K-9 Inspection Preparation Checklist

Close-up of a white dog's nose

Dogs are used to detect many things, such as explosives, drugs, ammunition, and even bed bugs. But, while K-9 inspections are currently the most effective way to locate and isolate bed bug infestations, dogs aren't perfect. It is possible for a dog to signal when bed bugs aren't present, and to give no signal when bed bugs are present. At Witt Pest Management, we give our K-9 inspection team every chance for success, by having areas prepared before inspection. We want to find every bug as much as you do. If we work together, we can get the job done. Here is a checklist of some things you can do to get your home or business ready for a K-9 inspection.

It can be harder for dogs to pick up the scent of bed bugs if there are other scents present.

  • A canine inspection cannot be performed if the area being inspected has had a pesticide application in the last 30 days, even if store-bought products were used.
  • Empty trash cans to remove odor.
  • Avoid cooking before inspection.
  • Extinguish smoking materials.
  • Refrain from using scented cleaners and disinfectants before inspection, and stow these cleaning bottles.
  • Stop the use of air fresheners, deodorizers, candles, potpourri, incense, and other items that may create an odor that can mask the scent of bed bugs at least a day before the inspection.

When dogs are distracted, they don't perform as well.

  • We ask that residents leave before an inspection so the canine inspector can get to work finding those bugs, undistracted.
  • It is important to remove all pets before inspection.
  • If you have a birdcage or aquarium, please cover them.
  • If you have a litter box, please remove it from the area.
  • Turn radios and televisions off before an inspection begins.

Dogs will be dogs. If you have food, water, or other attractants available, they will be drawn to them.

  • Store all pet food before inspection.
  • If you have exposed water, please remove or store it.
  • Vacuum areas to remove debris such as pills, food, powders, dust, self-applied or professionally applied pesticides, and tracking powders.

Dogs have a strong sense of smell, but they have a better chance of picking up scents if they can get in close, and when scents aren't trapped.

  • If you're able to move furniture, chairs, sofas, beds, and other objects 2 feet away from the walls, it will help the dogs get in close to check baseboards. It also allows the dogs to get all the way around these items.
  • If you have a sleeper couch or sofa that has pillows, place those pillows on the floor, away from these items, so that all items may be thoroughly checked.
  • Place bed pillows in the center of beds, so the inspecting dog can check the headboard effectively.
  • If you have bedding that covers the bed and reaches the base of the box spring, pull it out and flip it up to expose these areas for better inspection.
  • If you have bunk beds, take the mattresses out and place them on the bedroom floor to allow for close inspection.
  • Bed bugs can hide in receptacles. If you have receptacles behind bunk beds or some other item, these items will need to be pulled off the wall to allow an inspection to take place.
  • Closets can only be checked if accessible and organized.
  • Prepare clothing for successful inspection by cleaning all clothes and putting them loosely into drawers, with drawers open a ½ inch.
  • Place bags, suitcases, bookbags, and plastic bins in a large room, away from walls, and open them prior to inspection.

Still air creates the best environment for detection.

  • Turn off all fans, air purifiers, humidifiers, heating, cooling, and other appliances that can cause air movement. This will prevent the disruption of the scent cone.
  • Close all windows and doors that lead to the outside to avoid drafts.

We appreciate your assistance with these preparations. If we work together, we can achieve the best possible outcome. While no bed bug inspection can be 100% accurate, we follow strict protocols to ensure the highest success rate. This can seem strict at times, but please understand that we do this so that you get the best service possible and, more importantly, that we have the best chance of getting rid of all those bugs.

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