This ‘charity’ at the link below that got caught scamming the public out of millions upon millions of dollars is just like a ‘retail rescue’ on steroids!
From the story at the link:
“Washington D.C. • A Tennessee man with ties to Utah and his family used much of the $187 million it collected for cancer patients to buy themselves cars, gym memberships and take luxury cruise vacations, pay for college tuition and employ family members with six-figure salaries, federal officials alleged Tuesday in one of the largest charity fraud cases ever, involving all 50 states.”
The closing paragraph in the article reads:
“The FTC recommends that when considering a donation, look for a long-standing charity with a good reputation and avoid any group that uses high-pressure tactics or is reluctant to provide detailed documentation on how the money is spent. ”
Very wise advice!
Stories like the one at the link illustrate why people should ALWAYS ask questions BEFORE donating to publicly-operated, publicly-marketed, and publicly-donation-funded ‘charities’, which for the past 7-10 years have included animal rescues that can and do “reach out” with open hands for donations across the country and around the world.
Far too many of the animal rescues are in fact “retail rescues”.
Retail rescues are basically run by animal dealers/traders posing as animal rescues.
Retail rescues refuse to answer any and all questions from their supporters, donors, and prospective donors and supporters simply because they don’t HAVE to.
However, they are more than happy to post only what they want to post that puts them in a sympathetic light, gains them something like $$$$, material items, etc, they pretend they are “trying to learn” their way around “rescuing”, and in fact probably are “learning-how-to-ACT” because there are a few differences between the way they acted doing “just” animal trading and dealing, and how they “have to” ACT when dealing with animal lovers in the PUBLIC that just don’t understand their “sleight-of-hand” agenda and how they are being USED and MANIPULATED by these fraudsters that often present as ‘nice’ people in their public persona because the PUBLIC has something they want and NEED like $$$.
However, the person they really are in private, combined with the nasty things they say about their ‘marks’ in the public that support and donate to them, is pure ugliness and DISRESPECT.
Sure, as more and more of these “retail rescues” are sued in a court of law where they will have to answer questions under oath that will expose them for the scammers they are, many of these retail rescues will tank/go out of ‘business’, and their founders and primary participants that are committing fraud and other crimes will be held ACCOUNTABLE.
However, in order to separate the real animal rescues from the ‘retail rescue’ scammers, all that a prospective donor needs to do is ASK QUESTIONS of the animal rescue they are thinking of supporting and/or donating too, and if they do not get answers, which is usually the case when questions are asked of a ‘retail rescue’, DO NOT donate to them.
Instead, find an animal rescue that is primarily donation-funded that is doing really great things really HELPING ALL of the animals they really ARE rescuing, and they WILL answer any and all questions posed to them.
If the supportive, donating, animal loving public would simply ask questions BEFORE they support and/or donate to a donation-funded animal rescue, more animals could be rescued, more animal owners could be helped with their animals, and FAR FEWER animals will actually be KILLED by the “rescue” that is supposed to be ‘helping’ and “rescuing” them.
Please remember these FACTS about many of the ‘retail rescues’ —
when it’s found out that an animal they rescued using other peoples money has issues of one kind or another that are NOT life-threatening but which renders them unadoptable/un-sellable/un-useful to anyone, ‘retail rescues’ that are animal traders/dealers KILL or ‘disappear’ them, and then they make up all kinds of sob stories, false stories, say the animal “couldn’t be saved” because of a bad knee, a bad back, they had behavioral issues, and blah, blah, blah, so on and so forth —
but when asked by the PUBLIC for:
~euthanasia reports and bills
~or even a location with CURRENT photos and videos of an animal in the supposed ‘sanctuary’ or foster home the retail rescue sent them to;
that is a big, fat NO GO and NO Current VET REPORTS, NO BILLS, NO PHOTOS, and NO VIDEOS are forth-coming regarding WHERE is the animal they were supposed to be rescuing, and WHAT has happened to them 3 months, 6 months, up to 1 year after other peoples money supposedly ‘rescued’ them.
When an animal rescue writes things like “we rescued 40 dogs”, or “we rescued 35 horses”, and they are always using kind donations from the public to ‘rescue’, but THEN they only post current photos and videos of a limited number of animals instead of the numbers they said they were ‘rescuing’, that is cause for concern that NOT ALL of the animals are really being rescued that they are collecting donations on.
