Bed Bugs in Arizona

Finding a reason why or how bed bug infestations are on the rise is a question that is in no doubt up for debate.  Considering how bed bugs migrate in our belongings it would only make sense to assume that the most popular tourist attractions would be the most heavily infested areas. That being said the epicenter of bed bug activity in the U.S.remains of all places Cincinnati,Ohio.  I’m sure Cincinnati is aa bed bug great city; however it is surely not a tourism hot bed.  Here in Arizona, the Grand Canyon alone has approximately 5 million visitors each year not to mention Major League Baseball Spring Training, The U.S. Open, Barrett Jackson Auto Auction and much more.  Every year from January through mid-April most hotels are booked solid in the Phoenix/Scottsdale metropolitan area not to mention Sedona and Tucson.  Thankfully Arizona has so far had fairly light bed bug activity compared to the rest of the country. Each year however the cases in Arizona rise and I have personally seen a fairly dramatic increase during this past year compared to the years prior.

Where are the bed bugs coming from?  I have clients constantly trying to pass blame on different ethnic groups, foreigners and people from different income levels.  I always tell them the same thing.  I have found bed bugs in 5 star resorts and million dollar homes all the way down to low income housing and budget motels.  It has nothing to do with dirt or filth it has everything to do with having warm blood to feed on and we all have that including our pets.

I do believe that once a bed bug infestation is in place lower income households have a much more difficult time eradicating bed bugs because bed bug treatment can be very expensive.  Once the infestation takes hold in a residence it can be spread to others rather easily if precautions are not taken.

Here are some precautions you can take to avoid bringing home bed bugs from common hot spots.

  1. Keep in the back of your mind what the hot spots may be.  Hotels, Theatres, Libraries and anywhere else you would have a large turnover of people remaining stationary for long periods of time.
  1. Get familiar with what you are looking for so if you do encounter a bug you can identify it.  This will prevent bed bug hysteria as you will surely encounter different types of bugs everywhere you go.  Just because a bug is found on a bed doesn’t mean it is a bed bug!
  1. Bed bugs like organic materials to colonize in.  They are rarely if ever found on furniture solely made from metal or plastics.  On the other hand they do very well on wood, wicker and fabrics.  If you have a chair that is metal or plastic with fabric cushions then that is where you would look for bed bugs.
  1. If you are in a high risk hot spot for bed bugs and you want to be extra cautious or if you are positive that you have been exposed to bed bugs the most important thing is to not take them into your home.  I have been working around bed bug infestations for almost 3 years and I have never had a bed bug in my house just by following these few steps:Yellow lab bed bug detection dog

i.      Stripping down in my garage and putting my clothes and washable exposed belongings directly in the washer.

ii.      Going directly from my garage to the shower.

iii.      For belongings that are not washable I either thermally treat them or throw them away.  (Tip: if it is summer time and sunny out leave the non-washable items in the vehicle at least one day)

  1. Last of all; if you are worried about bed bugs and can’t find any evidence consider hiring a third party bed bug detection dog team.  They can provide a thorough inspection and either find the issue for you or hopefully prove that you don’t have bed bugs.

Most importantly is that all of us need to realize that there is only so much we can do in regards to being exposed to bed bugs.  To think bed bugs will prevent some people from staying in a hotel or going to the movies is sad and I hope these instances are few and far between.  We need to keep our eyes open and be smart, but not overreact and let it control our lives.

For more information on our bed bug detection dog services feel free to call us.

Keith Coddington

Owner / Founder of Cimex K9 & Certified Detection dog trainer


Bed Bug Exterminator – Phoenix

By Keith Coddington There are a few things consumers should take into consideration before hiring a bed bug exterminator in Phoenix, Arizona.  Due to the continued consistent rise in hysteria consumers should be on guard and do their research before being talked or scared into costly and unnecessary bed bug treatments. Below are some tips to protect your sanity and your wallet.

