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Can Dogs Carry Bed Bugs?

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Can dogs carry bed bugs? Read on for the answer, plus how to prevent bed bugs on dogs, and what you can do to treat them if they are bitten.

If you think your dog has been infested with bed bugs, then we suggest taking the following quick action to avoid a full-blown bed bug infestation in your home. Follow these steps to check for bed bugs on your dog:

  • Firstly, check your dog’s bed and the surrounding area for bed bug signs. Signs include–brown or black specks, live bed bug colonies, or shed dog skin.
  • Secondly, With a fine-toothed dog comb carefully comb through your dog’s fur. Pay close attention to the ears, neck, upper legs, anal and tailhead area, and belly.
  • Thirdly, check for red and itchy bites on your dog’s skin.
  • Fourthly, If bed bug signs are on your dog, immediately bathe the dog with a gentle, pet-safe shampoo.

Bed bugs can be extremely difficult to see and eliminate, so if you suspect bed bugs have infested your home, then you may want to go ahead and hire a professional pest control company.

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It’s very important to clean your home and bedding as thoroughly as possible. Wash all bedding and linens in hot water.  Vacuum your mattresses, box springs, bed frames, headboards, all furniture, floors, and baseboards to remove any bed bugs or eggs that may be present.  If you aren’t able to do all this, then we suggest you hire a professional cleaning service.

Preventing Bed Bugs on Dogs

Bed bugs can be a miserable nuisance to humans and pets. Bed bugs prefer to feed on human blood because humans have thin skin and no thick fur.  However, these tiny blood suckers will infest and bite dogs and other warm-blooded pets.

Here are four tips to help prevent bed bugs in your home and on dogs:

  • Frequent grooming: This can help you find bed bugs early. Brushing your dog’s coat and inspecting their skin can help you spot any signs of bed bugs or other skin parasites.
  • Wash bedding: Washing your dog’s bedding in hot water and drying it on high heat can help kill any bed bugs, their eggs, and any other small skin parasites.
  • Bed bug spray: Using a veterinary approved bed bug spray may help prevent bed bugs from infesting your dog.  Always read and follow the label directions.
  • Keep a clean home: Your home should be clean and clutter-free to prevent bed bug infestations. Vacuuming, dusting, and wiping down regularly as well as disposing of known infested items, like bedding, can help prevent a bed bug problem.

Please note that if your dog has been bitten by bed bugs then you should get the dog to a vet right away.  And, do the necessary things to eliminate the infestation in your home.

Treatment for Bug Bites on Dogs

If you think your dog has been bitten by bed bugs, or any insect, you should examine and treat your dog immediately.

In case your dog has an allergic reaction or if an infection develops, then you need to get your dog to the vet right away.

Here are some steps you can take to treat bed bug bites on dogs:

  • Clean the affected area: Using a mild pet-safe soap and warm water solution clean the skin. Doing this may prevent infection and will reduce itching.
  • Apply a cold compress: A cold compress can reduce swelling and soothe the itchy bite area. Either use a clean cloth soaked in cold water, or a bag of frozen vegetables wrapped in a towel.  Never apply ice or a cold source directly on the dog’s skin.
  • Use o-t-c treatments: Many pet over-the-counter treatments are available to help relieve bed bug and other insect bites. These include topical creams and ointments, sprays, and veterinarian approved o-t-c antihistamines.
  • Ask your veterinarian: If your dog has severe symptoms or if you are unsure about treating the bites, then ask your veterinarian. Your vet can recommend the best treatment for your dog’s specific health and needs.

It is important that even though bed bug bites can be uncomfortable and itchy for your dog, they are not necessarily dangerous. But, if your dog has an allergic reaction or if an infection develops, then you need to get your dog to the vet right away.

Can Dogs Carry Bed Bugs?

So, can dogs carry bed bugs or even do bed bugs bite dogs? It is widely accepted that bed bugs are attracted to warmth and carbon dioxide.  It is also known that bed bugs are an infestation and biting nuisance for humans and maybe for some pets. Bed bugs are certainly known to bite humans and can cause a lot of discomfort. However, there is only limited evidence that bed bugs infest and bite dogs as well.  If humans aren’t available then bed bugs may indeed attack dogs for a blood meal, especially dogs with skimpy hair coats and thin skin.  The bottom line is that you should still take precautions to prevent bed bug infestations in your home and on your dog.

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