Human Animal Support Services (HASS) Announces Highly-Anticipated Launch of the HASS Playbook

(AUSTIN, TX) January 23, 2024Human Animal Support Services (HASS), an international project revolutionizing the animal welfare industry by uniting the human and animal welfare approach, announced today the launch of the HASS Playbook–a FREE comprehensive portfolio of how-to guides aligned with the HASS pathways. The HASS Playbook aims to provide animal welfare organizations with innovative programming and best practices to rise above existing sheltering system challenges and increase capacity for care within their communities. 

“HASS is determined to play a role in creating progress within the animal welfare industry’s call for change and work alongside these communities to create true impact,” said Vincent Medley, Director of HASS. “No matter what part of the country you are in, economic challenges are significantly affecting people, pets, and the animal welfare industry equally. The HASS Playbook is the first step in our 2024 strategy to lift up our communities and colleagues the best way we can.”  

The HASS Playbook was built for animal welfare organizations and professionals–whether at the executive leadership level or operational front-line staff. Each HASS Playbook section is accompanied by a self-paced assessment tool that helps the user evaluate their current shelter initiatives, and upon completion, produces an instantaneous customized roadmap to create or enhance existing programs. These recommendations point directly back to four main sheltering categories including: pet support services, lost pet reunification, supported self-rehoming, and intake-to-placement. 

With more than 115 comprehensive toolkits, the HASS Playbook encompasses programming recommendations that seek to address the daily chronic challenges of both the animal welfare industry and the average community member all in one place–a first for the animal welfare industry. These include nationwide issues such as housing insecurity or accessibility to veterinary care, and innovative programming such as how to develop collaborative support services with municipalities or community partners to serve pets and people better. All HASS Playbook guides are created with the ability to begin implementation immediately or provide a framework for organizations to customize the programming as best fit for their shelter’s or community’s needs. Already, more than 20 HASS pilot shelters and 170 partner organizations have committed to or are currently implementing related best practices in alignment with the HASS Playbook. 

The release of the HASS Playbook comes on the heels of the HASS Resource Center which launched in Fall 2023. There, animal welfare organizations and professionals can also access stand-alone programming guides to implement HASS in their communities and move closer toward a more unified system of support. Since launch, the HASS Resource Center has been accessed nearly 15,000 times indicating that the industry is now more than ever, seeking new ideas to support their communities. 

“We’re extremely grateful to our partners and pilot shelters for participating in the development and testing of the HASS Playbook,” said Eliza Torres, HASS Education and Implementation Manager. “HASS has our eyes set on providing paths toward progress within the industry and continuing to build upon our education, implementation, and resource materials so all animal welfare professionals have even more tools in their toolbelt to serve the people and pets they love.” 

For more information on HASS and the HASS Playbook, visit


About Human Animal Support Services (HASS)

The Human Animal Support Services (HASS) project is a movement seeking to revolutionize the animal welfare industry by leading with and embracing a community support model. By providing both private and municipal animal shelters with equitable access to data-driven resources, education, and implementation tools, HASS aims to create pathways toward unified support systems for pets and their people in every community. Separated into three main pillars education, data, and policy, HASS encompasses a network of more than 1,500 animal and human welfare professionals. A project facilitated by Austin Pets Alive! (APA!) and under the direction of industry veteran Vincent Medley, HASS’ 41 pilot shelters and 165 partner organizations have joined the movement by committing to implement the HASS model. To learn more, visit

Human Animal Support Services (HASS) Announces Highly-Anticipated Launch of the HASS Playbook
HASS Media Contact