  1. If you are absolutely sure that you are familiar with identifying bed bugs and you are positive that you have anRoss searching a warehouse for bedbugs infestation consider contacting us for FREE as we are a third party that works with over 30 pest control companies.  We can give you an honest unbiased choice of treatment options and steer you in the right direction of the honest and ethical exterminators in the area.
  1. If you are not 100% sure that you have a bed bug issue then the first step is to try to find the problem yourself.  Here are some pictures of real Bed Bug infestations that we have encountered to make it easy for you to identify the problem.  If you find an issue contact us for FREE to guide you in the right direction.
  1. If you have inspected yourself and can’t find anything it does not necessarily mean that you do not have a bed bug issue.  Early infestations are very difficult to detect.  This is where our service comes into play and can be worth every penny considering the psychological impact these creatures can have on the average person.  Do your research and consider hiring one of our bed bug detection dog teams.  This way we can find an infestation in the very early stages and help you get it taken care of or even better yet put the issue to rest so you can rest if we find nothing.

If you do have bed bugs you will eventually be forced to do something as bed bugs will not go away on their own and the issue will become larger and larger as the colony grows.  The more bed bugs there are the more difficult and more expensive the treatment can be.  From my experience of inspecting thousands of properties over the past few years, the worse thing you can do is go to the store and buy bed bug spray or even worse yet foggers (bombs).  I have seen the aftermath from these store bought chemicals and it rarely if ever eliminates the bed bugs.  What these chemicals do very well is kill a few bugs, stir them up and spread them all over the place.  The bugs will simply scatter to areas where the chemicals aren’t and find a new place to start feeding. I know in this economy it can be a difficult pill to swallow to hire an exterminator, especially for those do-it-Keith Coddington and his bed bug dog Rossyourselfers; however there are just some things that you should seriously consider leaving to the professionals and this would be on that list in my opinion. Give us a call even if you don’t need our canine services and we can at least point you in the right direction based on your situation. Good Luck and “Don’t let the bed bugs bite”,   Keith Coddington Owner / Founder / Certified Detection Dog Trainer 888-928-4364

Bed Bugs in Phoenix

Are bed bugs in Phoenix? Many people wonder and the answer is yes without a doubt. Over the last few years just as with the rest of the country the incidents of bed bugs here in Arizona have continued to rise. Sniffing an office for bedbugs

The official numbers released from Rollins Inc., a corporation which operates 7 pest control brands including Orkin, on March 15th, 2012 show a 33.6% increase nationwide in their bed bug business for 2011.

Phoenix Arizona moved up 19 spots from number 53 to number 34. The number one and two spots remained the same with Cincinnati and Chicago respectively. Los Angeles jumped 20 places and is now holding at number 5 while Las Vegas is at number 16.

Keep in mind these figures are based on figures only from Rollins Inc. The true bed bug business activity would only be measured accurately if all pest control companies compiled a database together to track their bed bug revenue.

Locally here in Phoenix and throughout Arizona, Cimex K9 (a bed bug detection dog company) has had to respond with the growing demand for their services. Cimex K9 currently has 6 bed bug detection dogs on duty ready to sniff out these pests.

The advantages of using a bed bug detection dog are for early detection such as proactive inspections of commercial establishments, reactive inspections when there is thought to be bed bugs but no physical evidence can be found without professional help and last of all post-treatment inspections to ensure the pests were eliminated by the pest control company.

Cimex K9 maintains their third-party status by not offering bed bug treatments. This avoids a conflict of interest that can be common in the industry considering the more treatments a pest control company can sell the more money they make. Bed bug dog inspections are a fraction of the cost of an effective treatment and many suspected cases of infestations turn out not being a bed bug issue.

Cimex K9 is the only bed bug detection dog company in Arizona that can boast all of the following:

• The owner/founder is a certified detection dog trainer that trains and maintains his search teams personally on a daily basis. In addition he is also qualified by the Arizona Office of Pest Management to own and operate this licensed pest control company.

• Handlers all have prior dog experience including military and police K9 handling experience.

• Is a veteran owned and operated business.

• All search teams are third-party certified according to the National Pest Management Association’s guidelines.

• Cimex K9 has an impeccable record since it began providing this service in 2009.

• Is an accredited business with the Better Business Bureau and maintains an A rating.

