When it comes to a bed bug infestation in your home, your human family members aren’t the only ones at risk.
Pets, especially dogs and cats that move around the house, can also become vulnerable.
Unlike fleas or ticks, bed bugs prefer to feed on human blood, because human skin is exposed, but just because a bed bug would prefer to feed on a human, doesn’t mean it won’t feed on your pets as well.
Because most household pets have a lair of fur or long hair protecting their skin, bed bugs have difficulty getting through. The shorter the fur, the more vulnerable your pet is to being bitten.
If you find that your pet does has bed bug bites, it’s likely that the infestation in your home has reached an extreme level, given the extra effort the bugs are putting in on a secondary food source.
A bed bug bite is no more dangerous to an animal than it is a human, causing itching and discomfort that leads to scratching and the risk of secondary infection through open wounds – which may be harder to detect under fur – as well as increased levels of stress and anxiety.
Like with any bed bug infestation, the most important thing is to identify the infected areas. Because bed bugs feed where their food source is sleeping, this means that dog and cat beds and/or pillows need to be treated like the mattresses and bedding throughout the home and individually treated.
It is possible for pets to transport bed bugs from one home or environment to another on their bodies; however, it is highly unlikely given that bed bugs reside in dark, secluded areas (like inside mattress piping or walls) and have difficulty maintaining a grip on animal hair.
It is more likely that a pet could transport bed bugs by carrying fabric toys (like ropes or stuffed animals) than on their bodies.
There are some bed bug specific cleaning products for pets available on the market; however, because bed bugs can’t stay attached to fur for long, a hot bath away from the infested area and a half hour wait should guarantee that your pets are bed bug free.
When considering a bed bug treatment for your home, it’s important to keep your pets in mind. As with people, pets can be inadvertently harmed by the use of chemicals and pesticides.
>>If you become a victim of a bed bug infestation then contact the team at Allphase for the fastest, safest, and most effective solution. We offer heat treatment bed bug extermination for homes in Hamilton, Burlington, Oakville, Mississauga, and Toronto.