American Pets Alive! 2020

In February 2020, national animal welfare leaders met in Austin, Texas for the American Pets Alive! Conference to exchange ideas, tools and solutions that are helping the United States get to no-kill. As a major sponsor of the event, Maddie's Fund presents 60 talks in five categories that will help you and your organization reach your lifesaving goals.

General Sessions

A Radical Rethinking of the Role of Animal Welfare

February 2020

Inspiring thoughts on what animals deserve from animal welfare advocates, workers and volunteers. Learn More

Building a Foster-centric Organization

February 2020

What does it mean to be foster centric? Learn from the people who have elevated foster care from a sideline shelter program to a best practice. Learn More

Defining No Kill

February 2020

Want to know what the top-performing shelter directors in the country have to say about the term No Kill? Kristen Hassen-Auerbach moderates this panel with expert voices. Learn More

Imagining the Future of Animal Welfare

February 2020

Hear from some of the most influential voices in animal welfare as they imagine what the future holds for homeless pets. Learn More

Increase Return to Owner Rates in Your Organization

February 2020

Gina Knepp offers solutions and insight into how to start innovative, progressive and proactive programs to increase RTO rates, anywhere. Learn More

Marketing the Euthanasia List

February 2020

This session explores why it is important to understand exactly which animals are dying in your municipal shelter and let people help you to get them out alive. Learn More

Model Government Reporting Requirements

February 2020

In 2019, Austin passed the most comprehensive set of lifesaving laws in the country. A decade of work drove Austin to be the safest city in the country for homeless pets. Can Austin be a model for communities all over the country to implement reporting requirements? Learn More

No Kill. No Harm. An Ethic for the Future of Lifesaving

February 2020

Join this presentation and learn how transforming our thinking about animal management and sheltering can lead to more live outcomes, cost-effective solutions for emerging animal management and welfare challenges and a more fully engaged public.. Learn More

The Most Important Lessons Learned after 12 Years in the Largest No Kill City in America

February 2020

Join Dr. Ellen Jefferson as she guides you through metrics in outcomes, intakes and the 12 programmatic ingredients to propel lifesaving forward in your community. Learn More

Top 5 Reasons Animals are Dying in Shelters and How to Save Them

February 2020

Dr. Ellen Jefferson and the Leadership Alive! group share solutions to start saving the lives of the most vulnerable pets in our care. Learn More


Establish a Lifesaving Foundation


Increase Live Outcomes

Don't Euthanize That! Building a No Kill Culture in Your Clinic

March 2020

Learn how to instill a culture in your clinic that requires all staff to treat every animal with the care and treatment we would expect for our own animals. Learn More

Ensuring Accountability Around Life and Death Decisions

March 2020

Learn how to implement policies that will keep your organization accountable and increase lifesaving across your organization. Learn More

Every Cat! Live Outcome Options for All of Them

March 2020

In this session, we'll take a look at innovative programs for cats that work, and outdated practices we still need to replace. Learn More

Innovation and Emerging Practices in Adoption Counseling

March 2020

Learn the most innovative and creative ways to counsel potential adopters and safely increase adoption in your organization. Learn More

Steal this! Five Free, Easy Foster Strategies to Start Now

March 2020

Everything you need to know to recruit more foster homes, start new programs and send more pets to foster. Learn More

Using Technology to Increase Return to Owner

March 2020

Learn how to increase your organization's RTO and attain a higher return to owner rate through innovative, progressive and proactive programs. Learn More

You Just Arrived, Now Go Home! Make Pets Ready for Adoption, Immediately

March 2020

Learn how to fast-track animals and make them available for adoption, foster and transfer, immediately. Learn More


Maximize In-shelter Welfare


Proactively Reduce Intake

But We're Full: Smart Strategies to Increase Capacity for Dogs

March 2020

Come to this action-driven session to learn how to outsmart and overcome the impulse to kill in a space crisis. Learn More

Is Managed Intake Humane?

March 2020

Two animal shelter leaders from sizeable cities present ideas to keep your intake practices focused on serving pets and people. Learn More

Keeping Families Together: The Future of Animal Control

March 2020

Hear how animal protection units around the country are thinking about what's next for animal protection. Learn More

Pets are Family: Community Programs to Keep Pets Out of the Shelter

March 2020

In this presentation, Rebecca Guinn shares innovative ideas for community programs in the country. Leave with ideas to take back to your own community. Learn More

We're on the same team: ACOs and the Future of Animal Protection

March 2020

This session focuses on how to manage change amongst Animal Control officers and learning how to build teamwork and camaraderie even when things are different and new. Learn More

What If You Can't Return Them? When SNR is Not an Option

March 2020

Learn how you can safely save all the cats, even when SNR isn't an option. Learn More

When to Bring Them In: Pets That Truly Need Shelter

March 2020

Learn policies and procedures to implement in your organization and take the guesswork out of bringing animals in and streamline and prioritize the safety and wellness of pets and people. Learn More

Your Notes are Everything: How Officer Notes Impact Animals and Communities

March 2020

Learn how to ensure your staff is working to keep accurate & thorough notes to save more animal lives. Learn More