News and information from FAAWO members

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  • 14 May 2020 8:48 AM | FAAWO (Administrator)


    May 14, 2020

    ATTN 2019 Florida Animal Friends Grant Recipients

    Due to the COVID-19 pandemic and its effect on your activities, the Board of Directors of FL Animal Friend has extended the deadline for completion of your project and your report.

    Instead of filing no later than September 1, your final report is now due no later than 5 PM on November 1, 2020.

    May 14, 2020


    Here is the press release describing the important points from a new study that was just published. The study was conducted by a premier infectious disease research group at the Wisconsin veterinary school and demonstrated that cats are susceptible to infection by COVID virus from people and infected cats can spread the virus to other cats housed in close association (same housing unit). Infected cats shed virus from the respiratory tract (not the gastrointestinal tract) for 6 days.

    The importance of these findings are highlighted near the bottom of the press release, including for shelter cats.


  • 11 May 2020 7:46 PM | FAAWO (Administrator)

    From DailyMail:

    Long lines have emerged at pet food banks in Florida as desperate owners struggle to feed their beloved animals. 

    On Thursday, volunteers distributed boxes and bags of free food at a drive-thru pet food bank at the Pet Adoption and Protection Center in Doral, Florida. 

    It's the second food bank distribution organized at this center by the Miami-Dade Animal Services to help families struggling to make ends meet as over 30million Americans have filed for unemployment.   

    Locals were seen driving up to the center wearing face masks and plastic gloves, many with their eager puppies in tow.  


  • 8 May 2020 8:59 AM | FAAWO (Administrator)

    From Million Cat Challenge:

    Thanks to the generous support of SHOR-LINE, Joanie Bernard Foundation, Banfield Foundation, Virox Technologies, Team Shelter USA, and The Ontario Shelter Medical Association, we've pooled our resources and together purchased over 1,500 portals to give to lucky cat-loving shelters!!! Now that's what happens when kindness and teamwork get together. 

    There are no strings attached, just a promise from you to do everything in your power to keep those portal doors open. We know you want the best for your cats, and we trust you completely. We want you to use this time when the number of animals in the shelter is at an all-time low to set yourself up for success in this next chapter of sheltering. 

    Watching relaxed cats explore their newly expanded digs makes us all happy, so do us a favor and stream/snap/text/go live/start a watch group- whatever puts cats on our screen- when you get a moment. Your volunteers will love getting to see the cats getting excellent care and your supporters will appreciate knowing you turned this downtime into an opportunity to elevate your housing. The rest of us will applaud you for putting more cats on the internet. 

    Ready to get started? Applying for this opportunity is as easy as 1-2-3, but you have to hurry. We want to get these portals out the door and in your shelter, so we made the deadline QUICK. Click below and apply before May 15, 2020.


  • 23 Apr 2020 12:53 PM | FAAWO (Administrator)

    The ASPCA is thrilled to announce it's new virtual advisor, Ask the Expert! Wondering which disinfectants kill parvo? Want ideas to support your fosters with behavior? Need help starting an equine foster program? Submit a question to an ASPCA expert from our Shelter Medicine, Animal Behavior, or Equine Welfare team and get a quick response via email.


  • 13 Mar 2020 8:16 AM | FAAWO (Administrator)

    Florida Animal Friend (FAF) awards annual grants to municipal and non-profit agencies in the state of Florida who perform spay and neutering services to cats and dogs.

    Grant Applications are available each January 1st and the deadline for submission is May 1st. In August, we announce the grant winners and the grant funds are released on August 15th. Follow-up reports are due September 1st the following year.


  • 6 Mar 2020 2:35 PM | FAAWO (Administrator)

    April 15, 2020

    From the Florida Department of Health Division of Disease Control and Health Protection Bureau of Epidemiology:


    Click link above for protocols for Rabies pre-exposure and vaccination during COVIC-19

    April 9, 2020

    ASPCA supports veterinary telemedicine during COVID-19 Pandemic


    April 5, 2020

    Paycheck Protection Program FAQs for Small Businesses: CLICK HERE

    March 31, 2020

    This link includes some terrific resources regarding spay/neuter guidelines and COVID-19: 


