Humane Society University Webinar Series

Humane Society University is excited to announce the launch of a webinar series exclusively dedicated to the human-animal bond. Participate in HSU’s free, innovative webinars, led by experts in the fields of animal behavior and cognition, animal policy and advocacy, animal welfare, humane education, leadership, shelter and volunteer management, and wildlife issues.

Who should attend?

Animal care professionals and volunteers, animal welfare advocates, humane educators, and anyone interested in learning more about animal protection and welfare issues.

How to participate:

  • Register for live webinar(s)
  • Watch previously recorded webinars


  • Acquire additional knowledge about your current/future profession.
  • Educate staff, volunteers, or students by using the webinar to conduct training sessions.
  • Sharpen your leadership and advocacy skills.
  • Become a more effective volunteer.
  • Communicate confidently about issues and topics related to animal welfare and protection.

Interested in presenting a webinar?

HSU invites proposal submissions for consideration in the monthly webinar series. Proposals will be reviewed on a rolling basis and you will be notified within 45 days of your submission. HSU will not accept webinar proposals intended solely to promote commercial products.

Recorded Webinars

Finding Funding in a Slow Economy: Tips for Identifying and Successfully Applying for Grants
Presenter: Abby Volin, the Rescue Group Coordinator at The Humane Society of the United States

Although winning the lottery would be nice, your odds on finding funding for your animal rescue are significantly better if you know how to successfully apply for grants. Learn which corporate and private grant-making organizations are out there and how to find them. Discover the elements of a successful grant application, the buzz words that give your application the best chance at receiving funding and what screeners look for in applications. Additionally, learn what you need to do within your organization before you even start the process. Watch Now!

Building and Maintaining a Volunteer Program for Animal Rescues
Presenter: Hilary Anne Hager, Director, National Volunteer Center, The Humane Society of the United States

Volunteers often make up the vast majority of a rescue group’s workforce. Recruiting, motivating, and keeping great volunteers is critical to a rescue organization's mission and survival. In this webinar, participants will learn about the “crisis chaos spiral” caused by a lack of volunteer program structure, different volunteer program models and how to determine which works best for an organization. Participants will also learn how to build a strong volunteer management infrastructure, write effective and useful job descriptions, and find and keep the right people for their organization. Watch Now!

Trending Now: Using Social Media to Build Support for Your Animal Rescue
Presenter: Sarah Barnett, Senior Manager, Social Media at The Humane Society of the United States

Facebook is a great way to interface with the public, get the word out on adoptable pets in rescues, and attract support and volunteers. In this webinar you’ll learn tips and best practices for using Facebook to engage the community in your work. Discover ways to cultivate supporters, showcase your successes, and utilize positive approaches to handling criticism and negative feedback. Note: This webinar is for animal welfare organizations already on Facebook. Watch Now!

Customer Service in Animal Facilities: Tips for Dealing with Clients
Presenter: Jan Elster, M.A., Independent Consultant, Organizational Development and Change, assisting Animal Welfare and Animal Protection Groups

Many people who choose to work with animals – in shelters, clinics and other venues – sheepishly or proudly confide that they like animals more than people. The reality is, however, that protecting and caring for animals is only half the job. Working well with people is the unexpected, and sometimes challenging, other half. Recognizing that dealing with people in animal facilities can be emotionally difficult, this webinar will help participants understand the basic needs of customers, and what interactions are likely to create tension or anger in an encounter. It will give examples of how to bring positive energy to each interpersonal exchange; will help participants understand how “Ego 101” factors in, and will examine three “hot tips” for beginning and maintaining a sane, satisfactory relationship with customers so that the goal of ensuring animals’ welfare is met. Watch Now!

Fosters: Animal Rescue Rock Stars!
Presenters: Jme Thomas and Kara Main-Hester, Ph.D.

Building a foster network is critical to maintaining the health and socialization of animals in rescue situations. This webinar will share the experiences and strategy of two very different organizations and how they manage their foster programs. Participants will learn how to better find, empower, train and retain foster individuals and families. Guidelines and best practices shared from the perspective of these two successful organizations will help participants improve their strategies for success and keep fostered animals moving to loving final homes. Watch Now!

Can’t We All Just Get Along? Building Better Relationships between Shelters and Rescue Groups
Presenters: Jane Hoffman and Jody Jones

Despite shared goals of increasing adoptions and decreasing euthanasia rates, shelters and rescue groups sometimes have strained relationships. In this webinar, we discuss concerns that might lead to mistrust and ways we can move forward in healthy and productive partnerships. Restoring the relationship between shelters and rescue groups is one of the easiest ways we can ensure that more animals leave the shelter system and are placed into good homes!

Watch Now!