• Contracts with over 30 pest control companies from the largest national chains to small locally based businesses.

If you would like more information on Cimex K9 please feel free to contact us!

Keith Coddington Owner / Founder / Head Trainer


What do bed bugs look like?

As the bed bug epidemic continues to intensify in Phoenix and throughout Arizona, residents should educate themselves as to what a bed bug infestation looks like. Usually an active infestation can be found without too much trouble, however early infestations can be very difficult to detect without a professional. Using our bed bug detection dogs to provide the most accurate inspection possible is your best bet when you simply want to know for sure if you are facing a bed bug issue or not.

Below are several pictures of real bed bug infestations which you should familiarize yourself with so you can identify them.


colony of bed bugs

Bed bug in screw hole of bed frame

a well developed bed bug colony found on the seam of a mattress

Two large cast skins, fecal matter and several bed bug eggs.


Meet Ross, on the frontlines of the bed bug war in Arizona


By Keith Coddington Since 2010 Ross the bed bug detection dog has been helping his human counterparts by fighting the war against bed bugs in Phoenix, Arizona and beyond.  All indications point to the fact that we humans will probably never win this war against bed bugs, but with highly trained bed bug dogs like Ross on our side we can at least win battles when necessary.

Ross has been a pleasure to work with over the past two years.  He is one of the most versatile dogs I have ever had the pleasure of knowing.Ross searching a warehouse for bedbugs

His strong will to work, confidence and even keeled temperament make everyone that meets him instantly fall in love with him.

Ross is about 3 years old.  We are unsure of his exact age because as with all of our dogs he was rescued.  We believe he is a Labrador mix, but he appears to have the body structure of a German Shepherd.

Ross continues to amaze us with his amazing ability to detect even the smallest amount of bed bug evidence.  He is a dog that works quickly, efficiently and has learned the search pattern so well in all environments that he is basically on auto-pilot.

Ross has been deployed to dormitories, movie theatres, hotels, resorts, warehouses, homes, apartments, office buildings, hospitals, manufacturing plants, libraries, fire stations and more.  He has been to every corner of the state from Chinle to Phoenix toTucson.Ross and Keith on an plane to a bedbug job

Ross lives with his canine handler and the rest of his pack of dogs in Phoenix.  He loves to play with the other dogs on his free time or simply relax at your feet.

Cimex K9 looks forward to continue to help our customers in Arizona win their bed bug battles with our proactive and reactive bed bug inspection programs.

For more information contact Keith Coddington at:


Cimex K9

Phoenix, AZ


Phoenix welcomes a new certified bed bug dog.

By Keith Coddington Cimex K9 of Phoenix, AZ would like to introduce our latest certified bed bug dog, Kohl.

Kohl is a 2 year old Dutch Shepherd.  All of Cimex K9s dogs are either owner surrenders or from rescue organizations.  Although Kohl comes from an excellent breeding line, he was too much for his prior owner to handle due to his strong desire to work.

Although Kohl has this very strong work ethic he is also a very sweet boy that loves other dogs and people.  He is remarkably calm while doing his job detecting bed bugs for how much energy and drive he possesses.  His stamina and focus while on the job is second to none which makes him a pleasure to work with.

Just as with all of our dogs, Kohl is trained to passively alert meaning he will sit and point when he detects bed bug odor.    All of the handlers at Cimex K9 were third party certified with Kohl this January.

Kohl the dog at the splash dog poolBesides detecting bed bugs, Kohl also loves competeing in dock diving competitions.  During his first competition in January of 2012 he placed 2nd in the senior division of the Splash Dogs Competition in Tempe, AZ.

