Folks have often asked if they could write off donations made to ATAO Kennel. While we would love for this to be so, this kind of sponsorship or donation really only applies to nonprofits.

If you have looked up ATAO in the database of Alaska businesses, you may see that ATAO is actually incorporated as a “nonprofit corporation.” However, what we really are is a not-for-profit organization. Why? Because we don’t exist as a public good. I mean, maybe some folks may say we do, but ultimately, it feels weird to try to claim that. At the same time, we do not and cannot make a profit… LOL nice one. Owning a sled dog kennel– even with the incredible amount of support we have at ATAO– is super costly.

Incorporating as a not-for-profit relieves us of the burden of TRYING to be profitable. Which is great. We don’t WANT to be profitable. We aren’t here to make money. If we were we’d be doing something else, because right now our biggest asset is dog poop, and so far we haven’t determined how to transform that into gold. (When we do, we’ll incorporate as a for-poopfit I guess.)

Here’s a quote from an article that gives a good explanation of what a not-for-profit is:

“Similar to a nonprofit, a not-for-profit organization (NFPO) is one that does not earn profit for its owners. All money earned through pursuing business activities or through donations goes right back into running the organization.

However, not-for-profits are not required to operate for the benefit of the public good. A not-for-profit can simply serve the goals of its members. A good example is a sports club—the purpose of the club is to exist for its members’ enjoyment.”

This is a good fit for us. Some not-for-profits apply for tax exemption, but as of this writing (December 2023), we have not, and likely will not, because again, we aren’t an organization that is here doing a public good. I mean, we love being here for you, but we should pay taxes (and we do).

Unfortunately, this does mean you can’t write off your donations to us. I hope that doesn’t dissuade you from being part of the ATAO Team. If it does– We understand! And if you’re still excited to be here, good. We’re happy to have you.


– Will, Dec. 21, 2023