Bed bugs—two small words for some very big headaches. If your home has found itself with bed bugs, you’re probably scrambling … wondering what to do first and how to get the pesky pests out (not to mention wondering if bed bugs hurt pets). And, if you have a four-legged friend at home, your anxiety may be even higher. While bed bugs prefer to feast on humans, they also will bite and feed on pets.
So, how do you keep your pets protected? Can bed bugs hurt pets?
It goes without saying, but keeping your home protected from bed bugs will ensure your pets are, too. Bed bugs can be found almost anywhere—from homes and hotels to schools and public transportation. To help minimize a potential infestation, keep these tips in mind and ensure bed bugs won’t hurt your pets:
- Check secondhand or used furniture for signs of infestation (or avoid altogether) before bringing a piece into your home.
- Clear the clutter in your home to eliminate potential hiding places.
- Use a protective cover encasing your mattress and box spring to reduce hiding spots.
- When traveling, use a luggage rack in a hotel instead of setting your items on the floor. Check the mattress and headboard. And, upon return, launder all your belongings and inspect your luggage carefully.
What If Fido Gets Bit?
In the event your pet does get bitten, you’ll want to take care of them quickly. Said simply, bed bugs can hurt pets. How can bed bugs hurt pets you ask? Bed bug bites on your pet may look very similar to flea bites and can result in redness, swelling and itching. If your pet is bitten by a bed bug contact your vet promptly. Your vet will be able to tell you if the bite is dangerous and will likely be able to provide some kind of treatment to mitigate any swelling, itching and risk of infection. You’ll also want to follow these steps according to the American Veterinary Medical Association:
- Launder your pet’s bedding in the hottest temperature settings (minimum 120 degrees Fahrenheit in the wash water, and the medium/high or high setting on the dryer). Be careful when transporting the bedding to the laundry—you want to avoid any possibility of further spreading.
- If the materials (bedding, clothing, etc.) cannot be washed for some reason, but can be put in a dryer, put them in the dryer at medium to high heat for 10-20 minutes.
- If the bedding has tears or holes, consider getting rid of it altogether. Put them in a plastic bag, seal it, mark it with an obvious sign that it’s infested with bugs and trash it.
If you find yourself with bed bugs at home, it’s imperative that you call a professional pest control company. Be transparent with them and let them know you have pets. They will know how bed bugs hurt pets. You’ll want to choose a company—like ScherZinger Pest Control—that uses products or services that are as safe as possible for your family and your furry friend.
We’ve Got You Covered
ScherZinger Pest Control, a trusted pest control company in the Greater Cincinnati and Northern Kentucky areas, including Dayton and Columbus. We’ve been pioneers who have engineered new standards for ways of eliminating and controlling bugs and pests. Contact us by phone at 1-877-748-9888 or through our website, Facebook, or Twitter.