For Just $19 a Month…

We often see references to how little the Humane Society of the United States (HSUS) spends on shelters – less than 1/2 of 1% (.45% to be exact) of their annual budget.  It’s important to make this information known because many people donate to HSUS thinking they are supporting their local shelters in so doing.  But what is .45% in terms of a typical donation, such as the one celebrities solicit in HSUS ads on TV?  In a letter to the editor, an Iowa paper does the math:

HSUS finance records show that after you’ve made that [$19] monthly donation for a year, a grand total of $1.03 will reach a pet shelter.

Since math is not my strong suit, I got out my calculator:

$19/month X 12 months = $228

.45% of $228 = $1.03

So that looks correct to me.  How different the HSUS commercials would appear if they said “With your gift of just $19 a month, we’ll make sure almost 9 cents of that donation reaches a shelter somewhere every month…”

If you want to donate money to help shelter pets in your area, please do so directly.  If you can afford $19 a month, that’s great, but any amount would be appreciated I’m sure.  You can also help shelter pets by volunteering, adopting and dropping off food and supplies.  But if you prefer to donate cash, which is always needed, and your intention is to help your local shelter pets, the way to ensure that your donation does that is to donate directly to the shelter.

10 thoughts on “For Just $19 a Month…

  1. Wow! Thank you so very much for addressing this issue. I have been giving not only to HSUS but several other big companies and I am heartbroken that my money is not going where it should, or where I thought it did.

    I will now do more investigating as to where I send my money and I will be working harder to get my donations to local shelters and charities.

    You’re wonderful, thank you again!!

    1. They never claimed to be affiliated with shelters. The dogs in their commercials are in puppy mills and the cats were rescued from hoarders. HSUS has been effectively making progress with these issues and they are being attacked by those who profit from it, that’s where this negative information is coming from.

      1. Yeah, all those animal shelters and rescue groups are making a real killing. That’s why they scream so loud when HSUS raises money on the backs of the animals they are paying to care for, and devoting their time to rehabbing.

        Still haven’t seen a dime to help with Henry and Copper and Charlie from HSUS. Last surgery next month, thanks for asking.

  2. Hey, quick q: have you seen an actual copy of the HSUS budget for 2009? If so, where from? Having issues finding one…

  3. But they have published an annual report. It’s long on puffery, and short on verifiable facts, though. Not exactly signed under oath or anything …

  4. Just because the work is not taking place inside an animal shelter does not mean it isn’t valuable animal welfare work. HSUS is on the front lines providing direct animal care and rescue, battling dogfighters, puppy millers, factory farmers, and other animal abusers. The HSUS has a mobile CSI unit for animal cruelty to gather evidence for prosecutors to use in animal cruelty cases. They also have a mobile vet clinic which travels around offering veterinarian services to the needy who might not otherwise take their pets to the vets. Additionally, The HSUS has also partnered up with Maddie’s Fund & the Ad Council to launch The Pet Shelter Project with the goal of creating awareness of shelter animals and to increase adoption rates at local shelters. I am proud to be an HSUS Member and will continue my monthly donations to support an organization whose goal it is to end animal cruelty, neglect and abuse. The Center for Consumer Freedom runs nothing less than a disinformation campaign on behalf of corporate sponsors under a false guise of a non-profit whose ultimate goal is to educate consumers. Consider this consumer already educated.

  5. Less than 1/2 of 1% – that’s a sound bite I think the “small” people need to know.

  6. Since no one here actually had a link to the factual information, I found a full financial report by going to the HSUS site and looking at their links (Google search fail!). I was doing calculations based on the actual, legally filed information for you, but got hit by a taxi while riding my bike yesterday and completely forgot. They’re forthcoming, but not today.

    However, I will say there’s a huge discrepancy between the figures that site gives and what HSUS reported. I’m doing some more research on my own, because I don’t feel comfortable letting CCF do it for me.

    1. I hope you weren’t badly hurt! I did look over the CCF math when it first came out and it looked correct to me but math is not my game so if you find anything different, it would be fun to compare.

Leave a Reply