Chicago Animal Care and Control overcrowded with dogs

There’s a canine capacity problem as the Chicago Animal Care and Control is overcrowded with dogs.

They're even offering cash incentives to entice adoptions.

There is nothing more heartbreaking than going into a shelter and seeing these animals in need of a home. But what's even more heartbreaking, though, is what will happen if they aren't rescued soon.

The dogs are desperate. Many of their days could be numbered if they don't find homes and soon. The Chicago Animal Care and Control, which houses them, is running out of space -- fast. Susan Russell is the executive director of the center.

“Well, we are very, very full. 293 dogs in our Kennels. That's way, way too many,” she said.

She adds more dogs are coming in than are going out.

"We are an open admission shelter which means we can't turn away animals. We take in the strays. We take in animals rescued from abuse or neglect,” she said. "Which means animals are coming in daily. They have to have a place to go. Space is not infinite. We have to move the animals out. (And if you run out of space…you'd have to put some of these animals down?) That would be accurate, yes.”

To try and prevent that, the center, through the help of a donor, is offering incentives. Adopters will get $100 towards training the dog.

"So we really want to help people get their next best friend but also help their next best friend to get the training they need to be the best pet they can be,” Russell said.

Rescuers will get $100 for care for vetted dogs and $200 for unvetted dogs. Most of these cute canines at the center are mid-sized and mutts. Russell hopes that won't deter potential owners from taking home the perfect pet.

"When you look at a dog like this sometimes these dogs are judged before they even leave the kennel. So we're trying to get Chicago to treat all dogs as individuals and take great pride in our local dogs,” she said.

Russell also suggests fostering a dog if you're not ready to fully commit to adopting, that would at least give the dog a temporary home and would likely save the animal’s life. They also are encouraging people to volunteer to walk them or feed them.

You'll find all their information on their Facebook page.