own a pet and they are going on a holiday they face a complication: it is difficult
to find someone who will look after your pet, and kennels can be quite expensive.
This complication caused Aaron Hirschhorn and his wife Karine Nissim-Hirschhorn
to experiment themselves by offering dog-sitting services on Yelp. It turned out
to be a success and quickly Hirschhorn began to realize the concept’s potency.
Thus in March 2012, they launched DogVacay, first only in L.A, but currently in over fifty cities in the
U.S.A and even a few in Canada.
is a platform that connects pet owner and pet sitters. After the pet owners have
made an account, they are offered a list of potential pet sitters. Each pet
sitter has their own advertisement in which they include the price per night
and day, the distance from the pet owner to the pet sitters’ place, a picture
of where the pet would be staying, and references. The pet owners can pick a pet
sitter themselves. DogVacay recommends that every pet owner and pet sitter meet
up before the actual ”’vacay” to make sure it is a right match and that the
pet owners are confident with leaving their pet. When they both agree that it
is a good match, the pet sitter watches the pet for determined period, and
eventually the services are being paid for through a system provided by
DogVacay. DogVacay keeps 20% of the price in and uses it to keep the platform running
smoothly. The pet sitters themselves can decide how much they charge. The charges
range from $15 to $25 a night for a stay in an apartment, up to $70 for a visit
in a large home with yard (Geller, 2012).
can administer themselves as either a pet host or pet owner. An important
feature is that the platform is not just based on blind trust. DogVacay checks
the hosts thoroughly. First the hosts have to fill in an eight-page
questionnaire, which is followed up with a phone-interview and reference check.
After the hosts have been approved, they are required to follow several online
training seminars. Thereafter, their advertisement is available to the pet owners.
DogVacay concept turned out to be a success. According to Henry (2015), the website books more than $80
million in annual sales and has more than 200.000 daily users. Also, they have
succeeded in their aim to decrease the demand for kennels, which it has
successfully achieved. The costs to ”vacay” a pet is around $30 per night,
which is often cheaper than kennels, which
vary from $35 to $45 per night (Allen,
2013). This significant difference has led to a disruption of the kennel
market. The kennel market revenues are slimly increasing (Baffuto, 2016),
meanwhile the revenues of DogVacay are growing rapidly (Henry, 2017).
As of March last year, DogVacay is
owned by Rover.com, the pet-sitting market leader. They announced that Rover
acquired DogVacay in a deal that moves Dogvacay’s