The Niagara County SPCA says it is "bursting at the seams" with animals who need homes.
Amy Lewis, the shelter's director, says there is typically a spike in dogs and cats arriving at the facility in the early weeks of summer. She says adoption numbers are currently too low to sustain the influx of unwanted animals.
Compounding the issue, she says, is the shelter's contractual obligation to act as a holding facility for stray dogs in the county.
"Unique to the Niagara County SPCA is our municipal contracts with our local townships. We provide dog control services for many towns in Niagara County, which obligates us to bring the dogs into our facility," Lewis says.
Lewis says the shelter is at capacity with around 200 dogs and cats in kennels and cages, along with 125 animals in foster care. She says in order for the SPCA to maintain its mission as a 'no kill' facility, more people in the community need to come forward and provide homes for the homeless animals.
"Our euthanasia numbers are down considerably, down by close to 99% from two years ago. So, because we're saving more animals, it's backing up the system. Couple that with lower adoptions and it's really put us in a bind," Lewis says.
Lewis took over the shelter following a scathing report was issued in January of 2012 detailing poor conditions and mismanagement. She says the amount of animals is causing the shelter's staff to be overtaxed.
"In order for a no kill mission to succeed in this area, we need to make the public aware that the shelter counts on them, not only as adopters, but for financial assistance," Lewis says.
To help encourage traffic, adoption fees at the Lockport Road facility are being waived for the next two weeks.