PawsLikeMe plans to extend its pet matchmaking to cats

pawslikeme connects dogs owners felines crowdfund3 plm

Updated on 03-21-2016 by Lulu Chang: In a move that finally recognizes that love isn’t just between a human and a dog, online pet adoption platform PawsLikeMe has plans to add cats to its database of adorable animals. After a successful launch in the fall of 2015, PawsLikeMe is seeking to extend its mammalian matchmaking services to felines, as long as you promise to help by way of their Indiegogo campaign.

“Ever since we started our company, the vision has always been to add cats into our platform,” said Elizabeth Holmes, co-founder and CEO of PawsLikeMe. “However, there are special considerations to take into account when you’re working with a different species. We’ve now developed the inner workings of a cat algorithm which will power our new assessment, but we need additional support to bring the product to market.”

The need for such a platform is particularly high as kitten season approaches — it’s estimated that of the 3.4 million cats that enter shelters every years, 41 percent are ultimately euthanized. PawsLikeMe, however, promises to give animal rescues and shelters a new resource with which to find homes for their pets.

“We want people to look at animal adoption differently,” said Marianna Benko, co-founder and CCO of PawsLikeMe. “Instead of focusing on physical qualities, we’re looking below the surface and identifying key factors which determine compatibility between a person and their cat, including the person’s lifestyle and the animal’s individual personality.”

Original Post: Sometimes your soulmate is your pet. For devoted animal lovers who can attest to the fact that dogs really are man’s (and woman’s) best friends, finding the the canine love of your life can be an arduous process. After all, it’s a commitment — you wouldn’t just pick up anybody’s poop off the ground, now would you? But sometimes, finding the right dog can be as (if not more) difficult than finding the right human partner, which is why new online pet adoption platform PawsLikeMe is helping give “dogs a second chance at a forever home … using a proven algorithm with a more than 90 percent accuracy rate in predicting people-to-pet compatibility.” Basically, eHarmony for pets.

Operating under the belief that “personality is more than fur deep,” PawsLikeMe, which launched at the end of the September, goes beyond asking what breed you prefer or what size dog you can handle. Instead, it has “adopters complete a three-minute personality quiz, enter their ZIP code, and then have their results stacked up against the personality profiles of dogs that are available for adoption in the area.”

Their proprietary personality test, which borrows from dating sites like eHarmony and OKCupid’s algorithmic approach to matchmaking, is founded upon “four core personality traits that influence the human-canine bond: energy, focus, confidence and independence.” Of course, since dogs can’t actually answer these questions themselves (if only), the person re-homing the pet or the shelter fills this out on the animal’s behalf.

“The series of questions looks at how the dog behaves, its preferences, and how the dog reacts based on interactions with people, other pets, and different environments,” co-founder and PawsLikeMe CEO told me via email. “A human score is correlated to a dog’s score, we scale it and make it relative to each personality trait (focus, independence, energy, confidence) and then a matching percentage in each category is determined. By partnering an expert in animal behavior and an expert in human/social behavior we were able to create the perfect algorithm!”

In a press release, PawLikeMe notes, “The matching system also takes into account personality, lifestyle, and home environment when generating a score. Initial results are based solely on compatibility, but users can then further narrow down their compatible matches by personal preferences, such as size, age, or breed.”

With up to 8 million animals entering U.S. shelters every year and around 50 percent of them ultimately euthanized as a result of space constraints or other considerations, adoption platforms like PawsLikeMe that seek to both keep animals out of shelters or place them in loving homes can be incredibly useful and, for many dogs, life-saving. And because all dogs participating in PawsLikeMe must be spayed or neutered, the site is also helping to keep animal population numbers under control.

“It is too early to place any statistical significance on the re-homing program because it just launched in August,” Holmes admitted. “But the matching algorithm launched in January and appears to play a huge role in improved outcomes in terms of pet retention. This is based on the tremendous positive feedback we have received from our shelter partners and adopters.”

 Ultimately, to ensure that dogs are provided and kept in loving homes, Holmes says, “People need to be empowered with the knowledge, tools, and support needed to be active and responsible participants in their pets’ lives.” And with PawsLikeMe, that empowering process can begin.

Social Media

‘Superwoman’ YouTuber Lilly Singh taking a break for her mental health

Claiming to be "mentally, physically, emotionally, and spiritually exhausted," popular YouTuber Lilly Singh has told her millions of fans she's taking a break from making videos in order to recuperate.
Home Theater

The best movies on Netflix in November, from 'Buster Scruggs’ to ‘Dracula’

Save yourself from hours wasted scrolling through Netflix's massive library by checking out our picks for the streamer's best movies available right now, whether you're into explosive action, witty humor, or anything else.

The best PS3 games of all time

Choosing the right PlayStation 3 game can be a conundrum, especially when there are nearly 1,500 titles to choose from. Thankfully, we've rounded up the best games to have ever made it to the platform.

Your PlayStation 4 game library isn't complete without these games

Looking for the best PS4 games out there? Out of the massive crop of titles available, we selected the best you should buy. No matter what your genre of choice may be, there's something here for you.

These are the best Xbox One games available right now

More than four years into its life span, Microsoft's latest console is finally coming into its own. From 'Cuphead' to 'Halo 5,' the best Xbox One games offer something for everyone.

Want to save a webpage as a PDF? Just follow these steps

Need to quickly save and share a webpage? The best way is to learn how to save a webpage as a PDF file, as they're fully featured and can handle images and text with ease. Here's how.
Smart Home

Amazon has a huge team dedicated to enhancing Alexa and Echo

An Amazon executive on Tuesday, November 13 revealed the huge size of the team that's tasked with developing the Echo, the company's smart speaker, and Alexa, the digital assistant that powers it.

Here's our head-to-head comparison of Pandora and Spotify

Which music streaming platform is best for you? We pit Spotify versus Pandora, two mighty streaming services with on-demand music and massive catalogs, comparing every facet of the two services to help you decide which is best.
Social Media

Going incognito: Here's how to appear offline on Facebook

How do you make sure your friends and family can't see if you're on Facebook, even if you are? Here, we'll show you how to turn off your active status on three different platforms, so you can browse Facebook without anyone knowing.

Our 10 favorite Chrome themes add some much-needed pizzazz to your boring browser

Sometimes you just want Chrome to show a little personality and ditch the grayscale for something a little more lively. Lucky for you, we've sorted through the Chrome Web Store to find best Chrome themes available.

Aussies hope free Wi-Fi on their beaches will lead to fewer drownings

Lifeguards in Australia have hit on an idea to use Wi-Fi to make the nation's beaches safer. It's a simple but clever idea that plays on our need to stay connected around the clock.

How to easily record your laptop screen with apps you already have

Learning how to record your computer screen shouldn't be a challenge. Lucky for you, our comprehensive guide lays out how to do so using a host of methods, including both free and premium utilities, in both MacOS and Windows 10.

These are the coolest games you can play on your Google Chrome browser right now

Not only is Google Chrome a fantastic web browser, it's also a versatile gaming platform that you can access from just about anywhere. Here are a few of our favorite titles for the platform.
Smart Home

Amazon will bring a 7-foot-tall Christmas tree to your doorstep starting today

If you have fond memories of going out with your family and searching for the perfect Christmas tree, well, Amazon wants to create its own holiday tradition. Starting today, you can order a real, 7-foot tree from Amazon.