Thomas Dock, CVJ, Vet. Technician  
Male, 55
Indianapolis, IN

Interests: animals, Reading (sci-fi and fantasy)
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Where is the money REALLY going?

Dec 31, 2009 - 7 comments


One of our Veterinary News Network reporters sent this blog to me yesterday and I thought some of you might appreciate the content.  consumerfreedom.com/news_detail.cfm/h/4062-unpacking-the-hsus-gravy-train.  This blog includes a link to the actual tax form of the Humane Society of the United States.

In a nutshell, the authors of the blog are basically stating that the Humane Society of the US (HSUS) brought in almost $100 million dollars in donations for 2008.  Of that, they spent about $28 million on fundraising efforts.  So, when you donate to HSUS, 28 cents of every dollar goes to raise more money.  In addition, HSUS pays one company more than $4 million to count it's money.

Also, there are more than 40 HSUS employees who make more than $100,000 per year.   Total Salaries were almost $31 million.   So, that's another 31 cents from your donated dollar.  In total, so far, we can count on less than 40 cents of every dollar going to help animals.   Interestingly, another blog I read recently (I don't remember the link right now) stated that in 5 years, Wayne Pacelle (CEO of HSUS) has increased their legal staff from 4 attorneys to more than 30!!

Bottom line for this blogger was that HSUS spent less than $3 million dollars on grants to help local shelters.

Now, to be fair, the authors of the blog and the website (Center for Consumer Freedom) are accused of being backed by the restaurant and agricultural industries.  But, this is not the only time I have seen similar numbers being thrown around and I know that many animal welfare enthusiasts question the true motives of the HSUS.

For me, I would prefer to focus on helping rescues and shelters in my local community.  I think that the HSUS has certainly opened our eyes to some terrible problems that our animal friends have undergone, but I am very reluctant to support a group whose leader has publically said that we should not own pets.  And remember, the HSUS has absolutely nothing to do with your local shelter or humane society.  This blog and the associated tax forms make that absolutely clear.

So, in this coming New Year, I might ask you to think about your planned donations to animal charities.  Consider monetary gifts to your local groups or volunteer your time by helping at the shelter or fostering a pet for a rescue group.  Look at items around your home that you don't use anymore...are there old blankets that can be given to a cold shelter dog?  How about some old play toys that your senior pet has outgrown?  Still keeping that litter box in the garage even though your cat is gone?  All of these things and so many more can help animals in need this coming year.

For your own pets, the best thing you can give them for 2010 is the gift of your time.  Make it your 2010 Resolution to spend more quality time with your pets!  Happy New Year everyone!

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by ginger899, Dec 31, 2009
I know. I thought about this kind of thing when it came to my attention that Oxfam were operating such an administration (well, ok they may need that, and it doesn't come cheap I suppose) But it is disheartening. I sold mistletoe at Christmas for the local animal rescue shelter. The money didn't come to much, but the shelters here are maybe differeent to the ones in US.....they don't ever put healthy animals down, and that means they are stretched to bursting with many costs. I felt they needed it.

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by Piparskeggr, Jan 01, 2010
Stories like this just confirm my long standing conviction against giving to "umbrella" organizations, only to local chapters, save just a very few exceptions (the USO, Masonic Charities, Nature Conservancy, American Red Cross among them).

Avatar universal
by WYCVT, Jan 01, 2010
Right on.  At one time the HSUS was actually a good organization but this was back in the '50's.  Now it has turned into a money grubbing animal rights machine.  They go in and get laws passed that are supposed to help the animals.  However when one looks at the laws that are written, they actually hinder animal ownership.  This is why I preach to people that they need to send their hard earned dollars to their local shelters. The local shelter really need the money.  Plus you as a donor has a say as to how the funds are put to use.  Most do not realize that the HSUS does not operate a shelter anywhere although they do have a horse santuary that it is difficult to get a horse into.  Many people donate to the HSUS because they think that they actually run animal shelters.  They don't.  In fact if the HSUS comes into an animal shelter as a consultant, the shelter is charged an outragous amount for their expertise, such as it is.

Avatar universal
by aliceinlalaland, Jan 01, 2010
I always find it interesting that people comment that the CCF is backed by "restaurants and agriculture"  I often eat at restaurants and without agriculture none of us would eat.. anywhere.. the CCF does a great service by exposing groups like the H$U$ and Peta and the Physicians for Responsible Medicine. ( who are not really doctors at all) That said I thank you for this article.. well done and knowing it comes fro a vet tech makes it all the better..
Friends Don't Let Friends Donate to Animal Rights Groups

Avatar universal
by Lynnes_Honey, Jan 01, 2010
One may wish to download this document for an overview of where some of HSUS's money is being spent. This is a document being passed around as part of a campaign to have the IRS examine the tax exempt status of HSUS since lobbying is not permitted, to any great extent, under the non-profit status that HSUS maintains.

Avatar universal
by Roxanne374, Jan 01, 2010
Interestingly enough, the org that posted the blog Center for Consumer Freedom doesn't have their 2008 990 up for review. Kind of hypocritical if you ask me - just sayin.

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by 29sillygirl, Jan 02, 2010
Thanks for the post!

I do my bit for our furry friends in a up close and personal manner.   Living in an apt. complex for 20 yrs  now, I've had many opportunities  to give aid to cats.   I did have to take 3 kits to our local Humane Society once, but was rewarded with a call from woman who adopted one of them.

At times I believe I should contribute to our local chapter, but think after reading this post, best is to help the individuals who run no-kill associations.  They are frequently @ local pet stores showing cats and dogs, and know they can use $ to continue fostering them, if they are not adopted.

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