As a pet owner, there is little doubt that both you and your furry loved one have each experienced some form of anxiety when visiting the vet. And this is just during routine veterinary appointments. In today’s hustle and bustle with our lives getting busier each year, it can be difficult to find time to skip away from work to visit Fido’s doctor.
Hug A Pet, a Berlin Founder Institute portfolio company, is paving the way for a more comfortable veterinarian relationship by bringing the vet directly to your own home.
Led by CEO Tito Mukherjee alongside Co-Founder and Chief Veterinary Officer Detlef Apelt, the Hug A Pet team has already helped keep thousands of pets happy and healthy since launching in 2017.
As a pet owner of seven dogs, Mukherjee knows all too well what stresses can come from a vet visit. Mix in multiple pets, your own uncertainty with the symptoms, and the overdramatic Google search results proclaiming imminent death, and you have your typical veterinary disaster scenario.
“Let me draw a picture of the day of the vet visit: Your dog somehow feels extra sick, and she predicts your uncertain vibes. Next step, you and your dog leave home with enough time in advance to reach the veterinary office on time or before. And then you realize that the veterinarian is 40 minutes late for your dog’s checkup, due to previous appointments running late,” says Mukherjee. “Finally, when the vet sees your dog, he mentions that he needs a stool sample. He suggests that you should come back with your dog tomorrow morning along with the stool sample—and thus, you obviously will have to go through this entire process again.”
This is where Hug A Pet comes in—the company helps pet owners tap into a marketplace of mobile veterinarians. Their service allows pet owners to save time, and reduce the anxiety and unnecessary expenses of traveling to and from the vet’s office.
More Than A Marketplace: Hug A Pet is Your Mobile Veterinary Service Provider
In addition to the marketplace, the Hug A Pet application also allows you to speak with a doctor via video chat, and even saves the pet’s medical records. It is for these reasons that the company has already netted thousands of customers, built a partnership with Pawshake, closed an initial Angel round, and begun forming corporate partnerships with pet-friendly offices.
Hug A Pet fits within the €8.5B European pet healthcare industry, which measured globally, is €56B in size. This comes at a time when more than 8 million pet owners across Europe are already using some form of mobile veterinarian care, and in their launch city of Berlin, that number exceeds 300k pet owners. By comparison, there are another 300 million pet owners in Europe, and 1.2 million in Berlin alone, representing a great deal of opportunity for Hug A Pet to expand by relieving pet owners’ pain points. And that is precisely what Hug A Pet has been doing since launch, in showing very encouraging early traction.
Unfortunately, one of the hard parts about pet ownership comes along with their inability to tell you how they are feeling; and eventually, it will also come time for them to cross the rainbow bridge. In addition to typical health support like vaccinations or nail trims, Hug A Pet also helps pets and their families to make sure their last day is in a place they know, rather than in an uncomfortable vet’s office. CEO Mukherjee adds,
Our mission for Hug A Pet is simple: to make pet healthcare convenient and stress-free.
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