Posted on Leave a comment

Before You Give – Humane Charity

Hopefully you’ll soon be entering your charitable deductions on your federal tax return for your generosity in 2009, but what about your future donations?  One of the questions we are frequently asked is, “What charities do you donate to?” To help jumpstart your 2010 giving, we thought we’d share a little secret with you.

One of our requirements is that the organization adheres to a cruelty-free commitment and a policy that pledges that their research, services, experiments, and funding does not support any animal experimentation.

Thankfully, the Physicians Committee for Responsible Medicine (PCRM) maintains an online list of organizations that vow to support cruelty-free research, earning them the “Humane Charity Seal.”


The site offers a print friendly version of the list or you can order a printed booklet to keep with you. Go check out the full list, or use their search feature to see if your favorite charity is listed. The list also highlights charities that continue to fund animal experiments. They maintain a great news and analysis section that will keep you current on the latest efforts to end animal experimentation.

At the end of the day, it is your money and you have a right to know exactly what that money is funding. Take a proactive step in your charitable donations and make the charities accountable for their actions.

Consider this: We always see our charitable donations as signatures of approval of the actions of the charity. Are the actions of your chosen charity worthy of said approval and support? Take action with your donations, or give silent consent to the cruelty conducted in your name.

Posted on Leave a comment

International Animal Rights Day

Today is International Animal Rights Day. Today we’d like to tip our hats to our European neighbors and applaud the efforts they are making to help improve the lives of animals.

International Animal Rights Day – “The annual International Animal Rights Day (IARD) – 10th December – aims to remember the animal victims of human tyranny and call for the recognition of our Universal Declaration of Animal Rights (UDAR).” See Uncaged Campaigns for more info.

Make Animal Testing History – Virtual March – “The European law that regulates animal experiments, Directive 86/609/EEC, is being updated. Revision of the law offers a vital chance for real and lasting change for animals who currently receive inadequate protection. Most importantly, a targeted strategy to replace animal experiments with more advanced non-animal methods must be the ultimate goal.” – Join the march and catch a glimpse of a virtual Ricky Gervais

Pedigree Dogs Exposed from BBC America- “Two years in the making, Pedigree Dogs Exposed lifts the lid on the true extent of health and welfare problems in pedigree dogs.”

Animal Protection Agency – “the UK organization committed to ceasing the trade in wildlife for pets.”

“I am in favor of animal rights as well as human rights. That is the way of a whole human being.”
Abraham Lincoln

Posted on 2 Comments

Action Alert: Proposed Tax Deductions For Pet Expenses H.R. 3501


Pet parents, our tax day may be just around the corner! Congressman Thaddeus McCotter (R-Mich.) has introduced H.R. 3501, the“Humanity and Pets Partnered Through the Years” (HAPPY) Act, to amend the Internal Revenue Code of 1986 to allow a deduction for pet care expenses.

Current Status: Referred to the Committee on Ways and Means, House of Representatives

Date Introduced: 7/31/2009

What is it? How much can I deduct?

    (a) Allowance of Deduction- In the case of an individual, there shall be allowed as a deduction for the taxable year an amount equal to the qualified pet care expenses of the taxpayer during the taxable year for any qualified pet of the taxpayer.
    (b) Maximum Deduction- The amount allowable as a deduction under subsection (a) to the taxpayer for any taxable year shall not exceed $3,500.

What is a “qualified pet care expense?”

For purposes of this section, the term `qualified pet care expenses’ means amounts paid in connection with providing care (including veterinary care) for a qualified pet other than any expense in connection with the acquisition of the qualified pet.

Who/What are the qualified pets?

The term `qualified pet’ means a legally owned, domesticated, live animal.

What are the exceptions?

Such term does not include any animal–

(A) used for research or owned or utilized in conjunction with a trade or business, or

(B) with respect to which the taxpayer has claimed a deduction under section 162 (ordinary and necessary expenses) or 213 (diagnostic and similar procedures, medical devices and other medical expenses not covered by insurance) in any of the preceding 3 taxable years.

When would this go into effect?

The amendments made by this section shall apply to taxable years beginning after December 31, 2009.

Why is this a good thing?

The proposed amendment is a step in the right direction because it validates the financial obligation required of the pet owner while attempting to alleviate some of the burden of the expenses.

We’ve seen far too many animals abandoned, left to starve, and mistreated as the painful sear of the nation’s economic struggle makes its mark on the flesh of the innocent companions who share our lives.  Many households have felt compelled to choose between feeding their pet or buying groceries for the human counterparts. Many pets have had the short stick drawn for them when it comes to that choice. People are struggling to feed their pets, much less provide adequate pet care for them.

What can you do?

Contact your representatives and let them know you would like them to support the legislation. A simple call or email will suffice. Need some help locating your officials? Need some help writing your congressional representative a letter?

What do you think? Let us know what feedback you’ve received from your local representatives when you contact them.

We’ll keep you posted with any updates.

Photo Credit: YM

Posted on Leave a comment

Would You Agree to DNA testing for your Dog?

An East German politician believes that in order to rectify the problem of dog owners refusing to pick up after their pooch, the city will procure some DNA from each dog and start a database. Therefore, when a poop has gone astray with no one to claim it, someone (do you want that city job?) will come ‘round and collect a sample and compare it to the DNA database. The pet parents face fines of $60 – $80 for the poop offense. Wonder if the DNA collector will also pick up the poop?


Would you agree to submit your dog’s DNA to a database to track poop infractions? Is this a good idea in your opinion? Do laws like this go too far? How many “extra” fees are you paying for your animals now? Does your community tack on additional charges for pet parents? Have you changed your mind about moving to a certain area due to the fees charged for pet ownership?

Photo Credit: actruncale