Bedbug Sniffing DogAs bedbug populations rise in the United States, companies are resorting to various methods to sniff the pests out.

A new method, evolving in some pest control companies, is the use of pest detecting dogs.

Canines, trained in much the same manner as arson or bomb detecting dogs, are imprinted early in life with the scent of live bedbugs. When live bedbugs are detected in homes or businesses, dogs are taught to give a signal to their trainer: barking, scratching, sitting, etc. to indicate their discovery and are promptly rewarded. To the dismay of many around the nation, bedbug detecting dogs are being rewarded more often than not.

Bedbugs, who often find their way into homes of people who have been traveling outside of the United States or who have been visiting previously infested hotels, can be easy to miss if one is not directly looking for them. Making their nests in headboards, mattress linings and mattress covers, these little critters live life in the dark, waiting for their food to come to them.

So what can you do if you don’t happen to have a handy-dandy pest-sniffing dog on hand? Frequent checks for bedbugs, especially during and after travel is recommended. Thorough inspection of bedbug frequently visited haunts and regular washing of bed items can help but not completely deter.