PawsLikeMe uses an algorithm to match adopters with prospective furrever four-legged friends.
The decision to give away a beloved pet to another home is never an easy one – especially when you consider that life for an animal in a shelter is often incredibly tough. Nearly 70% of cats and dogs in shelters are re-homed at least once before finding furrever homes. Luckily, a new app now exists which might cut down on the amount of animals given to already overcrowded shelters.
PawsLikeMe, developed by Elizabeth Holmes and Marianne Benko, is an innovative app that matches adopters with prospective forever, four-legged friends. Kind of like an Uber for animals, it was designed to help pet parents meet prospective adopters and avoid shelters altogether.
Launched just last month, PawsLikeMe is already growing in popularity. More than 75,000 people and 200 organizations have already registered on the site. It also has shelter pets listed for adoption in every state, and pets are being re-homed in 26 states.
Because it matches people and their animals by facilitating a match based on what each specific person is looking for in a pet, it’s offering pet parents some assurance that their specific cat or dog is wanted by another family – a feature normally missing from the adoption marketplace.
According to the developers of the app, Holmes and Benko, the perfect algorithm is in place which matches people with pets based on lifestyle and compatibility, beyond just appearance or breed. The result is a “personality test” that enables adopters to get to know their potential pets a bit better. It also increases their chance of making a perfect match.
One individual who used PawsLikeMe and appreciated the experience is Keith Becher of Milwaukee, Wisconsin. He shared with GoodNewsNetwork that he was dismayed to part with his adored 4-year-old Golden Lab mix, Nico, but needed to find her a new home because his hectic work schedule wasn’t fair to the pup. He set out looking for an alternative to dropping her off at a shelter and came across the app.
“I adopted her as a puppy because she was abandoned at the location of my former job, and I couldn’t fathom bringing her to the shelter. So I kept her. She is an active dog and it was hard on her with me working long hours. I couldn’t afford to send her to doggy daycare,” he said.
He figured he’d try out PawsLikeMe, so filled out a pet profile for Nico, reviewed applications from prospective pet parents, and arranged an at-home visit with the family. Fortunately for all, it was a good match. Nico now lives with a stay-at-home mother, has plenty of room to run around, and enjoys playing with other neighborhood dogs.
“It was extremely difficult to give Nico up, but I am happy knowing that she will be well taken care of and loved in her new home.,” said Becher.
Those looking to “re-home” their furry friends can post cost-free, and the prospective adopter pays $75, half of which goes to a local shelter or rescue. If shelters and rescues post their pets to the app directly, the entire adoption fee goes directly to that organization.
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