HouseMyDog, the online community that enables dog owners to find and book local, trusted dog walkers and sitters, has merged with leading European competitor, Gudog. The merger makes the company the largest platform of dog walkers in Europe and a front-runner in the pet services space, with more than 25,000 approved dog sitters and walkers in over 70 cities across eight European countries, including the UK, Ireland, Spain, France, Germany, Switzerland, Austria, and Belgium.

HouseMyDog was established in Dublin in 2015 when founding brothers Timothy and James McElroy had difficulty finding a reliable dog sitter and walker for their family dog, Holly. The company has grown significantly since then, and now has offices in Dublin, London and Berlin.

Madrid-based Gudog was founded by Loly Garrido and Javier Cuevas when they also saw the need for a trusted platform for dog owners to find pet care. The company is the market leader in Spain and is growing rapidly in France and Germany. The pair will assume the roles of CPO and CTO respectively.

James McElroy, co-founder of HouseMyDog, comments: “We’ve had a close relationship with the Gudog team since we met in 2016. We admire what they have achieved and their passion for the community they have built. While today’s announcement makes strategic sense in combining our market share to accelerate our growth, we are also delighted to be working with a team that shares the same values and vision for the future of pet services in Europe.”

Loly Garido, co-founder of Gudog, comments: “We are delighted to combine the HouseMyDog and Gudog teams. The merger is a natural step as both companies operate a similar model and the experience and skillset of the teams strongly complement each other. This merger is a big step forward in creating Europe’s most trusted pet services platform.”

The merger will see competition heating up in the £130 billion pet care market after US firm Rover acquired European player Dogbuddy in 2018. Investment in the US increased in this space significantly last year with US-based on-demand dog walking and sitting platform Wag raising $300 million in January 2018 from SoftBank.HouseMyDog and Gudog will continue to operate under their existing brands and will roll into a single brand in early 2019. With a current headcount of 21, the merged company expects to more than double revenue in 2019 and plans to grow the team to 35 to drive this European growth.

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