Rover launches in-home pet grooming service in bid for global pet care domination

(Rover Photo)

Rover today unveiled the newest tool in its quest for global pet care domination: grooming.

The well-funded Seattle startup has been testing an in-home pet grooming service for more than nine months, and in that time pet owners scheduled more than 2,000 groomings. Today it is launching the new service, which the company hopes will disrupt the $2.5 billion pet grooming industry, in Rover’s hometown of Seattle as well as Austin, Texas. The service will expand to additional markets later this year.

Rover says nearly half of dog owners use professional grooming services regularly. But available options are inconvenient for owners, can cause anxiety in pets and have not kept up with technology for things like scheduling. Rover’s groomers come to the owners’ homes, which means the pet is on its own turf and should be more comfortable with the process.

“We think that the world sorely needs a high-quality, hassle-free grooming offering in the market today,” Rover CEO Aaron Easterly said in a statement. “By eliminating the hassle of traditional grooming options, we are making it easier for people to be amazing pet parents.”

(Rover Photo)

Rover will offer grooming services such as a “cut, bath, brushout, ear cleaning, nail trimming and gland expression,” according to a press release. Groomers bring their own pop-up salon, set up where the owner wants and clean up when they’re done. Prices vary based on the pet’s breed and weight.

Groomers for Rover have to pass a safety evaluation and background check. Rover requires its groomers have previous professional experience.

In addition to the new grooming service, Rover is marking another milestone today. The company will be cutting the ceremonial ribbon on a new office in Spokane, Wash. The company has more than 70 employees in the Eastern Washington city, and the area is home to more than 12,000 pet owners, pet sitters and dog walkers on Rover.

Rover has raked in serious cash in recent years, and it is using those funds to rapidly expand both its geographic footprint and the services it offers. Last May, Rover landed a $155 million funding round, one of the largest cash infusions for a Pacific Northwest company in recent history.

Since then, Rover accelerated its expansion in Europe with a key acquisition, made its entrance in Latin America and scooped up a new headquarters office space in Seattle. Rover branched out beyond its sweet spot of dogs and began offering cat services earlier this year.

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