Canine Pest Management Partners

By Special Guest Deanna Kjorlien - Owner & Handler at Green Dog Pest Service

Man’s highly trained best friend is one of the pest control industry’s secret weapons.  With the return of bed bugs on a such a massive scale, pest control professionals are turning to dogs to help combat the epidemic.  Properly trained bed bug dogs are able to locate live bed bugs and their viable eggs; bypassing dead bugs, fecal matter, shed exoskeletons and other insects. Dogs are able to cover areas faster than visual inspections, making their efficiency undeniable. 

Bed bug scent detection dogs are trained in the same manner as police and military scent detection dogs, often by the same trainers.  A dog’s sense of smell is approximately 40-times greater than humans, making them highly accurate when well trained.  While humans have about six million olfactory sensors, dogs are gifted with over 300 million.

Setting up routine scheduled canine assisted bed bug inspections can benefit property owners, and their residents.  In addition to being cost effective, canine assisted inspections are less invasive and quicker than visual inspections.  The pest management industry standard is twice annual inspections for multiple housing units as well as hotel and lodging facilities.  Randomizing these inspections, and conducting them on a monthly basis is an ideal way to comply with the recommendations, keep costs down and keep residents happy.  Maintenance departments also appreciate small batch inspections on a monthly, or in the case of large unit properties, a weekly basis, in place of large-scale inspections that take all day for multiple days. 

On the job:  A trained Border Collie alerting on the presence of bed bugs in a couch.

On the job:  A trained Border Collie alerting on the presence of bed bugs in a couch.

Another important use for canine pest control teams is tenant changeover inspections.  In this highly litigious era, property managers must be careful when it comes to providing a tenant with a vermin-free space.  Having dogs search a residence and confirm it bed bug free prior to a new tenant taking possession may stop a costly legal battle or a public relations hassle. Tenant changeover inspections can be scheduled anytime after the previous resident moves out and before the new tenant takes possession. 

Talk to your pest management professional about canine assisted bed bug inspections and how they can benefit your properties.  There are quite a few options available as this is not a one-size fits all industry.  Many pest management professionals offer all-inclusive programs that include inspection services and treatments for one monthly fee.  Whether your property needs a changeover inspection, scheduled monthly inspections or a one-off emergency inspection, using canine teams can be a real benefit for property owners and their tenants. 

For more information, visit Green Dog Pest Service and the World Detector Dog Organization on the web.