DECATUR, Ill. (WCIA)– Organizations that care for pets have had to adjust their operations to deal with COVID-19. The President of Humane Society of Decatur and Macon County, Irene Peterson, says they are closed to the public. Since visiting animals is a part of the adoption process, that means no new adoptions until at least April 7th. “That means we can’t show animals for adoption which means a longer time for them in the shelter. It’s very unfortunate, but at this time it’s something we have to do,” said Peterson, “It effects the animals because they can’t get into good loving homes.” They’re limiting the amount of staff members allowed in the building, but animals are still receiving care. “We’re doing our best to keep their stress levels down,” said Peterson.
Other shelters are forced to make changes as well. Champaign County Humane Society says they are discontinuing open hours for meeting and adopting animals at the shelter. A statement says in part, “As soon as it is possible for us to resume adoptions in a manner that complies with the governor’s order and protects the public from undue risk of exposure to COVID-19, we will do so.” While there has been a report of a pet dog contracting a “low level of the virus” Humane Society of Decatur and Macon County says the likelihood of your pet getting the virus is low. “It’s highly unlikely for companion animals to contract this virus so ask people please don’t go dump these animals,” said Peterson. The Humane Societies want potential adoptees to know they can still view available pets online. Humane Society of Decatur and Macon County says they are hoping to open again to the public sometime soon.