LOUISVILLE (WHAS11) -- Kentucky Humane Society employees are asking community members to listen closely to an ad playing on Kentuckiana radio stations this week. The ad is targeting the Humane Society of the United States, but some are confusing that with local shelters, and holding back on donations at a time when donations are crucial.
The ad, which is paid for by the Center for Consumer Freedom, started playing in Kentuckiana cities last week.
The one minute spot accuses the Humane Society of the United States of misusing funds, and discourages people from donating. Some listeners are confusing the humane societies--assuming the ad is talking about local shelters, and then withholding donations out of fear.
KHS employees say several people have called to discuss how their gifts will be used this year, to ensure that they are going to the animals as promised.
"December is our largest giving month of the year--the majority of our funding donated throughout the year is raised between December and November so it couldn't have come at a worse time for us,” Director of PR and Marketing for the Kentucky Humane Society, Andrea Blair, said.
Blair explained KHS is not affiliated with the Humane Society of the United States in any way. But donors are hearing the ad and getting confused, wondering if their dollars are really going to local animals.
Blair said, "When you give to the Kentucky Humane Society and other local animal charities, your money stays right here in the community and helps the community's animals."
The reality is at KHS, 82 cents of every dollar goes directly to the animals. It’s the way the private-nonprofit has worked since 1884, when it first opened, and it’s the way it works today.
"Were a very fiscally responsible organization, we're Kentucky’s largest pet adoption agency and no kill shelter and we do a lot of great work because of the donors who support us," Blair said.
The Kentucky Humane Society wants to hear from you if you have questions about how they are spending their donations. The best way to get in contact with them is to call (502) 366-3355.
The Humane Society of the United States Kentucky State Director Kathryn M. Callahan gave WHAS11 this statement:
“These ads are from Humane Watch, also known as Center for Consumer Freedom--one of HSUS’s most active and devious opponents. The Center for Consumer Freedom is really a front group for a PR agency in Washington, D.C., funded by those who profit handsomely from animal exploitation and abuse such as factory farms, puppy mills and cockfighters. This group and its leader, Richard Berman, have been exposed as a fraud by dozens of mainstream media outlets like the New York Times, Boston Globe, USA Today and 60 Minutes dubbed Berman 'Dr. Evil.'
"CCF uses the ‘1%’ argument to create a false controversy and generate ‘fake news’ to push their anti-animal agenda. True, we don't operate shelters or pass along all donations to shelters but that’s not why our organization exists or why people donate to us. We work to prevent cruelty and keep animals out of shelters. We also work to protect the other 99% of animals who don’t end up in shelters, including horses, farm animals, seals, whales, wildlife, elephants, lab animals, etc. In Kentucky, we have worked with law enforcement, local officials and animal welfare and rescue organizations to help animals and facilities.