Will the Powerball Winner Have a Pet Cause?

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If you picked the winning numbers, would you share the windfall with a pet cause?

The $550 million Powerball jackpot has everyone asking the same question: What would you do with all that money?

For many people commenting on social media sites, the answer is simple — they’d use the cash (or at least some of it) to help animals.

It's actually not unheard of for lottery winners. Here are just a couple of examples of what animal folk did with their mega earnings.

Give Me Shelter

An Iowa couple gave $350,000 of their $200 million prize to their local humane society in 2010, matching $1 for every $2 pledged to help fund a new animal shelter.

Tim and Kelly Guderian brought home $67 million after taxes when they hit the Powerball jackpot in 2006. When it came time to share the wealth, the Guderians wanted to take on a project that they could be proud of — and that would benefit the community.

“This is a project that has been 35 years in the making,” Humane Society of North Central Iowa director Laurie Hagey told KCCI-TV. “But it took a challenge gift like the one they made to make everyone believe we could actually do it.”

Don’t Forget the Goats

Not all lotto money has gone to the dogs (and cats).

A southern California couple who cashed in a $5 California Lottery Scratcher for a $2 million prize was relieved to have enough income to cover the cost of caring for their ever-expanding menagerie of rescued farm critters.

Jim and Beverly Evens started their animal rescue when they adopted a 2-day-old Alpine goat named Bucky. By the time the pair won the lotto in 2010, they'd taken in 35 goats, three horses and countless chickens.

They were “scrimping to feed all these animals,” Beverly Evens, who calls Bucky her good luck charm, told the Anderson Valley Post. “We are very low-maintenance people. The way we look at it, as long as the animals are happy, so are we.”

So what would you do for animals if you cashed in on the $550 million? Share your clever charitable windfall ideas with us.

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