Facts About Your Pet’s Pests

Dogs are man’s best friend for a reason. They are fun, loyal and hey if you take them hunting with you, useful. Their little tag-alongs however, are not man’s favorite. Here are some useful facts about two of their most common “friends.”

Fleas

  • They’ve got some impressive jumping abilities. Fleas can jump up to 8 feet -over 150x their height!
  • They’re in it for the long haul. Typically fleas remain on their host at all times, but are easily transferable to other animals, people and furniture.
  • There are over 2,000 known species and subspecies of fleas, but it’s the cat flea that’s responsible for the majority of infestations in the U.S.
  • It might not always be your dog. Fleas infest many animals, such as racoons and rodents. If you think you may have a rodent infestation, expect a fleas to follow.

TicksAcworth pest control

  • Yes, some tick species actually can have preferred host.  The American dog tick prefers to dine on domestic dogs, hence the reason it’s the most common tick species brought into homes.
  • Ticks are easiest to spot after a meal. They can grow up to four times their size when engorged with blood. Talk about a “food baby.”
  • To find a host, the tick grabs onto a shrub or grass with their back legs and reach their front legs out to grab onto passing fur or even clothing.
  • Regardless of what type of hosts they attach to, the ticks will crawl towards the head of their host. Why? Because the skin around the ears and neck is thinner and are the hardest areas for the animals to groom.

If you suspect your best friend has some hitch hikers, talk to your trusted veterinarian about the proper treatment for your dog. If you’re worried you might have an infestation, contact us today.

No Stinkin’ Way

Besides the temperatures dropping and the leaves changing colors, what’s one way you can tell fall is on its way? The arrival of stink bugs.

Known for their “smelly” reputation, stink bugs enter homes during cooler months to find a warm place to rest during winter. It’s true they pose no property or health risk, but they present an odoriferous problem if stepped on. So how do you stop and prevent a stink bug infestation?  Check out the steps below:

  1. Seal off entry points – Walk around your house and search for any openings, large or small. Seal any holes and cracks that you find using a quality silicone or silicone-latex caulk. pest control services Acworth
  2. Repair and replace – Got a 1/2 inch hole in your screen door?  Replace it. Stink bugs and other insects can enter through the tiniest openings. Also be sure there are no openings in your weather-stripping or loose mortar.
  3. Reduce Moisture areas – We can’t stress how important this step is. Between mosquitoes and stink bugs there are a number of bugs attracted to standing water.
  4. Turn off the lights – Like moths, stink bugs are attracted to lights. Try to keep your outdoor lighting to a minimum. Bonus: you’ll save on your power bill as well.
  5. Properly landscape – Do your best to keep branches and shrubbery well trimmed. It prevents easy areas of transportation, hiding, and possible mating grounds.
  6. Think before you squish –  When left alone, a stink bug will not release their less-than-favorable odor. When disturbed or squished, they tend to release their foul odor from pores on the sides of their bodies (hence, the name stink bugs). Gently pick them up and place them outside to avoid their odor.

 

 

 

Keep Your Pantry for Food Only

School is back in session and for parents this means your pantry just shifted from summer snacks and lunches to sandwiches, chips and a fruit or vegetable. While you’re packing you’re #1’s lunch, you may also be inviting other guest to their meal. Anytime your pantry comes close to bare, it’s highly recommended that you clean out expired goods and wipe down the shelves so that you discourage “pantry pest.”

What is a pantry pest?pest control Acworth

Pantry pests are any insect known for infesting goods often found in pantries such as: cereal, flour, spices, nuts, candies and other dry goods. They can also be found in your seasonal holiday decor in items such as dried flowers or potpourri. Common pantry pest are beetles, ants and the Indian meal moth.

Whether you’re baking goodies for the class or for a holiday meal, many times certain ingredients haven’t been used since the previous year. If you left your pantry products (accidentally) not properly sealed, they can become “sitting ducks;” attracting pest with their flavorful odor. Be sure to inspect each ingredient before use, especially items in paper containers.

