Because my dog and I work in San Jose Bed Bug Prevention and treatments, I am often asked by customers and friends how they can avoid bed bugs when the are staying in hotel and motel rooms. My advice to them is to worry less about being exposed to bed bugs outside your home, and worry more about allowing bed bugs to enter your home. You can learn how to prevent allowing bed bugs to enter your home by reading the article I wrote about how to prevent bed bugs from entering your home.
For those who still want to know how to avoid bed bugs when traveling, I offer the following 6 suggestions:
1. When you arrive in your room, place your luggage into the bathtub. Bed bugs can’t climb the smooth sides of the tub. When you’re using the tub, place your luggage on the bathroom counter, and return to the tub when you are finished. This is probably the most important suggestion, and if you only follow one of these tips, make it this one!!
2. Use a flashlight to inspect the mattress, box spring, bed frame, headboard, and nightstand, clock lamp that may be next to the bed.
3. NEVER use the luggage racks to store your luggage, NEVER place your luggage on or near the beds.
4. If you see evidence of bed bug activity, report it to the hotel management.
5. After arriving home, before bringing your luggage into your home, use my bed bug safe entry procedures to re-enter your home, and put all of your clothing in the dryer on high heat for at least 30 minutes.
6. Store your luggage in the garage, basement, or storage room. Do not store your luggage in your bedroom. NEVER store your luggage under, or near your bed.
If this article has helped you, please share it on social media! If you can think of something I’ve left out, drop me a quick email to let me know!! I’d love to hear from you!!
If you see us driving by, wave to Maggie!
This short article should help you prepare for your four day or three day structural fumigation bed bug treatment. The fumigation crew will be checking for these items, and if they decide you aren’t prepared completely, they may postpone your bed bug treatment.
Immediately after you receive confirmation of the fumigation schedule, you’ll want to do two things right away:
- Call my office at 408-292-5330 and provide payment for your treatment – If we don’t receive payment, we can’t do the treatment.
- Call PGE at 1-800-743-5000 to schedule them to come out and turn your gas on after 5 pm on the last day of your fumigation.
Preparing the outside:
- All trees and shrubs must be trimmed 12 inches away from your home so the tarp can come straight down and make contact with dirt or cement, without being touched by any trees or shrubs.
- Check around the outside of your home for birds nests. If empty, remove the nest. If it’s not empty, please call me to let me know right away. We may have to postpone your fumigation.
Preparing the inside:
- Remove all the food, beverages, and medicine from your home EXCEPT anything that is factory sealed in a glass jar or can. Everything else must go. This includes wine bottles sealed by cork. If there is room in your yard that will be outside the tarp, you can pack the food in rodent safe boxes/containers and put them in the back yard (try to put them in the shade) or at a friends house.
- Bag any food that will remain in the refrigerator/freezer. I’ll provide you a few bags to use to bag these items. Make sure you double bag them in accordance with the instructions that came with your disclosures.
- If you have any aquariums, terrariums, or house plants, you’ll want to relocate them to a friends house during the treatment.
Preparing to Leave:
- If you have a vehicle you want treated, you can leave it inside your garage during the treatment – just roll down all the windows and open the trunk. Make sure you leave the keys on the kitchen table/counter for the crew.
- Each person in your home should have two large plastic bags for clothes. The clothes you intend to wear as you leave for your fumigation should be run through the dryer on high heat for at least 30 minutes and packed in one plastic bag. Seal this bag and keep it in the kitchen or garage until you need it. The rest of the clothes you will wear during your treatment should be run through the dryer on high heat for at least 30 minutes, packed into the other plastic bag, and stored outside your home (maybe in the vehicle you’ll be driving while you’re gone).
- Plan to be out of your home by 7 am the day of the treatment. You should receive a phone call the day before your treatment advising you of the 2 hour arrival window of the fumigation crew, but if you plan to be out by 7 am, this call wont affect your plans.
- Plan to take as little with you as possible. This is critically important: Everything you take out of your home is an opportunity for a bed bug to survive the treatment. Take as little with you as possible, so that you decrease of carrying a bed bug out of the house before the treatment. That being said, do plan to remove any property that has high monetary value, or high sentimental value.
