How to Keep Ticks Off Your Dog and Ensure a Bite-free Adventure

this dog wants to know what it can do to avoid ticks during fun summertime hikesAttention, dog lovers in the beautiful state of Virginia! Are you tired of playing a never-ending game of hide-and-seek with ticks? While it may seem impossible to keep these blood-sucking pests away, with the right precautions you can help your furry friends avoid itchy bites all summer long. Read on to learn expert tips from the tick exterminators at Loyal Termite & Pest Control.

Tick Talk: Why Ticks Are a Big Deal

Ticks may be tiny, but they pack a punch when it comes to harming your furry companion’s well-being. From Lyme disease to other tick-borne illnesses, these sneaky critters can wreak havoc on your dog’s health. To help you out, are some tips for flea and tick prevention for dogs.

Daily Checks for a Tick-free Pup

Make it a daily ritual to give your dog a thorough tick inspection, especially after escapades in grassy or wooded areas. Get hands-on and feel for any suspicious bumps or lumps on their skin. 

Remember to pay extra attention to those ears, neck, belly, and legs. If you spot an unwelcome tick, arm yourself with tweezers or a handy tick remover tool to delicately evict the intruder. If you are worried about accidentally leaving the head behind, contact your veterinarian for advice on clean removal.

The “No-tick” Zones: Dodging Ticks Like a Pro

Treat tick-infested areas like the forbidden lands for your pooch. That means tall grass, bushes, and leafy havens. Steer clear of these hotspots when you embark on your walks or hikes. Stick to well-groomed trails and paths, leaving the tick playgrounds behind. Keep your lawn in tip-top shape by regularly mowing and tidying up any debris, making it a less appealing hideout for those tiny hitchhikers.

Suds and Suds: Bath Time Tick Defense

Who knew bath time could be a tick-busting extravaganza? Grab a mild shampoo made for your furry friends and lather up your furry pal. Rinse them thoroughly, removing any lurking ticks in the process. Add a splash of apple cider vinegar or lemon juice to the water for an extra kick. These natural tick repellents will make those bloodsuckers think twice. 

Fashionable and Functional: the Tick-Proof Dog Vest

If your furry sidekick is an adventure enthusiast, it is time to suit them in style! Introduce your pet to the tick-fighting superhero: the dog vest. This fashionable garment covers your dog’s chest and back, providing a barrier against tick bites. Some vests even come armed with permethrin, a tick-slaying chemical. 

Vet It Out: Tick Prevention Tailored to Your Pup

Your trusted veterinarian should always be your go-to resource for flea and tick treatment products. Schedule a chat with your vet and discuss how to keep ticks off your dog. They will recommend top-notch products and methods ideal for your dog’s needs. The options are endless, from collars, sprays, and drops to pills or vaccines.

Remember, some products can tackle ticks, fleas, and other pests. But be aware of potential side effects and interactions with other medications. Prioritize your pup’s safety by consulting with your vet before starting any regime of flea and tick prevention for dogs.

Tick Invasion? Call In the Pros!

The tick situation can sometimes feel overwhelming, especially in Virginia summers. That is where the tick exterminators at Loyal Termite & Pest Control come in. Their expertise and cutting-edge techniques will give those ticks a one-way ticket out of your furry friend’s life. Not only do they provide exceptional service, but they are also famous for their commitment to eco-friendly pest control solutions and their dedication to customer satisfaction.

Do not let ticks ruin your day or harm your dog’s health. Call Loyal Termite & Pest Control today and get rid of those pesky parasites once and for all.


Follow These Tips for a Pest-Free Patio

Tips for a pest-free* patio in your Henrico VA property - Loyal Termite & Pest ControlIt’s likely you are spending more time outdoors than ever this year. You’d also likely enjoy your outdoor living space more if you didn’t have to deal with pest problems! Pests may enjoy the Virginia summertime weather as much as you do, but that doesn’t mean you have to share your space with them.

At Loyal, we know how frustrating pests can be—especially when they ruin your backyard barbecue or gardening session. Following our commitment to keep our customers pest-free*, our experts are here to share top tips for a pest-free* patio and outdoor living area.

