Watchdog group blasts HSUS in full-page ad

 Resize text         Printer-friendly version of this article Printer-friendly version of this article, a project of the nonprofit Center for Consumer Freedom (CCF), is running a full-page ad in Friday's USA Today that highlights the failure of the Humane Society of the United States (HSUS) to share its multi-million dollar budget with local hands-on pet shelters.

Despite most Americans’ belief to the contrary, HSUS is not a national umbrella group that represents community-based humane societies, and it shares just one percent of its income with underfunded pet shelters at the local level, according to HumaneWatch.

The ad features a statement from HSUS President Wayne Pacelle: “We never said we funded animal shelters.” Yet the animal rights group continues to largely rely on the images of sad-looking cats and dogs to tug at the heart strings and, most importantly to HSUS, the wallets of America’s pet lovers, according to a HumaneWatch press release. The ad explain where HSUS’s money is going: Millions into its executive pension fund, $32 million stuffed in hedge funds, and for its defense against charges of corruption in federal court.

In comments to Pork Network on the ad, an HSUS spokesman questioned the funding used to pay for the ad and predicted the HumaneWatch campaign may fail. "The CCF's misleading campaigns would be almost funny, since they virtually always fail - if it weren't for the fact that the group takes money from hard-working farmers and struggling companies to wage them," said Matthew Prescott, HSUS food policy director.

“HSUS uses emotionally manipulative ads to hook Americans who love pets, yet it gives just one penny of every dollar it raises to local pet shelters,” said CCF Senior Research Analyst J. Justin Wilson. “It’s time Americans realize their hard-earned dollars aren’t going to care for cats and dogs in their communities but to support a huge staff of lawyers and lobbyists, executive pension plans, fundraising expenses, and to bankroll a PETA-like animal rights agenda that attacks modern farming.”

HumaneWatch, in the group’s news releases and its Website, urges readers to give their donations directly to local pet shelters instead of HSUS,

A new report finds HSUS’s direct mail, telemarketing, and television appeals actively perpetuate the misperception that HSUS’s primary focus is to care for abandoned and abused cats and dogs. However, HSUS doesn’t run a single pet shelter and local shelters aren’t seeing much of HSUS’s donations, with several local organizations across America going so far as to change their names in order to prevent donor confusion.

“HSUS continues to mislead the public with multi-million dollar ad campaigns,” Wilson continued. “With over $200 million in assets, HSUS could clearly afford to live up to its undeserved reputation as a major contributor to local shelters, but it appears to have other motives.”

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Allison McGill    
Mt. View, CA  |  August, 03, 2012 at 01:53 PM

I had no idea and indeed figured there were $s going to small shelters. The HSUS does valuable rescues and I will continue to support them as I am able. AND will also look in to supporting local shelters. The executive pension fund information stinks and thank you for making it known.

MD  |  August, 04, 2012 at 07:28 AM

They do not do rescues either. They may sue someone for animal abuse and then leave the local shelters and residents to clen up the mess. There CEO says that having a pet dog or cat is like having a slave and is wrong. His words from a debate in 1989.

Bill Cord    
LA, CA  |  August, 04, 2012 at 02:44 AM

These people are crooks. They use more dollars for fund raising that for any other purpose with the possible except of salaries.

Rob Parker    
Nebraska  |  August, 04, 2012 at 09:03 AM

Hmm I had a look at the HSUS response and it really shows this for what it is - you can see it for yourself at

San Francisco, Ca  |  August, 04, 2012 at 11:56 AM Get educated - go to the article page at this site and read the article HSUS, The Mob and The Black Egg - right now HSUS has the chicken farmers scred to death with SLAPP lawsuits and intimidation, extortion and the govt sits on its hands - hope the new Administration will kick their ass all the way to prison where these thugs belong!

charles Allen    
tn  |  August, 04, 2012 at 09:31 PM

mr. parker i challenge u please do the research your self into hsus and where there money goes dont belive either side until you check for yourself. because what you will do is belive the side you want to hsus tax returns are obtainable for you to get and look for your self.