- Do not forget to put a copy of your house key in the lock box I’ve left for you. The combination to open the keybox is in the disclosures you’ve received. If you can’t find it, just give me a call. Any other keys the crew needs should be left on your kitchen table or kitchen counter.
Before the crew arrives:
- If any outdoor plants are going to end up on the inside of the tarp, make sure you water them heavily before the morning of the fumigation, before the crew arrives. The water should stop any of the material from being taken in by the roots, and may help your plants survive the treatment. If this isn’t done the plants will likely die as a result of the treatment.
As you leave:
- Inside the entry way of your home, remove your clothes and put on the clothes from the plastic bag. Take care not to set those clothes down while they are outside the plastic bag. Leave the clothes you’ve removed inside your home to be treated.
- Once your safe clothes are on, leave your home directly. Do not sit down or lie down inside your home.
When you return home:
- Use Bed Bug Safe Entry procedures to re-enter your home, to reduce the risk of bringing bed bugs into your home after your treatment.
I hope this article helps you prepare for your bed bug treatment. If you have any questions, just call or email me so I can get you the information you need.
Bed bugs are small insects which feed on human blood by piercing the skin. They seek out blood meals from humans, usually at night and are attracted to our body heat and the carbon dioxide we exhale. They do not live on humans and they do not burrow in the skin. Adult bed bugs are 4-6 mm in length, oval shape and dark reddish brown. Juveniles are 1-5 mm long, depending on the growth stage and are cream color, becoming red to blackish after a blood meal. Adult females can lay up to 5 eggs per day which hatch around 10 days later.
Bed bugs are very mobile, but generally only move short distances to feed (up to 3 meters) so are usually found close to a food source. They are most commonly found on mattresses, particularly along the stitched edges where there are folds, which provide protection. They can also be found in bed frames, behind bed head boards, in bed side furniture and floor joints carpet edges air conditioning ducts, lamps, picture frames, behind wall paper and other cracks and crevices that provide them protection.
Bed bugs are not known to be vectors of diseases, even though they are known to carry disease organisms. They give off a distinct odor from glands in their thorax. Both adults and nymphs are considered pests.
Bed bugs are a major pest of hostels, motels, hotels, restaurants, boats, trains, aircraft, and even private homes and apartments. Their bites can cause irritation and allergic reactions while the stigma associated with their presence can cause loss of income in accommodation premises through both bad reputation and having rooms out of service for treatment.
If you think you may have bed bugs, call or email me right away. Don’t delay. The quicker we begin treatment, the cheaper and easier it is to get rid of them. Don’t try to treat them yourself, you’ll just end up calling me when it fails. I will get in there quickly and get them out of there for you.
Bed bugs can be difficult to detect, but here are a few signs that indicate they may be lurking in your home or property.
These parasitic insects can be difficult to detect, but here are a few signs that indicate they may be lurking in your home or property.
Looking for these signs now can help you catch a bed bug problem before it becomes a serious infestation:
- Fecal Matter: Bed bugs tend to leave behind small spots that look like black pepper. These spots are often found near the corners of your mattress, around electrical outlets (especially outlets hidden by your bed), and on the wall behind your bed.
- Blood: Often, when this parasitic insect feeds on us, it leaves a blood spot behind when it detaches from our body. That blood spot usually ends up on bedsheets.
- Shed Skins: When a bed bug grows, it will shed its exoskeleton. You may find the shed skins in a home where bugs are living and feeding.
- Bugs: Tiny, flat, almond-shaped, reddish insects that look like this:
The best way to know for sure if there are bugs in your home is to have a professional K9 Scent Detection team inspect your property.
Bed bugs are nocturnal and dwell in tiny cracks and crevices until it’s time to feed on human hosts in the night. So, you may never see them. Often you need more than just a visual inspection to detect them.
That’s where Maggie comes in. Dogs’ heightened sense of smell, plus specialized training, allows Maggie to detect bugs that human inspections can miss.
