Lacon Animal Shelter Fears Rt. 26 Collapse will Decrease Adoptions

Local News

A stretch of Route 26, south of Lacon, fell victim to this weekend’s heavy rain causing the road to collapse.


A nearby animal shelter is worried it could impact adoptions.


The A.R. K. Animal Shelter in Lacon says it’s already feeling the effects of the road closure.


Volunteers and people who come to adopt face a trickier commute, which could discourage them from stopping in and now IDOT says the road is closed indefinitely.


It was raining cats and dogs this weekend across central Illinois, all of that rain collapsing a stretch of Route 26 between Hickory Grove and Sun Roads in Marshall County.


Just down the road, cats and dogs, at the A.R.K. Animal Shelter are dealing with the aftermath.


“People have to be here we have lives to take care of.” Director of the A.R.K. Animal Shelter, Sherri Coghill, said.  


With the road closed indefinitely and limited access to the shelter, one of the A.R.K’s volunteers, Alicia Bell, says she had trouble on her commute from Washington Monday morning.


“There’s no paid staff here at the A.R.K. so we’re all volunteers so if we can’t make it in, cats don’t get fed their cages don’t get cleaned so volunteers keep the place running for sure.” Bell said.


The A.R.K.’s director says she anticipates the complicated route is going to cut down on the number of adoptions, with people choosing other shelters.


“Dog-wise, we usually carry 60 at a time and with cats could be anywhere between 80 to 100, so without the public getting here and getting access to get here easily it’s going to be a lot harder to our adoptions.” Coghill said.


That’s a major concern for this no-kill shelter.


“Every animal we pull in comes in that was on death row and waiting to be euthanized so if we can’t do that then we have to cut those numbers down.” Coghill said.


This A.R.K. is prepared to deal with the flood, staying open and committed to its mission.


“Theres so many loving kitties up here and so many loving dogs down there that need homes.” Bell said.


The A.R.K. wants people to know they are still open and have dogs and cats ready for adoption. Crews from IDOT spent time assessing the damage Monday, they don’t anticipate repair work will be done anytime soon.

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