uniteddogs.jpgUnited Dogs & Cats, a company that manages the social networking websites for pet owners, Uniteddogs.com and Unitedcats.com, has raised an undisclosed round of funding from Ambient Sound Investments.

The Estonian company is the latest European clone of a U.S. Internet company. It competes against Dogster, the San Francisco company that launched in 2004 and runs popular sites Dogster, Catster and other sites.

ud.jpgDogster has been growing steadily, having last year raised $1 million from angel investor Jeff Clavier and others. That company has essentially been profitable, but has poured resources into growth, and so is really only breaking even, according to Dogster chief executive Ted Rheingold.

Other similar sites include Fuzzster, Backwash Pets, PawSpot and PetsinCommon.

Of course, a multitude of venture-backed pet sites was the hallmark of the last bubble. Those sites, including Pets.com, were the first to crash when advertising dried up. However, it has become a cliche to cry out “bubble!” anytime we something similar to last time. Fact is, things are much saner this time around. Both Dogster and UnitedDogs appear to be raising prudent amounts of money.

Ambient has invested small amounts of cash into 13 early-stage companies, most in Eastern Europe, but some in Asia and the U.S. Its investments include Blip.TV.

Ambient, an Estonian firm run by four early engineers of Skype, will own a 15 percent stake of the company after the investment.

Like at Dogster, United Dogs & Cats lets you create a homepage for your pet, upload and comment on photos and videos, keep pet blogs and share stories with other pet owners.

UDC launched in March in Estonia, and then released an English version in May. In addition, UDC also has released new versions in German, French, Dutch and Latvian. UDC said it will add new languages to its portfolio. Co-founder Ragnar Sass said he is adding a new language to the company’s websites practically every week. This is one area where rival Dogster has been slow to move.

On name alone, however, Dogster wins this battle. It is so much more memorable than UnitedDogs.

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