What Pests are Common in Your Backyard

The warm weather and longer days invite all types of insects to be out in full-force. Some pests are more of a nuisance than others, and some insects are more dangerous for you and your family! Here in Virginia, the most common pests you’ll see in your yard are mosquitoes, stinging insects (bees, wasps, and hornets), ants, spiders, ticks, fleas, and flies. Ticks and mosquitoes are especially concerning for their ability to transmit dangerous diseases to humans. For that reason alone, it’s crucial to learn how to keep pests away from your property.

Top Tips to Achieve a Pest-Free Patio

Everyone wants to be able to enjoy their time spent outside to be pest-free*. This is harder than it sounds, especially this time of year. There are a few ways you can make your property less appealing to pests. Our best tips for a pest-free* patio are:

  1. Remove any standing water. Stagnant water is one of the biggest attractants for mosquitoes.
  2. Keep your lawn and shrubs trimmed. Ticks and mosquitoes will shelter in overgrown vegetation or tall grass.
  3. Be on the lookout for ant hills. Even a tiny mound can contain thousands of ants inside.
  4. Inspect all wood structures. Wood-destroying pests (carpenter ants and termites) will damage your wooden decks or porches.
  5. Use an insect repellent. Most store-bought repellent containing DEET will help repel mosquitoes and ticks.
  6. Clean your patio or space regularly. Spills or leftover food will surely bring ants around.

Need Help With Outdoor Pest Control?

Pests and insects are to be expected when you’re outdoors. However, there’s no reason to let them ruin your time spent in your own backyard! The exterminators at Loyal are committed to keeping customers pest-free* not just inside their homes, but outside as well. Call our team today to learn more about our residential pest control services.

Do Cockroaches Like the Summer Heat?

Cockroaches are more common in the summer in Henrico VA - Loyal Termite & Pest ControlAlthough cockroaches are a common pest throughout the year, they tend to be more common than ever in the summer months. This is because roaches are attracted to warmth and humidity (which is why they’re often found in kitchens and bathrooms). While roaches are considered to be hardy insects that can survive in a variety of climates, summertime is when they thrive here in the Henrico VA area. They can enter homes and, once inside, breed at rapid rates. Seeing even one cockroach is a bad sign there are many more nearby, making it important to know how to keep cockroaches out in the summer. The team at Loyal Termite & Pest Control are here with expert info on summer cockroach activity and tips for how to prevent it.

5 Tips to Keep Cockroaches Out This Summer

A cockroach problem, once established, can be very difficult to get rid of. For that reason, it’s best to know how to prevent them in the first place! Our top tips include:

  1. Inspecting the perimeter of your home and seal cracks and crevices. Seal windows and doors or install screens.
  2. Keeping a clean home. Wipe or clean up any spills or messes in kitchens and bathrooms. Avoid letting clutter pile up.
  3. Picking up pet food bowls after mealtimes. Try to avoid leaving food out overnight or for days at a time.
  4. Securely storing all food in tight-fitting airtight containers, and refrigerating unsealed food.
  5. Ensuring your garbage cans are sealed with a tight-fitting lid, and routinely take it out when needed.

Are Roaches More Common in the Summer?

Yes! Roaches are a problem all year long, but summertime is when we get the most calls about these pests. Many types of cockroaches will lie dormant during the winter to wait out the heat that summertime brings. Once summer rolls around, cockroaches breed at a more rapid rate, which is why infestations can explode in size. If they get indoors, they are likely to hide in dark, damp areas; this is why infestations can often grow out of hand before you realize there is a problem. The best thing you can do to avoid a summertime roach problem is work with an exterminator to keep them out to begin with.

Summer Roach Infestation Help

Cockroaches are known to be gross, but they can be downright dangerous, too. Cockroach infestations are known to trigger allergies in certain individuals. They also carry and spread potentially harmful germs and bacteria. For these reasons, it’s never wise to rely on DIY cockroach control. Always contact the licensed roach exterminators at Loyal for help with a summer roach problem.

What Do Different Wasp Nests Look Like?

Identifying wasp nests in Henrico VA - Loyal Termite & Pest ControlWasps are one of the most common summertime insects here in Virginia. Out in nature, wasps are a beneficial addition to our environment. However, they can become somewhat dangerous when their nests are built on homes or buildings. Certain wasp species become very aggressive, and will chase people. Most of them can sting repeatedly, which is very dangerous for anyone who is allergic to stings.  It’s important to learn how to identify different types of wasp nests that you may encounter this summer or fall. If you notice any of the below nests, exercise caution and try to avoid the nest at all costs. Keep reading to learn about what to look out for from the experts at Loyal Termite & Pest Control.

