Bed bugs are small. Really small. But they aren’t so small that you can’t see them. Even a newly hatched bed bug, which is only about 1mm in length, can be seen with the naked eye. Its size isn’t what makes a bed bug so difficult to detect; it is the fact that these insects avoid detection. Today, we’re going to talk about how bed bugs behave and how K9 Detection works to find these elusive pests.
The relationship between bed bugs and light is essential to understand if you want to detect these insects in your Dallas business. Some call bed bugs nocturnal insects, and this is somewhat accurate. They tend to emerge from hiding at night when carbon dioxide levels rise in their environment. Those rising carbon dioxide levels let bed bugs know that there is a warm-blooded animal sleeping nearby because warm-blooded animals exhale more CO2 while sleeping. But they may come out during the day if their environment is dark and they are able to draw a blood meal. This is why bed bug infestations are able to take root in businesses where you might not expect them, businesses like movie theaters.
When bed bugs find places to hide from the light, they select tight spaces. This is because bed bugs are thigmotactic. They like to be squeezed. So they’ll find gaps, cracks, recesses, seams, or pockets to hide in. When you open a bag to search for bed bugs, you’re probably not going to see them crawling around all over the place. They’re more likely to be tucked away somewhere out of view inside the bag. You’ll need to open gaps and creases and use a flashlight to look into pockets.
Don’t let the name fool you. As we just touched on, bed bugs can be found in bags and other carriable items. If you only inspect beds for bed bugs, you’re likely to miss them. You’re also likely to miss them if you only check moveable objects. These bugs can hide behind baseboards, under carpets, and inside wall voids. This can make them extremely difficult to detect.
Dogs have a powerful sense of smell that works like x-ray vision. If a bed bug is hiding in complete darkness, tucked inside the pocket of a duffel bag, its smell will give it away. Our trained bed bug inspectors are able to quickly find the scent and alert technicians to the presence of bed bugs. While it takes some finesse to make sure those bugs aren’t so deep that their scent is weak enough to elude detection, trainers have been able to reduce the margin of error down to about five percent. But, even at five percent, K9 Detectors still have human inspectors beat. The common claim by experts is that dogs are around 95 percent accurate and human inspectors are around 35 percent accurate. But it is important to understand that this 95 percent accuracy is not achieved by the dog alone. It is a combination of dog, handler, and pest control team. These three parts work together to get the job done at the highest level of accuracy possible.
Fast and accurate bed bug detection helps pest control technicians locate areas of infestations easily and target these insects so they are unable to elude treatments. Once the treatments are completed, fast and accurate bed bug detection works to make sure no bed bugs remain. While a human inspector may get the job done, it is best to use trained canines from beginning to end.
It can take quite a bit of time for a human detector to move through a commercial structure, which can make it cost-prohibitive to have routine inspections. But routine inspections are the only way to be proactive about preventing bed bug infestations. These insects are carried into your business. They don’t come in from the outside. Routine inspections catch infestations as they are taking root, and targeted treatments stop these bugs before they harm your reputation. Since dogs can move quickly, with little or no disruption to the areas they inspect, they are the ideal solution.
Do you need to know for sure that your Dallas business is protected from bed bugs? Reach out to Bullseye K-9 Detection. We can give you the support you need to detect bed bugs before they can hurt your bottom line.