Bed bugs are making a comeback nationwide and the pest control industry is looking for new technology to fight the increasing pesticide-resistant insects. Perhaps the most popular weapon in bed bug-fighting arsenal – is a dog.
Dogs that have been trained to sniff out weapons, missing persons, arson, termites, drugs, and cancer, are now being trained to identify and detect bed bugs and their eggs, helping bed bug exterminators to target treatment area. The canine bed bug inspection services are now helping to detect bed bugs more efficiently.
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The average dog has 200-250 million scent receptors in the nose. Nasal membranes cover seven square meters. By comparison, human nasal membranes cover nearly half a meter and contain only 5 million receptors.
A scenting ability is very sensitive in dogs. They can smell things that cannot be detected by most sensitive scientific instruments.
A trained dog can thoroughly investigate a room and find bed bug infestations in two to three minutes, less time than it takes a human technician who must rely on visual clues that could require a careful examination of the house.
Typically, dogs can detect infestations in a three-foot radius, but may not be able to narrow it down further. For example, dogs can show that bed bugs are under the furniture but cannot indicate whether the bugs are hiding in furniture joints or cracks of the floor.
Dogs are trained to alert their handlers to the presence of bed bugs by hitting the legs or barking. Small dogs preferred because of their ability to adjust in tight spaces.