To ensure your ingredients are safe from unwanted snackers, try the following steps:

  • Store all ingredients in sealed glass or plastic containers
  • Be sure to keep items such as pet food, in sealed containers. These are frequented by pest.
  • Sift through flours and sugars before using them as they could be hiding a 6 or 8-legged “friend”
  • Be sure to keep your cooking area clean -be sure to immediately wipe up crumbs and spills as they could attract pests.
  • Should you get the slightest inkling of an infestation, contact a license pest control professional to inspect, identify and control the problem.

 

Have A Pest Free Get Together

School just started back and the kids are already counting down to fall break. While the kids are counting down the days to their next break, dad is counting down the days until football season begins. Whether you’re an NFL or SEC fan, August means one more month until it’s time for BBQs, tailgating and watching the game with friends.

If you’re planning on having some game day tailgating or BBQs, here are 5 tips on how to keep them pest-free.

  1. Apply Insect Repellant– So this one might be a given but it’s still important. Most mosquitoes are most active at unfortunately, dusk and dawn (aka game time), so if you’re planning a barbecue before sunset, be sure to have plenty of effective repellant already applied and readily available for second coats and other guests.
  2.  Frequently Drain Standing Water– Remember, mosquitoes breed in standing water. Walk pest control Acwortharound your yard  and drain any source that could be a breeding ground for mosquitoes, including birdbaths, dog bowls, wading pools or garden ponds.
  3. Deter Stinging Insects– Whether you have an allergy or just hate being stung, stinging insects aren’t the party guest most people want to have. Yellow jackets and other stinging insects are attracted to many fragrances, so avoid using scented items such as candles and cleaners.
  4. Patch Up Those Screens– At least a few days before your get together, go around each window and door and repair any holes that could invite mosquitoes and other insects entry into the home. Try leaving a polite note for guest to make sure the door, closes behind them.
  5. Stay Clean– It’s no secret that many insects are attracted to food, so take the extra steps to keep food safe by using tightly sealed containers and coolers. Additionally, do your best to clean trash, crumbs and spills from picnic tables immediately.

Think you might need additional pest protection? Give us a call and let’s make pest control plan for you!

Consumer Reports Recommended Zika Repellant

We’ve talked a couple of times now about Zika. Some of you may already know the World Health Organization has declared the rapid spread of the Zika virus an international public health emergency. In response to this, Consumer Reports has released – free to the public – its test results of mosquito repellents, including those that protect you against Aedes mosquitoes (the ones that carry Zika).

Zika can make individuals sick for up to a week with fever, rash, red eyes, joint pain, and other symptoms. It is widely known that the largest threat is to pregnant
women as it increases the risk that the unborn baby will develop microcephaly, an abnormally small head and incomplete brain development.

As of July, there is still no vaccine to prevent Zika. The most a person can do is avoid mosquito bites. To do this, CDC recommends using multiple strategies such as wearing long-sleeved shirts and pants outdoors, spraying for mosquitos at their residence, as well as mosquito repellent. Below is a list of the most effective insect repellents:

The Best:

best bug repellantsSawyer Picaridin and Natrapel 8 Hour -each contains 20% picaridin and Off! Deepwoods VIII -which contains 25% deet. -Studies proved these products kept the mosquitoes from biting for ~8 hours. Sawyer’s was the top insect repellant, being that it also kept Culex mosquitoes (carriers of West Nile), and deer ticks (carriers of Lyme disease) away for at least 8 hours.

Runner Up:

Ben’s 30 & DEET Tick & Insect Wilderness Formula- This kept Aedes mosquitoes away for ~7.5 hours  

Repel Lemon Eucalyptus This has 30% lemon eucalyptus and kept Aedes mosquitoes away for ~7 hours.

Products that are not recommended

Products including the chemicals IR3535 and 2-undecanone, those containing 7% DEET or less than 20% picaridin.

