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Bites in row but no bug sign in apt, PCO and dog saw nothing either?!

(16 posts)
  1. confusednyc

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    Posted 5 months ago
    Mon Jul 8 2019 18:20:52
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    Hi all-

    Sorry, this is a long one

    The other day, I saw what looked like bedbug fecal stains on a pillow cover and immediately called my super, who arranged for the building's extermination company to come with a K-9 visit today. The super was 99% sure it wasn't bug sign, and after research, so was I - it was just some dust and/or other weird stain. I also ripped my place apart to look for other signs and saw nothing. No blood smears, no fecal matter, no casings, no bugs... nothing. However, we decided to keep the appointment with the dog to be safe and sure. It's a big building and my next door neighbor once had a visit by a single hitchhiking bedbug.

    I should also mention that Saturday and last night, I slept on my sofabed, being afraid of my bed.

    Cut to today: this morning, I woke up and saw this on my ankle just above my left sock line (I can't remember if I wore socks to bed last night) :

    https://imgur.com/a/sVHb0qh

    I was down by the Hudson River a long time Saturday night and KNOW I got mosquito bites - at one point, I sat right against the river and felt myself getting bitten, so I retreated. Sunday night, I noticed the bites on my thigh, but not these on my ankle.

    Tthese bites... I didn't notice them until this morning, and they are all in a row/line/cluster above my sock line, and there are a couple as well around the side that don't show in the picture. Nothing on my right ankle or leg or thigh. I'd have said mosquito bites for sure except for the distribution pattern so indicative of bedbugs.

    The PCO came today, took one look at my pillow cover and said "not bedbugs", then the dog went everywhere and didn't react to anything, not near my bed, my sofabed (went there twice), or anywhere else except where the PCO marked part of my wall with bb scent as a control.

    I felt better... then decided to go to the local exterminator to buy some active monitoring systems (I travel tomorrow for a week).

    At the exterminator, guess who I run into but a friend from high school who now runs the place (total surprise to me.) He took one look at my leg and said "you have bedbugs" and of course, my heart sank.

    He also kindly gave me two Nattaro Scouts and two ScenSci volcano kits to place on my bed and sofabed while I'm away, which I've now placed.

    My questions:

    - How likely is it that these are bedbug bites considering I never had bites previously, can't find a single bug sign in my apartment and neither did the dog.

    - Is it possible these really are mosquito bites?

    - Aside from active monitoring, I'm not sure what I can do until I get home (I fly tomorrow). But once I get home, I'm home for a few days before I fly out again. Is this a "bag all of my things now" situation, or more of a "wait and see" one?

    Thanks so much for looking at this and for your help - I appreciate everything you fine people are doing to help us scared people out

    -Confused in NYC

  2. Mawiwala

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    Posted 5 months ago
    Wed Jul 10 2019 7:38:47
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    I wouldn't suspect bed bugs. Bites aren't an indicator for bed bugs.

    But my thoughts on this bite pattern.
    Fleas love to bite in the foot area and especially ankles and they often leave clusters of many bites. Fleas was the first thing in my mind after I saw this.

    My be mosquitos, too.

  3. BigDummy

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    Posted 5 months ago
    Wed Jul 10 2019 7:51:32
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    Bed bugs do not bite in any set pattern, number or shape. You don't have bed bugs.

  4. confusednyc

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    Posted 5 months ago
    Wed Jul 10 2019 8:01:34
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    Hi and thanks, both!

    It’s been a scary time.

    Couple of follow up questions if I may:

    - do fleas also like to bite outside, near a river and a park?

    - would it be odd to only get bit by fleas or mosquitos on only one ankle? Why just the one?

    - I do remember in the middle of one night this weekend that i felt itchiness on my ankle and rubbed them together ... fell dead asleep right after that. I also may have accidentally left my left sock on.

    - if it was bed bug bites from an outside source (movie theater last Friday night) and one hitchhiked home, would the dog have been able to smell such a new infestation? (I put the jeans back in my drawer. The dog went by there and didn’t react vita we didn’t open the drawers.

    - would those active monitors which emit pheromones confuses a k9 (if I were to get more bites and have another inspection)

    Thanks all - you’re the best!

  5. Mawiwala

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    Posted 5 months ago
    Wed Jul 10 2019 8:08:55
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    I would just chill.

    No fleas are not outside and if it were fleas I wouln't suspect, that there is a colony. If it is just one, why not bite only one ankle. Mybe you picked one up or you even have pets.

    There are so much causes for bites outside like blackflys, ants, mosquitos, (grass) mites etc.

  6. BigDummy

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    Posted 5 months ago
    Wed Jul 10 2019 8:43:14
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    You're really, really overthinking this. I could mail you a few bed bugs if that would make this any easier.

