serious happened to him when he fled the airlines. Could they have quietly disposed of him? I have a service animal and there would be no way that animal would leave my side. Either these airlines need to shape up or they need to be ordered that animals are a part of a person's belongings and do not have to be stuck in a dark hole in an undercarriage. They are getting away with too much control. They are a service business for pete's sake. Where is the customer rights for what they are paying for? It is such a fiasco to travel by plane, who wants to anymore.

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Kim B.
Kim G B7 years ago

I am OUTRAGED at Delta's lack of comassion, concern and most of all action. I pray Paco is found and returned to his owners asap. You have my prayers.

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Naomi H.
Naomi H.7 years ago

I continue to pray Paco is found and reunited with his new family. I travelled from Australia to Canada and back with 20 cats, who sadly had to travel in cargo. Thankfully the airline wasn't negligent like Delta was, and all kitties made it safe and sound. Shame on Delta....it's awful that they let this happen and it's made far worse by their lack of action in finding Paco. I will never fly Delta again.

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