For more information on Cimex K9s bed bug detection services call 888-928-4364

Many Arizona Businesses to implement Proactive Bed Bug Dog Inspections

Cimex K9 has been offering bed bug dog detection services since 2009.  Most of our clients are located in the Phoenix metropolitan area, but we service the entire state. April 12, 2014

Unfortunately for Arizonians the bed bug epidemic undoubtedly is just in the beginning stages.  We here at Cimex K9 have noticed a drastic increase in bed bug activity this winter not only in Phoenix but throughout the entire state.  Unlike past years where the bed bug activity seemed to decrease during the winter months this year has shown a drastic increase in activity from our perspective.Bedbug dog sniffing books

Many businesses throughout the state have decided to take a proactive approach using our bed bug detection dog service rather than waiting for customer complaints.  This service help protects the reputation of the business, provides peace of mind and allows infestations to be discovered in the very early stages which allow treatments to be easier and less expensive.

We recommend most establishments adopt a quarterly inspection schedule to provide adequate monitoring to practically eliminate the possibility of customers encountering bed bugs.

There are products on the market for bed bug monitoring and detection, however nothing can beat Cimex K9’s impeccable track record.  Over the past two years at the thousands of properties we have inspected our search teams have yet to let a customer down by not letting even the smallest infestation go unnoticed and ensuring every canine alert is in fact an active infestation.

Please contact us for more information.  Feel free to check our track record with the Better Business Bureau and additional references are available on request!

Keith Coddington


Cimex K9, LLC


Interquest Detection Canines of Arizona Launches Contraband (Drug Dog) service

Interquest Detection Canines® is pleased to announce the addition of our Arizona office located in Phoenix to provide services to Arizona schools and industry.Interquest logo Interquest, via the use of highly trained and certified detection canines provides a deterrent program to minimize the presence of unwanted  drugs and other contraband potentially found on the school campus or in the workplace.

We welcome Keith Coddington to our team responsible for all Arizona operations.  Keith comes to Interquest with vast experience in both canine training as well as development and use of scent trained canines.

Interquest currently is represented in 24 states serving over 1600 public and private school systems as well as numerous manufacturing and industrial concerns.

For further information, please contact Keith Coddington at 480-437-4334 or visit 


Importance of hiring a third party Bed Bug Detection Dog Service in Phoenix, AZ

By Keith Coddington Cimex K9, LLC would like to stress the importance of hiring a third party bed bug detection dog service.  Here in Phoenix and Nationwide there are unethical scams taking place regarding the use of bed bug detection dogs to convince customers they need costly bed bug treatments when it is not necessary.

Unfortunately we have seen this ourselves in the Phoenix area more than once as we have searched locations right after a previous Marley the dogcompany insisted there was a major bed bug problem that needed to be addressed immediately.  One thing in common with every issue like this is that even though their dog is alerting in various locations they cannot provide visual proof of the infestation as the infestation simply does not exist.

For some reason I have seen consumers just assume since a bed bug detection dog is being used that it is not necessary to verify anything and just trust the pest control company that is operating them.  Please insist on evidence and protect yourself as the dog handler may be paid on commission for selling the treatment!  If that is not a conflict of interest I don’t know what is.

Also, just because your canine service is provided to you through a regular pest control company it does not necessarily mean it is not a third party.  Many pest control companies subcontract out their bed bug canine work to a third party as is the case with most of the jobs we perform.  Feel free to ask your company if they contract out their canine services as this will minimize the conflict of interest.  Also, make sure the bed bug detection dogs are certified!

If you have any other questions feel free to contact Phoenix, Arizona based  Cimex K9 at 888-928-4364

Keith Coddington

Founder, Certified Detection Dog Trainer

Phoenix Bed Bug Dog Service

By Keith Coddington Cimex K9, LLC announces the addition of two more bed bug dogs to our Phoenix, Arizona based operation plus two more bed bug dogs for our out of state operations as we continue to contract with national and regional pest control companies.Bedbug dog sniffing books

Cimex K9 also recently added a former military canine handler / trainer to our staff to assist us with our new additions in order to provide the highest quality bed bug dog detection services on the market today.

Cimex K9 certifies their teams through an independent third party called the World Detector Dog Organization.  The owner of Cimex K9 is also a Certified Detection Dog Trainer through the WDDO and is licensed by the Arizona State Office of Pest Management.

For the past two years Cimex K9’s bed bug dogs have been servicing private residences, hotels, summer-camps, local, state and federal facilities with our discrete proactive and reactive inspection services.

