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a question of legitamacy

post #1 of 5
Thread Starter 
How do i go about finding out if a animal adoption center is legit? I have been supporting a local rescue shelter for two years and the animals do seem to be well cared for, but recently i have heard an alleged story of criminal activity going on there. Is there a national telephone number or website i can check out to see which shelters are approved by the state of New York?
post #2 of 5
Thread Starter 
My email hasn't been working well for the past month, so if anyone mailed me an answer to my question about legitimacy of animal shelters i need it posted here. Thank you.
post #3 of 5
Not sure if this helps but one thing I look for is 501 c3 status (not-for-profit) with the IRS. It is not a guarantee that they are doing a good job, but it is at least a guarantee that the IRS looks over their finances so it is better than nothing.
post #4 of 5
Hi All,

You can ask to see the financial records for any organization, just say that you want to assure yourself that they are in good shape. Most (though not all) recognized 501c3 organizations (those with budgets over a very minimal one) MUST share their IRS 990 with you on request. You can also find this information at

a site which provides information on most charities and foundations. And, in most states in the US, you can also call your State Department of State (sorry for the redundancy) and find out if a charity is registered with them.

Even if you check out all of this, I would urge that the only real way of checking an organization out is to start going to their events and meetings; start volunteering. By the way, if you are someone who has even a LITTLE financial management savvy, PLEASE consider volunteering to help them in that area!! Most, if not all, animal welfare organizations are sorely in need of that kind of help -- most definitely would LIKE to be good efficient operations that make the most of every donation, but often they do not have a volunteer willing to dig into the accounting work that takes!

post #5 of 5
You may check on the status of their 501C 3 here http://nccsdataweb.urban.org/FAQ/index.php?category=31 as well as down load their 990's.

What part of NY is the shelter located in?
There is no "official" list of shelters, however there are plenty of good sources that can help you find them.

I reside in Upstate WNY and work with most of the shelters/resuces in this area, please PM if you have questions about a shelter in that area and i will do what i can to get you information.
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