4 Wasps and Their Nests

Different types of wasps build different nests! In order to identify a wasp, it’s sometimes easiest to identify them through their nest. Here are the main characteristics of each: 

  1. Yellowjackets. These nests are made of a papery material and have a single opening. The inside of a yellowjacket nest can have up to 100 tiers of cells. Yellowjackets can also build underground nests that can be enormous in size.
  2. Paper wasps. Their nests famously look like upside-down umbrellas. These nests are often open, and can get quite large in size. They are typically supported by a single stalk and consist of a paper-like material.
  3. Mud daubers. Female wasps build their nests out of mud. The nests are small and tubular in size, often looking like organ pipes. They are typically found in cracks or crevices.
  4. Bald-faced hornets. These nests are almost always at least three feet off the ground. They are made of chewed wood fibers mixed with saliva. They often grow to be the size of a football or basketball.

Types of wasp nests in Henrico VA - Loyal Termite & Pest Control


Top Wasp Nest Locations

Many people assume that wasp nests are primarily found in trees. However, certain wasps prefer other spots to build their nests. For example, paper wasp nests can be located under and within the eaves of structures, in attics and wall voids, and in other enclosed areas. Yellowjackets favor areas near the ground, in hollow trees, under porches, and a number of other areas. The bald-faced hornet builds its nest oftentimes in trees, bushes, or wooded areas. Mud daubers, as solitary wasps, built their nests for eggs in sheltered areas. They are often in areas that provide protection from any rain. In sum, a wasp nest can be built many different areas, making it important to know what to look out for.

Safe Nest Removal

Nests are dangerous, bottom line. Yellowjackets and bald-faced hornets in particular can be very aggressive and sting repeatedly if they feel their nest is at threat. DIY nest removal is never recommended and can endanger those around you. If you need a wap nest removed, always contact your local stinging insect control team at Loyal for help.

Look Out for These Mosquito Breeding Grounds

Empty pots containing water will attract mosquitoes to your Henrico VA home - Loyal Termite & Pest ControlMosquitoes are the biggest nuisance pest in the summertime. Especially here in Virginia, it can seem like mosquitoes will flock to you every time you leave your home at dawn or dusk. If that’s the case, you may be unknowingly harboring mosquito breeding grounds right in your backyard. Female mosquitoes need just a half inch of water to lay their eggs in, making any container collecting water in your property fair game. Thankfully, there are a number of ways you can reduce the number of mosquito breeding grounds around your property. The team at Loyal is here to help.

Where do Mosquitoes Breed?

After breeding, the female mosquitoes will lay their eggs in stagnant or still water. From there, the eggs will hatch and the larvae will become adult mosquitoes in just two week’s time. Due to this rapid rate of reproduction, it’s crucial to stay on top of eliminating mosquito breeding grounds. Mosquitoes will target any spot that contains standing water. They are frequently found in or around birdbaths, gutters, pools, mud pots, tree stumps and wood piles, tarps, children’s play sets, trash cans, old tires, and more. To avoid mosquito breeding grounds, routinely dump out standing water or consider placing covers on items.

Mosquito prevention around your Henrico VA home - Loyal Termite & Pest ControlHow to Avoid Mosquito Problems

In addition to getting rid of standing water in the above items, there are a number of ways you can prevent mosquitoes:

  • Install screens on doors and windows to keep mosquitoes outside
  • Avoid going outdoors at dawn and dusk
  • Fix water leaks or drainage issues promptly
  • Keep your lawn and shrubs trimmed and neat

Keep Mosquitoes Away For Good

Bottom line: mosquitoes are a nuisance in the summertime. The last thing you want to deal with is a mosquito infestation every time you want to spend time outside of your home. If you’ve done everything you can to get rid of common breed grounds for mosquitoes and still are dealing with them, contact the mosquito exterminators at Loyal today. Our team has what it takes to keep mosquitoes away from your property.

The Emergence of 17-Year Cicadas in Virginia

Periodical cicadas in Virginia - Loyal Termite & Pest ControlMany people are accustomed to the occasional humming of a cicada during the summertime, but not the loud buzz of thousands! After living underground for 17 long years, cicadas are expected to emerge on the East Coast, including right here in Virginia. Periodical cicadas, often misidentified as “locusts”, live underground for years as juveniles before they emerge above ground for just a few weeks to a month. There are seven periodical cicada species — all members of the population develop at the same time and thus emerge all at once. This makes them much different than your typical cicada species, which are seen every summer. Brood IX is expected to emerge this year in southwestern Virginia as well as southern West Virginia. Keep reading to learn all you need to know about these unique 17-year cicadas.

