Petsi AI

We help to find lost cats and dogs

Photo of Alexey Gavrilov
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I confirm that I am fully aware of the eligibility criteria and terms of the Purina BetterwithPets Prize and, based on its description, I am eligible to apply:

  • Yes, I’m eligible
  • Yes, I’m 18 years old or older

Should you be successful, please confirm your availability to attend:

  • Additional Skype interview(s) during the week of March 16-20th 2020
  • The Purina BetterwithPets Forum in Paris, on 3-4th of June 2020

Initiative's representative name

Alexey Gavrilov

Initiative's representative date of birth


Initiative's representative gender

  • Man

Headquarters location: country

  • Russia

Headquarters location: city


Where are you making a difference?

Russia, Moscow

Website or social media url(s)

Date Started


Focus Areas

  • Fostering emotional intelligence and behavioural competences

What is your current yearly budget for the initiative? If you are an idea stage, what early budget you would need to kick-off and run operations in your first year?

  • €100k - €250k

Organisation Type

  • nonprofit/NGO: an organisation that uses its resources to achieve a purpose outside of creating profit
  • civil society: a community of citizens linked by common interests

1. Founding story: Share a story about the "Aha!" moment that led the founder(s) to get started or the story of how you saw the potential for this project to succeed.

I am a programmer who use in daily practise machine learning algorithms. My friends work in some charity funds(ecology and prevention of orphanhood) and their experience inspired me to think about what can I do with social projects. I found that people who left their pets spent much time exploring lost pets message boards. We can reduce this time by auto matching lost pet’s photo with pets’ photos found by other people. So this is a story about my project’s main idea.

2. The problem: What problem are you helping to solve?

The probability of finding your pet in social networks is very low. Every day in Russia about 1000 pets are lost. About 7% dogs and 25% cats are lost forever(, so about 25000 dogs and about 90000 cats are lost forever every year. Our goal is to increase the number of people who found their lost pets. New technologies like machine learning and data science can facilitate and accelerate search for lost pets

3. Your solution: How are you planning to solve this problem? Share your specific approach.

Fortunately, people in Russia care about lost pets. If some person sees a (possibly lost) pet without an owner, he can take it home and/or take photos and upload photos on online lost message boards(for example,,,, etc) The problem is that there are many resources so you should visit all of them so your search is accidental cause of big data set to explore. We aggregate photos, titles, descriptions, geo and another meta-data from many resources to train our machine learning algorithms. If pet’s owner uploads pet’s photo in our system, we can show him pets from message boards that are most similar to his query. If a photo is in our system, we can help to reunite lost pet and his owner.

4. Innovation: How are you innovating or using unique approaches to solve the problem?

Our project is the first service in Russia that provides lost pet’s search using machine learning and computer vision.

5. How does your project harness the pet-human bond to help people develop important social competencies (For example: emotional intelligence, collaboration, empathy, resilience, inclusivity) and overcome serious societal issues (for example: violence, abuse, trauma, isolation, abandonment)?

Our project is designed to decrease the time of lost pets’ search. It can reduce risks of: * Pet’s trauma or death; * Suffering and despair pet and pet’s owner. Another idea is to increase the number of volunteers, people who can take a photo lost pet and public it on lost pets message boards or can take it home for some time. If we popularize our service then searching for lost pets becomes centralized. It can increase number of people who involved in lost pet’s problem.

6. Impact: how has your project made a difference so far in terms of both business outputs and social impact? How do you plan on measuring progress?

Our project is nonprofit. We measure our performance as the number of lost pets that were found. We started with two people, now 10 people are active. Most of us are OpenDataScience( members.

7. Growth strategies: what are your main strategies for scaling your impact?

In addition to data aggregation we can: * Collect data from all russian’s lost pets message boards, including social networks like Facebook, Instagram and Vkontakte. Now we have only part of them. * Improve our current algorithms and develop new * Inspire people to create pet’s account in our resource before it’s lost. If person loses his pet we can notify him about new similar photos

8. Creating shared value: How does your initiative create value for different stakeholders?

We are creating social value by taking part in social relevant project. We share our research and data with everybody so we facilitate other projects. We write articles( about problem so we attract society’s attention to the problem.

9. Financial sustainability plan: can you tell us about your plan to fund your project and how that plan will be sustainable in the short, medium, and long term?

Project’s lifetime is about 1 year and is funded by its members, so it’s conditionally independent of market. We plan to use donates, grants and maybe ads.

10. Team: what is the current composition of your team (types of roles, qualifications, full-time vs. part-time, board members, etc.), and how do you plan to evolve the team’s composition as the project grows?

Product owner, Manager, GR-manager, PR-manager, Advert-manager. Technical Department: Software Architect, Team-lead, Front-end programmer, Back-end programmer, Data-scientist, Deep learning engineer, DevOps. Everyone on full-time.

11. How do you plan to influence your field of work if you are a winner of this edition of the Purina BetterwithPets Prize?

1) Buy a more powerful server 2) Pay to people who works fulltime 3) Pay for service promotion 4) Improve current service design

12. How did you hear about this challenge?

  • Recommended by others


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