Cimex K9 is an accredited business through the Better Business Bureau that maintains an A rating with an unmatched regard for customer service.

For more information Contact Cimex K9 at 888-928-4364

Phoenix Bed Bug Detection Dog Update – Trends for 2011

Phoenix, Arizona based Cimex K9 specializes in proactive early detection of bed bug infestations and provides post-treatment assurance that treatments were effective. We are approaching the two year anniversary of Cimex K9’s bed bug detection K9 services.  We have seen a consistent increase in bed bug activity throughout Arizona over the last two years.

At the end of the third quarter of 2011 we have found that the bed bug epidemic in Arizona has significantly increased from the prior year.  We are finding active colonies more often in public places which previously was a rarity.  It does Sniffing and office for bedbugsnot make a difference if the areas are low-income or high-income neighborhoods because to a bed bug the blood is all the same.  We speculate that due to the high cost of treatment sometimes lower income households are less likely to be treated effectively which may lead to the bed bug colonies migrating from one structure to another more often.

We at Cimex K9 are encouraged to see that more commercial establishments are taking a proactive approach to detect infestations prior to customer complaints.  We feel this is by far the most effective use of our service as it always pays for itself by protecting the establishment’s reputation along with a much more effective treatment due to early detection.

Should you see a bed bug inspection canine working at a public or commercial establishment you should feel grateful that the location is taking proactive precautions to protect you rather than thinking because they are using a bed bug sniffing canine that they must have a serious problem.  Bed bug detection dogs are normally used to find infestations before they get out of control as larger and more active colonies are easily detected without the use of a bed bug dog.

As the use of the bed bug detection dogs in Arizona becomes more mainstream they will be seen as a welcome sight rather than a reason to panic.  Until then we will maintain status quo by being as discrete as possible.

Should you have any questions or comments about the services we provide at Cimex K9 please feel free to contact us at 888-928-4364


-Keith A Coddington

Founder of Cimex K9, LLC

Consumer beware: Investigate before you hire a Bedbug Dog! Phoenix, Arizona

By Keith Coddington Close up dog noseThere is no doubt that the nationwide bedbug epidemic has turned into an enormous business opportunity which looks extremely attractive in today’s economy.   The bedbug epidemic is nationwide and Phoenix, Arizona has not been spared.  Experts agree the bedbug problem will get much worse before it gets better.

There will be more and more start-up companies trying to cash in on this opportunity which is not necessarily a bad thing, however consumers need to be sure to research the company they are about to hire especially when it comes to bedbug dogs.

The problem is that there is currently no set standard, license or industry-wide recognized certification for bedbug detection dogs teams.  As of now anyone can simply claim they have a trained bedbug detection dog.   A system of consistent quality control in this highly specialized field is lacking.  The good news is that there are several different organizations already addressing this issue and a long-term industry-wide solution is on the horizon.

Cimex K9 is promoting and currently working on the implementation of a state sponsored certification process for search teams to ensure consumers are protected and receive the best quality service possible.

So you may wonder:  How do I hire a reputable detection dog company?

1.       Ask if the dogs are certified.  If so which certification agency?  Ask for proof.

2.       Is the certifying organization operated by the same person that trained and sold the dog?  If so this is a conflict of interest and you should be very skeptical of the legitimacy of this type of “certification”.  The organization must be an independent uninterested third party.

3.       Certification must be of the Team which includes the dog and handler.

4.       Is the certification in real-world conditions?  Is it a double-blind test?

5.       Who trains and maintains the detection dogs?  There is a difference between handlers and trainers.  Trainers train the dogs and the handlers from scratch.  Handlers are trained to use a dog that has already been trained, and aren’t qualified to train other handlers and dogs.  Not many areas have actual trainers on-hand  to maintain the detection dog teams, but when available this is an issue worth considering from a quality control perspective.

6.       Ask for references.  Of course any business will always give out the customer’s names that have had good experiences with them.  The best reference for a bedbug detection dog would be to ask for an apartment complex that has used their bedbug detection dogs frequently over the past year.  This can give you a much clearer picture of the company’s performance.

