Overcrowding Crisis Hits BARC

The Bureau of Animal Regulation and Care is packed to an "unsustainable" level, so if you've been thinking about fostering or adopting, get thee to the shelter, stat.

The facility "has experienced a drastic increase in the number of animals turned into the shelter in the previous two weeks," according to a press release. As of today, BARC has 878 animals -- it was only designed to shelter 550.

Spokesman Chris Newport says warmer weather usually causes increases, especially of cats, but this latest wave has also brought in a higher number of dogs.

The shelter had a total intake of 184 animals Thursday; the average daily intake over the last two weeks was approximately 100 animals.

Besides the warmer weather, Newport attributed the spike in part to what he said was an improved image of BARC in the media. (We're assuming that doesn't include Hair Balls).

"We've just generally been more visible...we've had some good stories going around, where it's perceived generally as a more functional organization now," Newport told us. "So we're kind of a victim of our own success generally, and people are more aware of it. So when they see stray dogs, we get a lot more contacts now than we used to."

BARC is open for adoptions from 11:30 a.m.-5:30 p.m. today, and from noon to 4 p.m.over the weekend. Animals are also available at the weekly Galleria Remote Adoption event, in front of Gap Kids, from 11 a.m.-2 p.m. Also, the Homeless Animal Partnership Initiative is holding a Family Pet Festival Saturday at St. Christopher's Episcopal Church, from 11 a.m.-4p.m. (The church is located at 1656 Blalock Rd).

There's always a need for BARC animals to find good homes, but right now it seems especially urgent. So quit your yappin' and go get yourself one of the best friends you could ever have.

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