    March 26, 2020


    A number of national animal welfare organizations and industry experts have teamed up to curate and compile the most accurate and timely COVID-19 resources. The Daily Digest publishes Monday through Friday


    March 26, 2020

    Video with Julie Levy, DVM, University of FL and Sandra Newberry, DVM University of Wisconsin

    Shelter Medicine experts Dr. Sandra Newbury and Dr. Julie Levy explain why spay/neuter is considered an elective procedure and the multiple reasons why these surgeries should be suspended during COVID-19 

    March 17, 2020

    From The Maddie’s Shelter Medicine Program at the University of Florida

    The Maddie’s Shelter Medicine Program at the University of Florida continues to monitor the developing situation as animal shelters cope with the COVID-19 pandemic. Below is our Interim Guidance on Shelter Care of Animals Exposed to SARS-CoV-2 (COVID-19), as well as additional helpful resources for shelter staff health and safety and obtaining help from your community.

    Interim Guidance on Shelter Care of Animals Exposed to SARS-CoV-2 (COVID-19)

    Coronavirus (COVID-19) Shelter Kit from Animal Sheltering  

    March 6, 2020

    The following information has been provided by Association for Animal Welfare Advancement (AAWA):

    The following links provides accurate information on Coronavirus and how you can support your community, employees and volunteers in preparation for public inquiries regarding COVID-19

    Information from the Center for Disease Control (CDC)

    Information from Humane Society of the United States (HSUS)

    While COVID-19 is contagious for humans and, as of now, is understood to spread primarily from person to person, the WSAVA (World Small Animal Veterinary Association) Global Veterinary Community – an association representing more than 200,000 veterinarians – states that there is no evidence that companion animals can be infected.

    The WSAVA does caution that this is a rapidly evolving situation so people confirmed to have COVID-19 should avoid contact with other people as well as pets. The full advisory document from WSAVA can be found here:  READ MORE

  • 18 Feb 2020 10:02 AM | FAAWO (Administrator)


    The Humane Society of Tampa Bay (HSTB) actively mentors other humane organizations in Florida and across the country in Trap/Neuter/Vaccinate/Return (TNVR) best practices. 

    The Society has seen great success in their own TNVR efforts, sterilizing more than 66,000 free-roaming cats since the program's inception in 2008. In addition, with their close partnership with Hillsborough County Pet Resource Center (the county's municipal shelter), HSTB has helped reduce the area's cat euthanasia rate by 60%.

    Representatives from Alley Cat Allies (ACA), including ACA President Becky Robinson, recently visited HSTB to observe the celebrated program in action. Vero Beach Humane Society and Daytona Animal Services are other animal welfare organizations which have recently visited the Society to observe and learn how effective the program is for the community. During the mentorship sessions they learned the following:

    • How guests drop off their feral cats, how paperwork is processed, and how cats are tagged
    • How each cat is prepped for surgery
    • How each cat's temperature, pulse, and respiration (TPR) are monitored when recovering from surgery
    • How the Society's program for Working Cats is structured and managed, including a tour of the Working Cat Adoption Barn
    • How Society staff and volunteers provide one-on-one, post-surgical recovery instructions to each caretaker when they arrive to pick up their cats

    If your organization is interested in mentoring with the Humane Society of Tampa Bay in this life-saving work, please contact HSTB CEO, Sherry Silk at 813.774.4309 or

  • 18 Feb 2020 6:36 AM | FAAWO (Administrator)


    In the animal welfare field, it’s not uncommon to hear people say that they “feel alone” or that “nobody else cares”. It’s a difficult field to work in – heavily passionate -- and it’s easy to feel isolated, and like there is always so much more work to be done. 

    While this is a common sentiment in our field, I’m here to tell you that you are not alone, and while there is certainly always more work to be done, we have a wonderful and large community of like-minded people and organizations to help!

    The Humane Society of the Treasure Coast in Palm City, Florida faced a difficult few months near the end of 2019, receiving three back-to-back feline hoarding cases of twenty or more cats each. Over the course of these three cases, we received all types of cats from young to old, healthy to unwell, social to feral, and everything in between – and that’s on top of our regular intake!

    We reached out to our local community to help, pushed through adoption promotions and Facebook pleas, even press releases. But ultimately we just had more cats than our community could take on, and way more than was appropriate for our capacity for care. 