If this isn’t really what is happening with donation-funded rescues, ANY and ALL rescues can clear up the controversy by simply posting current and then weekly photos of ALL of the animals they “say” (they “say” a lot of things, but retail rescues for the most part do not supply much if any factual proof of what they are ‘saying’ is actually TRUE) they rescued, at their facility and/or at one of their approved foster homes.
Since retail rescues post several times a week, if not several times a day, that they NEED ‘more donations’ for all kinds of things, if the animal lovers follow their exploits for a while, they would see a pattern emerging that is never ending, and the cycle repeats over and over again.
The pattern is usually:
1. they are supposedly rescuing animals from a “neglect” situation;
2. they are “rescuing”/buying them from an animal control, or from a horse/livestock sale using kindly donors money to do so;
3. they need $$$$ for feed — and this is bizarre considering that MANY of these retail rescues harass, bully, and attack animal owners that may in fact be having trouble feeding their animals because of health issues, loss of a job, etc trying to get them to ‘surrender’ animals to them, and if the animal owner refuses, they ramp-up a “social meda madness mob” that goes on the attack for them while they sit back pulling the strings, and the animals are often seized by animal controls that are in collusion with the rescue;
4. they NEED money for veterinary evaluations and treatment, but rarely if ever post the vet reports and bills for ALL of the animals they ‘say’ they’re ‘rescuing’ using other peoples money
5. they NEED vehicles to transport animals — a horse rescue that will not be named “needed” a new horse trailer to supposedly ‘rescue’ certain kinds of horses, and the trailer was costing close to $20,000 (!) when a far less costly trailer could have worked absolutely fine. None of the primary participants at said rescue have jobs because “rescue is their job”, so putting out their outrageous sob stories fleecing the trusting public is really gross, disingenuous, and disgusting, but is not an isolated case by a long shot.
What is curious about these pleadings for donations is seeing as these ‘rescues’ RELY on the public to support them (this is why donation-funded retail rescues are also called “welfare rescues”), WHY would a rescue keep bringing in more, and more, and more animals when the fact when watching their social media pages are that relatively FEW animals are being adopted-for-a-fee and/or euthanized showing euthanasia reports and bills, but the “rescue” ONLY shows a limited number of those 40, 20, 15, or 35+ dogs or horses they “say” they are ‘rescuing’, they DON’T show vet reports, vet bills, euthanasia reports and bills, they don’t show CURRENT photos and videos of the animals at their facility or at the foster home facility, and chances are HIGH that ALL of the animals the “rescue” “said” they were rescuing DID NOT make it back to their facility and/or into approved foster care under their rescues name and control.
So please animal loving, kind-hearted and compassionate public, ASK QUESTIONS because the animals are counting on YOU to “have their backs”, and ‘weed-out’ the ‘bad apples’ known as retail rescues from the rescue world.
Not ALL publicly-marketed, publicly-operated, publicly-donation-funded animal rescues are ‘retail rescues’, so when the public that helps support these donation-funded, publicly-supported rescues “cleans house” and gets rid of scammer animal rescues/retail rescues, that will allow and encourage the real and true rescues to flourish and do really good work for THE ANIMALS and NOT for their wallet and bank account.
And if its a donation-funded retail rescue that is *supposed* to be “rescuing them”, animals very lives are often in grave danger of being killed or ‘disappeared’ into the black void of nothingness and death — just as if they were at a “high kill rate” animal control for dogs and cats (factual documentation exists of some animal rescues surrendering some animals at animal controls for euthanasia), or being sold at a “kill sale” or to a feedlot for horses (factual documentation has been secured related to some horse rescues selling/dumping horses at kill sales and to feedlots in order to get rid of ‘money pit’ horses with issues they don’t want to maintain) or take care of), and then shipped into the inhumane commercial slaughter pipeline they are reduced to expensive cuts of meat, with baby horses called “veal” and ‘filet of foal’.
Please animal lovers in the public, ASK QUESTIONS BEFORE you donate to a donation-funded (as opposed to a self-funded) rescue because the life you may be saving by NOT donating to a donation-funded retail rescue is the life of an innocent animal that cannot speak for themselves of the deceit and lies that go hand-in-glove with retail rescuing.
Some questions to ask publicly-operated, publicly-marketed, and publicly-donation-funded animal rescues can be found on this questionnaire below: