You may have seen the Jim Carey film ‘Ace Ventura: Pet Detective’, but did you realise that there are actually pet detectives in real life? If you’ve ever had a cat go missing, you’ll know how distressing it can be, so having a team of people on hand who search for lost pets for a living can be a blessing.
Who are the Pet Detectives?
Pet detective companies are dedicated to tracking down missing pets; mainly cats and dogs, but also birds, reptiles and other household animals. If your cat goes missing they’ll search for him, using various methods, and their success rate is usually high. Pet detectives are generally animal lovers themselves, with a good understanding of cat behaviour and extensive experience in how to effectively search for missing pets.
Why should I choose a Pet Detective?
If your cat goes missing, you can try to find him yourself – putting up posters, asking around your neighbourhood and searching in your local area. Read our article on How to find your missing cat for more information. Often though, time is of the essence, and a professional team of pet detectives are likely to have more resources at their disposal.
Pet industry contacts
Pet detectives will have established contacts in the pet and animal world, such as vets and animal shelters, and in fact they’re often one of the first ports of call when a ‘found’ animal is brought into a shelter.
Assistance with search techniques
You can post a photo of your missing cat on their website, and they can assist you with flyers and posters as well as door-knocking in your local neighbourhood. Pet detectives know the right questions to ask, and are less likely to let emotions get in the way of their search.
Understand why pets go missing and lost cat behaviour
With their extensive experience in missing pets they understand the common reasons for pets going missing (e.g. have you just welcomed a new and crying baby into the house?), and understand lost cat behaviour. Unlike dogs that will often travel great distances when they become separated from their family, cats are territorial and more likely to be hiding somewhere nearby as a result of being chased by a dog or getting into a fight with another cat. A cat that finds itself in unfamiliar territory is likely to be scared and seek somewhere to hide e.g. under your neighbours house or under bushes in the garden. A scared or injured cat is also likely to hide in silence to avoid being discovered by predators. They won’t meow even when they recognise your voice and hear you calling their name.
Understand human behaviour
They understand human behaviour – what people tend to do when they find a missing cat, why people steal other people’s cats (thankfully this is rare, unless you own an exotic breed) and they are often also experienced in resolving pet ownership disputes.
Modern surveillance techniques, traps and psychics
In addition to traditional pet finding techniques pet detectives use modern surveillance techniques such as night vision wildlife cameras, amplified listening devices, and can help with setting humane traps to recapture your cat. Some pet detective agencies will even work with psychics to help find your lost pet.
A pet detective agency is a business, so be prepared to pay for their services, but in the long run you may just find that it’s worth it to maximise your chances of being reunited and getting your beloved family pet back home with you again as quickly as possible.
Have you ever used a pet detective to find your missing cat? Please share…