7.       Does the company, trainer and/or handler have any prior experience with detection dogs?

If the company you are about to hire can’t easily answer all of the questions above you may want to look elsewhere.  Until there is a set industry standard regarding bedbug detection dog certifications the questions above are the best way to ensure protection for the consumer.

-Keith Coddington

Cimex K9, LLC

The Canine Nose Undercovers

Letting the bedbugs bite? Go to the mattress with a well-trained sniffer.
by Mara Bovsun - July/August 2011 issue of AKC Family Magazine
Yet again, the human race is under siege and, yet again, we’re calling on our dogs to pull us from the brink of disaster.  The enemy this time is a tiny insect, about the size of an apple seed.  In scientific circles, the proper name is Cimex lectularius.  To the rest of us, that’s bedbug.

Phoenix Bedbug Detection Dog Services

By Keith Coddington

Phoenix, AZ based Cimex K9 search teams are currently employed by various pest control companies across Arizona.  We boast the fact that we are currently the only third party certified detection dog teams maintained by a certified detection dog trainer in the state of Arizona.  It is extremely important for consumers to be aware of this fact as more and more bedbug detection dog companies start popping up that are not third party certified, experienced in the field of detection canines and have little if any quality control standards in place.

We have a genuine concern for this industry considering how specialized this field is and how there is currently a total lack of a certification requirement or required testing when it comes to bedbug detection dogs.  Anyone can currently simply state that their dog is a bedbug detection dog and there is no way for a consumer to know the difference.

Cimex K9, has chosen to certify our search teams through the World Detector Dog Organization.  The WDDO is fortunate to have Dr. Larry Meyers as our quality control advisor.  Dr. Meyers began his research on detection dogs in 1982 and continues his research at Auburn University.  Dr. Meyers and David Latimer are the WDDO’s certifying officials and developed the only double-blind certification procedure which is the most stringent and real-world certification available.


Keith Coddington
Owner / Trainer / Handler
Cimex K9, LLC
Phoenix, AZ

Dogs help sniff out bedbugs in Phoenix public housing

Canine detectives discover infestations as incidence increases 

Emily Gersema - Apr. 7, 2011 10:30 AM The Arizona Republic

The management company of a city-owned senior housing complex near downtown Phoenix recently took an unusual step to check the units for bedbugs.

McCormack Baron Ragan hired a Phoenix company, Cimex K9, to lead a dog that is trained to point when it finds bedbugs. The dog was used in the apartments of the Senior Living at Henson Village complex near Buckeye Road and Eighth Avenue.

(Read More)

Arizona's Proactive Commercial Bedbug Inspections

By Keith Coddington

Unfortunately for our clients the bedbug epidemic appears only to be in its infancy. And although a silver bullet will take care of your typical vampire, a bed bug treatment is a bit more complicated to destroy these little nocturnal blood-suckers which means they are here to stay at least for now.
That being said the best option available to any commercial establishment at risk of infestation is routine proactive bedbug inspections.  The obvious goal is to avoid customer exposure by finding the infestation in its early stages and eliminate the problem before complaints and even lawsuits ensue.

That may sound easy enough however the problem is that detecting bedbug infestations during the early stages can be

A picture of a call center a great place for bed bugs

extremely difficult and labor intensive.  To complete an extremely thorough inspection of a typical hotel room would require pulling all of the furniture apart and visually inspecting every spot a bedbug could wedge into.  This type of routine proactive approach is impractical in most commercial settings especially with a large number of rooms to search.

