Canterbury coach Dean Pay says he knew of the NRL salary cap mess the club was in when he took over from Des Hasler late last year.
Seven News has reported that the Dogs have just $800,000 left in their salary cap for 2019 with 12 players coming off contract including veteran outside backs Josh and Brett Morris.
Pay inherited the club's salary cap position from Hasler, who back-ended many of his big name's contracts.
It leaves the Morris twins in danger of being squeezed out of Belmore unless they take massive pay cuts.
It also leaves the Bulldogs hamstrung in their pursuit of a halves partner for Kieran Foran, having been heavily linked to Canberra's Aidan Sezer.
The club had shopped around prop Greg Eastwood, however, could not find him a new home.
Eastwood underwent surgery to repair an irregular heartbeat in the off-season and was dropped after their first-round loss to Melbourne.
"We signed on there, we knew what we were coming into," Pay said in Townsville on Friday before their clash with North Queensland.
"It's a moving process and we need to move forward.
"The squad we've got, that's the one we're going to work with now, we need to make sure we get the best performances out of them."
As well as Eastwood and the Morris twins, the Bulldogs have a number of fringe first-graders off-contract including Jeremy Marshall-King - who has stepped into the starting five-eighth spot - Matt Frawley, Josh Cleeland and Asipeli Fine.