What Are Periodical Cicadas?

Periodical cicadas are cicadas that appear at 13- or 17-year intervals. This makes them much rarer than your typical cicada species, which are active annually. 17-year cicadas are grouped into geographical broods based on which calendar year they will emerge. Here’s how to identify periodical cicadas:

  • They have black bodies, red eyes, and orange veins on their translucent wings.
  • They range in size from 3/4″ to 2 1/2″
  • These cicadas have a pair of antennae and six legs
  • Periodical cicadas appear in the hundreds or thousands per acre
  • They are not to be confused with annual cicadas, which are black and green in color

Why Are They Emerging Now?

17-year cicadas live beneath forest floors for years and receive sustenance from the tree roots. These nymphs live no more than 2 feet away from the surface but can travel deeper to feed. These nymphs will emerge on a spring evening when the soil temperature is more than 64 degrees Fahrenheit. This typically occurs anytime between April and June. The adult cicadas that emerge only live for a few weeks and are typically gone by mid-July.

In their short time, they are focused on reproducing. The male periodical cicadas will “sing”, which is the loud hum you may be used to hearing. After mating, the female will lay up to 600 eggs inside twig slits. When nymphs hatch, they will burrow underground and begin another 13 or 17-year cycle.

Are 17-Year Cicadas Dangerous?

These cicadas pose the biggest threat to young trees, which are the targets for laying eggs. They do not bite or sting humans and do not pose any health threats. They are mostly known to be nuisance pests, in large part due to the fact that they make so much noise! They are by far the loudest insect in the nation, and their “singing” can be heard for up to 1/2 mile away. They may get into your home by accident, but are not able to breed indoors and will not infest your property.

Regardless, if you have troubles with any insects inside your property, it’s always best to call your local pest control company, such as Loyal Termite & Pest Control!

Preventing Ants in the Summertime

Prevent summer ants in Henrivo VA - Loyal Termite & Pest ControlIt’s summertime here in Virginia, and pests are out in full force! Ants are one of the most common pest problems in the summer for property owners. They tend to infest kitchens and bathrooms, and are often found trailing along your floorboards. They’re nearly impossible to get rid of without an exterminator, and their infestations can seem never ending. In order to avoid the frustration of an infestation, it’s crucial to learn the best ways to go about preventing ants in the summertime. Keep reading for expert tips from the team at Loyal Termite & Pest Control.

What Ants Are Common in the Summer?

There are more than 700 species of ants in the United States alone. Typically, you’ll only encounter a few in your lifetime. It’s important to learn about the common ants in your area in order to be better prepared for an infestation. Certain ants are more dangerous or destructive than others. The most common ants you’ll see in the summer include: 

Preventing Ants in 6 Steps

Ants can seemingly appear out of nowhere. And once you have them, they’re difficult to get rid of! Thankfully, there are a few ways you can lessen the risk of getting them in the first place. Our top tips to keep ants out include:

  1. Avoiding excess moisture. Areas with standing water or leaks will attract ants quickly. Attend to broken pipes and clean up spills quickly.
  2. Trimming back trees and vegetation. Plants close to your home can encourage ants to come in. Make sure tree branches, shrubs, and bushes are trimmed away from the perimeter!
  3. Keeping a clean home. Sweep your floors regularly to get rid of crumbs. Ants are attracted to sugary food sources and a few crumbs will keep them coming back for more.
  4. Storing food properly. Avoid leaving food out uncovered. Keep food in airtight containers or store them safely in cupboards and fridges.
  5. Sealing entry points. Ants can crawl through the tiniest of cracks. Inspect your property and use caulk to seal any gaps, holes, or potential entry ways.
  6. Picking up your pet’s food. Crumbs and spills from your cat or dog’s food and water bowls can be a huge attractant for ants. Always clean up and store bowls between mealtimes.

How to Keep Ants Out All Year Long

It can be very overwhelming to know how to keep ants away. If you’ve done all you can but still have ants making their way indoors this summer, it’s best to call the team at Loyal. Our experts can work with you to develop a successful game plan for preventing ants not just this summer but year-round!

