While pets are common carriers of fleas and other pests, they are not the primary target of bed bugs in Canada. Bed bugs are much more attracted to humans because they’re easier to access (without the heavy fur). Bed bugs will, however, settle for your furry companions if they are without access to human feeding sources.
Even if your pet is bitten by bed bugs, it’s rare that they become carriers. Bed bugs are not built to nest on their hosts. They take their meals and then return to their hiding spots in dark cracks and crevices. So generally speaking, you do not need to worry about your pets carrying around bed bugs.
What is the protocol if your pets and bed bugs do cross paths?
There is a chance that your pet may have bed bug bites if they’re scratching incessantly. You most likely will not find bed bus in your pet’s fur, as they tend to hide away when they’re not feeding.
The first thing you should do if you believe your pet is carrying bed bugs or their eggs is contact your vet. He or she should be able to suggest a shampoo to kill the bed bugs that won’t be harmful to your pet. Traditional flea sprays and monthly topical treatments are not a suitable substitute. They will not kill bed bugs.
Also, washing your pet’s bedding and toys at extremely hot temperatures (113 degrees Fahrenheit for an hour, minimum) is necessary to kill the bed bugs and their eggs. Since bed bugs are primarily nocturnal and do not live on hosts as parasites, playing with other pets is likely not a concern. However you may want to take extra precautions until you are sure you have killed the bed bugs.
Finally, and most importantly, call an exterminator. Without the help of trained professionals, removing all traces of bed bugs is difficult. If you’re in need of a bed bug exterminator, we have a proven track record in the Canadian extermination market.
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