Our HumaneWatch.org project has been educating Americans about the real agenda of the Humane Society of the United States (HSUS). Of course, HSUS does a good job of hiding that agenda in its fundraising material. In a national poll, 71 percent of Americans said they believed HSUS was an “umbrella group that represents thousands of local humane societies all across America.”
That perception could hardly be further from the truth, but it’s not surprising given HSUS’s advertising, which relies heavily on dogs and cats. We conducted a review that showed that 85 percent of the animals in HSUS TV commercials were in fact cats and dogs. That’s definitely deceptive when one considers that less than one percent of HSUS’s $130 million budget is shared with local animal shelters. That got us thinking: What do HSUS’s donors think of HSUS’s misleading appeals?
Now we know. We conducted an online poll of self-described HSUS donors and found that 90 percent didn’t know how little of their gifts HSUS gives to local pet shelters. Armed with the truth, 80 percent agreed that HSUS “misleads people into thinking that it supports local humane societies and pet shelters.”
That shouldn’t be surprising. Before telling the surveyed donors how little HSUS gives to local pet shelters, we asked their primary reason for giving to HSUS. The vast majority donated to help shelter pets: 40 percent said they gave to “help HSUS care for homeless dogs and cats in animal shelters and humane societies” while another 36 percent gave to “reduce the number of animals put down in shelters each year.” They aren’t the first pet-loving HSUS donors to be shocked by the truth.
And there’s a whole lot more truth to share with HSUS donors. When HSUS isn’t factory fundraising, stockpiling pension funds, or propagandizing children, it’s lobbying to take meat, dairy, and eggs off the table, just like PETA. We have to wonder what these HSUS donors think about their doggie dollars going to a radical animal rights agenda. And we know an easy way to find out.