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|Hayley Matthews • 3/11/16|
The Short Version: “Where cat lovers greet and meet,” Purrsonals.com is the #1 dating site for finding a fellow felinophile. And with a secure screening process, easy-to-use chat features, member-generated blog posts, and the latest in cat news, Purrsonals is also a go-to social networking platform for making like-minded friends, sharing personal stories, and reveling in all things cats.
42.9 million U.S. households own a cat, according to the 2015-2016 APPA National Pet Owners Survey. But while feline fanatics do make up a significant portion of the population, it can often be difficult to find that special someone who equally shares your passion — most dating sites don’t focus on that as a matching priority.
As cat owners themselves, Sonny and Joan completely understand where you’re coming from, which is why they created Purrsonals.com.
The first dating site of its kind, Purrsonals unites cat lovers from around the world for lifelong friendships, quality dates, and, most importantly, everlasting love. Not to mention the site is also known as “The Cat Lovers Social Network,” where you can do things like watch entertaining videos, read funny “catoons,” and discuss anything and everything feline.
We talked with Founder Sonny to learn more about the special relationships people have with their furry friends, how Purrsonals.com addresses the needs of single cat lovers, and the value in doing so.
When Sonny and Joan founded Purrsonals.com in 2009, they were ahead of the game in this particular market, as the pet industry is now worth over an estimated $60.5 billion.
It’s clear that people are putting their cats (and dogs and other pets) first more than ever before, and Purrsonals has carved out an extraordinary place for those people to find exactly what and who they want in the dating world.
“With people getting older and becoming empty-nesters, they are caring more about their pets,” Sonny said.
But Purrsonals.com isn’t just for seniors or empty-nesters — it’s great for cat lovers of all ages.
“People love their cats and are happy being with someone who also has cats,” he added.
Purrsonals has been featured in popular media outlets like NPR, CNBC, and Lifetime — and numerous production companies have even expressed interest in creating a show around the site. But the main goal all along has been simple: to connect people whose cats are like their family.
“This site, for me, isn’t about making money. It’s really trying to see more cat lovers get together,” Sonny said.
“This is basically a dream come true. All I’ve ever wanted in life is someone to share the joy of cats with.” — A Purrsonals.com member
The proof that it’s working comes from the constant positive feedback Sonny and Joan receive. Singles are thankful for the personalized dating help, and felinophiles overall are grateful to have a place to call their own where they can be themselves.
“Only cat lovers truly understand the unique bond between owner and feline,” Joan writes on the website. “We’ve created a space where members know they’ll be meeting others who are just as passionate and dedicated to their pets.”
While some dating sites concentrate heavily on intricate matching algorithms and lavish features, Purrsonals.com focuses more on ease of use and simple tools that will get you meeting compatible people — and then get you offline and connecting with those people in real life.
It only takes a couple of minutes to join Purrsonals, and it’s free to create a profile, send and receive messages, use video and audio chat, upload photos, and access the active forum. You’ll also receive a free e-book that’s full of cat-related tips.
Writes Joan, “We pay special attention to detail when creating new features because we recognize that most cat owners are extremely finicky and particular in their lives and loves.”
“It’s an easy site for people to go to just because they love cats — and with the hope that they’ll meet somebody and something will come out of that,” Sonny said.
And even with thousands of members — and more signing up every day — Sonny and Joan take the time to review and verify every user to ensure the experience is safe, fun, and fruitful for all.
“We screen every person joining to keep it enjoyable for everyone,” he said.
Besides offering so much from a dating perspective, Purrsonals.com also provides members and non-members alike with the most recent cat articles (e.g., “Why Cats Are Better Than Men”), news about local and national cat shows, and a entire section for Fun Stuff — including popular Facebook pages to follow and charming poems.
And perhaps the most interactive aspect of the site is the Blogs page, where you can tell stories, ask questions and receive advice for any situation, or just relate to other cat obsessives.
What has now become one of the most well-known dating sites in this special niche started as an idea Sonny had in the middle of the night.
Working as a pet product developer in Brooklyn required Sonny to travel a lot, and he didn’t want Joan to be lonely — but the idea of her walking a dog alone at night wasn’t appealing either. So they got their first cat, a Persian named Jesse, and that’s when their love of felines began.
Not long after, during the early years of the Internet, Sonny would spend his free time buying and selling domain names. Online dating was also in its initial stages, and mainstream sites were getting a lot of attention.
Trying to fall asleep one night, Sonny kept thinking about the millions of feline-friendly singles who were looking for another cat person to share their life with, and he didn’t see anything in the dating industry specifically for them.
The original name he kept thinking of was Personals.com, referencing the old-school way singles used to find each other via newspapers. Then it clicked: Purrsonals.com was the purrfect name for a dating site for cat lovers.
Turns out the domain name was available, so Sonny bought it and immediately knew he had something amazing in his hands.
“It was really, pardon the pun, too ‘purrfect’ of a name not to be taken. They do everything for dogs, but why not cats?” he said. “I knew this could be something very big.”
And he was right. Since then, Purrsonals has been successfully filling that void in the dating space.
Purrsonals.com is a quirky site that’s doing wonders for this niche of the dating industry with its one-of-a-kind perspective, effortless dating system, and the devotion of Sonny and Joan. So whether you’re a single cat lover looking for your mate or simply a feline fanatic looking to chat about cats, check out Purrsonals.com — it’s only going to get better from here.