At Brook Kornegay’s house in Luling, watching vivacious kittens pouncing and playing would never give away the story that they had just been rescued from Louisiana’s historic flood.
But that’s their story and one for hundreds of animals from the parts of the state that succumbed to the flood that has been compared in damage to Superstorm Sandy.
Kornegay is fostering them and these “flood babies” lucked out on getting a veteran in this area who has successfully found homes for many kitties.
“We’ve rescued for a long time,” she said.
It shows in her love for photography and the beautiful photos she’s incorporated into collages that she’s made for each of these rescues. It’s been so successful that she’s already gotten Murphy the kitten adopted even though it’s still in quarantine.
Kornegay’s love for cats is evident in her determination to find every one a home.
“Murphy screamed during his exams,” she said. “He’s normally sweet and cuddly, but when drawing blood for tests he screamed like a chimpanzee.”
One down … six more to go.
Kornegay affectionately named them all, including Six-Pack (ribbed fur pattern on back), Phelps (strong swimmer in the flood waters of Denham Springs), Steve Urkel (named for the comical TV figure), Slim Jim (Urkel’s sibling and both were dumped in a parking lot by evacuees) Madeline (the perfect little lady) and Simone (outgoing and loves everyone) – all are adorable and need a home.
Their stories today greatly contrast the situation they were in earlier this month.
Some of them came from an animal shelter in Tangipohoa Parish or Denham Springs in a hectic grab from the ensuing floodwaters.
Kornegay praised St. Charles Parish Animal Shelter Supervisor Jena Troxler for bringing them to the parish, as well as imposing the quarantine standards to ensure they are well enough to go to new homes.
“There is always a need for fostering,” Kornegay said. “The shelter provides the food and care.”
Since the Great Flood of 2016, the need is even greater to care for rescued animals.
Troxler, who thanked Parish President Larry Cockran for allowing them to help, said she and fellow animal control officers have been delivering supplies donated by local residents, as well as volunteering to help animals at the Lamar Dixon Expo Center in Gonzales and Celtic Media Centre in Baton Rouge, both serving as shelters for both people and animals, since last week.
Lamar Dixon, which is not air-conditioned, has proven challenging for both people and animals, she said.
“The human-animal shelter was the most amazing shelter,” Troxler said of Celtic. “The people who were there with their pets were the calmest and nicest. There was even doggie daycare. It was amazing.”
In the days they assisted, she said they divided up to help at Lamar Dixon, as well as the Livingston animal shelter. They’re on the road again there if a veterinarian is needed.On Monday, Troxler and shelter animal control officers were returning to Celtic.
Troxler said all animals are assisted while those that need homes are taken in. The goal is to keep animals logically as close as possible to where owners are more likely to reclaim them.
Currently, Lamar Dixon is housing more than 300 horses (not all claimed), more than 500 dogs and more than 120 cats, as well as a menagerie of rabbits, goats and cows. A shelter there allows rescued people there to stay close to their animals.
Troxler said all donations are turned into gift cards, which are easier to use toward providing assistance.