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CLEVELAND (WJW) – Instead of being in the regular kennel at the Cleveland animal shelter on Detroit Avenue, some of the dogs are being housed in conference rooms because space is so tight.

In the past few days, Cleveland Animal Control has taken a big pack of strays from all over the city.

“Since Sunday, since the past three days or so, we’ve had about 50 dogs come in as strays which is a lot for us and we’ve already been full. It’s a busy time of year. Some of those dogs, a handful have been reunited with their owners or we’ve found other locations that can take them, but most of those dogs are still here,” Adoption Coordinator Izzy Esler said.

The kennel can comfortably hold roughly between 70 and 100 dogs. Right now, they have about 150 that need to be cared for.

What’s compounding the problem is that the number of people looking to adopt has slowed.

“Coming out of COVID, a lot of fewer people are looking to adopt. They’ve gone back to work, they’re catching up on vacations, they need to take kids going back to school. A little change in consistency of schedules where people had a little more time at home.” Esler said.

The shelter says that their staff and corps of volunteers have really helped meet the challenge of caring for and feeding such a large number of dogs.

But the numbers really need to start going down. There are plenty of dogs up for adoption and there are also probably plenty of owners who are looking for their lost best friend

“Even if your dog gets out, call daily, visit daily, do whatever you have to do. Check our website constantly because we get new dogs arriving anytime of the day.” Esler said.

Esler says the large number of strays also shows the need for getting a dog microchipped. It is the easiest way to get your dog back if they turn up missing.

It’s a small cost to save a big headache and to make sure your friend gets back home again.

The shelter is holding a drop-in adoption event this Saturday from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. at at their location on Detroit Avenue.

You can find more information here or the City Dogs Cleveland Facebook page.