Peace Theory and Animal Protection
Presenter: Helen R. McClure, PhD, Chair, Animal Policy & Advocacy, Humane Society University

The animal protection movement is one element of an evolving historical movement towards non-violence in our world. Using elements of peace theory that may be unfamiliar to many animal advocates, this fascinating webinar will explore the differences between structural and personal violence, and place the animal protection movement in a broader social justice context. Participants will be able to articulate, and understand, how elements of peace theory apply to animal welfare, and how they can use this theory to think about their advocacy work in a different light. Watch Now!

The Business of Humane Education: Models for Making it Work!
Presenter: Heidi Colonna, Curriculum and Educator Outreach Manager, Humane Society University School of Continuing Education

In today's sheltering environment, it can be challenging to include a humane education component in planning and operations. Even though education is a key element in creating change, it can be hard to find the resources to make it happen - or to successfully sustain it. Using case studies and working models of programs in place around the country, this webinar will give participants best practices and proven business models to help them position humane education as a mission-critical and self-sustaining initiative, one that may support itself financially as well as support other organizational needs. It will also review marketing, evaluation, and partnership models. Watch Now!

Forging Progress for Farm Animals
Presenter: Paul Shapiro, Vice President for Farm Animal Protection, The Humane Society of the United States

Amazing progress has been made on behalf of farm animal welfare in the past few years. At state and federal levels of government and in the private sector, changes have meant millions of animals are no longer suffering in cramped cages. At the same time, in spite of scientific evidence that current standard animal production practices are unhealthy for humans and exact a devastating toll on animals, much remains to be done to improve the lives of these animals. This webinar will give participants an overview of the problems farm animals face; will examine the successful campaigns that have changed producers' and consumers' perspectives on farm animal production; and will present opportunities to join in bettering the lives of pigs, chickens, cows and other farm animals. Watch Now!

Animal Rescue Groups: A Vital Link for Animal Welfare
Presenter: Abby Volin, Rescue Group Coordinator, The Humane Society of the United States

In every community around the country, individuals and organizations do their best to rescue and care for companion animals. From sheltering and fostering, to transport and specialized adoption services, their reach and impact on animals makes a difference in animal welfare every day. This webinar will look at The Humane Society of the United States’ initiative to support these vital services. Participants will learn about the different types of animal rescue organizations and their best practices, as well as how to help an established group or to start one themselves. Watch Now!

The Tipping Point: Spotting an Animal Hoarder
Presenter: Jyothi V. Roberston, DVM

Is someone a rescuer or a hoarder? Can you tell the difference? Participants will receive basic instructions on how to recognize the most common signs of animal hoarding. Clinical manifestations of hoarding cats and dogs will be discussed, with an emphasis on specific disease conditions present in crowded, unsanitary conditions. The current working model on the psychology of animal hoarders will be discussed, listing the three basic types of hoarders and strategies used to work with each. Watch Now!

Stop Puppy Mills: Advocating for Change
Presenters: Kathleen Summers and Dale Bartlett

Do you know how to tell if a dog or puppy has come from a puppy mill? As part of National Puppy Mill Action Week, learn about the lives of animals in puppy mills, the most common problems inherent in these mass breeding facilities, and what can be done to address them. Participants will be given tools to report suspected puppy mills, and learn how to educate their communities about this form of animal cruelty. Recorded Webinar:Watch Now!

Do Apes Have Language?
Presenter: Benjamin Beck, PhD, animal cognition specialist and author

Explore the characteristics of human language and scientific attempts to elicit human language among great apes. In addition to revealing evolutionary similarities between humans and great apes, Dr. Beck will talk about the implications of the research on how these animals are viewed from an ethical and legal standpoint. Participants will be enabled to reach their own conclusions about great apes' capabilities and to explore the ethical implications of their conclusions.
Recorded Webinar:Watch Now!

Fostering Compassion through Humane Education Summer Camps
Presenters: Stacey Zeitlin, Vice President, Association of Professional Humane Educators, APHE
Meena Alagappan, Executive Director, Humane Education Advocates Reaching Teachers, HEART
Kimberly Korona, Program Coordinator and Humane Education Instructor, HEART
Christopher Parrucci, Humane Education Instructor, HEART

For those who wish to run a humane summer camp, or already run a humane summer camp, this webinar will present you with the tools you need to achieve your goals. Experts from the Association of Professional Humane Educators (APHE) and Humane Education Advocates Reaching Teachers (HEART) will cover the benefits of both on-site and off-site camps, highlighting various aspects to consider when planning a camp, including staffing, location, timing, budget, advertising and more. Also covered are fun, hands-on camp activities that foster humane education to campers as well as innovative ideas for anyone who wants to set up a camp but lacks sufficient resources.
Recorded Webinar:Watch Now!