This is where the use of bedbug detection dogs is by far the best option.  A properly trained and certified search team can clear a typical room in a matter of minutes and do it more accurately. (see my other articles on how to research and hire a bedbug dog).
The biggest issue clients initially have when it comes to using the dogs is that they are worried about the perception from their customers that if dogs are seen then their customers will believe there is a bedbug problem at the location.
Here in Phoenix, AZ using bedbug detection dogs is a relatively new concept and anything new is always uncomfortable at first, but many other resort hot spots across the country proudly proclaim the fact they are keeping their guests as safe as possible by being proactive.  Bedbug Detection Teams should never tell the client's customers we are searching for bedbugs unless they give prior permission, but for the customers that do figure out what is going on it is always a been a positive reaction. By being one of the properties that values their customer's safety above everything else is always a good thing.
I realize proactive bedbug inspections in Arizona is a new thing however we are slowly but surely coming to the time when it will be something that is promoted rather than kept quiet.  Until then I will work with our clients to be as discreet as needed to get the job done.
For more information about Bed Bugs be sure to check out this great page on Bed Bugs from Texas A & M University.
Keith Coddington
Owner / Trainer / Handler
Cimex K9, LLC
Phoenix, AZ

K-9 Bedbug Inspection – How it works – Phoenix, AZ

By Keith Coddington A properly executed and thorough inspection is  a very crucial part of the Bed Bug Treatment process to avoid missing an infestation leaving it untreated only to create a problem in the near future.  A poor inspection puts the customer at risk and gives the pest control company a poor reputation.

The most important thing to know about a K-9 Bedbug search team is that it is in fact a team.  The dog alone and handler alone are neither as effective as when they work together.  The dog has his strong points being the sense of smell, efficiency and ability to work fast.  The handler has the eyes and brains of the operation.  It is up to the handler to interpret the dog’s body language and investigate any possible areas that bedbugs usually reside.  This is done through visual inspections, visual confirmation of every spot the dog indicates and other common areas where bedbugs usually reside.

Pointing at a Bed Bug Dogs nose

The dog is a great tool, but not necessary in all cases.  Obviously if the infestation has progressed enough to where it is easily visible there is no need for the K-9 team.  The bed bug K-9 team is best used for very light infestations that are very difficult to visually detect, to confirm/deny reports of bedbug activity and to inspect a location post-treatment to ensure the treatment was effective.  By far the best use for a K-9 Bedbug inspection team is pro-active searching in a commercial environment where time equals money such as the hospitality industry, a hospital or call center.  The team can effectively search a hotel room in a fraction of the time it takes a technician alone, do it more accurately and more cost effectively.

The bedbug dog is only as good as the handler.  Dogs are extremely perceptive of any movements or body language the handler may show and it is very easy to teach a dog to false alert or react to certain involuntary signals.  This is nothing new and has always been the case with detection dogs, but a good handler that is backed by a good detection dog program is taught to recognize this and has the support through his trainer to correct these types of issues.  Considering all of the types of detection dogs out there bedbugs can be one of the most difficult to detect since the odor can be very minute compared to say narcotics.  This being said having a well trained and maintained K-9 Bedbug inspection team is all the more important.

One way to ensure the detection team you are about to hire is trained properly is insisting that the dog has been properly certified by a third party according to the National Pest Management Guidelines and investigate the certification.  As of now there is no performance standard regarding bedbug detection dogs and anyone can claim they have a trained detection dog.  Even claims of certified detection dogs should be investigated as some certifications are not legitimate and are a meaningless formality between the trainer that sold the dog and the person who purchased the dog.

For more information on certifications or K-9 Bedbug inspection teams contact Arizona based Cimex K9 at 888-928-4364

Arizona’s K-9 Bedbug Inspectors to/from the rescue

By Keith Coddington Two dogs on the grassCimex K9 would like to introduce Zane, Ross, Isis and Olivia Arizona’s best option for bedbug inspections.  Each one of these dogs has been hand-picked for this special field of detection.  It often takes evaluating 100-200 rescue dogs before one is selected for this line of duty.

The intelligence of the dog doesn’t have as much to do with the selection as other factors.  What is most important is the drive behind the dog.  Meaning the dog will do absolutely anything to receive their reward.  These four are all toy / praise reward dogs which means they work so they can play with their toy and handler.  We prefer this method over food reward due to how often we find food in the areas we are hired to search in and we enjoy the high drive our dogs posses.

Another extremely important factor in the selection of a working dog is how the dog behaves in public with the distractions of people, other animals, noises and just about any other distraction you can think of.  Our dogs are very obedient, conditioned to work through any distractions and they are trained to primarily work off-leash independently of the handler or on-leash when required.  The more the human can stay out of the dog’s way the better,  after all the whole reason we are using the dog is that they are the natural expert hunters.