Early detection and extermination is key! Bed bugs multiply quickly; a female bug can produce over 5,000 spawn within 6 months, and the pests can live up to 18 months. Waiting to exterminate can mean the difference between a controllable issue and a major infestation that is more difficult and expensive to get rid of.
Maggie and I will find those bed bugs for you and provide you some peace of mind. To schedule a time for us to inspect your home or property, call me at (408) 389-4225 or email me at Jay@k9bugfinder.net.
While you’re checking your home for bed bug infestations, it’s important that you also inspect your vehicle periodically for the little buggers. Full Story on the Burlington Record.
That means you need to be vigilant about what you put in your vehicle. Think twice about stowing yard sale items, for example, especially if they’re full of the nooks and crannies where bedbugs love to hide. Hop online to familiarize yourself with what bedbugs look like — and how to spot their bites and other evidence they leave behind when they head back into their lairs.
“They crawl onto your luggage and lay eggs — and they glue them on; those eggs are not going to fall off,” said White. “And always brush off the outside of your suitcase before you put it in the car.”
Prevention is a lot better than the cure. That’s because two of the three most effective methods for getting rid of bedbugs aren’t really suitable for use on automobiles. That leaves fumigation, which uses gases to permeate bug-ridden areas. “We take an auto, tarp it to make it airtight and insert gas at a certain rate until it kills the eggs and bedbugs,” said White. “The gas breaks down in air and won’t hurt people when it disperses. And it’s more environmentally friendly.
“The drawback is, it’s the more expensive option — about $1,000 to $1,200 per vehicle. So the real secret is not to get bedbugs in the first place.”
If you’ve had bed bugs in your auto or RV in the past, or if you think you may have them there now, or if you’ve had them in your home and just want some peace of mind, I’ll be happy to check your autos with Maggie to make sure there are none there, and if they are there, let you know where the infestation is.
The tiny, blood-sucking pests are light brown, and the adults are slightly less than a quarter of an inch long. They love to make their homes in mattresses, bedding and furniture. They most often feed on people at night while their victims sleep. The bugs don’t transmit disease, but their bites leave itchy white and red welts. They’re also adept at hitching rides in clothing and suitcases.
The problem is getting worse. A recent survey of pest control operators funded by the National Pest Management Association showed the problem is intensifying, especially in the South.
There’s really nothing available over the counter to tackle the problem because every bug has to be sprayed directly, and no pesticides are very good at killing the eggs, so reinfestation is common.
To help ensure you don’t bring any home from your next stay at a hotel, follow these travel tips:
• Inspect your hotel room when you arrive. Check mattress seams and folds. Look for blood spots the size of a pencil point. Check behind the headboard as well. They can even lurk in a picture frame or in a popcorn ceiling.
• If you see signs of bed bugs, demand another room, and inspect that one as well.
•- In the room, keep your suitcases away from furniture and walls until you finish your inspection. Keep your suitcase closed overnight and inside tightly sealed plastic garbage bags when you’re not using them. Keep your shoes and socks inside the plastic bag while you sleep. Bedbugs are attracted to the odor of feet.
• When packing to leave, check your clothing and luggage for signs of the small insects. Check seams and folds carefully.
• Back at home, immediately wash all your laundry from the trip in hot water, then machine dry on the highest setting for at least 20 minutes. Even if you don’t wash, putting possibly infested items into the dryer on high heat will kill bed bugs. Even dry-cleanable clothing can be put in driers if you don’t wet it first.
Read more at the Seattle Times
If you think you may have bed bugs, Maggie and I will find those bed bugs for you. To schedule a time for me to inspect your home for bedbugs, call me at (408) 389-4225 or email me at firstname.lastname@example.org. Maggie and I will be happy to provide you some peace of mind.
No doubt about it, bed bugs are GROSS! These videos help to illustrate how bed bugs can infest a hotel room, an office building, or even your home.
In this National Geographic, you will learn about how a bed bug infestation can wreak havoc as you sleep at night.
Bed Bugs Attack!
In this video, Kyle Tekiela discusses the bed bug infestation epidemic America is facing.