Watchdog group calls on FTC to investigate the Humane Society


WASHINGTON — Recently, a project of the nonprofit Center for Consumer Freedom, called on the Federal Trade Commission to open an investigation into the deceptive fundraising practices of the Humane Society of the United States.


A recent Freedom of Information Act request revealed that more than 120 complaints have been filed with the FTC since December 2011 regarding HSUS. Dozens of the complaints come from Americans who have given money to HSUS.

HSUS’s deceptive advertising helps fool the unsuspecting public: a recent analysis found that more than 85 percent of the animals in HSUS’s TV appeals between January 2009 and September 2011 were cats and dogs, when just 1 percent of the money donated to HSUS is sent to hands-on pet shelters, according to HSUS tax returns.

“This is deception on a national level, and the FTC needs to act now,” said J. Justin Wilson, CCF’s Senior Research Analyst. “HSUS routinely employs familiar images of sad-looking dogs and cats in their advertisements.

“Yet, the majority of HSUS’s donations are used to bankroll an animal rights agenda. This emotionally charged bait-and-switch doesn’t just harm donors. It harms needy shelters and pets.”


Recent public polling determined that 71 percent of Americans mistakenly believe that HSUS is a pet shelter umbrella group, and 68 percent wrongly think that HSUS spends most of its money on pet shelters.

Less than 1 percent of HSUS fundraising appeals have contained a disclaimer that local humane societies are independent of HSUS.

Get our Top Stories in Your Inbox

Next step: Check your inbox to confirm your subscription.


  1. Animal Rights Activists are taking over just about every aspect of agriculture and pet ownership. Lsst week, In Colorado, an Activist in the employ of an airline freight handling company, turned in a 4H rabbit breeder/ shipper, and a 4H receiver, in two states, for a rabbit transfer. HSUS and other AR groups have actively worked to make state and local laws unfriendly to the small producer of meat, eggs, and produce. It is time to stop being complacent about the loss of our rights to live our chosen lifestyles.

  2. So…Lets all put a Donation Jar at every store Etc…. and then lie about what the Money is needed for ??? See how long you stay out of Jail and how much Money you would have to pay back for lieing about your Cause ??? “HSUS” needs to pay it all back not to mention your NOT tax exempt is you Lobbie ???? So how are they getting away with this ???


We are glad you have chosen to leave a comment. Please keep in mind that comments are moderated according to our comment policy.

Receive emails as this discussion progresses.