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Alaqua Animal Refuge reopening doors to the public

Published: Oct. 30, 2020 at 5:59 PM CDT
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DOTHAN, Ala. (WTVY) - With hopes of moving into a new facility, Alaqua Animal Refuge faced many setbacks due to Hurricane Sally.

Alaqua Animal Refuge has learned to act fast in the face of adversity but a low-lying facility has brought trouble when heavy rain comes.

“When we found out that the hurricane was going to be a lot worse than anticipated we immediately put the plea out and got all of our dogs and cats off property and into foster homes and this literally happened in a 4 to 5 hour period and we are talking about hundreds of animals so we had horses still remaining here a lot of these goats and smaller farm animals were also remaining here but we had high ground so we thought that they were going to be okay but unfortunately we came in we fed the water started rising and within in hour it went from one foot of water to four or five feet of water so we had to swim the animals out and literally put some of these smaller guys on paddle boards and kayaks to get them off the property,” said Laurie Hood - Founder of Alaqua Animal Refuge.

For the refuge this wasn’t the first time they have seen this type of flooding, after Hurricane Ivan they saw flooding heights just as close to this time. Which lead founder Laure to know this land would no longer be suitable for the refuge.

So they went on the search for new land to call home only to receive quite a surprise.

“We were actually donated about 100 acres of land about 10 minutes from here and we have been building on that for about five years the process has been a long one but we have got some buildings up and our dream is to get there by the first of next year,” said Laurie.

This land being much higher and out of flooding range is also an expansion from their 10 acre location currently.

While all of this has caused them to close their doors for quite some time, Alaqua members knew they couldn’t keep the doors closed forever.

“we really felt like the community needed to feel some love these animals can heal your soul and so we wanted to do it for that reason but we also wanted to do it for the reason that so many of these animals that came back today are from foster homes so the public has never been able to see them and they are just such loving animals and they are ready to be in their forever homes," said Laurie.

If you are in search of a forever pet Alaqua has a pet for just about everyone from horse and pigs to dogs and cats.

Alaqua Animal Refgue relies on community especially now in their time of need. If you would be interested in donating you can do by vising this website.

The refuge will now be open Friday thru Sunday 12pm till 5pm.

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