Post by Blog Manager Robbi Hess
Have you ever wanted to find the pet of your dreams? That dog that loves long walks on the beach? The cat that likes nothing better than chilling on the couch with a good book and a great movie? A guinea pig that squeals in delight when you walk through the door at the end of a long day at work? If you have a picture in your mind of the ideal pet, chances are AllPaws.com can help you find him or her!
Set up under the dating model site model, AllPaws.com is an interactive site that allows animal shelters and rescues to upload photos and profiles of adoptable pets and offers a free place for potential pet parents to search for that pet and upload their own information of what an ideal companion looks like to, and for, them.
Darrell Lerner, founder of AllPaws.com had a background on online dating with his former company. He, along with Founding Member Kimberly Bouton, look at their “dating model” pet adoption site as a boon to both shelters and prospective pet parents.
As background, Kim said she’d started working with Darrell at his former endeavor prior to having graduated college. “I was majoring in history and theology at Fordham University and found a position with his other company as a community manager,” she explained. “I was interviewed and hired before I’d even graduated.”
When Darrell made the leap from his former company to his new start-up, AllPaws, he asked Kimberly to come along with him and she did. “You truly never know where life will take you,” she said.
Why did she leave the safety of a job to work with another start up? Kimberly explains, “Darrell had a lot of belief in what he wanted to do with AllPaws and I was interested in what was going on in a start-up. I wanted to get my feet very wet in this start-up!”
As Kimberly explains, “Pets are near and dear to our hearts and even though the other adoption sites out there are wonderful and provide a great service to the community, we have taken it a couple of steps further.”
AllPaws.com provides an advanced search feature and make it easy for the prospective pet owner to get in touch with the shelters. “We offer a direct messaging feature and feel we’re pioneers in the pet industry by trying to make it easier for pets to find forever homes.”
The pets featured on AllPaws come from a number of organizations and word of mouth continues to grow and feed the adoptable pet database. “We have had people who have found pets on our site because of the blog and other features we offer and that is so exciting. We love it when we hear the success stories from people who’ve used the site to find a pet.”
As for the “dating model” of the system Kimberly says, “We ask questions on the profile that can help you narrow down not only the type of pet you want, but it helps someone with that kind of pet find you.” A potential pet parent can narrow down the type of pet he wants to adopt by species, whether it is well behaved enough for apartment living, does the pet have special needs, is it housebroken, what is his temperament, and more. “We offer an advanced set of filters to help people narrow down the type of pet they’re looking for. You need to know yourself and the type of pet you’ll be happiest with in order to get a good match,” she said.
AllPaws is active on Facebook posting pictures of adoptable pets. Kimberly shared, “When I was in Colorado, one of my best friends texted me and said she’d just adopted a dog from AllPaws.com and then when we were at dinner our waitress had also heard of us – our organic growth has been incredible.”
What does the future hold for AllPaws.com? “We’d love to become the hub for pet lovers – not just a place to find a pet, but a place where you can go to learn about pets and pet care. We want the site to be a place in the pet world for any- and everyone,” she said. “We want to get more pets adopted – this has been out driving mission throughout.”
The AllPaws founders say, “We have a huge opportunity and we have found a way to re-imagine the way people find the pet of their own.”
(Photo: Shutterstock Dog running in park)