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August 8, 2019

4 min read

Is the Pet Care Industry Becoming Cat Curious?

There is more to the virtual orange tabby slithering down pipes and navigating through an abandoned city in the latest video game breaking the Internet. The attention that “Stray” has brought to feral cats and shelters indicates how much people adore cats. Felines not only make great pets, but they are also quite low maintenance. Historically seen as elusive and mysterious, cats have grown in popularity to become the number one pet during the pandemic in Europe. Feline furballs are lovable companions, but they can be difficult to read — this makes cat parenting a bit more complex.

Evolutionarily, cats are predisposed to hide their pain and signs of weakness. This approach helped cats survive longer in the wild, but today this means it’s harder for their humans to identify discomfort. Contrary to popular belief, cats are not entirely self-sufficient. They are social beings and depend on their owner for not only food, but also attention. To make cat-parenting less complex, there is a need to decode signs and signals that can tell us more about what our purr-pal is experiencing. To bridge this gap, innovation leaders are coming up with new solutions to solve cat-parenting challenges; and Leap Venture Studio is leading the way.

Here are some of the most innovative cat-focused companies from our Leap network:

  • Basepaws (Torrance, CA) is a cat health and genetics company, helping cat parents know their cats inside and out.
  • CATalyst Council (Annapolis, MD) brings shelters, veterinarians, and pet industry stakeholders together with health-centric initiatives and programs for the betterment of companion cats.
  • Dezi & Roo (Marietta, GA) brings outdoor adventures to indoor cats with exceptional products that are made in the USA. Dezi & Roo toys are unique, innovative, and a whole lot of fun.
  • Dr Mew (Delray Beach, FL) has created the world’s first cat toilet, called Catbox.
  • Katio (Atlanta, GA) is a cat litter box that goes in your window — just like a window A/C unit, solving the common issues like litter box placement, odor control, and containing litter spread.
  • Meowtel (San Francisco, CA) allows cat-owners to reserve an in-home cat sitter who is vetted and insured.
  • Moggie (London, UK) has created a smart-collar for cats that allows for tailored guidance & instructions to take better care of your cat.
  • Natusan (London, UK) delivers sustainable cat litter to the whole of mainland UK, reducing cat litter waste going to landfill by 51%.
  • Tabby — The Cat Person’s Dating App (Los Angeles, CA) is the best way for cat lovers and cat owners to find a compatible match and plan cat-friendly dates.
  • Toletta Cats Inc. (Kanagawa, Japan) is the IoT cat litter box from Japan that can monitor your precious cats 24/7.
  • Wildcat (San Francisco, CA) creates hyper-functional and versatile cat products that create joy and beauty in the home. Launching in 2020, their products are inspired by colors and forms found in nature, as a way to bring the outdoors in for cats to enjoy.
  • Cat in a Flat (London, UK) makes it easy to find a local, trusted cat sitter in your neighborhood.

Leap Venture Studio

Leap VentureStudio & Academy has been supporting pet care startups since 2018. Launched as a partnership between Michelson Found Animals and Mars Petcare, Leap is focused on springboarding early-stage startups working on innovative solutions for pets and their people. Through its accelerator and pre-accelerator programs, Leap has impacted over x startups globally. Several of these startups are leading innovations to improve the health and well-being of cats and make parenting felines a catwalk.

Want to learn more about Leap? Join our Slack Channel here to keep up with our programs for pet care startup founders.

Have questions? Reach us at

BY Isabel Havens

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