A group that’s main goal is to stop suffering of animals or humans as a result of abuse, cruelty or any similar reasons is called a humane society. In a number of different countries worldwide, this term is used mostly for preventing animal cruelty. In the UK, it might also be a society that is providing waterways rescue, recovery service or something that gives awards for saving human life.
In 1866, Henry Bergh has founded the American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals or simply as ASPCA which was actually the very first humane society recorded in the US. Then just after two years it was founded, the Massachusetts Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals or MSPCA was formed. In the year 2012, the Oregon Humane Society snagged the largest portion of animals in the US with about 97 percent adoption rate and also, 98 percent save rate for an estimated 11000 adoptions made every single year.
As for the Humane Societies that are operating in the US, they are all independent of similarly named national organizations like for example, the ASPCA or American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals and the HSUS or Humane Society of the United States. With local organizations are concerned mainly for sheltering, euthanasia of animals and adoption, such organizations coordinate and address the much larger issues beyond the resources or scope of the independent and smaller groups.
The truth is, Humane Society of the United States is not operating, funding or controlling local groups. It does however providing supporting grants, standards of care, training of animal care personnel as well as evaluation services. Apart from that, the HSUS are working often with shelters in big scale animal disaster and rescue operations, assist in transporting and caring of rescued animals, evaluation and triage. HSUS provides a well national promotion of animal adoptions and shelters either done in partnership with other known animal protection charities or on their own.
Basically, there was a study made by Chronicle of Philanthropy back in 1994 focusing on the credibility and popularity of the non profit and charitable organizations. Out of the 100 non-profit charities in the US, it revealed that the Humane Society of the United States is on the 6th spot.
Some local humane society shelters are considered as No Kill. This is frequently defined as a shelter to which the animals are just euthanized when they’re considered to be unadoptable either because it has behavioral problems that can’t be resolved or is suffering from untreatable medical condition.
If you like to learn more, there are abundant resources online that you can find.