Utne Blogs > Environment

Bedbug Dogs Sniff the Pests Away

by Emily Schnobrich 


Tags: Environment, bedbugs, dogs, pest control, DDT, pesticides, The Atlantic,

A Sniffing DogYou wake to tiny red bites along your arm and panic overwhelms you: You have bedbugs. Before calling pest control, The Atlantic reports that you could consider employing a bedbug dog, trained to sniff out the critters and their eggs. 

Bedbugs’ tiny size, and their ability to survive more than a year without food, make them a tricky pest to purge. Now that nasty pesticides like DDT have fallen out of favor, pest control companies are using more “environmentally sensitive”—and admittedly less mighty—methods to control the bugs. Dogs can thus save time, headache, and unnecessary treatment by accurately deciphering pest problems before taking action. In fact, The Atlantic reports that “A controlled experiment by entomologists at the University of Florida found that dogs were 98 percent accurate in locating live bedbugs in hotel rooms.”

For more on eco-friendly bug killers, read about pest control with a conscience from Utne Reader's January-February 2008 issue.

Source: The Atlantic 

Image by Pink Sherbet Photography , licensed under Creative Commons

livinghealthy
4/25/2014 9:13:21 AM

I hate pests! I recently had a problem with three wasps nests being in the roof of my home and they were getting into the house and stinging me and my dog. I decided to call up a http://e-pestcontrol.co.uk company and they came in and did a fantastic job. Not something I would have liked to have done myself for sure.


rena_2
7/8/2009 1:19:20 PM

Bed bugs are a real problem. I just got back from a mountain resort getaway and got attacked - 17 bites that freaked me out. Got home washed and vacuumed everything...what a pain. The article in Utne talks about dogs being trained to sniff out the problem...BUT I wish it would say more ...like once they are confirmed, what then? ...and where are these dogs trained? ...who does the training? An article with more info would be appreciated. Rena