GUILFORD COUNTY, N.C. - The Guilford County Animal Shelter is transferring more than 130 cats and dogs to the northeast.

The animals will be relocated to other shelters under the care of animal welfare organizations.

The purpose of the relocation is to save lives and give shelter pets the best chance of finding safe and loving homes.

The Guilford County Animal Shelter says the shelter is overcrowded with more than 300 pets.

"This gives us an opportunity to take a deep breathe and take a step back to look at what we are doing day in and day out," said Jorge Ortega, Guilford County Animal Shelter Director. "It will help us strengthen our day to day operations where we need to tweak things and it would give us time for us to actually see where any inefficiencies are and work on improving those."

Shelter workers put the animals in kennels and crates Wednesday morning to prepare for the long journey ahead.

Some of the animals will be transported to Charlottesville, Virginia, Harrisburg, Pennsylvania, and Hagerstown, Maryland.