Interview with Doobert: ride-sharing for the animal rescue world

By May 26, 2021Blog

At Pet Pardon, we’re always looking for ways to help more at-risk animals. When we see an organization making a difference, we like to give them a shout-out. Get to know Doobert.

Doobert’s founder and president, Chris Roy, combined his passions for animals and aviation to help transport shelter dogs from high-kill locations to areas where they were more likely to be adopted. Chris has had the fun of flying hundreds of animals to new locations. But organizing the transport operation was far less enjoyable, so Chris decided to build a system to coordinate the trips.

Doobert brings animal shelter and rescue organizations together into a common platform to collaborate, share information and to provide ways to help transport animals where they need to go. Since launching in 2014, Doobert has grown to support thousands of volunteers and over 1,200 organizations across North America.

We asked Chris to tell us more about his organization’s goals and how it works.

1.     Tell us a little bit about yourself

I’m an IT guy in my “day” job. As an IT Portfolio Director for Johnson Controls, I manage a global team of project managers to deliver ~$125MM of IT projects annually. I’m also an avid pilot and am multi-engine, commercially rated. I’m supported by my beautiful wife Daphne (17 years married) and loved by our fur kids: Maddy (dog), Mina, Gracie, Ash and Ember (cats). I was born in New Jersey (army brat) and have been in Milwaukee since 1990 when I went to Marquette University.

2.     How did become involved in animal causes? 

Like many others, I fell into animal rescue in about 2008 when I was asked if I could fly down to pick up some dogs in Kentucky to bring them back to Milwaukee. Not really knowing the “why” behind this, I was simply excited at the opportunity to fly and to play with dogs of course. After that, my name started to get shared and I was getting calls from all over the country. I kept saying “there has to be an app for this,” one where people could indicate the days and times and distances they were available. Since no app existed, I decided to create it and the idea for Doobert was born.

3.     What is Doobert?

The name Doobert actually came from one of my cats. Our mission is to support people who are helping animals by providing them the technology and tools they need. Most people know Doobert as the “Volunteer Uber” of the animal rescue world but the Doobert system has continued to grow over the years to do even more. We help organizations to partner with one another and to see which animals are available to transfer, in real time. We support local rides, rescue relay transports and even transports using shelter vans, or commercial vehicles.

We are proud to support more than 1,200 organizations and 27,000 volunteers across the United States and Canada. This year we’re building out our foster capabilities, furthering our transport options to specialized transports, like clinic rides, and even adding more podcasts to our educational offerings to raise more awareness of people helping animals. We also want to keep expanding our offerings to support animal rescuers in other countries.

4.     Is there anything that you want people know about animal rescue?

Animal rescue is something universal that people around the world have in common. It’s been such a pleasure to connect with people across the globe who are positively affecting the lives of animals. The challenges for animals may differ in different countries, but the passion for them and the desire to help them exists everywhere.

There are so many ways that people can help and our podcast is geared towards raising awareness so that people can find the right way to get plugged in. You don’t just have to volunteer at a local animal shelter to make a difference (though that certainly is a good way). Whether you are a marketer, photographer, IT guy or even an attorney, there’s a role you can play in helping animals. And if you’re not sure where to plug in, please ask us. We’d love to help.

5.     How can people get involved with Doobert?

The easiest way for people to get involved is to become one of our Dooberteers. You can easily sign up and choose how you want to help as a transporter, foster home, or even a photographer. If you work with an organization like a rescue or a shelter, we have even more capabilities to support your life-saving work.

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