LOCAL PET care start-ups in the city have reached out to pet owners by facilitating services such as quick delivery of food and medical supply as well as online vet consultation in the wake of the extended lockdown.
The demand for such services has gone up for both the start-ups as not only solo pet owners but also shelters and local feeders have been to their customer base.
Vartika Tripathi, co-founder of one of the start-ups Pawshbox, said while normally, they had around 80 to 90 new subscribers for their customised pet box, the requests had increased to 250 to 300 in a matter of 21 days.
“With all the pet supply shops as well as poultry shops shut, several concerned pet owners reached out to us for their pet’s needs. We had anticipated such a situation will arise and, hence, we had ordered in bulk from our suppliers as ordering from them now will not be possible. Dry kibbles and wet gravy food are running low as production has stopped at manufacturing units. First, we delivered a box to our regular customers so that they are prepared for the next one month or so. Now, we are stocked up for two rounds of new orders till the end of May,” she said.
She also said apart from solo pet owners, her start-up had also received orders from local shelter bodies and feeders.
On a normal day, while they fed dogs and cats a meal mixed with chicken, after the lockdown they were relying heavily on packaged foods, Tripathi added.
The other start-up has also started contactless food and medical supply delivery with online payment options. “We tailor our food for dogs and cats considering that they fulfil the nutritional value and are gluten free. After the outbreak, many pet owners are concerned about their pet’s immunity as well as their hygiene and grooming. The miscommunication around COVID-19 has also led to many abandoning their pets and we received a call from a person who rescued a pet dog but was unsure how to tend to its needs,” said Anushka Iyer, founder of the other start-up Wiggles.
The start-ups are also taking virtual vet consultations for pet owners, where you can talk to a vet from basic consultations regarding vaccination to severe ailments in older pets.
As for delivery, the package reaches within a matter of one to three days. “Sometimes, it is last-minute ordering from the customer’s side. Hence, we need to attend to it immediately,” said Tripathi.
While these pet care start-ups function out of Pune, they wish to extend services to other target cities like Mumbai, Delhi, Bengaluru and Hyderabad.
“We have received several requests from our pan-India customers but due to travel restrictions, we are unable to cater to them,” Iyer said
📣 The Indian Express is now on Telegram. Click here to join our channel (@indianexpress) and stay updated with the latest headlines