Want to reunite more pets with their families? Get information and inspiration with our interactive huddles!

Want ideas and inspiration for increasing your Return to Home rate? We'll be hosting 8 huddles throughout the month of February, on every Tuesday (10am PST) and Thursday (1pm PST). Each huddle will cover one area or "practice" of Return to Home and will likely have two presenters. Huddles will include a total of 20 minutes of presentation time and 20 minutes for Q and A, with the exception of the technology huddle. Here's a list of all practices.

Register now for any that you wish to attend!

Huddle Schedule

Scroll down to view upcoming live presentations or watch recordings of past huddles.

  • Huddle 1: Cultural Embrace of Return to Home
    Tuesday, February 2 (10am PST)

    Joshua Fisher (Charlotte-Mecklenberg Animal Services) and Ed Jamison (Dallas Animal Services)
    Topic: Organization embraces a culture of Return to Home
    - Teams of staff/volunteers work solely on pet reunification
    - Organizations create internal guidelines, tracking system and Return to Home goals
    - Staff/volunteers are rewarded for accomplishing successful Return to Homes
    - LOS and cost of care for strays vs. cost of returning in field is recorded, analyzed and shared
    - Stories of successful Return to Homes are shared with team, stakeholders and community members

    Watch Recording

  • Huddle 2: Website must-haves for Return to Home
    Thursday, February 4 (1pm PST)

    Teri Rockhold (Fresno Humane) and Tracy Mohr (City of Chico)
    Topic: Return to Home polices and lost/found techniques are marketed to the community
    - Website contains content about importance of microchipping and registration
    - Website contains content about how to find lost animals
    - Website contains content about how to report lost and found animals
    - Website contains report/list of lost and found animals (or posted to social media if unable to do so on website)
    - Magnets and business cards with info for lost animals are distributed to the community

    Watch Recording

  • Huddle 3: Microchipping
    Tuesday, February 9 (10am PST)

    Cindy Machado (Marin Humane Society) and Shyanne Shull (Washoe County Regional Animal Services)
    Topic: All animals in the community have identification
    - Microchips are implanted and registered at the time of adoption and Return to Home to both the chip manufacturer and Found Animals Registry
    - Offer microchipping to the public in a variety of ways (microchipping during open hours, community chipping/registration events and clinics, individual outreach via Pets for Life style programs)
    - Animals are registered to Finding Rover
    - All animals are given free or low-cost ID tags and collars when needed

    Watch Recording

  • Huddle 4: Technology Essentials
    Thursday, February 11 (1pm PST) (please note this Huddle will be approximately 60-80 minutes instead of 40 minutes)

    Ryan Hinderman (Front Street Animal Shelter), Mark Sloat (Austin Animal Center), Jessica Schleder (Adoptimize) and Chelsea Staley (Petco Foundation – Finding Rover)
    Topic: Technology is used to help reunite pets and owners
    - Skip tracing subscriptions help locate people who have moved or changed phone numbers
    - Social media is searched for lost pet posts
    - Owners are called, texted, emailed, contacted via social media or visited in person
    - Administrators of the local lost and found pet pages are partners in reunification

    Watch Recording

  • Huddle 5: Return in Field
    Tuesday, February 16 (10am PST)

    April Moore (KC Pet Project) and Amy-Jo Sites (Fort Wayne ACC)
    Topic: Animals are returned in the field rather than at the shelter
    - Microchips are scanned in the field and searches are run in field (by officer or through dispatch, etc.)
    - Lost and found animals are posted on social media when staff receives call or finds animal
    - Neighbors and community are engaged immediately to help find owner
    - Signs are posted and door hangers are left for found animals

    Watch Recording

  • Huddle 6: Working with the Community
    Thursday, February 18 (1pm PST)

    Bethany Colonnese (San Antonio Animal Care) and Ann Dunn (Oakland Animal Services)
    Topic: Organization works with community to help facilitate Return to Homes
    - Partnerships exist with local businesses (veterinarians, pet supply stores), community centers and churches
    - Volunteers in high stray intake areas foster lost animals and help look for owners
    - Utilities companies help find contact information for owners

    Watch Recording

  • Huddle 7: Laws and Regulations
    Tuesday, February 23 (10am PST)

    Adam Ricci (NACA) and Chris Fitzgerald (City of Rochester)
    Topic: Regulations and laws encourage Return to Home
    - Redemption fees can be waived or reduced; if not possible offer affordable payment plans; donation-based fund for redemption; mandatory spay/neuter for redemption can be waived
    - Review state and local ordinances against internal policies to ensure what is truly required by law and what is aiding or hampering Return to Home
    - Team works with owners to fix problems that lead to lost animals (i.e. - mending doors and fences)
    - Encourage microchipping over mandatory licensing

    Watch Recording

  • Huddle 8: Anything Else?
    Thursday, February 25 (1pm PST)

    Gina Knepp (Michelson Found Animals Foundation)
    Topic: Anything else that wasn’t covered in the previous 7 huddles regarding Return to Home

    Watch Recording