The Internet has become a great starting point for people searching for potential pets and to help network for those in need of a forever home. Now there’s a new app to add to the tool kit, called BarkBuddy, that’s being described as the dating site Tinder, but instead of matching people with each other, its intent is to match people with their dream dogs and make the adoption process a little easier.
The app was recently launched by Bark & Co., the company behind the monthly canine care package subscription service BarkBox and at home vet service BarkCare. BarkBuddy pulls information from databases like PetFinder, in addition to shelters that are part of its referral program and, according to the company, it now currently features close to 300,000 adoptable dogs who are waiting to be found.
As with Tinder, the app allows people to search through photos of adoptable dogs and swipe left for “no” (if you can bring yourself to do it) and right for “yes,” or to hit the “X” or “heart” icons to save or remove dogs, or the “i” for more information.
According to TechCrunch, the app also allows people to indicate what kind of dog they’re looking for before getting started by filtering for males or females and choosing other criteria including age, activity level and size. It also uses GPS to streamline the search for dogs in their area’s shelters and plays matchmaker by collecting stats on the dogs users like.
Each adoptable dog comes with their own profile and provides contact info so rescues or shelters can be contacted directly to set up a meeting. Even if you’re not looking for a dog, the app also allows people to share adoptables with friends on Facebook.
Chris O’Brien, Bark & Co.’s communications director, told TODAY.com that the app is on track for 50 million swipes in May alone and while they’re looking into how many swipes have led to adoptions, shelters are being inundated with requests to meet dogs.
Although it offers another resource to help connect pets and people, BarkBuddy isn’t the only tech tool available for potential adopters to use to search for pets. As TechCrunch notes, it’s similar to apps like apps like Fido and PetMatch, another mobile app that was released this month by the startup Superfish, which uses image recognition and analyzes a photo of a pet you have to find similar pets in your area. There’s also still other sites that feature thousands of adoptable pets, including Petfinder, Petango and Adopt-a-Pet.
Time also notes the ASPCA also used the looking-for-love angle on us this winter when it bought targeted ads for pets that were designed like dating profiles on OKCupid last February, which resulted in 6 dogs and 35 cats being adopted in the four days after launching the ads. Really, could you leave a dating site with a better relationship?
Photo credit: Bark & Co