Products not included in the study

Many natural plant oil based brands such as California Baby Natural Bug Blend and EcoSmart Organic since they either failed immediately or did not last 1 hour.  

Additional information

The CDC recommends using EPA-registered insect repellants only, since their ingredients are tested and regulated by the EPA. To find out if a product is registered by the EPA, look for its registration number on the back of the label.

Spraying your yard for mosquitoes was also recommended, but it was advised to do your research on service providers. Contact your trusted pest control company today to get a protection plan for your family in place.

 

Let’s Talk About Fleas

Fleas are every man and fur-baby’s worst enemy. Ok, maybe not worst but they certainly aren’t welcome. These little guys require protecting your pets, house and yard in order to prevent an infestation.  Are you properly prepared for the battle against fleas?

Basic Flea Factsnope

Fun fact: fleas can live up to 100 days! Even scarier, the females can produce 400-500 offspring in that time. They transport themselves via rodents, mammals or humans (if need be) and usually remain on their host at all times. Lastly, they can jump 8″ aka 150x their height!

Pets

Consult your trusted veterinarian for the proper flea medication for your pet. Do research on their breed and prepare a list of any questions you may have for your vet. It’s good to ask for a favorite flea shampoo in case you feel your pet’s been exposed to fleas.

The House

The best form of flea protection is prevention. Contact your trusted pest control company about a plan that’s right for you. A simple, easy way to test for a flea infestation involves a simple pair of socks. Put on some white, mid-calf length socks and walk around your house. If you have an infestation, chances are you’ll have some hitchhikers. Call your pest control company immediately if this happens.

The Yard

Again, an easy way to check if you have fleas in your yard is the white sock test. Only this time wear them outdoors in the areas your pet hangs out the most. Should you have hitchhikers, call your trusted pest control company.

*Image via Flickr

How To Create A Pest Control Plan

Discovering pests is a jarring experience; some are nuisances, and others carry fatal diseases. Whether you’re dealing with irritation or danger, developing a plan for controlling these pests is necessary.

Preventative Measures

A smart way to avoid trouble with pests is to prevent them from emerging in the first place. Knowing your environment and articulating what issues with pests existed in the past can help you to craft an appropriate plan with the experts. Also, you should let them know if you have plants that are prone to any particular type of pests.

Cost Control

yay!Navigating the world of pest control requires that you pay attention to the cost. Finding cost effective plans often involves a willingness to pay in partial amounts. A payment plan, spread throughout the year, can prove less financially jarring than a lump sum. When you speak with the experts, let them know what your budget is.

Health Concerns

As you are exploring the options, you have to consider your own health too. Some pest control services may use methods that are dangerous indoors, especially when you have pets or small children. Opting for methods that are natural and that do not cause any harm is a smart idea, no matter where the pests are.

Location Determination

When you speak with the team, you’ll need to articulate where the problems lie, whether they are indoors or outdoors. The experts will work to find the exact source of the pests, but you have to point them in the right direction. Also, if you have any hint as to where the pests are coming from, let your team of pest control professionals know.

Developing a plan helps you to eliminate the pests from your house and property and to enjoy a safer, cleaner environment free from deleterious critters.

Are Your Kids Not The Only Ones Marching In The Kitchen?

The summer months are synonymous with insect infestation in many homes and businesses. From cockroaches and mosquitoes to ants, these critters love to congregate in humid and arid areas. They are especially attracted to open food, which they take back to feed their young and growing colonies. If not treated in a timely and professional manner, a bug infestation can truly de-valuate your property and even cause health issues. With years of extensive industry experience, Protect All Pest Control has the tools and expertise to eliminate ants and pests from your residential and commercial properties. In fact, one phone call or e-mail is all you need to secure timely, affordable, and effective pest elimination services across the board.

Why Do Ants Come Into Your House?

no!There are several species of ants, including red, black, army, and fire ants. While these critters usually build mounds in front and backyards, they can even form entire colonies in basements, crawlspaces, and especially attics. Ants love to hide in wall cracks and crevices as well, which gives them protection from other predators. The main reason why ants leave their outdoor mounds and come into your house is food. Like other creatures, ants need food to survive – and when there are no other bugs to feed on – they look for crumbs, open containers, and other food particles left in your sink or table.

