MENANDS, N.Y. (NEWS10) — The Mohawk Hudson Humane Society’s intake rate is 24 percent higher than Oct. 2021 and that increased number of pets in need is straining their staff and resources.

Gail Hughes-Morey, Senior Vice President of Operations, said vet shortages and the cost of living are playing a significant role in the number of pets being brought to the shelter. Inflation is affecting people’s ability to afford their pets and, with resources now scarce for many in need, more pets are being returned to the shelter after an increase in adoptions at the beginning of the pandemic.

“The cost of pet food has gone up, the cost of vet care has gone up, there’s a vet shortage in the area,” Hughes-Morey said. “The eviction moratorium is over which means that people have to move and when they move, they may not get a pet-friendly apartment so I think we’ve got a real combination of more pets in the community and fewer resources to help people deal with those pets now that all of those stimulus packages are gone.”

Hughes-Morey said while the shelter is over capacity, only 50 percent of dogs and 20 percent of cats are readily available for adoption. While the other animals await vet care and other services, the Mohawk Hudson Humane Society is looking for foster families who can help take care of animals in need — making more room for others at the shelter.

A new challenge is also contributing to the shortage of kennel space at the humane society: the peak number of animals being found is not happening at its usual time, taking the shelter by surprise. Hughes-Moray said the number of dogs in need of shelter usually peaks in the summer.

“This year it started in May and this month is our highest intake month so far,” Hughes-Morey said. “It’s almost like the patterns we’re used to are not the ones in effect anymore so we are really trying to figure out what this new sheltering is going to be like.” 

The shelter is offering a $100 adoption fee for all animals one year and older through Oct. 31, 2022.

If you need to rehome your pet, the shelter offers a self-rehoming option and other services to find the best option for the animal. More information on all of the Mohawk Hudson Humane Society’s services and information on how to donate to their pet food pantry can be found on their website.