SAN DIEGO (CBS 8) - Some San Diego residents have received fliers in the mail taking aim at the Humane Society of the United States.
The fliers can easily be confused as attacks on local animal shelters, but that is not the case.
The fliers contain ten things that should be known about the Humane Society of the United States and it has some San Diegans wondering if it’s targeting local humane societies.
John Van Zante, with the Rancho Coastal Humane Society in Encinitas, said there is often confusion when it comes to where exactly donors are sending their money. According to Zante, donors will see commercials for the HSUS and think their donations are staying local.
“They see a card like that, it's got a picture of a dog on it and they see humane society, so they think they're supporting Rancho Coastal Humane Society or San Diego Humane Society, and that's not the case,” he said.
Local humane societies are not funded by the Humane Society of the United States, though the HSUS does partner up with local humane societies.
Just last month, the HSUS sent hundreds of dogs from Korea to the San Diego Humane Society.
“We had a lady contact Rancho Coastal Humane Society, said ‘sorry I forgot to send my check this month.’ Looked into it, [she] hadn't sent anything at all. She was sending her check to HSUS. Not a bad thing, they do great work, but she didn't understand that it is a different organization,” said Zante.
According to the resident and CEO of HSUS, Wayne Pacelle, the organization is being attacked in part because of a decade long campaign by Washington lobbyist Richard Berman. Berman, according to Pacelle, represents restaurants, the meat industry and other groups against animal welfare organizations.
“This is a front group funded by animal abuse organizations attacking us for ten-years. Badge of honor, we're doing our job just right,” said Pacelle.
CBS News 8 reached out to the Center for Organizational research and education. A spokesman said its executive director is Rick Berman and said the organization stands behind their anti-humane society campaign.
They accuse the HSUS of deceptive advertising and using donor money to push a radical political agenda.