Stories from the Storm | "The Cat Came Back!" Text and Photos by Jeanette Larson

Carol and Jewel 
It was a pet owner's worst nightmare. Carol Deitrich was in New York visiting a new grandchild when Harvey hit Rockport. Her cats were being cared for by a friend who could not take them when evacuation was called. Jewel and Tikka rode out the storm in Carol's trailer but the trailer was split in half by a tree. When Carol returned home three days after the storm, the cats were gone.

Carol, who works for Drifter's Resort, doted on her cats and they had traveled with her from New York to San Diego. After her son, a Marine stationed at Camp Pendelton left service, Carol headed East again. Just south of San Antonio, she says she got "tired of traveling and stopped in Rockport." And here she has stayed. The cats were an important part of her family and Carol was resigned to thinking they were lost forever.

Carol's trailer post-Harvey
Two days after her return, Tikka returned home but was too injured, sick, and traumatized to save. Disheartened, Carol was surprised on September 23, almost exactly a month after Harvey ruined many lives, to hear a cat crying outside her RV. Looking around she saw no cat. Later that night she heard crying again and found Jewel hiding under the trailer. Scared, the cat was reluctant to come out until she was lured by food. She wandered around inside her new home before jumping into Carol's loving arms! It appears that this well-traveled cat is happy to be home and not too interested in further adventures.

When in panic mode, dogs run while cats tend to hide. Cats may bolt in fear but tend to silently hide near home. Cats and dogs may find their way home but to help them be sure they are microchipped and that your contact information is up to date with the chip service. If your pet is missing, post to and check Facebook sites like Rockport Lost Pets and Found Pets, Aransas County Animal Control, and the Humane Society of Aransas County. And don't give up hope.

Jewel seems happy to be home!

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