Family's Cat Accidentally Shipped to Amazon in 'Nightmare Come to Life'

Curious cat inside the cardboard box, following the sounds outside.

Cat owners are calling one family’s recent Amazon return mishap a “nightmare come to life” after the family’s cat was accidentally shipped more than 600 miles away from home.

Carrie Clark recently spoke with the Salt Lake City-based news station KSL-TV about the incident involving her family’s indoor cat, Galena. As Clark recalled, Galena disappeared without a trace from her family’s home in Utah on April 10. The “worst part” was having “no idea what happened,” Clark told the station.

The family posted fliers and got their friends and family members involved in a search, but they found no sign of Galena for a full week. But on April 17, Clark said she received an alert that Galena’s microchip had been scanned. Shortly thereafter, a veterinarian near Riverside, California, called Clark to inform her that Galena had been found.

Though Clark said she initially thought the vet’s call from California was “a prank,” she and her husband quickly figured out what must have happened. They came to understand Galena had snuck into a large box that Clark and her husband were using to return some shoes to Amazon. Clark said her husband hadn’t realized Galena was inside the box when he dropped it off to be shipped back to an Amazon returns processing facility.

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The couple thanked the Amazon employee named Brandy, who found Galena and cared for her until the cat could be taken to the vet.

“We are so thankful for Brandy and for everything that she did for our kitty,” Clark told the station.

Though Galena was without food and water for several days, she was able to breathe in the box and only suffered “mild dehydration.” She was reunited with her family when they flew to California to retrieve her the day after receiving the vet’s call.

After the Today show highlighted the family’s story in a segment shared via TikTok on Thursday, April 25, several people online reacted to the incident and celebrated the Clark family’s happy ending.

“I’m just picturing how boxes get thrown around in shipping,” one TikToker commented, adding that they were “glad” the cat wasn’t hurt.

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“So lucky to get her back!!!” another TikToker said.

Several people said their own cats have enjoyed hiding in boxes as they urged others to “always check to make sure that cats [are] not in luggage or boxes.”

“This is my nightmare come to life, I shake any box I’m shipping,” one person wrote.

Some people questioned why checking Galena’s microchip had been necessary when Amazon had the family’s contact information through the box’s return label. Others suggested that, while the incident itself was terrifying, it could make an interesting movie premise.

“Pixar needs to make this a movie ASAP,” one person wrote as another agreed, writing, “Make it a movie.”

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