The information contained within this blog is for information purposes only and does not necessarily reflect the views and opinions of FAAOW.

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  • 20 Jun 2019 9:36 AM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    Training opportunities for shelters seeking to move towards No-Kill status are being offered by Jacksonville Humane Society (JHS). Training is free and funds may be available to assist with travel costs. Trainings takes place at  JHS or can be scheduled onsite for requesting agencies as available. There are no specific dates set, trainings will be scheduled upon request.

    To schedule your training, contact Denise Deisler, CEO Jacksonville Humane Society at 904.493.4613 or


    Topics- Managing Animals In

    Community Cats
    Explore the options of “Trap Neuter Return” and “Return to Field”. Learn how and why these humane solutions can create live outcomes for cats in your community.

    Spay and Neuter
    Find new ways to increase the rate of altered pets in your community by providing accessible options and using a targeted approach. 

    Managed Admissions
    Discover new methods to lower your intake of animals, improve staff moral and serve your community with a managed admission process.

    Pet Retention
    Learn how to keep pets healthy and in their homes with a pet retention program, by examining alternatives to surrender in the field and at the shelter to achieve your no kill goal.

    Understand the different options for transfers via a public-private relationship, working with rescues and sending animals out of state.

    Topics- Managing Animals Out*

    Open Adoptions
    Explore the many facets of an open adoption program and learn how removing barriers and embracing the community will increase your adoptions and save lives. Learn how to make changes to your existing program, train staff, offer more to the public and find homes for harder-to-place animals.

    Understand the necessary elements for a successful adoption event at your shelter or at an off-site location. Learn the ins and outs of everything from one-day events to mega adoption events.

    Take your messaging to the next level by setting strategic goals to use transparency and data to engage the public with creative content. Learn how each social media channel can increase your lifesaving and why having a digital strategy is necessary for all shelters.

    Behavior and Enrichments
    Discover new ways to provide in-and-out of kennel enrichment for dogs and cats in your shelter that are cost effective and life changing. Evaluate your current behavior protocols and learn new methods for lifesaving.

    Learn the many ways that increasing opportunities for volunteers can benefit your organization and help you achieve the no kill goal. Discover new ways to recruit qualified individuals, work with groups, and increase your volunteer retention rate.

    Explore how changes to your foster program can increase live outcomes for the most at-risk animals in your shelter. Learn new ways to recruit, train, support and retain foster parents, particularly when approaching kitten season.

    *Managing Animals Out lessons also include a self-assessment to help participants evaluate their programs and help shape their shadowing experience at JHS.

    All lessons include discussion on how to create buy-in with your stakeholders, staff, volunteers, and community by using an easy-to-follow method of rhetorical devices.

    All lessons include a list of online resources for each topic, comprised of academic studies, how-to guides, blogs and additional reading from the leading organizations in animal welfare.



    Model Ordinances
    Get the proper guidance to working with local government to establish ordinances that will increase live outcomes in your community.

    Board vs. Staff
    Learn the different roles that a board and staff should play within your organization, from building your board to writing bylaws and setting financial policies

    Discover the best use of resources for your department and staffing to aid your no kill mission.

    Learn ways to increase monetary donations, in-kind gifts, grants and bequests with your new no kill goal in mind.

    Community Engagement
    Uncover new ways to celebrate your community’s unique traits with creative messaging and calls to action.

    Partnerships and Collaborations
    Evaluate your capacity to save more lives with increased partnerships and collaborations.

    Preparing for Disasters
    Learn the do’s and don’ts of hurricane response, and understand how JHS’ procedure can make you a lifesaver before, during and after storms.

    Best Practices and Standards
    Update your protocols and procedures with guidance from JHS on animal welfare’s best practices in behavior, cleaning, medical and more.

  • 13 Jun 2019 2:01 PM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    Humane Society Naples is excited to announce the launch of their new field trip program, Rescue Recess! Rescue Recess pairs visitors with adoptable dogs for an unforgettable day outside of the shelter. These outings will help the dogs manage kennel stress, burn off energy and get more exposure in the community.

    Thanks to Maddie's Fund, HSN is able to provide visitors with a backpack full of essential field trip items including an adopt me vest, leash collar, first aid kit, bottled water, list of suggested local places to visit and other supplies. Rescue Recess requires minimal training for participants that will be offered by HSN's Animal Care Team. The goal is to encourage members of the public, who normally wouldn’t have time to volunteer, to engage with the no-kill shelter and advocate for the animals up for adoption.

    For more information on Rescue Recess, email Anne Butler at   

  • 13 Jun 2019 1:11 PM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    Calling all animal advocates!  Please join us at a grassroots meeting occurring around the state about puppy mills, what’s being done on the legislative front and find out how you can help!

