WALTON COUNTY Fla. (WMBB)– After Hurricane Sally, Alaqua Animal Refuge had to deal with flood damage to their current eight-acre property, but it turned out to be a blessing in disguise.
Although not officially open yet, after Hurricane Sally flooding they decided it would be best to try and move into their new home early.
The staff has started to move many animals over to the new Alaqua Animal Refuge location right in Freeport off of Highway 20.
“We want to offer all sorts of things for the human soul to heal as well,” said Founder Laurie Hood. “You know, goat yoga, and cat cafes, and different wildlife trails that you can just come and spend the day.”
Hood and her staff have envisioned this 100-acre property to be interactive for guests.
“Almost like an animal welfare theme park where we can invite tourists and locals and have the experience of getting to know and love animals,” said Hood.
The buildings they were moving into were badly damaged during Hurricane Sally, Hood said, now they are left to scramble and find alternatives.
“We’ve identified a shipping container manufacturer that actually redoes those into homes,” said Hood. “But he is going to make us three large kennels for our dogs.”
Hood and her staff are crossing their fingers, hoping to officially open before the first of January, as soon as they can safely house all their animals again.