MUSCATINE, Iowa–15 years ago, Meagan Koehler and her husband returned to Muscatine County where they had grown up. Koehler’s husband, an active duty member of the navy, had gotten stationed at the Davenport recruiting station, and the couple welcomed the chance to get back to their roots.
An animal lover her whole life, Koehler often fostered rescue dogs and served on the board of directors for the PAWS & More animal shelter in Washington. Through her volunteer work, she saw just how many animals needed assistance finding forever homes and wanted to do more to help them. Determined to help rescue more dogs from states without no kill shelter policies, Koehler decided to found a rescue of her own, It Takes a Village Animal Rescue & Resources. Koehler started the rescue March 16, as she worked on completing her nursing degree, managing to both finish her schooling and start her non-profit with great success. “It was a busy semester for sure, but I was able to finish my nursing degree and graduated magna cum laude in May,” she shared.
Since opening It Takes a Village this spring, Koehler has helped many dogs (and even a few cats) from Muscatine and beyond find families who will love and care for them. She has also helped get the word out about It Takes a Village through community events such as the Dog Days of Summer Fest, and collected supplies to donate to animal shelters affected by hurricane Ida. Though running an animal rescue takes lots of time and effort, Koehler finds it very worthwhile. “There is not a soul on this earth that is more deserving of our time, money, and efforts than a dog,” she said. “Saving these sweet creatures from euthanasia and helping place them into loving forever homes is so incredibly rewarding.”
As a longtime member of the Muscatine area community, Koehler finds it especially meaningful to help find animals in a place where so many people truly love their furry friends. “This is a community of animal lovers–we may not all agree on religion or politics or how we take our coffee, but we can agree that dogs deserve nothing but love and compassion.”