Meet the young man who created SA’s 1st Lost Pet Reuniting mobile app

Logan Hing created the pet reuniting mobile app, “Oh Whizkers” when a lost puppy landed on his doorstep, which he adopted when he couldn’t locate its owners.

By: Thanduxolo “Thandz” Buti
Images courtesy of Logan Hing

According to data from market research firm Euromonitor, released in 2014, South Africa had about 9.1 million dogs and 2.4 million cats. There is little doubt that those numbers have definitely increased since the release of the study.

With those numbers of pets, there is also a high number of lost animals who eventually become stray animals.

We also cannot discount the many animals that run away from their homes due to abuse and neglect.

This has seen a rise in local websites dedicated to lost and found pets.

However, there has never been a local mobile app that is solely dedicated to finding lost and found pets.

This is what inspired Logan to create a more interactive mobile app dedicated to lost and found animals.

Oh Whizkers mobile app

Logan first conceptualised the app, in 2016, for his multimedia design graduation project, at University of Johannesburg (UJ), where he was specialising in user experience.

The idea first came to him after he had to raise a puppy that was found abandoned in a veld, in Johannesburg South.

After an intense search – which included Facebook, Whatsapp and neighbourhood watch – to reunite the pet with its rightful owners bore no results, he adopted the puppy and named her Jade.

“That experience always had me wondering if there could be another way to make it easier to reunite missing pets with their families,” explains Logan.

“People should think of this app as Facebook for pet owners/lovers.”

People can download the app for free and create profiles for their pets. The app allows people to create profiles according to the amount of pets they own.

I definitely think it’s worth it to have the app if we want to cultivate a world that is much warmer to animals and cares about their well-being. – Logan

To register, pet owners put down the pet name, gender, photo, breed and location.

With just a click of a button, the app uses a geolocation tag and alerts all the people on the app within a 20km radius.

The pet owners/ animal lovers at close proximity can then help locate the missing pet or send an alert if it’s found.

Logan adds that you don’t necessarily have to own a pet to register on the app.

“We have another feature for animal lovers, who don’t own pets, which allows them to snap a photo of a pet they might have found and it instantly alerts people within the 20km radius.

“If someone is missing a pet or someone knows of someone missing one then that information can be shared instantly,” he adds.

Logan’s love for animals motivated him to create Oh Whizkers.

Logan reveals that creating the app came with an army of challenges. At first he struggled to find a developer.

He now faces the challenge of making more people aware of the app.

“We have so many pet owners in Johannesburg, alone,” he shares.

“Our main goal is to get as many of those pet owners on the app because that’s when it can be more effective and have more impact.”

Logan notes that the app will play a crucial role in ensuring that many stray animals are taken off the streets.

“I definitely think it’s worth it to have the app if we want to cultivate a world that is much warmer to animals and cares about their well-being,” he explains.

“This app is a great way of getting people to come together and create a world where animal rights and animal safety become a priority.”

I am always striving to be a good person and I love to see people happy. This app is just another way for me to create a more loving and caring society. – Logan

Logan foresees Oh Whizkers becoming a permanent feature in people’s lives.

“I know personally what it’s like to lose a pet, and I know many people who also know how that feels like.

I believe with this app we can build a world where we not only give back to our community but also ensure the safety of animals.”

Logan further adds that many people are still unaware of the value pets add to our lives. Besides protecting us “they also teach us responsibility, loyalty and unconditional love”.

Logan with one of his dogs.

Another motive for the app is to bring people together through the love of animals.

He adds that it’s a small step towards creating a community where people talk and interact more with one another.

“We want to create a forth feature that will allow people to create community groups. Through those groups, people can arrange group dog walks/ runs, or park days with their pets etc.”

The product designer, budding visual artist and art collector, says his intention has always been to share his love for people and animals.

“I am always striving to be a good person and I love to see people happy. This app is just another way for me to create a more loving and caring society.”

You can download the Oh Whizkers app for free on Google Play (For android) or the App Store (For Apple).

Instagram: @ohwhizkers

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