Home World A new type of detective triumphs in China: the one with pets

A new type of detective triumphs in China: the one with pets

Lorraine sang |

Beijing (BLAZETRENDS).- With an appearance far removed from the traditional anti-hero of the classic crime novel and many more technological resources, a new type of detective triumphs in China: those who dedicate their day to investigating traces of small paws and revealing remains of fur Searching for lost pets.

The economic development of the country has triggered the number of domestic animals and the spending that the population is willing to spend on them: according to official figures, it is estimated that at the end of 2022 there were 117 million pets in the country’s urban areas.

And when one is lost, its owners have the option of calling companies like Lan Ling, a kind of “A-Team” whose members will search for the missing animal with the help of technological equipment that would make the FBI itself pale.

Drones, Racing and Analytical Skills

Pet detective Liu Yin Tong shows a thermal imager used for rescue operations in Beijing, China
Pet detective Liu Yin Tong shows a thermal imaging camera used for rescue operations in Beijing, China BLAZETRENDS/EPA/Mark R. Cristino

“Pet owners are now more concerned about them and their well-being,” confirms Liu Yin Tong, leader of Lan Ling, to BLAZETRENDS.

Night vision goggles, drones, spectrometers, heat detectors, climbing ropes, pulleys and nets of all kinds, long-range radios, special lights of various powers and even water cans are just some of the tools that detectives use to do your job.

The group has its “headquarters” on the outskirts of Beijing and integrates 18 people -including several Army veterans- who meet requirements such as having athletic skills, being able to monitor surveillance cameras at high speed and having the ability to analysis and knowledge of animal behavior “because finding animals is similar to solving a case.”

“Two days ago, to rescue a cat, we had to run after it for two kilometers,” explains the expert, while stressing the importance of knowing how to anticipate what a stressed animal will do, what its reactions might be or why it ran away, since that way you can anticipate their subsequent behavior.

And if anyone knows about canine behavior, it is Luo Luo, a shepherd dog that is a key part of the team and capable of finding and dealing with his own kind, but also with cats, birds and even reptiles.

A very lucrative industry

Pet detective Liu Yin Tong shows the ID of rescue dog Luo Luo in Beijing, China. BLAZETRENDS/EPA/Mark R Cristino

In recent years, the company has rescued some 5,000 animals in Beijing and other large cities such as Shanghai or Wuhan, including not only pets, but also wild or protected animals in collaboration with the authorities.

Liu recalls his most difficult case involving a cat trapped inside a bridge pillar at the capital’s southern railway station, where the team worked simultaneously in water, air and inside the bridge for 14 hours. to save the fierce feline, from whom no one can explain how he managed to get into that place.

Although he prefers not to reveal the cost of the deployment, according to the China Youth Daily the rates for a pet detective range between 3,000 yuan (415 dollars, 379 euros) and 30,000 yuan (4,148 dollars, 3,788 euros) depending on the difficulty of the rescue and the necessary means and time.

A report by the consulting firm iiMedia Research estimates the volume of business around pets that moved in China in 2022 at 500,000 million dollars.

“Don’t buy pets, adopt”

Still, for those interviewed, not everything revolves around earnings, which help pay the bills but also allow them to spend time rescuing, curing, and finding homes for stray or abandoned animals.

“I would like to make a call: if you want a pet, consider adopting instead of buying,” Liu asked to the nods of several of his colleagues.

The growing passion for pets is also attested by the hundreds of millions of views and comments caused by the videos and stories of reuniting lost animals with their owners.

Last January, the images of the tearful reunion of an elderly woman from Hubei (center) with her dog thanks to one of these detectives touched the hearts of 50 million Chinese Internet users.

Going to social networks is, in fact, one of the tactics used by professionals in parallel to the search through more sophisticated means.

This is how a young woman from Zhejiang (east) found her cat last March, which thanks to the information provided by other Internet users could be rescued in extremis 1,600 kilometers from her home along with several dozen more cats kidnapped bound for a slaughterhouse, according to what the South China Morning Post published at the time.

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