This New App Is Like "Uber For Dogs", Allows People To Find Shelter Dogs To Hang Out With — VIDEO

LONDON, ENGLAND - AUGUST 02: Molly the Staffordshire Bull terrier is taken for a walk at Battersea Dogs & Cats Home as she awaits a possible new owner on August 2, 2010 in London, England. Battersea Dogs & Cats Home rehome or return to their owners around 5,000 animals a year, however many dogs have to be put down because they are unsuitable to rehome despite being physically healthy. Last year the animal shelter had to put 2815 dogs to sleep. 321 of those because they were banned breeds, 482 for medical reasons, 81 due to behavioral problems and 1931 because of their temperament and aggressive nature which pose a risk to the public. 43 per cent of the dogs that come in to the dog's home are Staffordshire Bull terriers. Known as 'Staffies' these dogs and similar crossbreeds are increasingly popular within gang culture as a status symbol, however, once abandoned they are very difficult to rehome due to their aggressive temperament. (Photo by Dan Kitwood/Getty Images)
Source: Dan Kitwood/Getty Images News/Getty Images

Good news for dogless dog-lovers out there: you may soon be able to get your “puppy fix” by taking shelter dogs for walks, all with the help of an easy-to-use mobile app. San Fransisco-based couple Charlie and Cristina Saunders are working to release Walkzee, an app that would pair potential-dog walkers with pups from shelters. The couple began the project after visiting Hawaii for their honeymoon. While there, they stopped by the Kauai Humane Society, which has a “Shelter Dogs on Field Trips” program that allows visitors to borrow a dog for the day, and took a dog named “Big Z” (pictured below) out hiking. They were so impressed by the program that they now want to bring it to a wider audience. Charlie Saunders told The Huffington Post:

While on the walk we talked about how amazing it was as a program. … So many dog lovers don't have a dog to spend time with, because of their job or home situation. Meanwhile, so many dogs wait for a walk in a shelter. We think this is crazy.

So their next step was to start Walkzee, a program designed to match dog walkers with shelter dogs, sort of like a canine version of Uber. The app would work by having shelters list information about available dogs; then users could search for dogs by location. The app would then tell them how to connect with the shelters (allowing shelters to maintain their own borrowing procedures and policies). The app would be free to use for both the walkers and the shelters.

The app sounds like a solid win-win for everyone involved: Dog lovers who can’t have their own dogs (due to housing restrictions or unruly schedules, for instance) get a chance to grab some dog time, the shelters get dog walking volunteers, and the dogs get some much-needed one-on-one attention, as well as exposure to potential adopters. It would also be a great app to use on vacations; how many times have you visited a gorgeous park or hiking spot and thought, “This would be so much better with a dog”?

The couple hope to launch Walkzee in June. The program has already reached its original Kickstarter goal of 20 thousand dollars, which will fund the Walkzee website. Further donations will be put toward developing the Walkzee mobile app. Check out Walkzee’s Kickstarter page, or visit them on Facebook. Find out more info in the video below.


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Image: Getty Images; walkzee/Facebook

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