Can bed bug-sniffing dogs be the solution to bed bug infestations?
Since New York City has been hit hard by bed bugs lately, the city is trying new methods.
Bedbugs have found their way into numerous movie theaters around the city. On July 30, the AMC Magic Johnson Harlem 9 was immediately shut down for treatment. Apparently bedbugs were found on “two of the 4,700 seats” at the Midtown AMC Empire 25 on August 3rd, 2010.
You may be wondering, how do you trace bed bugs to exactly two seats in a massive multiplex? Here’s where the specially-trained bedbug sniffing dogs come in. They are very capable of finding bed bugs, and the city is considering hiring its own pack of dogs for finding bedbugs in multifamily homes.
The two major companies who provide these bedbug-finding dogs are Florida Canine Academy and J&K Canine Academy. Now, the National Pest Management Association is considering a certification program for dogs and handlers that could help standardize how these dogs are trained.
It is very important that these dogs get the specialized training needed for developing their bed-bug-finding skills, but the training of bedbug-sniffing dogs isn’t an exact science either. Dog handlers have to interpret changes in the dog’s behavior and not give clues to a dog when on the job. If you don’t have someone who really knows how to train a dog for this purpose, you are likely to end up with a dog and handler who are not effective at all.