    There will be several speakers on puppy mills, preemption, local ordinances and an overall legislative update. Please join us to learn more about the important role Florida plays in our campaign to fight the cruelty of puppy mills.

    Speakers will be Kate MacFall & Jenna Jenson from the Humane Society of the United States and Mindi Callison from Bailing Out Benji.

    Panhandle/North Florida

    • When:  Tuesday, June 18, 2019  4 PM – 7 PM CDT
    • Where:  400 Paws, 1147 Creighton Road, Pensacola, Florida

    Osceola County/Central Florida

    • When:  Wednesday, June 19, 2019  4 PM – 7 PM
    • Where:  Kissimmee Civic Centre, 201 East Dakin Avenue, Kissimmee, Florida

    Manatee County/West Florida

    • When:  Thursday, June 20, 2019  4 PM – 7 PM
    • Where:  Manatee County Public Safety Center, 2101 47th Terrace East, Bradenton, Florida

  • 7 Jun 2019 10:47 AM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    On May 1, 2019, Humane Society of Tampa Bay (HSTB) supporters, board members, advisory council members, staff, volunteers and furry friends gathered to celebrate the groundbreaking for the DeBartolo Family Animal Shelter.

    The new multi-story facility will be built on the Society's current property, replacing the standing 50+ year-old shelter and significantly increasing the organization’s adoption capacity. Some of the new facility’s highlights include:

    • puppy and kitten nurseries for underage litters
    • an isolation area for sick animals to reduce spread of disease
    • expanded medical and surgical suites
    • climate control in all areas

    Lisa DeBartolo spoke on behalf of the DeBartolo family who donated $3,000,000 for naming rights to the multi-story building that will allow the Society to save an additional 2,000 lives a year. 

    Tampa Bay Community leaders including Mayor Jane Castor (who gave remarks), Councilman Guido Maniscalco (who gave remarks), Councilman Charlie MirandaCommissioner Ken Hagan, Commissioner Sandra Murman, and Hillsborough County Sheriff Chad Chronister also attended to lend their support for the construction project.

    Sherry Silk, HSTB CEO is urging citizens to support their "community shelter" by helping raise the additional $985,000 needed to open the doors once construction is complete in mid to late 2020. 

    "While we celebrate the growth of our vibrant community we cannot ignore its voiceless citizens whose needs have kept pace with expansion," said Silk. "As a community, it is our job to Shelter Them. They won’t survive without us."

    "Although construction is already under way, there are still many naming opportunities for people who want to leave a legacy for animals," said Ornella Varchi, HSTB Chief Development Officer. "We even have ways for children to be involved through purchased tiles that they will decorate at a family painting party at the shelter. The tiles will be hung in the Humane Education Center allowing young people to have a role in this important community project."

    To find out more about naming opportunities, tiles or other ways to donate to the DeBartolo Family Animal Shelter, visit


  • 25 Apr 2019 4:17 PM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    Photo courtesy of @jsokk9unit

    When Jacksonville Sheriff’s K9 Officer "Fang", a three year old German Shepherd was shot and killed in Sept 2018 in the line of duty, his death would become the genesis of legislation to protect search & rescue, police and fire dogs as well as horses used in public safety functions.  According to Jacksonville's Chief Mat Nemeth more than 100 police K-9s were killed across the country last year,.  "That means it's upwards of 100 police officers that could have and may have been killed were it not for that police K-9.  It's a critical partnership."  said Nemeth.

    Republican Senator Aaron Bean and Republican Representative Josie Tomkow sponsored the bills that will stiffen penalties for anyone convicted of intentionally causing great harm or death to a dog or horse working in public safety.  

    FL laws have protected police dogs since 2000, but now the protection will be changed from a third degree felony punishable by up to five years in prison to a second degree felony punishable by up to 15 years in prison.  

    The bill passed unanimously in both the House and Senate and is on its way to be signed by Governor Rick DeSantis.  The bill will take effect October 1, 2019.   Please thank your legislators for voting to protect the voiceless members of our law enforcement agencies.  For these four legged officers are often credited with saving the lives of our two legged law enforcement officers. 

  • 25 Apr 2019 1:44 PM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

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  • 24 Apr 2019 9:28 AM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    Are you ready to elevate your shelter to the next level of lifesaving but are not sure where to begin or how to come up with the funds? THEN WE HAVE GOOD NEWS! Thanks to a generous grant from Maddie’s Fund, the Million Cat Challenge team and the Shelter Medicine Program at the University of Florida have teamed up to offer shelters a full, on-site assessment (a $30,000 value) completely FREE OF CHARGE.

    The assessment team will provide expertise and make recommendations in the following areas:

    • Animal Sheltering Best Practices
    • Community Cat Population Management
    • Public Policy and Enforcement
    • Fiscal Responsibility and Budgeting
    • Management of Human Resources
    • Sustainable Community Resolutions
    • Targeted Spay/Neuter Programs
    • Canine Programs . . . and so much more!

