Nyx in training

Finding bed bugs requires a (grueling?#!) workout schedule for Nyx.

Illinois Bed Bug Dog…Arriving on the Scene

Hey Cliff, can you park your truck on the next block?

As Good As Dead aka A.G.A.D. Pest Control has been around for 30 years. I learned that having advertising on my truck was good business while the truck was moving. It’s only when I stopped that curtains were drawn and doors were slammed. Parking in front of a school, customer’s house, dormitory, apartment or condo complex; that was a different story. Being discreet became very important. By the time we eradicated whatever pest might have been plaguing a property owner, there was a good chance that neighbors were discussing all manners of what “pest” their neighbor was inundated with.

I bet its roaches! Naw, gotta be rats! I told you they had wasps! No cat there. Must be infested with mice! That itchy kid must have lice! Raccoons, I knew it!

In truth, the most immaculate homes can run into trouble with pests. In fact, those are the clients that are most likely to call. Or they’ll stop me on the street. They’ll give me the address, invariably followed by the instructions “Hey Cliff, can you park a couple blocks away?” Sometimes, they’ll even provide the address of an unkempt rental property where no one would be surprised that a pest problem might occur.

Bed Bugs on the Move. Ugh!

It had become part of tucking a child in at night; “Good night, sleep tight, don’t let the bed bugs bite!” You don’t hear that much anymore, because theeeeeey’re back! And they’re miserable. Their bites are painful, uncomfortable and you could be bitten hundreds of times before you realize it. You won’t be going to the Prom with the swelling and rashes they cause. The little buggers travel light and easy too. They move quickly, quietly and invisibly through your house, apartment, school, office or hotel through the walls and often use the electrical system as a “superhighway to their destination; your bed!

How do you find them? Endless Training and Cross-training.

For years that meant literally tearing up your house to expose them. That’s if they didn’t find you and your delicious flesh first. Sorry, but that’s how most people first learned of their unwanted guests.

Not anymore. Meet Nyx, the Illinois Bed Bug Dog. She’s cute and very discreet. More important, she’s trained to find these bed bugs in any structure no matter where they are hiding. You could say Nyx lives for this job. Because she does. She’s a petite Fox terrier on a mission. She can fit into awkward and small spaces and she can smell beg bugs wherever they are. Even in the walls. Nyx only is rewarded with food when she successfully finds the bed bugs. Nyx has had 800 hours of initial training and an ongoing training program every day. She doesn’t get distracted by other stimuli, not smells, sights or sounds. When her “work leash” is on, she’s single-mindedly looking for only one scent; bed bugs. She’s up to 98% effective and she works fast. What used to take a whole day and might have a 30% success rate, now takes several minutes and it’s nearly perfect. As her trainer and co-worker, I, Cliff Duple, am responsible for continuing her training for 2 hours every day. That’s not too hard to do. Nyx and I are busy, really busy. She’s inspecting all day, and often times makes night calls. Whenever the bug bites, the phone rings. Nyx and Cliff Duple are ready to find those bed bugs. No one realizes Nyx is on the job. She looks like any other family pet (although in my biased opinion she’s in the top echelon of cute dogs and would win ‘Best in Show’ at Westminster if she didn’t have a job, unlike the other shallow contestants) When Nyx and I enter, we look like visitors. If Nyx finds bed bugs, I get to work with A.G.A.D. to eradicate them. Nyx will come back and check my work when I’m done. If I’ve gotten rid of the bed bugs and made your life better, I get a treat. Nyx eats her treats. I deposit mine.

Oh, and let me know if you like my latest workout photo. Is pink my color? Ya think?

Find my bed bugs

Nyx stays competitive with a (grueling#?!) training schedule.
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