Ellen Holloway knows the federal government's partial shutdown has created victims with bigger problems. Still, she, her husband and kids would sure like their family dog back.
|Hope Holloway, with Eiffel|
Ellen and her husband, Allen, moved their family from Charlotte to England last month as Allen pursues a master's degree at the University of Reading. It was a big move for their 8-year-old daughter, Hope, and 7-year-old son, Connor, and leaving the family dog behind was never an option. Eiffel, a 3-year-old English Springer Spaniel, is a member of the family, and like a sibling to Hope and Connor. She would be a great comfort for the children amid such tremendous change.
It turns out that shipping a dog to the United Kingdom requires following a very specific process over a 10-day period. The vet has to see her exactly nine days before the flight. Then a vet with the U.S. Department of Agriculture has to sign the paperwork and send it back to the family's vet. She has to arrive in England within 10 days of seeing the vet and after being given a de-wormer three days before.
The Holloways researched all that and followed the rules to a T. "Eiffel's paperwork was literally the next on the desk to be signed when the shutdown began," Ellen says by email from Reading. Eiffel's trip was cancelled the day before she was to fly.
"Telling the kids, who had been counting down the days from 14 to 1, wasn't easy," Ellen says. "We can't even restart the count -- we don't know how long it will be. They cried and can't understand why this is happening ... or when she'll finally arrive."
So now the kids come home to their strange new house in a foreign country, and Eiffel is not there to greet them. All because Congress can't get its act together.
"The only silver lining?" Ellen says. "I now have a sure-fire method to end bickering among the Holloway siblings: remind them that they are doing exactly the same as 'the politicians' and the bickering quickly subsides. Even school children don't want to be caught acting like that!"
Hope and Connor made a video asking Congress and President Obama to please end the shutdown so they could have their beloved Eiffel back. Watch it below.
-- Taylor Batten (h/t to Peter St. Onge)