    Learn more and sign up today

    While pro-bono spaces for full consultations are limited and based on greatest need, we won’t leave anyone out. Applicants not selected for full on-site consultations will receive a private targeted consultation via web conference.  The Million Cat Challenge is a partnership of Maddie’s Shelter Medicine Program at the University of Florida, the UC Davis Koret Shelter Medicine Program, and Maddie’s Fund.

  • 24 Apr 2019 9:09 AM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    FAAWO encourages all of our member organizations to participate in this nationwide effort designed to gather data to help all of us do our best to provide humane care for the communities and animals we serve. DEADLINE: 4/30/19


  • 24 Apr 2019 8:44 AM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    From left: Dianne Suave, county commissioner Mary Lou Berger and Rich Anderson at a Countdown 2 Zero event. Photo courtesy of Peggy Adams Animal Rescue League

    FAAWO Partner Shelter, Peggy Adams Animal Rescue League was recently featured in HSUS's Animal Sheltering magazine for their EXPO presentation with the municipal shelter in Palm Beach County.

    Can't we all just get along?

    WHEN DIANNE SUAVE, director of Palm Beach County Animal Care and Control, and Rich Anderson, executive director of Peggy Adams Animal Rescue League inPalm Beach County, Florida, presented together at Animal Care Expo 2017, some attendees were skeptical.

    The two leaders—one of an open-admission municipal shelter serving 2,383 square miles and 39 municipalities, and one of a large private shelter serving the same area—shared their presentation like talk show hosts, bantering and teasing one another—almost as if they were (gasp) friends ...


  • 24 Apr 2019 8:39 AM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    PALM CITY, Fla. — It started in 2009 with a simple goal to save as many lives as possible. Strategic planning and partnerships added progressive programs and services, a new clinic and isolation ward, and a continued commitment to sound fiscal management. This simple goal became more than a goal. It changed the culture of the organization and the future for the animals at the Humane Society of the Treasure Coast (HSTC).

    The HSTC is now the only open access, no-kill animal welfare organization operating in Martin County. With 3,000 animals being rehomed annually through aggressive adoption programs and other services, the HSTC has joined leading shelters around the state and country as a model organization for lifesaving culture change in its community.

    “We maintained our commitment to never turn away any Martin County animal for any reason while reaching a live release rate of 90 percent for the animals in our care,” said HSTC President and CEO Frank Valente. “This is considered the benchmark goal for a no-kill community. We have sustained this level of care for more than a year and we are thrilled to celebrate this milestone and our commitment to ensuring that Martin County become a no-kill county.”

    The next phase of the HSTC’s commitment to saving lives will include two major initiatives.  The adoption campus in Palm City will be growing with the addition of the Mildred and Frank Savastano Dog Play Areas, The Jane and Shirley Wurz Obedience Training Center, and the renovation of the dog, cat and small animal adoption center.

    At the same time, the HSTC will expand some of the most progressive programs in the area, including the TNVR Community Cat and Return to Field program, Intake Prevention and Pet Retention Outreach and its discount spay-neuter vaccinate programs with its partnering animal rescue groups.

    The HSTC will continue to collaborate with the Best Friends Network and the Maddie’s Shelter Medicine Program at the University Of Florida College of Veterinary Medicine. These relationships have been a cornerstone of the culture change over many years.

    “Best Friends made the bold pledge to reach no-kill in this country by 2025 and is committed to saving the lives of homeless pets through collaboration,” said Emily Park, Southeast Regional Specialist for Best Friends Animal Society. “The Humane Society of the Treasure Coast is a shining example of true partnership due to their willingness to try new things, strong partnerships, and exemplary leadership. We look forward to seeing the HSTC continue to impact their community while also inspiring and helping those around them save even more lives.”

    “We would like to thank all of our community partners, including the Martin County commissioners and administration, Martin County Animal Services, the Martin County sheriff, our community nonprofit partners and the more than 40 animal rescue groups we work with to save lives,” said Valente. “Most importantly, our dedicated and compassionate staff, volunteers, supporters and donors and our board of directors have worked tirelessly to achieve this goal. The animals were the inspiration but the commitment from the HSTC community was the key to this lifesaving success story.”

    The Humane Society of the Treasure Coast (HSTC) is a no-kill animal welfare organization located at 4100 SW Leighton Farm Ave. in Palm City, FL. Since 1955, it has been the leading advocate for animal protection and well-being in the Martin County area. A 501(c) 3 private, nonprofit organization, the HSTC is independent and locally operated and relies on donations to support its programs and services. Follow the HSTC on Facebook at and Twitter at

    For more information, visit or call (772) 223-8822.

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Florida Association of Animal Welfare Organizations


Florida Association of Animal Welfare Organizations is a 501(c)6 non-profit organization

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