Press release: Petco Love
Animal welfare organizations across the country are joining forces with Petco Love, formerly known as the Petco Foundation, a national non-profit working to lead and inspire change for animals, to change the outcome for missing dogs and cats. Starting today, approximately 1,000 shelters and rescues in both cities and rural areas across the U.S., will adopt the searchable database that uses facial recognition technology to help reunite lost pets with their families should they ever go missing.
A recent survey* of pet parents found that more than half confirmed they were unsure of all the steps to take or the resources available should they ever lose or find a pet, while 88 percent of current dog and cat owners agreed a searchable database would be helpful. Petco Love is stepping up with a new solution.
“The fact that 1 in 3 pets will go missing in their lifetime is simply too many and the only way to bring them home is by coming together on a single platform that connects shelters, pet parents and good neighbors together,” said Petco Love President, Susanne Kogut. “We know the solution requires a national infrastructure and we’re launching today with more than 1,000 animal welfare organizations and pet industry partners already signed-up. We encourage others to join us and pet parents to register their own pets should the unthinkable happen.”
Throughout the coming months, Petco Love Lost will continue to enhance its search algorithms and fine-tune the AI technology of the platform as additional partners sign on and more pets – along with their information – are added into the system. The more robust the database, the more pets together we will reunite. This simple-to-use tool will be easily accessible by pet parents, as well as any person who finds a lost dog or cat. Uploaded photos of a missing pet are immediately scanned to determine whether there is a match at a participating shelter or neighbor in the community, providing initial results in less than a minute.
Petco Love recognizes that finding missing pets is an industry-wide challenge that animal welfare organizations can all-too-well relate to and it often takes an entire community to help in the search effort. That’s why Petco Love is on a mission to unite to reunite by bringing together thousands of their existing animal welfare partners with the pet industry, university, and corporate partners. Early adopters agreeing to drive awareness of Petco Love Lost include Petco, the American Pet Products Association, the North American Veterinarian Community, BOBS from Skechers, Blue Buffalo, Hills Pet Nutrition, the Human Animal Bond Research Institute, ASPCA, 24PetWatch, Nationwide, State Farm, along with many more.
“Petco Love Lost can help millions of lost pets reunite with their families, protecting those animals from suffering, returning joy to their owners, and preserving critical space and resources at shelters for other animals in need,” said Matt Bershadker, CEO of the ASPCA. “We are proud to support Petco Love on this remarkable and innovative project, which can also play a key role in helping families and their pets find each other following major natural disasters and emergencies.”
* An online survey of 1,005 past and current dog and cat owners was conducted by Petco Love on March 16, 2021.