Pest control is always somewhat of an irritating, if not a gross thing for homeowners to take care of. For one thing, some pests are more noticeable than others. If cockroaches are crawling about your house or mice are chewing at your food, you’re not going to be able to ignore it! But even smaller pests that are harder to initially notice must be dealt with. Some homeowners attempt to handle extermination on their own, but this can lead to a number of different issues. Most pest control products are not inexpensive, which means that you may invest in these products and then use them incorrectly, resulting in money lost before you employ pest control services. Of course, there’s also the disgust factor that leads a lot of homeowners to work with the pros. If you’re attempting to rid your home of rodents, you’ll still have to deal with the dead animals afterward. It’s one thing to know that you need to get rid of the pests infesting your home, and another thing entirely to deal with the aftermath. With that being said, professional exterminators can not only take care of that with you for the added convenience but help you prevent the issue from happening again. Of course, when you’re ridding your home of certain creatures, they might not be the only animals inhabiting your home. What do you do with your pets when having pests exterminating?
There are a number of risk factors that come with utilizing pest control products or services when owning pets. A lot of these products involve poisons that not only kill pests, but larger animals as well if consumed. While there’s been something of a move away from edible poisons, they still need to be used at times; and often, the alternative products still emit fumes that can harm your pets. Therefore, when you have your home taken care of by exterminators, you must look into how to keep your pets safe throughout the process. While you can ask your exterminators about this ahead of time, it’s really up to you to take the steps necessary. With that being said, let’s explore how to keep pets safe while at the same time ridding your home of harmful pests.
1. Tell Your Exterminator
Again, keeping your pets safe is ultimately your responsibility and not that of your local pest control company. However, of course, they won’t want anything bad to happen to your pets, and you need to let them know about your pet situation before welcoming pest control services into your home. In the midst of a pest infestation, you’ll understandably be panicked when you get in touch with pest control services. Therefore, you may not remember at first to mention your own pets. Therefore, it may be a good idea to get in touch with your exterminator again and make it clear that you own specific types of pets, and they reside in these parts of the house. Of course, a good exterminator will ask about your pets ahead of time.
Another factor to consider, aside from how to keep pets safe, is, of course, the safety of those coming to your house as well. Some pets are going to be friendlier than others. It’s not your fault if your dog happens to be more protective, for example; but it will be your fault if your exterminator walks into your home not expecting a protective dog and gets hurt. Therefore, it’s a good idea to make sure that any pets involved are either socialized enough to be around the exterminators or removed entirely from the situation. For that matter, your pet may very well need to be kept away from the home when you’re having your home visited by pest control services, which we’ll discuss more later. At the same time, if your pet can be safely kept in the home during extermination, you should prepare to keep them contained. This is not only a matter of protecting your exterminator; it can also be a part of how to keep pets safe in the first place. Some extermination services are confined strictly to one area, and need not affect any other part of your house. If your pet is kept in one particular room throughout the extermination process, they should be just fine in many different scenarios. Furthermore, if your yard is bordered by residential fencing, you can actually take advantage of that and keep certain pets like dogs in the backyard. Of course, this is not always the case, especially if your infestation is more severe.
2. Be Prepared To Board Your Pet
Some infestations are much more difficult to deal with than others. For example, a rodent removal process isn’t always a one-day situation. Oftentimes, an exterminator is required to return to the same place repeatedly or to lay down a treatment that is meant to last for a somewhat extended period of time. Ideally, this process will take less than a week; otherwise, the infestation may be so severe that you, the homeowner, will need to leave the home for some time as well. In the case of an extermination that takes multiple days, you at the very minimum need to consider how to keep pets safe, to the point of placing that pet in a different area for some time. If you live near friends or family who can take your pet on for a few days, this is obviously ideal. But if you don’t, you can potentially seek out boarding services for a few days. While nobody loves the idea of having their pets away from them for an extended period of time, this is sometimes the best thing to do, both to ensure that your pets are safe and to make sure that the exterminators can do everything that they need to do. So, how do you choose a boarding service while your home is undergoing extermination? You should be careful, as not all boarding services are created equal. A lot of professional boarding kennels are meant exclusively for dogs. With that being said, a lot of them are not quite up to date and you should be careful about reading reviews ahead of time and seeking out local recommendations. Another thing you should consider, of course, is working with your vet. While smaller animal hospitals rarely offer boarding services, a lot of them not only offer boarding, but daycare services as well. This means that if your exterminator is only going to be visiting for a short amount of time but needs your home to be kept pet-free during that time, you can actually take advantage of those daycare services. If your vet doesn’t offer these services, have no fear! Using apps like Rover will allow you to use the services of experienced pet-sitters, either overnight or in a daycare scenario. If you’re really trying to be strict about how to keep pets safe while using pest control services, the best thing to do is to really take them out of that situation entirely. For some, this simply isn’t going to be a valid option, at least not easily. What happens if you own pets that aren’t easily contained or boarded?
