Click here to learn more.
According to a recent survey, animals and their welfare rank high among Americans for causes worth contributing to — third, in fact.
So at this time of year, when holiday cheer meets end-of-year tax tinkering, it only makes sense to offer you a post on animal charities. Unfortunately, it’s not always so easy to tell where your hard-won dollars are best allocated.
With that challenge in mind, I’ve listed some well-recognized dos and don’ts of charitable giving, as well as a list of my favorite animal causes.
Do … check out the charity. A good place to start is with a charity evaluator, such as the Better Business Bureau Wise Giving Alliance (rates more than 1,200 national groups), the American Institute of Philanthropy (rates about 525 U.S. charities) and Charity Navigator (rates more than 5,300 national and international organizations).
Don’t … base your decision on ratings alone. Evaluations are based on financial performance and corporate governance, but not necessarily on how well charities accomplish their goals. Moreover, it’s clear that these reviews aren’t perfect. For example, simple accounting technicalities can throw a charity’s ratings into the gutter, while other charities have learned how to game the ratings system in their favor.
Don’t … fail to recognize that plenty of great charities aren’t necessarily rated by evaluators. Luckily, there are other ways of assessing charities, such as reading an organization’s mission and position statements, and then trying to find out as much as you can about at least one of the programs that the charity has undertaken.
Do … follow your heart — once you’ve done your homework and a bit of critical thinking, of course.
To that end, here are my five favorite animal charities for 2012:
This high-marks earner is an interesting alternative to the standard you-know-whos of the animal welfare world. I mean, how can you resist this tagline? “We may be the only lawyers on Earth whose clients are all innocent.”
This rescue earned a four-star rating on Charity Navigator, and entered the exalted territory of Charity Navigator’s “10 Highly Rated Charities with Low-Paid CEOs.”
For financial accountability and transparency — not to mention their amazing work caring for and placing cast-off equines — Days End is a great place to put your horse-dedicated dollars. For $100, why not sponsor a needy horse for the holidays?
Like this article? Have a point of view to share? Let us know!
Thank you for subscribing to Petwire. Look for the latest newsletter each Wednesday.
Ebola survivor Nina Pham celebrated
Bentley the Cavalier King Charles
Spaniel's second birthday Thursday.
"Polar vortex" weather conditions might
but be taking over the country, but these
The animal lovers in your life will surely
appreciate calendars, jewelry, chocolate
and more that benefit animal…
A tiny hamster and his tiny dinner guests
enjoy a tiny Thanksgiving dinner while
wearing tiny pilgrim hats.
In the days between Thanksgiving and
New Year’s, your dog or cat will probably
sneak his fair share of leftovers.
From deliciously rich holiday fare to
enticingly shiny decorations, the season
brings plenty of risky temptations…
The playful Shih Tzu will love to be your lap dog and prized canine companion, even if you're not a Chinese emperor.
If the video doesn't start playing momentarily,
please install the latest version of Flash.
Thank you for subscribing.