    When we realized we needed more help, Frank Valente, our president and CEO, got to work reaching out beyond our local community, and out into the animal sheltering community.

    Enter Karen Slomba of the Animal Welfare League of Charlotte County. When Karen heard that we were in need, she reached out and got right to work coordinating a multi-organization transport of cats from HSTC in Palm City, to partner shelters along the west coast of Florida. She coordinated placement for thirty-one of our cats to be sent to four wonderful partner shelters – Humane Society Naples, Gulf Coast Humane Society, Animal Welfare League of Charlotte County, and Humane Society of Sarasota County. 

    To say that we were overwhelmed by the coming together of so many people to help us out is an understatement. We were overjoyed by the thought of getting that number of cats placed with such great organizations and to know that so many people were going to help us – just one small shelter -- get back to an appropriate capacity to care for the pets that depend on us.

    Less than a week after Karen reached out to help us, on a rainy January morning, we found ourselves loading up our transport van with thirty-one cats (and lots of Feliway!), ready to take the next step on their journey in finding forever homes. I spent the day traveling across the state and up the west coast, delivering our precious kitties to each shelter, one by one. I was able to meet some lovely and dedicated intake and animal care staff along the way, and was fortunate to have the opportunity to tour four amazing facilities. 

    That same day, Love Me True Rescue, Inc in Ponte Vedra Beach, took in Serena, a long-time resident cat from HSTC whose behavior struggled from being confined in a shelter. Their dedicated staff and specialized accommodations gave Serena a second chance, and she has since already been adopted. 

    The following week we had an offer from Leon County Humane Society to take in some of our special kitties, when they heard we were in need and they had some extra room available following a hugely successful adoption event. While we weren’t able to make this transport work out this time, we are still incredibly grateful to them for extending their offer.

    We absolutely cannot thank all of these spectacular people and organizations enough for the help they have provided us. Not only that, we can’t express how great it feels to see the animal welfare community come together, work together, and save as many cats as possible. We are refreshed and rejuvenated, and we hope that this partnership helps each and every person reading about it to feel that you are not alone, and that you don’t have to do this on your own. It may be cliché, but it truly takes a village, and we have such a powerful village when it comes together!  

    - Reagan Johnson, TNVR Coordinator, Humane Society of the Treasure Coast.

  • 4 Feb 2020 2:30 PM | FAAWO (Administrator)

    Florida H.B. 1237/S.B. 1698 contains harmful language that would invalidate existing local laws and strip all Florida cities and towns of their authority to enact similar laws, leaving more dogs to suffer in squalid conditions.



    As you may know, most puppies sold in pet stores come from puppy mills. These commercial breeding facilities prioritize profit over the health and welfare of animals, and dogs owned by these operations are often kept in overcrowded and unsanitary conditions without adequate veterinary care, food, water or socialization.

    That’s why nearly 300 localities across the nation—including almost 70 in Florida—have enacted their own local laws to keep cruelly bred puppies out of their pet stores. In response, pet store lobbyists are pressuring state legislatures to pass “preemption” laws blocking cities and counties from adopting ordinances addressing the retail sale of puppies.

    Contact your Florida State Representative and Florida state Senator today.  Let them know you oppose H.B. 1237/S.B. 1698.

    See our positions on other pending legislation
  • 30 Jan 2020 11:18 AM | FAAWO (Administrator)

    The Humane Society of Tampa Bay (HSTB) actively mentors other humane organizations in Florida and across the country in TNVR best practices. 

    The Society has seen great success in their own TNVR program, sterilizing more than 66,000 free-roaming cats since it's inception in 2007. In addition, their close partnership with Hillsborough County Pet Resource Center, the county's municipal shelter, HSTB has helped reduce the areas cat euthanasia rate by 60%.

    Representatives from Alley Cat Allies, including President Becky Robinson, recently visited HSTB to observe the celebrated program in action. Vero Beach Humane Society and Daytona Animal Services are other animal welfare organizations who have recently received TNVR mentoring from HSTB.

    If your organization is interested in mentoring with the Humane Society of Tampa Bay in this life-saving work, please contact HSTB CEO, Sherry Silk at 813.774.4309 or


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Florida Association of Animal Welfare Organizations


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