07/05/2012 03:15 pm ET Updated Jul 05, 2012

Shelter Animals On Death Row In NYC: Mark Ross Photographs The Animal Care And Control Shelter (PHOTOS)

As thousands of animals are put on death row in New York City, one passionate photographer has been dedicated to portraying animals in need of homes under a unique light, hoping to elicit strong feelings from New Yorkers and hopefully find pets a new home.

At times, the results are somewhat shocking, as the abandoned animals look hauntingly into the lens. Mark Ross explains to HuffPost:

As a portraitist, it was my duty to create that all-important connection between the subject and the observer and it had to be meaningful and it had to be instantaneous. That was what I set out to accomplish and high-keyed visual drama was the means.

Ross also takes to social media, rigorously posting new photos of shelter animals onto his Facebook. Ross said, "Being informed time and again that the photographs I made and posted, both on Facebook and by email blast to local rescue groups, was the very reason someone decided to rescue or foster or adopt an animal, convinced me to continue doing what I was doing."

His extraordinary photos were recently turned into a book "Animal Shelter Portraits" with proceeds from the sales benefitting No Kill Advocacy Center.

For more information on how to adopt an animal, visit the Animal Care and Control of NYC.

See below for Ross's striking images all taken at the Manhattan Animal Care and Control facilities:



Mark Ross Captures NYC Animals On Death Row