Saving the Prairies... One Dog at a Time
Presenter: Lindsey Sterling Krank, Director of the Humane Society of the United States Prairie Dog Coalition

Did you know that grasslands cannot survive without the prairie dog, or that members of the squirrel family could recognize when you wear a different colored shirt? Join us for this fascinating webinar by Lindsey Sterling Krank, the Director of the Humane Society of the United States Prairie Dog Coalition, as she talks about these intelligent, embattled creatures of the North American prairie ecosystem. Lindsey will discuss their keystone role in maintaining the fragile plains system, and the complex social and communications networks that help them to survive in a hostile world. Learn how you can help with this important work.
Recorded Webinar: Watch Now!

Using Your Time and Talents to Successfully Volunteer for Animals
Presenter: Hilary Hager, Director, The HSUS National Volunteer Center

You love animals and want to help, but where do you start? Join the director of The HSUS National Volunteer Center in a webinar which will explore available volunteer opportunities in animal-welfare– be it working in a hands-on capacity or behind the scenes. More importantly, learn how to determine which volunteer opportunity is right for you and how to research options and organizations so your time and talents are well-directed -- and your expectations are met. Attendees will leave with knowledge of volunteer opportunities and how to find the best fit for personal talents.
Recorded Webinar: Watch Now!

Care and Feeding of Reindeer and Other Wildlife
Presenter: Dave Pauli, Senior Director, Wildlife Innovations and Response, The Humane Society of the United States and Lecturer, Humane Society University

Jolly old men in red suits aren’t the only ones interested in the welfare of reindeer and other winter wildlife! Dave Pauli, whose work saving, rehoming and rehabilitating wildlife is legendary in the animal protection community, will share his experiences and expertise in rescuing and appreciating the glorious wild species who share our country and our planet.
Recorded Webinar: Watch Now!

What to Expect if You Report Suspected Animal Abuse or Neglect: Demystifying the Legal Process
Presenters: Sherry Ramsey, Esq., Adjunct Professor, New York Law School and Lorna Grande, DVM, Adjunct Faculty, Berkshire Community College.

In cases of suspected non-accidental injury to patients, veterinarians are key partners with law enforcement and pivotal to a successful prosecution. Participants will receive basic knowledge of the legal process they can expect if suspected non-accidental injury or neglect of a patient is reported. Additionally, research related to the connection between animal abuse and interpersonal violence, as well as professional association expectations, legal liability, and professional ethical obligation will be discussed.

Pandemic Prevention: Swine Flu and Other Emerging Infectious Diseases
Presenter: Michael Greger, M.D., Director, Public Health and Animal Agriculture for Humane Society International

Influenza pandemics, triggered by bird or swine flu viruses, have the potential to kill millions of people. The influenza virus has existed for millions of years as an innocuous intestinal virus of wild ducks. What turned a harmless waterborne duck virus into a killer? In an engaging multimedia presentation, Dr. Michael Greger traces the human role in the evolution of this virus and suggests what society can do to reduce the likelihood of such potential catastrophes in the future.
Recorded Webinar: Watch Now!

Before the Rehabilitator Arrives: How to Provide Emergency Care to Wildlife Brought to Your Clinic or Shelter
Presenter: Roberto Aguilar, DVM - HSVMA

Do you and your clinic or shelter staff know what to do when someone walks in with an injured songbird or orphaned mammal? Join this free, 90-minute webinar to receive basic instruction in how to provide emergency care for the most common injured and orphaned wildlife brought in to clinics or shelters.
CE hours: 1.5 RACE approved.

Beasts of the Imagination: Familiars, Vampires, Werewolves and Things that go Bump in the Night
Presenter: Dr. Andrew Rowan President, Humane Society University

Join this delightfully whimsical Halloween-themed presentation on the legends and beasts of lore that are part of a tradition deeply rooted in the primordial relationship humans have with non-human animals.
Recorded Webinar: Watch Now!

The Inner Lives of Animals
Presenter: Dr. Jonathan Balcombe, Department Chair of Animal Studies, Humane Society University

Animal minds and abilities are explored as well as new scientific discoveries about animals’ capacity to have feelings and experience their world in a profound way.
Recorded Webinar: Watch Now!

School Realities: Standards for Success in Humane Education
Presenter: Stephanie Itle-Clark, MS Ed., CHES, Director of the School of Continuing Education, Humane Society University and Heidi O’Brien, MS, CHES, Curriculum and Educator Outreach Manager, Humane Society University

This webinar will explore school-based humane education standards as a partner with character education and social and emotional curricula.
Recorded Webinar: Watch Now!