The answers to the most frequently asked questions. If you need more info, please contact us.
You don’t have to be a bed bug detective to search your own home for bed bugs. Visual inspections can be done by people who know what they are looking for. Bed bugs can often be found by looking for small black stains, which are the bed bug droppings. These marks are easily seen on light-colored bedding. Sometimes when an engorged bed bug is crushed it will disgorge blood, leaving visible stains. Crushing bed bugs will produce a unique sickly sweet scent, which can also be detected in the air in a severe infestation.
You can look to see if you can identify the fecal stains, egg cases, and exuviae (shed skins) in crevices and cracks on or near beds. Inspect all the seams, creases, tufts and folds of mattresses and box springs. You should also look at other areas such as under wallpaper, behind picture frames, in sofas and other furniture, in bed springs, and even in articles of clothing. While fecal stains and skin casts suggest that bed bugs have been present, these do not confirm that the infestation is still active. Finding one bed bug does not mean that your home is infested and that is why it is important to know where and how many more your home may have.
Searching for bed bugs can be challenging because they are small, flat, and adept at squeezing themselves into tiny spaces. They can hide in places we’d never think of looking for them, like behind loose wallpaper or under electrical switch plates. The best way to detect for bed bugs is through use of a certified bed bug detecting canine paired with a thorough and complete visual inspection.
There are a number of eco-friendly bed bug treatment methods. Examples of non-chemical solutions are Cryonite instant freeze or thermal heating programs. In addition to these completely non-chemical solutions, there are a number of eco-friendly insecticides that have been specifically approved by the EPA as safe and non-harmful.
There are a number of specific things to look for when trying identify bed bugs. Bed bugs are flat, wingless creatures. Adult bed bugs are about 3/16-inch (5mm) long, 1/8-inch (3mm) wide, brown to reddish-brown, with oval, flat bodies – not too small to see. This is a common misconception when identifying bed bugs. The newly-hatched nymphs resemble the adults, but are smaller and somewhat lighter in color and appear translucent. Though bed bugs in all stages can be seen by the naked eye, bed bug nymphs can be too small to provide a positive confirmation without using a microscope to identify bed bugs.
Dogs have over 300,000 more scent glands than human and detect the presences of bed bugs without the use of sight. For centuries, dogs have been employed by the military and law enforcement to help with search and rescue. Since bed bugs can harbor inside furniture such mattresses and sofas making visual identification virtually impossible, bed bug detecting dogs can rely solely on the scent of the live bed bugs and viable eggs to detect them.
Based on an independent study conducted by the University of Florida, NESDCA certified bed bug detecting dogs have a demonstrated accuracy of over 98% in detecting the scent of live bed bugs and viable bed bug eggs.
Here you can learn more by reading the study: http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/18767752
If a bed bug detecting canine confirms presence of bed bugs in your home or office, there are a number of different things that you can and should do. Generally, it’s always good to confirm the work of the dog with a visual inspection. Although bed bugs will not always be visible, this double confirmation should be attempted. If and when bed bugs are detected, it’s always wise to evaluate all of your different treatment options available so that you can make an educated choice on what the best solution is going to be for your particular problem. Also, one of the benefits of using a bed bug detecting canine is that it can usually be determined if the problem is isolated to a specific area, or widespread in a larger area. These factors will also weigh in when it comes to determining the extent of the required treatment.
There are a number of different ways to prevent bed bugs and decisions that you can make in your everyday lives that will help decrease your likelihood of running into bed bugs. First off, all of your mattresses and box springs should be encased in encasements that have designed specifically to protect against bed bugs. The spread of bed bugs is often attributed to an increase in travel. Prior to traveling, make sure to check websites such as http://www.bedbugregistry.com/ to see if your vacation location has been affected by bed bugs. Always use the luggage rack in hotel rooms and thoroughly check the beds and furniture for bed bugs in each hotel room prior to settling in.
If the infestation is recent and isolated, some self-remedies such as laundering, vacuuming, steaming and rubbing alcohol can be very effective methods to get rid of bed bugs. With the help of a NESDCA certified bed bug dog, we can help you locate and pinpoint problem areas. If the infestation is non-isolated or severe, you should contact a licensed professional to help eliminate bed bugs.
Eliminating bed bugs is not difficult but locating all the bed bugs is extremely difficult. There are a number of different proven eco-friendly bed bug treatment programs in the industry today that include combating bed bugs with insecticides, Cryonite instant freeze, thermal heat treatments and Vikane fumigation. It is important to know that there is never going to be one silver bullet that will tackle all sides of every situation. All of these aforementioned methods have their individual advantages and disadvantages. For assistance or consultation about bed bug treatment, you should contact a licensed, certified and insured exterminator.