The Center for Consumer Freedom has launched a Web site, HumaneWatch.org, to analyze the activities of the Humane Society of the United States. Director of Research David Martosko says they are assuming the role of being a watchdog organization over HSUS because no one else has been willing to do it.
"This is an enormous organization; they raise about $100 million a year and most of their own donors have no idea where that money goes or what kinds of programs they're actually supporting," Martosko said. "So we thought it was about time that somebody took a daily and relentless look at this organization from the point of view of let's find out what is actually going on. Let's look at facts, let's look at documents and let's have a serious discussion about it."
Martosko says many HSUS supporters believe they are supporting pet shelters, not an animal rights activist organization.
"In 2008, HSUS only put about one half of one percent of it's budget into actual hands on pet shelters," Martosko said. "The rest of it went to pay for a staff of 30 lawyers, bloated expense accounts and pension accounts for their executives, and all of this sort of PETA style lobbying. I think most people would be really appalled if they found out that those commercials on Fox News that ask for $19 a month were not really helping local pet shelters very much. And most of the shelter professionals that I know are quite up in arms about it."
In 2008 alone, HSUS put more than $2.5 million into pension plans - money that its own advertising suggested would be put toward the direct care of animals. HSUS neither operates nor is legally affiliated with, any pet shelters anywhere.