My Saint Bernard

My name is Christina, I post this only for the purpose to as for opinion, can this case be brought to court, and what are the charges I can use to sue this service provider. I also hope that no one else will experience this. Hopefully people can learn from this true story, 4 February 2011.
I used to have 4 St Bernard dogs. I loved them and cared of them since they were still 2.5 month year old puppies. The tragedy started when I wanted to send them to my friend in Klaten, Yogyakarta, Indonesia named Handaka. The climate in Klaten is cooler than Jakarta, and Handaka have grass area and a big pond in his land so that my dogs would be happier there, receiving better treatment.

Here are the photos of my 4 St Bernard before the tragedy :

Because both me and Handaka didn’t have any experience nor knowledge in sending animal to other cities, Handaka called Johanes Indrajaya – PLANET PETSHOP GAJAH MADA PLAZA, 1st floor to provide his service in pet delivery.

Johanes immediately answered that Handaka could use his service to transport the dogs. He convinced Handaka that he is experienced in transporting pets to other cities.

Finally, Handaka agreed to use Johanes Indrajaya service and paid him  to transport 5 dogs (4 dogs of mine, and 1 dog that belong to other person)


Thursday, 3 Feb 2011 (1 day before delivery date) JOHANES called me at about 3 pm, when I was working at my office, and asked about the weight of my St Bernards. I clearly answered that each of my St Bernards weight more than 65 kgs. In this phone conversation, Johanes sounded a bit doubtful and asked “do you think they will fit in P5 sized cage?”

I asked him back “what is the size of P5 cage?” (in cm dimension). He did not answered because he did not know the exact size in cm.

Then I made myself clear on the phone “well, each of my St Bernard weight between 65 kgs to 75 kgs. They’re about the weight of an adult human. I heard from Handaka that you are experienced in transporting pets, so I trust your experience, just make sure that the cage is big enough.”

Johanes answered “Will you be at home tomorrow , about noon to 1pm? I plan to go to your house to pick up the dogs.”

I answered “Does the pick up day has to be Friday? I do office work so I can only stay at home during weekends especially that tomorrow I have to do some presentation in the morning. However there is someone at my house, his name is Noldi, he’s the one who's been helping me taking care of my dogs. If you must do the pick up on Friday, I'll ask him to help you (for info, Noldi is 19 year old, his highest education is only junior high school)


4 Feb 2011, Friday, noon, all the 4 dogs were picked up by Johanes from my home. Around 11 am he called me but I was in the middle of a presentation meeting at work, so I couldn’t pick up the phone. At 1 pm I send him text message and he replied “I already picked them up, Mam”

Who would have thought that Saturday morning, 7am, I received a text message from Handaka that 3 of 4 dogs transported by Johanes is dead. I cried histerically. I cried even more when I heard that according to their autopsy, the case of their death is due to the lack of oxygen (they couldn’t breathe), their lung broke, blood came out of their eyes, nose and ears.

There was no intention from Johanes to take responsibility.

Just for information, average price for St Bernard in productive age (like my dogs) is around IDR 20 million (USD 2,200) to IDR 35 million (USD 3,800) each.

Johanes send me a text message “I AM NOT AT FAULT AT ALL. THIS IS PURELY AN ACCIDENT”

Then he blamed Noldi “If Noldi said that the cage was too small the day I picked them up, surely I wouldn't pick them up. If only you could take leave from work and stay at home on the day, surely this would not happen.”

Before you make further conclusion, please take a look on the P5 cage that Johanes used to transport my St Bernards : (photo taken by Handaka)

I need to mention that Johannes put TWO St Bernards inside ONE cage like this.

The cage is 92 cm x 66 cm x 72 cm. Even the height of one dog is already 73 cm to 83 cm. My dogs travelled in these cages for 15 hours in a train, 2 dogs in each cage. And you can see that in the cage there are evidences that the small holes for air circulation WAS SEALED. In the blue-white cage, a transparent seal are still attached to the ventilation holes. Before taking pictures, receiver already removed some of the seal trying to save the dogs in case still possible.

A cage with size that is even too small for one dog, he forced TWO DOGS to enter the cage. THERE WAS NO WATER provided for the dogs to drink.

3 dogs died. 1 nearly died, but lucky can still be saved.

Handaka as the dog receiver was really shocked seeing the dogs in such condition. It arrived 6am Saturday. They started their travel at 4pm Friday from Jakarta.

Dior, Alvan and Dextra (the names of my dogs) were already dead with blood on their eyes, noses and ears. Aisha survived luckily because it was saved just before it died.

Handaka was very shocked seeing a very not proper cage, plus the tapes that sealed all the ventilation holes. He called a veterinary doctor to check, and the doctor declared that the cause of death is the lack of oxygen (they can’t breathe).

Can you imagine my feeling as the person who raised them from babies, seeing their photo in this condition?

Photos are taken as evidence if Johanes still refused to take responsibility in court.

To make this writing fair, I also quote Johanes’ answers when I met him after starting my legal action against him. Noldi was present. This conversation was recorded.

Johanes : “That day I asked Noldi, is this cage enough? Noldi answered yes, enough. I assumed that Noldi represents your opinion, then I took the dogs.”

Noldi : “Mr Johanes, I work for Mam Christine, I only got order to let you take the dogs. Not my position to decide right or wrong. Even, that time I asked you “sir, is this cage big enough for them?” then you answered “you know their sizes, so the biggest one and the smallest one goes to one cage, the other two goes to the other cage”

Me (Christina): “Mr Johanes, it’s very improper for you to blame Noldi. Noldi does not know what’s enough and not enough. YOU are the professional that I paid for your service. This is just like a doctor asking the patient “Mam, if I give you this medicine, will you be cured?” As a professional service in pet transportation, you said that you are experienced in transporting hundreds of dogs before, how could you not know that St Bernard can not stand hot air? And you even put two dogs into one cage !” (I was very emotional back then)

Johanes : “Christine, if I ever sent the St Bernard dogs in the past using this cage before and died, surely I wouldn't do this to your dogs!"

Me : “Now they are dead, where is your responsibility?”

He used 3 kennel boxes to pick up my 4 dogs and 1 other dog from other owner, total 5, using his KIA Carnival car. my 4 dogs are fitted inside 2 P5 kennel boxes, 1 dog had her own. WHO WOULD'VE THOUGHT THAT HE WOULD USE THE SAME BOXES FOR THE DELIVERY TO JOGJA, even Noldi wasn't suspicious enough because he thought it was only temporary, because there was no way that he would bring 5 of P7 Kennel boxes in his KIA car to pick up 5 dogs

I write this story as neutral as I can. There is no empty accusation. Everything I said have evidences.

Another information, apparently Johanes never transported the dogs himself. He send the dogs from Jakarta to Yogya using HERONA, another delivery service for sending goods and packages via train. It is written in Herona receipt that all damages are sender’s responsibility. All goods delivered MUST be insured.

Until today Johanes still feels that he is absolutely doing nothing wrong.

Even after he saw my posting in this forum.