Jim Carrey and ‘Ace Ventura' made us famous but the work is very serious
In 1994, the series of movies made famous by Jim Carrey hit theaters and the phrase pet detectives sky rocketed into the English language. It was initially associated with "the silly" but over the years, the phrase pet detectives would transform and take on an entirely new meaning.
Pet Detectives, Inc.
In 2005, when I switched my investigative agency from humans to missing animals, I decided to name my company Pet Detectives, Inc. The phrase although popular, was not being used seriously by anyone involved in missing pets. I took a chance on using the phrase because frankly I could find no other moniker that explained what I did. The risk turned out to be worth it, and over the next few years I was able to overcome the comedy of the phrase pet detectives and begin to establish credibility as my repurposed title took on a new meaning in a new industry.
Fast forward a few years...
An organization that had been training lost pet consultants began to use the term pet detectives for their online training. I opted to stop using the term. However, the term, "pet detectives" was now forever ingrained in popular culture as someone who looks for lost pets.
Not just any Ace
Today, when a pet goes missing many pet owners google "pet detectives" as they search for someone who can help them find their lost pet. Many, however, may not understand the difference between a professional when compared to a hobbyist. Those that do this work professionally can be lumped in with those who have limited or no experience finding lost pets.
Getting help from pet detectives... or anyone.
When a pet goes missing, pet owners should consider many factors before allowing anyone to help them in the search for their missing family member. I have re-worked countless cases where the pet owner was sent in the wrong direction by well meaning "pet detectives" or volunteers. In some cases, free help can turn out be the most expensive. In one case it resulted in the death of the missing dog while in many others, the time wasted in those first crucial days and weeks resulted in wasted efforts as the families were sent in the wrong direction based on the lack of training and experience of self proclaimed pet detectives.
Ask plenty of questions before hiring anyone.