Tag Archives: no kill conference

No Kill Conference Workshop: Here Comes Social Media

30 Jul

Social media has become an absolutely essential tool for any effective No Kill advocate in today’s world. Today, Alan Rosenblatt, Associate Director of Online Advocacy at the Center for American Progress, instructed a conference room full of eager students on the many tools of his trade. From Facebook to Twitter, Alan covered the social media gamut, and helped us all gain an even better understanding of how we can utilize these tools to drive change.

Some of the key highlight’s from Alan’s presentation included the following:

  • Reaching out to key legislators via Twitter and Facebook is very effective, as these are completely public forums. Via email, they can easily claim to have never seen the correspondence, but with social media, the proof is public.
  • Before reaching out, do extensive research. Determine who the key legislators are, and find their social media profiles. The easiest way to do so is via Google – a simple search with their names and the word “Twitter” or “Facebook” is usually effective.
  • When it comes to petitions, act.ly is a simple tool that easily allows petitions to be shared via Twitter. Users can sign directly from the page or Re-Tweet another’s signature.
  • Although Twitter allows 140 characters per Tweet, 120 characters is the maximum recommendation, so it allows for followers to add their own commentary or additional information when Re-Tweeting.
  • When linking to outside content or information, use a trackable service like bit.ly. This website offers a free URL shortening service that also provides click-through statistics when users are registered for an account.
  • Twitter hashtags are an invaluable tool to insure your message begins to reach a wider audience. Look for relevant and frequently used hashtags through Twitter search. Identify four to five that relate to your cause, and use them to share your message with like-minded users. You can search for issue-specific hashtags, state-specific hashtags, and ideologically-specific hashtags, among others.
  • Always remember that Twitter is an entirely public forum. Don’t share anything you wouldn’t want the world to see. Private messages are an option, but the site is primarily
  • If you click “favorite” on any given Tweet from another user, it prevents them from deleting said Tweet. Additionally, remember to take screenshots of your comments to organizations and legislators. This provides proof should the content be deleted.
  • Social media has made everyone a citizen journalist. Now, every individual has a platform from which to speak that could potentially reach the far corners of the globe. Social media also allows everyone access to influencers – both traditional and new: press, legislators, bloggers, etc.
  • Among institutions, Non-Governmental Organizations are the most trusted in the US, however, Americans trust individuals that they know far more highly.
  • There is a three-step process for increasing followers on any social network. One: connect with them. Two: engage with them. Three: Recommend them.

Alan’s presentation was impressive, and left us pondering a world of possibilities for No Kill advocates everywhere.

Stay tuned for additional blogs outlining content from the conference!

Building a No Kill Community Workshop Recap

2 May

This past weekend, the No Kill Nation team attended the Building a No Kill Community workshop in Houston. This day-long session was chock full of useful and important information for No Kill advocates and groups. Hosted by No Kill Houston and led by Nathan Winograd, the turnout was terrific, and we laughed, cried and cheered together.

We live Tweeted from the event, and got lots of great feedback and questions. Below are some bullet points of information from our Twitter feed, and check us out at @NoKillNation for the rest of the content. If you have the chance to attend a conference like this in your area, we HIGHLY recommend it! You’ll be blown away.

History of the movement & basic information:

  • The “pound” was first created to protect people from the PERCEIVED threat of stray animals, a rationale that still exists today.|
  • The original ASPCA’s mission was to protect animals from people. Two different movements with different missions.
  • After Henry Bergh’s (ASPCA founder) death, ASPCA sadly takes over NYC’s pound contract and becomes city’s leading killer of dogs & cats.
  • Who is to blame for the killing? The national “humane” groups blamed pets for not being adoptable and people for being irresponsible.
  • When we seek laws to punish people, too often we end up punishing the animals!
  • Most successful communities in US don’t have mandatory s/n, cat confinement laws or cat licensing laws & only passively enforce dog license.
  • LA saw 35% increase in cat killing, 24% increase in dog killing after passing mandatory spay/neuter laws.
  • Based on using the No Kill equation, there are No Kill communities in Colorado, California, Utah, Kentucky, Indiana, Michigan and many more.
  • There is NO correlation between per capita spending on animal control and lifesaving. It all comes down to decisions made by leadership.
  • A key ingredient of the No Kill Equation is a hardworking, compassionate shelter director committed to No Kill.
  • Do good things for animals, tell people about it and ask for their help. Most people WILL help, that’s the key to a No Kill community.
  • There are 17 m. ppl annually who can be convinced to adopt, for the roughly 3 m. animals who need homes. We need only convince a small %.

How to adopt your way out of killing:

  • It’s key to have shelter workers who like animals AND people.
  • Provide good helpful advice to ppl and offer an animal help desk. In Reno, 59% interacting w/ animal help desk end up keeping their animals.
  • Adoption promotions happen all year but biggest adoption season is spring/summer so it’s key to be highly staffed during these periods.
  • Beat the competition, offer great adoption specials and prices. Do promotions based on your population size, what’s happening in the shelter
  • Celebrate every adoption, applaud, ring a bell, dance! Make the adopter feel special!
  • Professional website is key, plus social media to get the word out about adoptable animals!
  • Good photographs make a world of difference in adoptions, find a volunteer photographer to help.

The shelter environment – saving cats and dogs:

  • Most “temperament” testers in shelters have no formal training and have been shown by others who have also had no formal training
  • It would be difficult to design a worse or more frustrating environment for a dog than a kennel at a shelter…
  • Dogs should get out of the shelters 4x a day between staff and volunteers and comments about the animal should be recorded each time”
  • Some shelters claim that up to 70% of cats coming in are feral, but many of these are just fearful.
  • Every shelter that has achieved No Kill was once as bad and regressive as those who kill now.

And visit our Twitter feed for LOTS of additional information and discussion.