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Q: My chicks were delivered a day late by the post office. Will they refund my shipping since they didn't meet the overnight Express Mail guarantees?


Unfortunately, no. USPS does NOT guarantee overnight Express delivery for live animals, as much as we would like them to. We agree: it seems a little crazy that the MOST important packages aren't subject to the same guarantees that much less sensitive packages have... but that is their policy. This is excerpted from their website (choose the "special handling" tab on that page):

What Needs Special Handling?

Special Handling Service is required for unusual items that need different handling through the mail, like live poultry and bees. This service is only available at your Post Office™.

Ordinary items that are breakable or fragile don’t need special handling if they are packed with the right cushioning, and marked clearly with the word “FRAGILE.” Add Registered Mail™ to further protect valuable or irreplaceable items.

What mail services are compatible with Special Handling?

  • Express Mail®
  • Priority Mail®
  • First-Class Mail®
  • Parcel Post®
  • Media Mail®
  • Mailing Live Animals

Live animal shipments (including poultry, reptiles, and bees) have very specific packaging requirements. Though you can drop them off at any Post Office, it might take longer to ship depending on the availability of transportation. With a few exceptions, pets and warm-blooded animals such as cats, gerbils, hamsters, mice, and dogs can’t go in the mail.

Live animal shipments using Express Mail® should expect a 2- to 3-day transport, so try shipping early in the week and avoiding holiday weeks with limited acceptance days and times. Express Mail postage will not be refunded unless the delivery or attempted delivery is more than 3 days after the day of mailing.

Even though the Post Office won't refund your postage, as a part of My Pet Chicken's 100% Live Arrival Guarantee, in addition to refunding the cost of lost chicks, we do cover shipping costs in some circumstances (out of our own pockets). Read details of our 100% Live Arrival Guarantee here and in the related questions below.