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The CFHS National Animal Welfare Conference

The CFHS National Animal Welfare Conference is an annual professional development and community-building event for Canada’s animal welfare sector. This two-day conference includes presentations, workshops, keynote addresses and panel discussions on new animal welfare initiatives, emerging animal welfare science, best practices in animal sheltering, leadership practices in an animal welfare context, making the link between animal cruelty and other crimes, advocacy and stakeholder relations techniques and animal welfare community engagement. As part of each annual conference, CFHS hosts an awards dinner to honour animal welfare leaders who have made significant contributions to the sector.

The 2018 CFHS National Animal Welfare Conference takes place at the Hyatt Regency Calgary, April 22-23, 2018, and it marks our fifth year! As a special way to mark our fifth anniversary, we'll be offering five learning tracks each day, including Animals in Research, Wildlife Welfare, Farm Animal Welfare, Sheltering for Change, Standards, Guidelines and Certification, Applied Animal Science, Advocacy and Humane Education.

Join us at #NAWC2018 for world-class speakers, daily networking opportunities, amazing exhibitors, NEW delegate lounges and chances to connect with thought leaders in multiple disciplines and gain insights into emerging trends. While you're in town, benefit from shelter tours at Calgary Humane Society and the Alberta Animal Rescue Crew Society (AARCS), and be sure to come to our special awards dinner on Earth Day, April 22 to cheer on the heroes of Canadian animal welfare at the 2018 CFHS Animal Welfare Leadership & Innovation Awards!


Who Attends?

Do you work with, care for or advocate for Canada’s animals? Then the CFHS National Animal Welfare Conference is the community hub for you. As the convenor of the largest animal welfare community in Canada, the Canadian Federation of Humane Societies will help you connect with the best and brightest thinkers in animal welfare today. Learn cutting-edge practices and build a network of support that stretches from coast to coast.

This event is open to students in any discipline, veterinarians and vet techs, academics, researchers and scientists, animal enforcement personnel, animal care professionals who work with: companion animals, farm animals or wildlife, staff from humane societies, SPCAs and animal rescues, animal welfare advocates, policy experts, humane education professionals and members of the general public who want to advance their work for animals.

Learning & Networking Opportunities

  • Break isolation and learn cutting-edge practices that will help you and your organization work more effectively for Canada’s animals
  • Build your professional network while learning innovative new solutions to common animal welfare problems
  • Build a quality network of animal welfare thought leaders and decision-makers from across Canada
  • Forge new relationships and partnerships
  • Share your cutting-edge animal welfare knowledge and help to advance animal welfare in Canada
  • Gain unparalleled access to the best and brightest thinkers in animal welfare today

Continuing Education Credits

NEW: We're offering continuing education credits this year!

The 2018 CFHS National Animal Welfare Conference is approved for 14 hours of Alberta Veterinary Medical Association continuing education credits for Veterinarians and Veterinary Technologists who are ABVMA members. Please contact conference@cfhs.ca after the conference to request your certificate of attendance to submit to the ABVMA.

Attendance at the 2018 CFHS National Animal Welfare Conference has also been pre-approved for continuing education credits toward re-certification as a Certified Animal Welfare Administrator (CAWA) through the Society of Animal Welfare Administrators (SAWA). CAWA certificants can claim credits for attending this conference in the CAWA Certification Portal under "Pre-Approved Continuing Education".

Travel & Hotel


Hyatt Regency Calgary

Hotel reservations now available! CFHS has reserved blocks of rooms at the Hyatt Regency Calgary for Conference participants, book today!

Experience the urban sophistication of downtown Calgary.

Located next to the Calgary TELUS Convention Center, Hyatt Regency Calgary offer easy access to many downtown attractions, including the theatre district, historic buildings, restaurants, pubs, galleries, and luxury shopping.



Cheryl_-_WHC_headshot_-_small.jpg"My take-away from this conference is more hope. I like that the sessions offer strategic thinking, initiatives, ideas that are outside the box. I wanted to see sessions that I could put into practice."
– Cheryl Albuquerque, artist and NAWC2017 delegate




Bruce-Roney-300x226.jpg"Congratulations to the entire CFHS team on the 2017 National Animal Welfare Conference! I understand what a huge undertaking a conference of this size can be and how hard it can be to keep growing and improving. Yet, every year, the conference keeps getting better and better. All the sessions I attended were relevant and well-presented. Overall, I felt it compared favourably to the HSUS and SAWA conferences. Everything I overheard from attendees was consistently positive and I was delighted to have been a small part of it. This was a great project. Thank you!
– Bruce Roney, Executive Director, Ottawa Humane Society and NAWC2017 delegate


SPCA-Sofia-Gonzales-e1403292365473.jpg"Attending NAWC gave us the opportunity to network with other animal welfare professionals and learn from sheltering and welfare experts. We would absolutely encourage people to attend the conference. It is important to continue to learn, and this conference always provides sessions on a diversity of subjects. It takes organizations to the next level of development."
– Sofia Gonzalez, Adoption and Foster Coordinator, SPCA Montreal and NAWC2017 delegate



20170409-SAS_5357.jpg"We are proud to support the CFHS National Animal Welfare Conference because those in attendance share our unparalleled commitment to pet well-being. At Hill’s, we’re about more than just pet food.  We are about connecting pets to people and the conference ensures we can help enhance the special relationship between people and their pets across Canada." -Hill's Pet Nutrition Canada, NAWC 2017 Sponsor


PetSmartCharities.jpg"PetSmart Charities of Canada has been a proud sponsor of the Canadian Federation of Humane Societies’ National Animal Welfare Conference (NAWC) since its inception.  We believe by bringing the best and brightest minds in animal welfare together, CHFS is ensuring the organizations in attendance at this premier conference in Canada are staying at the forefront of animal welfare issues, best practices and future directions while fostering a culture of collaboration across our industry. The conference also provides a great opportunity to meet and inform our Canadian colleagues about the mission and granting priorities of PetSmart Charities of Canada." - Dani Mailing, Regional Relationship Manager, PetSmart Charities of Canada


 Interested in seeing what you missed at #NAWC2017?