Northeast  |  August, 05, 2012 at 08:01 AM

The HSUS started with trying to Ban use of Fur which then spawned those that torch mink farms. Then they moved on to Eggs and have created a problem which will cost everyone with the rise in Egg prices. Now they are attacking the Pork Producers. And all the while their ads speak to the poor starving Dogs and Cats that will be killed without the help of "your" donations. HSUS is trying to force their Vegan agenda and eliminate all human interaction with animals. To paraphrase Wayne; "One generation and out". The HSUS has recently been the subject of a federal investigation regarding income tax evasion and now is being sued under the RICO (racketeering) act. I hope they get run out of town on a rail!!!!

kansas  |  August, 06, 2012 at 09:32 AM

Alllison is a HSUS is obviously an HSUS shill, in keeping with the organization's drive to Lie, Cheat and Steal from well-intentioned but totally ignorant urbanites. Pacelle, like Ingrid Newkirk @ PETA, is an extremist radical vegan who intends to destroy Livestock producers and eliminate companion animals from society at any cost, by any means - as he has said many times in many ways. At the same time, he's lining his and his staffs' pockets with millions from these tax-exempt donations. Adding insult to injury, his cynical and nasty toady, Prescott, spews insincere crap about money being taken from Hard-Working Farmers and Struggling Businesses! His statement would Almost be Funny, if these same folks weren't Freely Giving their money to Honest and Truthful groups to defend themselves against the smarmy, deceitful legal and legislative attacks by liars and frauds like himself. Thank you HumanWatch for not being intimidated by this repulsive, but well funded propagandists and anti-farm hate groups. The poor, emotional-but-ignorant and gullible urbanite suckers you save will eventually thank you.

August, 08, 2012 at 05:12 PM

I've been a member of HSUS for years, and have every intention of continuing my membership and extra donations. HSUS has done more for thousands of animals than any individual shelter could do. They tackle the ugly stuff, they risk their safety going under cover and expose dog fighting, bird fighting, puppy mills, etc. They go into homes, with the assistance of local authorities, to rescue emaciated and abused animals of all sorts. What about tragedies like Katrina? Luckily HUSU does have money to fund these interventions and, possibly, subsequent lawsuits. Maybe the top executives are making out with lots of $$, but the animals are also benefitting. Sounds like the watchdog site is pro farming and would love to keep pregnant sows contained in small pens and chickens in battery cages. These are examples of abuses must stop and I'm grateful to HUSU for their relentless deeds. They deserve praise, not condemnation.

NC  |  August, 09, 2012 at 06:18 AM

I am sorry to burst your bubble but for every dog HSUS takes in -a dog dies, reason is that in most shelters there is a 50 percent kill rate, so when HSUS brags about confiscating 40,000 dogs from 2004-2009 that means 20,000 died. Remember what he wanted to do with the Vick dogs - all killed. PETA has a 95 percent kill rate! Have you never heard the slogan. "better dead than fed"!

NC  |  August, 09, 2012 at 06:18 AM

I am sorry to burst your bubble but for every dog HSUS takes in -a dog dies, reason is that in most shelters there is a 50 percent kill rate, so when HSUS brags about confiscating 40,000 dogs from 2004-2009 that means 20,000 died. Remember what he wanted to do with the Vick dogs - all killed. PETA has a 95 percent kill rate! Have you never heard the slogan. "better dead than fed"!

August, 15, 2012 at 08:53 AM

It is ridiculous if the HSUS is using such a huge amount of donations for their pension plans, etc., and I certainly hope that they will disclose their handling of donations. However, I agree with any group who goes after factory farms. If large numbers of animals are jammed into buildings and given meds to try and control infection and disease.......this is not humane treatment, and not good for humans for sure. If farmers don't have their animals out in a pasture they shouldn't be in business. Why would anyone want meat from mega farms? Do you really think these people care about animals? This is about greed!

New Jersey  |  August, 16, 2012 at 05:12 PM

Telegram to Annette: HSUS raised $35 million for Katrina and badly botched the relief work. After receiving dozens of complaints from rescues, New Orleans pet owners and HSUS's own volunteers, the Louisiana Attorney General opened an 18 month investigation into where the money went. HSUS could only document that about 20% of the $35 million was used for Katrina and had to resort to the pathetic defense that they weren't raising money for Katrina, but for their disaster program as a whole. They are "relentless" liars and self-promoters. For more information on how HSUS really operates, read "Dubious Deals at HSUS" by Nathan Winograd. And don't believe what you read on the HSUS website, in fundraising letters, or in their Annual Report (not a legal document) and Financial Statements (ditto). DO read their IRS 990's, filed on penalty of perjury.

SD  |  August, 16, 2012 at 07:48 PM

I challenge "anonymous (99176136)" to give the name of ONE so called Factory Farm and show photo's of how they abuse cattle or any other animal. It shouldn't take a rocket scientist to know that an abused animal is NOT a profitable animal.....and many who decry so called "factory farming" insist that they are in business ONLY to make a nasty PROFIT. How is your food going to be produced if no one is allowed to make any profit? Who knows what the current rate of return on investment in farming is, anyway. Last I knew several years ago, it ranged from 1.5% to 3%. Figure out how much of an investment it would take to make even a modest income to support a farm family at even the top rate in that equation. Don't forget that 98%percent of farms in the USA are family owned, managed, and staffed.

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