'Crazy cat lady' stays with 80 cats, two dogs, parrot amid New Richmond flooding

'Crazy cat lady' stays with 80 cats, two dogs, parrot amid New Richmond flooding
She says she wasn't going to leave her cats behind, despite recent flooding. (WXIX)

NEW RICHMOND, OH (FOX19) - Self-proclaimed crazy cat lady Ollie Darnell says she stayed put during recent flooding, along with her 80 cats, two dogs, and a parrot.

She says she has 35 more cats at her home down the street.

It's been a watery mess lately in New Richmond. No truer words than on a sign on her building, which reads, "Soggy Dawg." If the water had gotten any higher, her pets would have been soaked.

"They do call me the crazy cat lady, yes," said Darnell. "I take it with pride!"

She runs the Cozy Corner Cat Rescue. And she says she was not about to leave her fur babies, despite rising floodwaters.

"I have right at 80 here and then I have 35 of my personal cats at home," she said.

So when the waters came up, she had a simple plan.

"Get higher in the house," she said.

But she wasn't going to abandon the cats.

"No way," she said.

If water would have gotten inside, the cats would have gone upstairs, she said. Darnell says they got a lot of water in the basement and cut off the electricity there, but that's about as bad as it got.

Her husband took care of their 35 cats and two dogs at home. She stayed at the Cozy Corner.

"We didn't have a whole lot of after-mess, thank God, and we didn't get water in the building like most of the businesses here and I thank God for that," she said.

Darnell says they've adopted 50 cats and kittens out since Christmas. But they're worried about more rain Wednesday.

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