Baroo, a Boston-based pet care startup, shut down operations on Wednesday after expanding to five major markets and having raised $3.5 million from investors.
Lindsay Hyde and Meg Reiss, Baroo’s co-founders, announced the news in a note to customers on its website this week.
“Together, we shared over 130,000 playdates with over 5,500 pets in five major metro markets,” they wrote. “However, as with any start-up, like Baroo, that is pushing innovative approaches and something totally new: sometimes you don’t make it.”
Founded in 2014, Baroo was founded as a full-service pet concierge service that partners with luxury rental apartments. The company’s investors included Birchaven Group, Merrick Ventures and The Graduate Syndicate, a seed fund run by Jeff Bussgang of Flybridge Capital Partners that focuses on startups founded by recent Harvard Graduates.
Despite Baroo’s efforts to focus on providing dog walking and pet-sitting services to high-end rental buildings, the startup faced steep competition from well-funded companies that serve more cities.
Wag, for instance, was founded the same year as Baroo, but it has expanded to more than 100 cities after raising exorbitant amounts of venture capital. A few weeks ago, the Los Angeles-based company raised a $300 million round from Japanese tech giant SoftBank.
Seattle-based Rover, a competitor that has been around longer than Wag or Baroo, serves 10,000 cities and has raised $155 million. In Baroo’s farewell note, the startup said it has partnered with Rover to help customers receive continued service.
“Thank you all so much for trusting us with your best friends, and for helping us grow from a small, Boston-based operation to a national brand servicing thousands of customers every month,” Hyde and Reiss wrote.