Can Your Pets Spread Bed Bugs?
You probably know that your furry friends are vulnerable to various pests like fleas, ticks, and worms. These parasites love to prey on well-fed animals. With the recent resurgence of bed bugs, you might be wondering if your pet might be falling victim to another breed of bloodsucking bugs.
Your concern is well-founded. Bed bugs will feast on the blood of any mammal, including people and their pets. If there is a bed bug infestation in your home, your pets are at almost as much risk as you are.
The “good” news is that pets rarely spread bed bugs on their own. Unlike other parasitic pests, bed bugs typically only bite long enough to get their fill of blood. Then they abandon ship, hiding in a secluded area to lay eggs. This means that your dog or cat is unlikely to pick up bed bugs outside and then bring them into your home.
If you already have bed bugs in your home, then animals are certainly able to spread them throughout the building. If you let your pet sleep with you on your infested bed, or if your pet has its own infested bed, don’t be surprised if bed bugs latch on temporarily and get dropped elsewhere.
Dealing With Pets and Bed Bugs
Unfortunately, most normal flea and tick medication won’t scare off or kill bed bugs. If the bugs are in your pets’ fur, your best bet is to manually wash and comb their hair.
Bed bugs on a pet are usually indicative of a larger problem in your home. If they’re on your dog or cat, they’re probably in your carpet, bedding, and laundry, as well. Getting rid of a nest of bed bugs is a daunting task.
Your best bet is avoiding the problem altogether and preventing bed bugs. If they end up in your home, it’s probably your fault—not your dog’s. Failing that, you can try some Do-It-Yourself treatments. If none of that works, consider finding a nearby pest control expert to protect your family—even the four-legged members.