Today we’re announcing a new campaign for pets: “We Are the 99%.” The goal of our “We Are the 99%” campaign is simple: To promote local shelters, and to clear up the humane confusion that exists.
Up to 8 million dogs and cats enter shelters every year. The Humane Society of the United States claims to provide “direct care” to about 100,000 animals a year. Tossing out wildlife from HSUS's assertion, that means about 99 percent of pets entering shelters don’t receive any care from HSUS every year.
Additionally, more than 99 percent of HSUS’s $126 million budget goes to fund things other than grants to support sheltering. We’d wager that most shelters (but not 99 percent) never see a dime of the many doggie dollars that HSUS hauls in each year.
Instead, local humane societies, rescue groups, and others do the vast majority of the work caring for shelter pets. And in this economy, pet shelters are struggling—while HSUS hauls (and hoards) cash.
According to national polling, 71 percent of Americans mistakenly believe that HSUS is a pet-shelter umbrella group. Fifty-nine percent wrongly believe that HSUS gives most of its money to local shelters, and 63 percent are under the false pretense that HSUS is affiliated with their local humane organization. This "humane confusion" needs to be dispelled.
We’re emulating the style of the “We Are the 99%” campaign (which should not be construed as an endorsement of it). Here’s what you can do:
- Write a note telling your pet’s story and spread the “give local” message in your own words
- Include HumaneWatch.org at the bottom
- Take a picture and post it to our Facebook wall and share it with your friends
We’ve posted an example (above and below, click to enlarge) of two of our pets to serve as a starting point.
(In case you’re wondering: No, we don’t encourage anyone to “Occupy HSUS.”)
HSUS claims that it is “the nation's leading advocate for animal shelters.” But don’t let the national animal-rights lobby pretend it can “speak for” your pet. The actual biggest advocate of shelters and shelter pets is you.