Community Opportunities

Special Events

Community special events provide a forum for sharing and teaching humane messages.

The Detroit Zoological Society hosts Meet Your Best Friend at the Zoo, one of the nation’s largest off-site companion animal adoption events, where hundreds of dogs, cats, puppies and kittens are be available for adoption to loving homes.

Conferences and Meetings

The DZS was selected as the hosting site for the 2013 Association of Professional Humane Educators (APHE) National Humane Education Conference.  Humane educators from around the world convened to learn about current humane education issues. The two-day conference included presentations, round table discussions and networking opportunities.

Members of the DZS Education Department regularly give humane education presentations throughout the community. Recent presentations were given at the Michigan Science Teachers Association (MSTA) Annual Conference and the Association of Zoos & Aquariums (AZA) Annual Conference.

The Detroit Zoological Society hosts humane education experts to facilitate professional development workshops for both DZS staff as well as area educators. Recent facilitators have come from the Institute for Humane Education, the Humane Society of the United States and HEART (Humane Education Advocates Reaching Teachers).

Humane Collaborations

We are working toward establishing relationships with other humane organizations locally, nationally and internationally to verify program agenda and content and to discuss partnership opportunities. For example, we’re currently collaborating with the Humane Society of Huron Valley and the Arab Community Center for Economic and Social Services, discussing humane education programming and opportunities.

For more than seven years, the Detroit Zoological Society’s Berman Academy for Humane Education has led a gardening program with Oakland County Children’s Village that helps to instill reverence and respect for wildlife and wild places with the 12-17-year-old boys residing there. Children’s Village includes secure detention, residential treatment and shelter care services. We’ve worked with hundreds of boys throughout the course of this program.


The Detroit Zoological Society (DZS) works diligently to decrease the number of animals being kept in inhumane conditions. Through the DZS’s ongoing efforts, stricter regulations are now in place governing exotic pet ownership in Michigan and elsewhere.