Initial training can take several months, but the training never stops and having a trainer on staff providing quality control is what we believe sets our program apart from others.

It is important to understand that the K-9 and the handler are a team and work together to make sure the customer is Two bedbug dogs sitting in the grassreceiving the most accurate inspection possible.  Often the K-9 will quickly find bedbugs or evidence of bedbugs in a room in a matter of seconds on their own yet other times the handler must detail certain areas to be sure.  This combination along with visual verification is by far the best option possible in today’s battle against these persistent bedbugs.

All of our dogs live a normal pet dog style of life when they are off duty.  They know when it is work time and when it is off-duty time.  They live with regular families and live in wonderful loving homes with other dogs as well.  Our canine’s favorite activities when not working are by far playing with their toys.  These dogs are absolutely obsessed with their toys as this is what they also work for.  They will play fetch for hours on end until your arm falls off.  They also know when it is time to settle down and they all do have their “off-switch” Olivia’s switch can sometimes be the hardest to turn off, even after her handler takes her on a 10 mile walk/run.  Ross and Zane currently live together and not only love playing fetch, but love to wrestle.   Isis loves her GIANT ball more than anything.

One of the most rewarding things about working with these dogs is knowing that they were saved from the shelter and more than likely destruction.  These high drive dogs do not make good pets and are usually dropped off at the shelter because their energy can’t be channeled into something positive which leads to destructive behaviors.  Fortunately we have given these dogs an outlet for this energy and it is helping us humans against the dreaded bedbug!

For more information on our dogs or bedbug dog detection teams contact Cimex K9, LLC at 888-928-4364

Scottsdale, AZ hosts Bedbug dog Certifications

By Keith Coddington

Phoenix, AZ based Cimex K9 held their annual K9 Bedbug Search team certifications this week at a hotel in Scottsdale, AZ.  The location was chosen because it has never had a bedbug infestation and was also swept by a certified K9 bedbug team before the testing.

A total of five teams tested and certified this week.  Four of the teams were from Cimex K9 and one from Las Vegas Dog sniffing for bedbugs in a hotel room

The certifying official conducting the testing was Master Trainer David Latimer.  The testing was proctored by entomologists from the University of Arizona including Dawn Gouge Ph.D. Associate Professor / Associate Specialist and Bryan Stevens MSc. Assistant in Extension.

Cimex K9 feels it is extremely important to educate consumers on the proper use of bedbug dogs and proper certification.  As of now anyone can claim their dog is a bedbug detection dog as there is no license/certification standardization statewide or nationally.  It is up to each company to choose the best method of certification if they choose any at all.

Cimex K9 trains and maintains their own bedbug dog inspection teams and certifies them through the World Detector Dog Organization which is an independent third party.  The World Detector Dog Organization certifies various types of detection dogs for commercial and governmental agencies and is the only bedbug dog certification to utilize a double-blind system.Dog sniffing for bedbugs on a couch

Should you choose to hire a detection dog or wish to certify your detection dog you should research the certification.  Some of the key points to look for in a legitimate certification:

Is the organization a third party?

Is the organization conducting their testing in real-world conditions?

Is the testing conducted using a double-blind method?

Is there a certifying official and proctor present during the testing?

If you would like to join the World Detector Dog Organization or have more questions about their certification procedure please visit their website at

Keith Coddington
Owner / Trainer / Handler
Cimex K9, LLC

Local Dogs Sniff Out Bedbugs

East Valley Tribune updated 12/10/2010 4:15:37 PM ET It has been said by dog trainers everywhere that one of the best things you can do is to give your dog a job.

While the object is to keep your dog active and obedient, there are some dogs out there that perform jobs that humans themselves cannot do.

Take for example Isis, a 3-year-old Catahoula mix. Isis is a bedbug-detection expert. She is employed by Cimex K9, a Phoenix-based company that is hired by residents and businesses to sniff out bedbugs.

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