NEWPORT NEWS, Va. — Do you have a fur coat or other fur
garment collecting dust in your closet or attic? You can give the fur back
to the animals when you donate these items to be used to help comfort
orphaned and injured wildlife?
The Humane Society of the United States collects furs to
send to wildlife rehabilitators, who use them as bedding and nesting
material for the animals in their care. Donations are tax-deductible.
Wildlife rehabilitators use fur garments as a key
first-aid component of care for the animals that are injured or abandoned.
Pieces of fur from coats, apparel and accessories are cut into an
appropriate size for the animal, whether a rabbit, raccoon, squirrel or
opossum, and placed inside the animal’s enclosure. The furry blanket
becomes a “surrogate mother” to the orphaned or injured animal, reducing
stress and giving comfort.
The humane society accepts all fur and fur-trimmed
apparel, including shearling. Fur accessories including hats, gloves,
scarves and muffs are also accepted.
Last year, the society received 800 furs with a combined
value of more than $100,000.
It’s easy to donate your fur. Package it in a sturdy box
or padded envelope for small items and mail it to Fur-Free Century, The
HSUS, 2100 L St., NW, Washington, DC 20037. The humane society sends a
letter thanking you for your donation, which should also be kept for your
If you plan to itemize tax deductions, you can claim the
fair market value — the amount you could sell the fur for today — for your
donation, according to the humane society. Furs valued at $5,000 or more
must have a “qualified appraisal,” according to the IRS. You must have
this appraisal done before sending your donation. Consult your tax
attorney for further advice.
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