Warning to Houston Pets and Their People: PETA and HSUS are Coming to Help
As if things are not bad enough for Houston's pets and their people... they are suffering through record-setting flooding in the wake of Hurricane Harvey. But, things may be getting worse, because People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA) and the Humane Society of the United States (HSUS) say they are coming to "help." If history is any indicator, that really means that they will squeeze their donors for cash, they will do some glossy fundraising, and they will kill a lot of animals. In our opinion, these two organizations are two of the worst disaster profiteers that exist.
During Hurricane Katrina, HSUS was very high-profile in the press and they looked very good, but those of us with boots on the ground had a different experience. Several of us had similar experiences: we would be working an area heavily hit and would have been there for hours. Suddenly a group of vehicles would pull up, and a team of people from HSUS would get out with cameras rolling. They would stay and film for an hour or so, then pack up the cameras and leave, leaving the rest of us to keep working. And stories of the poor conditions at the HSUS-run center in Lamar-Dixon Expo Center, and the needless killing that happened there, were widely reported. And, the HSUS reported misuse of funds during Katrina was so extreme that the Louisiana Attorney General had to launch a formal investigation into the organization's activities there. The investigation happened after record numbers of complaints were made by owners of pets that were picked up by HSUS.
The situation with PETA is even worse. That agency has a history of stealing pets in order to kill them, or lying to pet owners in order to get them to surrender them so that PETA can kill them. In fact, PETA runs an animal "shelter" in Norfolk, Virginia (their only "shelter") that, according to USDA inspection reports, has no animal housing at all. Their "shelter" is a "euthanasia" table and a walk-in freezer.
But, true to form, both PETA and HSUS are putting out the call for money so they can "help" the animals in Houston. And, if history is any indicator, that will mean the local groups doing the real work of saving animals will be squeezed even farther, because these major organizations - each with dubious (to put it nicely) histories and that are already sitting on millions of dollars that could help - are now officially taking donations away from those in Texas that need the money.
Take Action: Send an email to the Mayor Sylvester Turner of Houston and ask him to publicly say Houston does not need their kind of "help."
Note: The Mayor and the Chief of Police have both displayed strong leadership on behalf of animals during this disaster, and they should also be thanked for that.