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'Bursting at the seams': Humane Society won't accept any more animals

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Staff at the Calgary Humane Society (CHS) have temporarily suspended the intake process for animals at their emergency shelter "due to an overwhelming number of animals admitted."

In a release, officials said they are caring for 350 animals, which is close to double the capacity they can handle.

CHS executive director Carrie Fritz said staff knew they would be pushed to the limit with the poor economy, inflation and lack of pet-friendly housing, but they were caught off-guard by how severe the problem's become.

"We are facing a crisis situation, similar to what animal welfare organizations were dealing with over a decade ago," she wrote in a statement.

"People are really struggling to keep their animals in their homes and shelters across North America are bursting at the seams."

It's not just Calgarians who are arriving to surrender their animals, staff said.

Residents from outside the city are coming to the shelter to drop off pets they cannot care for.

"This very weekend we had a breeder facing eviction, unable to re-home puppies, stay overnight in our parking lot. These dogs were destined to live in a vehicle in the heat of summer if (we) did not intervene," the society said.

As a result, it took in 22 dogs.

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While it is helpful for Calgarians who have space in their homes to adopt animals from the CHS, workers say it's essentials for those individuals to know exactly what they're in for.

"(They must) understand what is required to be able to responsibly care for them," the CHS said.

"Speak with a veterinarian about annual vet costs (including the cost of spaying or neutering your pet). Consider pet insurance for unexpected veterinary bills, talk to your landlord and make sure you source your pet responsibly."

Anyone who is looking to help but cannot commit long-term to an animal can apply to be a foster parent or donate directly to the CHS.

For further information on how to do that and see the list of animals ready for adoption, you can go to the CHS website.

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