My hero is strong. He’s good at his job, friendly….and furry. My hero is a certified bedbug sniffing dog named Roscoe.
You might not know it, but working dogs like Roscoe are trained specifically to sniff out these tricky pests.
According to Nova, a dog’s sense of smell is 10,000 to 100,000 times more acute than a human’s. This means that a dog could detect a single rotten apple in 2 million barrels. This innate characteristic makes the canine a perfect bug detective, able to scan a mid-sized apartment in a matter of minutes with 95% accuracy.
So, where do these super sniffing dogs come from? Mostly from shelters. Rose Pest Solutions told the South Bend Tribune that they seek out young, high energy dogs who are food-driven from rescues in their area. Adopting instead of buying from breeders keeps their costs down and helps to save pups that might not otherwise find a home.
Once they’re rescued, these pooches go to one of several specialized training facilities across the U.S. They start with the basics, obedience and bonding between the handler and the dog and, then, practice scenarios that teach the difference between live and dead bugs and hone the dog’s search patterns. After 800-1,000 hours of training and a test of the dog and handler team by the National Entomology Scent Detection Canine Association (NESDCA), the pair can track bugs professionally.
By the end of this rigorous process, each pup should be able to find a single bug in a pristine room. If I’m ever in need of bug inspection, I won’t think twice about hiring one of these highly-trained furry-faced Sherlocks.
Check out the ever-popular Roscoe at work below!