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New Report: HSUS shortchanges Iowa pet shelters

Posted Dec. 13, 2013

HumaneWatch.org analysis reveals HSUS gave Iowa pet shelters only $1,000 in 2012
HumaneWatch.org, a project of the non-profit Center for Consumer Freedom (CCF), yesterday released its fourth annual report documenting the total contributions by the Humane Society of the United States (HSUS) to local pet shelters, the only report of its kind.

The results: In 2012, HSUS spent a total of $120 million, but less than 1 percent of that went to supporting local sheltering organizations nationwide. Iowa shelters received a single grant worth $1,000 during the year.

The full report, “Not Your Local Humane Society,” is available online, and includes an accounting of all grants to Iowa pet shelters made by HSUS during the years 2009, 2010, 2011, and 2012. All data is drawn directly from HSUS’s Form 990 tax returns filed annually with the IRS.

The report comes in the wake of a September 2013 poll of 1,050 self-identified HSUS donors in which 87 percent said they were unaware that HSUS gives such a miniscule portion of its annual budget to local pet shelters. When informed of this, a full 83 percent of HSUS’s own donors agreed the group “misleads people into thinking that it supports local humane societies and pet shelters,” and 59 percent were less likely to support the group going forward.

“The Humane Society of the United States is making money off of manipulating Americans,” said Will Coggin, CCF’s senior research analyst. “HSUS rakes in millions during the holiday season from Americans who believe their donations will go to pet shelters near them. Because HSUS siphons so much money out of local communities, there’s less to go around for local groups that save homeless pets.”

Instead of spending its money where it is most desperately needed – at local shelters – in 2012 HSUS spent $50 million on fundraising expenses alone, bankrolled PETA-style propaganda campaigns, maintained a huge staff of lawyers and lobbyists, and rewarded its top brass with bloated salaries and benefits, including $3 million in pension contributions.

Coggin concluded, “HSUS has $200 million in the bank. Animal shelters in Iowa are struggling day in and day out to help save the lives of pets, but it appears HSUS has other priorities. Animal lovers should demand better from this self-titled ‘humane society,’ and give to their local shelter this holiday season.”

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