Sportsman’s Alliance of Maine Executive Director David Trahan’s misrepresentations of The Humane Society of the United States are part of an effort to defend inhumane and unsporting methods of killing bears (letter, Aug. 4).

Maine is the only state that allows all three unnecessary and cruel practices of trapping, hounding and baiting, which have no place in fair chase bear hunting or responsible bear management.

The HSUS has top ratings from charity evaluators and cared for more than 100,000 animals in desperate need last year. Our successful anti-cruelty campaigns, which help millions more animals, were developed under the leadership of two Maine residents who chaired our board of directors for a combined 12 years.

We also run the nation’s largest sanctuary system and help local shelters in myriad ways. In Maine, our experts visited and provided assistance to shelters in Aroostook, Washington, Kennebec, Somerset and Oxford counties. The HSUS is also sponsoring a conference with the Maine Federation of Humane Societies to help improve the care of cats in this state. I am pleased to serve on the board of that organization.

Animal shelters such as The Coastal Humane Society, Animal Refuge League and Animal Welfare Society support the campaign to provide long overdue protections for Maine’s bears and prevent the inhumane treatment of dogs used in hounding.

Ending bear hounding will help shelters, as they are the ones burdened with caring for the stray and abandoned hounds treated more like hunting equipment than family pets.

Katie Hansberry, Portland, Maine director, Humane Society of the United States

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