BALTIMORE (WJZ) — A critical situation is developing at one of Baltimore’s animal shelters. Hundreds of dogs and cats are now up for adoption.

WJZ’s Ron Matz reports the Baltimore Animal Rescue and Care Shelter (BARCS) needs your help to find a home for these animals.

At BARCS, they care for 12,000 dogs and cats every year.

Steve is just one of the animals looking for a good home.

Pet owners can bring their four-legged friends to this open door shelter regardless of the reason.

“Sometimes they have a family hardship and have to give up their pet and they’re devastated about it,” said Jennifer Brause, executive director of BARCS. “We’ve had people become terminally ill and have to give up their pets. We’ve had people who have to move and can’t take them where they’re going — all different kinds of reasons.”

The situation here is now critical with more than 700 cats and dogs up for adoption; Mr. C is a stray.

“Stray animals come in. The best thing people can do is microchip their pet,” said Deb Rahl, business manager of BARCS. “If [Mr. C] had been microchipped we could have already been in touch with his owners and they could come and claim him.”

Dozens of volunteers are there every day and if you’re looking to adopt — now is the time.

“We get animals of all kinds,” Brause said. “We get puppies, kittens, adult animals. We get older animals, it’s a whole variety. They’re just wonderful and they’re looking for a home.”

In the first 10 days of August, BARCS has taken in nearly 200 cats and 150 dogs, including Dixie.

“It’s really a challenging job,” Brause added. “It’s extremely emotional for everybody, not only the people who have to give up their pets, it’s very hard on them and it’s also very hard on the staff to see.”

Rahl said summer is BARCS busiest time of year for intakes — with pets getting lost. They also see a lot of cats and kittens because it’s cat breeding season.

If you’d like to adopt a cat or dog, BARCS is now waiving the $75 adoption fee. Click here to learn more.

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