The Protect All Difference

Protect All Pest Control has helped countless home and business owners tackle ant infestation. With cutting-edge equipment, we are able to find any colonies within or outside your home. Our dedicated pest experts are committed to excellence in all services. This includes spraying pesticides on mounds, along with placing sticky pads and blocking entrance routes for ants.

For more information, contact us today and experience the difference!

How Much Do You Know About Bed Bugs?

Bed bugs: we’ve all heard of them, but how many of us have truly inspected our mattresses to check for them? Or even know how and where to start?

Let’s start here: Where are they found?Bed bug

Bed bugs are one of the best hitchhikers out there and can hide in just about anything -boxes, shoes, small cracks and crevices. They will hide in just about anything to be near a food supply. They are found mostly in bed parts (hence, their name) such as mattress, box springs and folded areas, but they are not limited to any one type of area. Nowadays, they can even be found in five-star hotels, movie theaters and high-end clothing stores if conditions are right. And no, they aren’t region specific, but can be found anywhere in the U.S.

What do they eat?

What they eat determines where they’re found. Their meal of choice is human skin. They are attracted to their prey by the carbon dioxide emitted by their body. While humans are their favorite, they’ll feed on just about any warm-bodied host. If the infestation is bad enough, they will search out prey during the day time as well.

What are the signs you might have bed bugs?

Small red/reddish brown fecal spots on mattresses, upholstery or walls:

nope

 

 

 

 

White, sticky eggs, empty egg shells or molt skins:

not-uh

 

 

 

 

Red, itchy bite marks:

ouch

 

 

 

 

If the infestation is heavy, the will be a strangely sweet odor.

What should you do if you think you have bed bugs?

Contact your trusted professional, immediately. A female bed bug can lay 5 eggs a day; a sense of urgency is needed. If the problem is not bed bugs then they can help you identify what the pest is, what course of action is necessary and how to prevent them in the future.

 

 

Are Your Guests American or German?

Caution: this blog is not for the faint of heart.

Why? We’re talking about one of the least loved insects in America: the cockroach. There are over 70 species in North America alone (not kidding). Yet for Georgia, there are two that cause the most problems for residents: the American cockroach, also known as the “Palmetto bug,” and the German cockroach.

Basic Facts

Each of these has 3 stages in their life cycle: the egg, nymph and adult. What maybe one of the scariest facts about this blog post is the number of eggs they lay -a German cockroach has 30-48 eggs in an egg capsule and the American cockroach has 10-28. Newly hatched nymphs have no wings and must molt (shed their skin) several times before becoming winged adults.

Cockroaches are nocturnal, meaning they are most active at night. During the day they hide in dark, sheltered places. When the lights go out, the cockroaches come out.

Identifying

American roachThe American cockroach adults are between 1” – 2” long, making them the largest of the house-infesting cockroaches (aren’t we lucky?).  They have a reddish brown color with a yellowish margin on the thorax and wings they aren’t afraid to use. When disturbed, they quickly run away or adults may choose to fly. The nymphs in their later stage resemble adults, but they have no wings.

German roachGerman cockroaches are about ⅝” long and are most commonly found in houses (kitchens and bathrooms, to be specific) and restaurants. They have a lighter brown/tan color, oval body shape and long antennae. They eat food of any kind and are known to hitchhike on cardboard boxes (such as soft drink boxes, egg cartons, etc), sacks of potatoes or onions and even appliances and furniture. Because they have such a large egg count and reproduce so quickly, infestations of German cockroaches occur at an alarming rate.

If you’ve seen a hint of a cockroach at your residence or business, we strongly encourage you to start spraying for prevention and control. Contact your local, trusted pest control company to set up pest control plan. Summer nights are for bonfires and making s’mores, not killing roaches.