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  • Writer's pictureGarey Clark

Managing Bed Bugs in a Youth Camp

Imagine being in charge of a Youth Camp. Here comes 500 more kids sleeping in cabins. Bringing their back-packs with them. Out of those 500 kids, how many have a bed bug issue at their homes ? 4 ? 8 ? Your child could bring them back to your home.

We deal with this type of scenario frequently. What can be done to curtail this ?

Our technicians are very well trained in identifying bed bugs and knowing what to do to control them. Educating our clients is just one of them.

We teach them what to look for, in hopes they can side-step a problem. We have seen many camps have their cabins infested with bed bugs. Most of the beds and cabins have a lot of rough wood, which bed bugs like. They can nest in wood joints around bed areas, only to get a blood meal while the kids are asleep. Until someone notices a bug or some bites, nothing is done. Then when they are found, they can be difficult to eliminate.

Benny bed bug dog checking cabin
Benny - Bed Bug Dog inspecting a Youth Camp Cabin in North Georgia.


Bed Bugs prefer rough cloth and rough wood. They don't like slick surfaces and will avoid them. They can't crawl up a mirror but can easily crawl on the drywall or wood walls. They will nest next to hosts for an easy meal. Bed Bugs are not going to harbor far away from hosts. Why would they ? Their only food is blood. They have no interest in anything else.

One thing we have found is there are a lot of bats in some of these camps and a few have found bat bugs and have them confused with bed bugs. Bat Bugs look very similar but don't behave like bed bugs. They feed on bats and when the bats are removed, they wander around looking for them anyway. By magnifying the bugs we can tell the difference.

Bat bugs - Bed Bugs Identification Georgia
Bat Bugs Vs. Bed Bugs - Identification.

By mis-identifying bat bugs for bed bugs a lot of unnecessary work is done.

Many Camps in Georgia become pro-active and use the Sensor Dogs for inspections regularly. The Sensor Dogs can detect even the smallest amount of infestation so the problem can be eliminated before it spreads to other cabins and beds.

Bed bug dog youth camp Georgia
Benny checking beds at a Summer Youth Camp in Georgia.

We have had directors to have the kids line up their backpacks and have the dogs check them in a line. This actually works out great if you can time it right. We had one that we checked the back packs and found 2 that were infested and getting ready to unpack in a cabin. Nothing good would have happened here. With 500 kids you would expect some of them to have infested back packs. Bed Bugs are like dogs in that they have no concern with money. They don't care about anything but a blood meal. And our dogs care about finding them. As they are rewarded when they do. The Dogs want to please the handler. They do this every day.



I have been training dogs to find insects since 1984. Termite Detection dogs can help find termites behind walls and floors. But in Georgia the seller chooses the termite inspector. (Really dumb). They don't want a better inspection.

So, when bed bugs re-emerged we starting using the Sensor Dogs for bed bug detection. A very useful program for residential and multi-unit housing. We can do 150-200 units in one day for about the cost of 1 treatment.

Let us show you what we can do. Most places that try the Sensor Dogs ask us if we can do it on a regular basis. We have Quarterly sweeps to continue the pro-active work. We have a large retirement community that had a bed bug outbreak 5 years ago. We sent the K9 team in to help. The company thought they had about 8 units with bed bugs. Nope, 37. After the treatments they would bring the dogs back quarterly. Numbers went down big time. The last 2 inspections we have found zero and zero.

Does this help the pest control operator ? Yes, very much and that's why we have been back quarterly for 5 years. We can help to control bed bugs at your location also.

Betsy bed bug dog atlanta
New Trainee - Betsy the Bed Bug Dog - Atlanta

Bed Bugs have become a major problem for not only homeowners but also businesses. With the ease of travel today, and hundreds of flights regularly entering the country, it will just be a matter of time before you too are involved in some way with bed bugs. Bed Bugs infest homes, cars, workplaces, movie theaters, schools, and child care facilities no matter how clean the area is. Once an infestation is discovered, professional treatment must be made to end the infestation. Clark Pest Remedyhas been providing effective solutions for controlling Bed Bug infestations in residential homes, and commercial buildings throughout Georgia for over 20 years. Clark Pest Remedy provides bed bug removal for hotels, motels, apartments, hospitals, college dorm rooms, nursing homes, and residential Homes.

CLARK PEST REMEDY - Sensor Bed Bug Dogs - Atlanta - Macon - Georgia


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