  7. confusednyc

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    Posted 5 months ago
    Wed Jul 10 2019 9:06:42
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    Haha ok, I take your point and will relax while I’m on my trip. Thanks.

    I would just like your guidance on whether the natarro and volcano active traps would make a dog think there was a false positive - just for future reference...

    Have a great day!

  8. Mawiwala

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    Posted 5 months ago
    Wed Jul 10 2019 9:27:22
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    Well if they alert to the bb trap because of the used pheromones, I would say yes. But then you can tell, what the source of the alarm is. A good K9 would serach the area and find try to find culprits. It wouldn't be good to have traps with bed bug smells in the to be inspected room, because it might confuse the dog. After all the dog is trained to sniff out bed bug smells. Nattaro is with pheromones.

  9. confusednyc

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    Posted 5 months ago
    Wed Jul 10 2019 9:54:03
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    Thanks. Ok that’s not good then because I set them both the living room
    By couch and bedroom by bed, two of each type per my high school colleague.

    If I remove the traps when I get back to New York on Monday, how long would those pheromones still be caught by a dog?

    And besides climb ups what should I use to monitor instead?

    A real pity because I specifically asked them - would this spoof the dog and they said no.

  10. Mawiwala

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    Posted 5 months ago
    Wed Jul 10 2019 10:07:33
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    If the K9 says so, I would trust them. I only did guess here. Place the qestion about monitors in a new post.

  11. BigDummy

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    Posted 5 months ago
    Wed Jul 10 2019 11:18:35
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    confusednyc - 1 hour ago  » 

    A real pity because I specifically asked them - would this spoof the dog and they said no.

    Then I would tend to accept their answer. If you already don't trust them how could a dog inspection be of any use?
    You have zero evidence, correct?

  12. confusednyc

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    Posted 5 months ago
    Wed Jul 10 2019 12:30:41
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    Hi

    Sorry if this has been confusing.

    - Saturday -building scheduled K9 to after I found weird stains on pillow.
    - monday - noticed bites in a line around one ankle only, above sock line. Had spent time by the river the night before and no other body parts bit
    - Monday - k9 visit , no response anywhere in apartment

    - Monday PM - went to local store to buy active monitors for when I’m away, in case leg bites are bed bug bites. PCO At store owner took one look at my ankle and said “bed bugs” then gave me monitors for free since we went to high school together.

    - Monday Pm - set up active monitors - scensci and natarro

    - Tuesday - flew to SF

    - next Monday- fly home.

    Wondering if I should remove the active monitors and switch to passive climb ups, and if the monitors up for a week would spoof a canine.

    Honestly I never would have thought bedbugs except for this ridiculous number of bites on one ankle only in a concentrated area and feeling getting bitten (but dismissing it) in the middle of the night.

    The bites I noticed on monday are already fading, barely itch unless I scratch them.

    I believe the first dog found nothing - but wonder if a dog would be able to detect and incredibly new infestation.

    The second pco scared the crap out of me haha!

    Thanks!

  13. lalmaroad

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    Posted 5 months ago
    Wed Jul 10 2019 12:50:43
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    Have you researched packtite passive monitors? If not this site has a lot of info on them. I have them on every bed, couches and easy chairs in my home so 9 in all. They have helped me immensely with my anxiety. Fleas are known to bite in a concentrated area and in a row. You could also look into getting some flea traps to see if that may be the culprit.

    Outside of a dog, a book is man's best friend. Inside of a dog it's too dark to read. ~Groucho Marx
  14. BigDummy

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    Posted 5 months ago
    Wed Jul 10 2019 14:05:47
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    You're just not interested in logic at this point.
    Take the night off from focusing on bed bugs, go catch a movie, do something enjoyable and distracting.
    Tomorrow ask yourself if you're being rational about any of this bed bug stuff. You wasting your own time and money has no effect on me, but repeatedly ignoring the help that you've asked for seems kinda pointless, no?

  15. confusednyc

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    Posted 5 months ago
    Wed Jul 10 2019 14:22:18
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    Hey all-

    I truly apologize if it sounds like I’m not listening to advice. I appreciate all of it, will review and act on it, and will not write back unless anything new happens.

    From the bottom of my heart , thanks. And yes I think I may be overreacting ... thanks for being honest as well.

    All the best and keep up the work you do.

  16. BigDummy

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    Posted 5 months ago
    Wed Jul 10 2019 17:38:38
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    Hanging out on a bed bug message board tends to keep them in your thoughts, some find it helpful to take a break from this place and reset. I'm serious, go have some fun, treat yourself to something nice, worse case scenario is bugs, not a huge threat.


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