Statement of Hong Kong Paws Foundation Limited
1.     Hong Kong Paws Foundation Limited (“HK Paws”) was established in March 2011 and is a Hong Kong registered animal welfare society. Our charity number is 91/11168 and our Animal Trader Licence Exemption number is ORG-00059.

2.     HK Paws is audited by the Hong Kong Inland Revenue Department on an annual basis and its financials are audited annually by an independent reputable accounting firm.

3.     As stated clearly on our website (, HK Paws operates on a solely voluntary basis and is not supported by full-time employed staff. All donations received by HK Paws are spent on our rescued animals, without exception.

4.     While we absolutely do not endorse breeding in Hong Kong, we are also of the view that animals do no wrong and would try to help rehome breeder rescues as much as we can. We make it very clear in our mission, which has been evidenced by our work over the years, that as an animal charity we do not endorse animal trade nor encourage preference of a particular breed. As can be seen from our website and Facebook page, 99% of the animals we work with are mongrels or domestic short hair, more widely recognised as “tong-gau” (唐狗) or “tong-mao” (唐貓/家貓).  The handling of pedigree is an exception rather than the norm.

5.     It has come to our attention that allegations are being made against HK Paws on social media in respect of its adoption process, specifically surrounding a recent adoption of a rescued pedigree cat, previously known as Bonita. Allegations are being made that HK Paws have previously agreed with an adopter that the adoption fee of Bonita would be HK$1,500 but later unilaterally increased the fee to HK$4,000 which was found to be unacceptable by the adopter. It was also alleged that the adopter was pressured into paying the adoption fee.

6.   We take this opportunity to set the facts straight and to clarify our stance in response to such allegations made against HK Paws:-
i.      HK Paws first rescued Bonita from an unethical breeder and took her under our care.
ii.     Thereafter, on 27 July 2020, we entrusted her with a foster, “Mr. A”, without any promise that she would be adopted. At the time when Bonita was handed over, no conversation about the adoption fees nor any of the formal adoption procedures took place as it was simply a foster arrangement.
iii.     On 28 September 2020, two months into the foster arrangement, during one of the regular updates over WhatsApp between HK Paws and Mr. A, Mr. A expressed his intention to adopt Bonita.
iv.     Upon hearing the good news, HK Paws arranged for a visit to Mr. A’s residence to complete the adoption process. However, due to COVID-19 and other factors, the visit was postponed to 15 November 2020.
v.     On 14 November 2020, one day prior to the visit, Mr. A sent a WhatsApp message to our volunteer who was in charge and enquired about the adoption fee. The volunteer replied that the adoption fee would be HK$4,000. Mr. A went on to confirm our volunteers’ visit on the next day.
vi.    On 15 November 2020 at 5:30pm, two of our female volunteers visited Bonita at Mr. A’s residence where 3 male acquaintances of Mr. A’s were also present.
vii.    During the visit, a conversation took place with regards to the adoption procedure. HK Paws’ volunteers further explained to Mr. A and his friends that given Bonita was a pedigree rescue, the adoption fee would be HK$4,000. viii.   After agreeing to and signing off on the adoption terms, Mr. A made a bank transfer of HK$4,000 to HK Paws’ bank account at around 6:21 pm on 15 November 2020.
ix.    On the following day, HK Paws acknowledged receipt of the adoption fee with Mr. A over WhatsApp. Shortly after at 11 am, Mr. A confirmed our acknowledgement and stated that he looked forward to receiving a receipt for the purpose of tax deduction.Our volunteers then further explained the requirements of getting Bonita micro-chipped in response to Mr. A’s enquiry of such.
x.     In HK Paws’ point of view, the entire conversation in the morning of 16 November 2020 was amicable and Mr. A did not take any issue with the adoption process, including the adoption fee.
xi.    Subsequent to the adoption, HK Paws received a number of WhatsApp messages from a person claiming to be Mr. A’s partner who enquired into the details of the adoption fee. In particular, the person alleged that HK Paws and Mr. A previously agreed that the adoption fee would be HK$1,500 instead of HK$4,000 and requested for a refund of the excess amount.
xii.    However, as HK Paws were unfamiliar with such person claiming to be Mr. A’s partner and in the interest of protecting the confidentiality of the adoption and the adopter’s personal information, we did not respond to such enquiry.

7.     In light of the facts as set out above, HK Paws hereby denies each and every allegation that our adoption process involves any dishonest practice or that we have any ulterior motives other than those to protect and defend the rights and welfare of animals. As an animal charity, we are thoroughly transparent in our work, adoption process and our financials.

8.     We are utterly disappointed and frustrated by the abovementioned allegations. In particular, such allegations were made by a third party who was not privy to the conversations between HK Paws and Mr. A. We believe the proper course of action to take, if any adopter is unhappy with our work, would be to contact us directly regarding the alleged frustration through our website or other social media platforms.

9.     It is undeniable that the adoption fees may vary among animals since the fees go towards the costs of vaccinations, neuter, vet visits, prescriptions etc., depending on the circumstances of each animal. Therefore, HK Paws maintains its right to determine the adoption fees on a case by case basis.

10.  In order to improve on HK Paws’ work and to ensure effective communication between potential fosters or adopters and us, we will strive to explain in greater detail to fosters or adopters what the expectation of a foster and/or adoption is. We will also update our website to reflect the latest adoption information, including the scale of adoption fees, as frequently as possible. We hope you can understand that there may sometimes be delays in updating our website as HK Paws is solely run by volunteers who kindly spared their free time to do so in addition to juggling their daily responsibilities. Nevertheless, we endeavour to respond to each and every enquiry, email and message as quickly as possible.

11.  We do not strive to be right with all humans as everyone is entitled to their own views, motives and perspectives. However, we do take the side of the animals at all times, as our goal is to protect those who can’t speak for themselves. Animal rescue work is never easy and we have the utmost respect to all animal charities around the world especially those in Hong Kong where government support is non-existent. Every one of our peers is striving just to stay afloat. It is not a competition as to which animal charity is better than the others.

12.  This will be the only and last response from us on this matter. We believe our time, and those of our supporters, will be better used to focus on doing the right thing and helping animals in need. Ancient Chinese proverb says “The wise do not buy rumours.” and in the West, they say “Actions speak louder than words.” We have every conviction that the works of HK Paws over the past decade have served these purposes.  

13.  Last but not least, we truly appreciate our supporters and adopters’ outpouring of support in the last two days on Facebook, Instagram, private messages, WhatsApp and emails. By letting us know how our work has impacted the lives of animals and humans, and how well our “furkids” are doing after being adopted, is what keeps us going during these extremely difficult times. We truly thank you from the bottom of our hearts and PAWs. The world is a better place because you are in it.  

Dated 20 November 2020    

Hong Kong Paws Foundation Limited