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On October 22 and 23, 2018, Kirkpatrick Foundation will host the ANIMAL 2018 Conference of Ideas, Impact, and Inspiration at the Skirvin-Hilton Hotel. The conference, though held just once every three years, is a key to achieving the Kirkpatrick Foundation’s Safe & Humane mission to make Oklahoma the safest and most humane place to be an animal by 2032. We invite those interested in promoting active compassion for animals and others in their state and nation to come to this energizing event. Please follow on and on the Kirkpatrick Foundation Facebook page for information about ANIMAL 2018


On March 30 and 31, 2015, the Kirkpatrick Foundation hosted the first ANIMAL Conference of Ideas, Impact, and Inspiration at the Skirvin-Hilton Hotel. The vision behind this triennial conference was to bring together individuals to learn, discuss, and connect on current animal wellbeing topics in Oklahoma and throughout the world. From the pre-conference tour to the our final keynote speaker, downtown Oklahoma City was alive with ANIMAL 2015 participants, alongside a few dog and cat voices that added to the attending choir. Based on attendee feedback, we believe the conference was successful in promoting our vision.

The pre-conference tour of Mindy's Memory Primate Sanctuary and a stunning, Sunday evening pictorial talk from Joel Sartore--photographer for National Geographic--began the conference in a moving and inspirational direction. Over the next two days, the 307 registered attendees from sixteen states, as well as a number of drop-ins and volunteers, heard from stocksmen, critically-acclaimed journalists, members of Oklahoma legislator, national officers of animal grantmaking non-profits, and many others. Throughout the conference sessions, attendees visited animal wellbeing booths and could even adopt a cat or two from local animal shelters. At our closing plenary we honored the service dogs from Tinker Air Force Base and Oklahoma County Sheriff's Department, a New Leash on Life therapy dog program, City of Oklahoma City Fire Department's Search and Rescue K-9 program, and the Oklahoma City Police Department. ANIMAL 2015 closed in much the way it started: with a moving keynote talk from Tim Hetzner of the Lutheran Church Charities' K-9 Comfort Dog Ministry. You can read more about the speakers below.

Continuing the momentum from the conference was the release of the Oklahoma Animal Wellbeing Study in early 2016. The report, highlighted during two sessions at ANIMAL 2015, was the culmination of 104 interviews, extensive data review, and literature research regarding the status of animal wellbeing in Oklahoma. 


Speakers | ANIMAL 2015

DVM, DACVB, President of Veterinary Healing Arts and Author

The Soul of All Living Creatures

When we look into a puppy’s eyes and feel...

Office of Counterterrorism and Emerging Threats of the Food and Drug Administration

Aysha Akhtar, M.D., M.P.H., is a neurologist and public health specialist who is on a mission to demonstrate how protecting animals provides a mutual benefit to both humans and the animals themselves. She is the author of the book, Animals...

New York Times Journalist

Charles Siebert is the author of three critically acclaimed memoirs, a children's book, an e-book and a novel. ...

Attending the Conference | ANIMAL 2018

The Kirkpatrick Foundation invites you to be part of ANIMAL conference in 2018. The conference agenda will be rich with information about veterinary care, animal behavior, the animal-human bond, shelter administration, humane consumption and buying power, humane education, and much more. With impressive speakers and presenters from across the United States and the state, conference attendees will come away from this unique and exciting event more aware of animal wellbeing in all its forms and inspired to become more active in the animal wellbeing community.

Why should you attend the 2018 ANIMAL conference?

  • Gain insight into the current topics of discussion and concern facing those in the animal wellbeing fields and what others are doing to overcome those challenges.
  • Actively support the Safe & Humane initiative and learn how you can bring the initiative back to your community.
  • Learn what animal wellbeing and care resources are available to Oklahomans and those in the surrounding regions.
  • Take part in an energizing conference format that will leave you excited to get back to your community and share what your learned.

What is included in my registration fee?

  • Breakfast, lunch, and breaks for both days of the conference.  An early evening reception with light refreshments is also included on Monday night; dinner is on your own during the conference.
  • Two days filled with over 20 informative breakout sessions and plenary speakers.
  • Time to meet and have a book signed by one of our amazing speakers. (Purchase price of book is not included in the registration.)
  • Opportunities to network with individuals from different parts of the animal wellbeing field who work throughout the United States and in all areas of Oklahoma.

If you are interested in registering for the conference, please check for details on this site and on the Kirkpatrick Foundation's Facebook page in early 2018.