3. Cover Your Pets’ Enclosures
Some pets, like dogs and cats, can be kept safe through boarding or easy containment. But if you’re a fish or reptile owner looking up how to keep pets safe, you may struggle to find a boarding center that is right for your pets. They may not be easy to move at all, and a lot of these types of pets can easily be affected by chemicals used for ant control as well as other types of extermination. Therefore, it’s important to really take the time to make sure that these sensitive pets are carefully protected, and this is often done through covering or cutting off their enclosures.
If possible, you should go ahead and move the enclosures to a safer room. They should then be covered by screens or filters that will still allow them to get the oxygen they, of course, need, while at the same time protecting them from harmful vapors or chemicals. At the same time, you should very much check with your vet before having any type of chemical treatment done within your home. Many exotic pet owners find exterminations more difficult, as a lot of extermination products advise clearly on their effects on dogs and cats, while they don’t advise on their effects on exotic pets. Another thing to keep in mind is that you shouldn’t just apply these tips towards how to keep pets safe during pest control services. They can also be used when you’re attempting your own floor cleanings or any time that you use harsh chemicals to clean your house. Remember that animals can be affected by a number of factors that we aren’t even aware of us; and unlike humans, pets can’t let you know that they’re sick or hurting. You need to be over-cautious, rather than assuming that your pets will be fine because you’ll be fine.
4. Keep Up With Your Pets Following Extermination
Part of keeping up with how to keep pets safe during the extermination process is, of course, continuing that degree of over-cautiousness after the process is technically completed. Even the best providers of termite treatment services, for example, can’t guarantee that your pets won’t be triggered by the scent of certain chemicals and won’t attempt to try to root them out. Therefore, you may want to take your pets to the vet for a quick checkup about a month after the extermination is done, just to ensure that they haven’t experienced any sort of negative side effects. You may also want to follow up the extermination process with a deep clean of your house, whether by your own hands or through a hired cleaning service. Not only will this remove, ideally, any remaining chemicals from your home; it’s also simply a good practice to employ after you have your home exterminated. You should view extermination as a time to start fresh with your house, and have it cleaned completely. If you’re boarding your pet, you may want to do this before they even get home!
With all of this being said, your pets themselves can actually be the hosts of pests themselves. While your pets may not bring cockroaches home — certainly not to the point that you’ll need to seek out cockroach extermination services! — they can be home to fleas and ticks, which can infest your home in a surprisingly short time. It’s incredibly important to keep your dogs and cats on regular flea prevention medication, which often prevents ticks as well. These parasites can not only cause your pet discomfort but may very well result in them getting sick after some time. If you’re really concerned about how to keep pets safe, you need to start there.
Again, it’s understandable if you initially panic about pests within your home. Pets can have long-term effects on your property’s value. Considering the fact that the complete value of farmland and buildings in the United States came to $2.7 trillion in 2018, there is a lot at risk if homeowners don’t have their pests exterminated in a timely manner. Many people struggle with the idea of spending money on professional pest control. However, if you don’t, you risk sustaining more damage to your property in the long term.
But no matter how much your property is worth, your pets of course have more emotional value. Therefore, it’s important to seek out pest control companies that understand the importance of keeping your pets safe, and ideally can even offer tips about how to keep pets safe during the extermination process. The more cautious you are, and the more carefully you protect your pets, the easier it will be for your exterminator to truly rid your home of its infestation and leave everyone happy and healthy.