8 Debunked Bed Bug Myths

Learn about bed bug myths in Henrico VA - Loyal Termite & Pest ControlFor decades, there has been a lot of theories and myths about bed bugs circulating. As one of the most dreaded pest problems, it’s easy to understand why bed bugs are so feared. However, are the reasons why you most fear bed bugs even true? With bed bug awareness week upon us, the team at Loyal Termite & Pest Control wants to debunk common bed bug myths we often hear about. Keep reading to learn how to separate fact from fiction when it comes to bed bug problems!

Bed Bug Myths vs. Facts

When it comes to any pest problem, it’s easy to incite fear when you read false facts. Some of the most common questions we see about bed bugs include:

  1. Can bed bugs transmit disease?
    • Thankfully, no. Bed bugs may cause you anxiety and even itchiness, but their bites do not transmit disease as mosquitoes do.
  2. Are bed bugs capable of living for months without feeding?
    • Yes, but it’s unlikely for them to live for a year unless they are in the most optimal conditions. Young bed bugs need to feed more often than adults.
  3. Are bed bugs nocturnal?
    • No! Bed bugs are active when their hosts are at rest. This usually means overnight, but they are able to adjust their schedule as needed.
  4. Can bed bugs infest areas of your home other than your bedroom?
    • Bed bugs can infest anywhere–including chairs, sofas, cracks in the wall, and even power outlets. They prefer to congregate near where their hosts rest, making bedrooms the main target.
  5. Can you see bed bugs with the naked eye?
    • Although nymphs are nearly impossible to see, adult bed bugs are about the size of an appleseed and can absolutely be seen with your own eyes.
  6. Do you have to get rid of infested furniture?
    • No! In fact, you shouldn’t move infested furniture in the midst of an infestation. Doing so can contribute to bed bugs spreading into other areas.
  7. Are bed bugs more likely to infest messy homes?
    • This is one of the biggest myths. Anyone is prone to a bed bug problem, regardless of how clean or cluttered your property is!
  8. Can bed bugs fly or jump?
    • No! Unlike fleas and ticks, bed bugs have underdeveloped wings and are only capable of crawling.

What to Do About Bed Bugs in Virginia

If you have a bed bug problem, it’s important to act quickly. When it comes to bed bug control, DIY is not the answer! Getting rid of bed bugs requires the pest control industry’s best treatment options that are designed to get rid of all life stages of bed bugs in your property. The team at Loyal is proud to offer comprehensive bed bug removal services–contact us today to learn more!

What to Know About Common Summertime Wasps

Common summertime wasps in Henrico and Richmond VA - Loyal Termite & Pest Control

It’s summertime here in Virginia, and everyone is looking to spend more time outdoors. Warmer weather means more opportunities for picnics, barbecues, pool parties, and more. Unfortunately, it also means the return of the wasp season. Paper wasps, yellow jackets, and mud daubers are three common summertime wasps you need to keep an eye out for. It can be difficult to identify these wasps, which is why the team at Loyal Termite & Pest Control is here to provide you with information. As always, it’s important to take caution around wasps, especially when you have a nest nearby.

3 Summertime Wasps

Paper Wasps

Paper wasps are known for their nests, and can deliver a nasty sting. Here’s what to know about this summertime wasp:

  • They are similar in body shape to yellow jackets, but are mostly brown in color with yellow markings.
  • These wasps are known for the papery nests they build, which look like upside-down umbrellas.
  • Paper wasp nests often hang from tree branches and twigs, as well as porch ceilings and door railings. They typically contain up to 30 wasps.
  • Paper wasps aren’t as aggressive as yellow jackets, but they may sting to defend their nests. Their sting is known to be especially potent.

Yellow Jackets

These wasps are notoriously aggressive and very common, especially in the late summer. Some things to know about yellow jackets include:

  • Yellow jackets congregate in colonies of up to or more than 1,000 workers.
  • Their nests look globe-shaped and are built above ground, often near garages, sheds, and more.
  • Yellow jackets will not bother you unless they feel threatened, in which case they may sting repeatedly.
  • Yellow jackets can be best identified by the yellow and black horizontal stripes that run across their bodies.

Mud Daubers

As their name implies, mud daubers are known for constructing their nests out of mud. Although mud daubers are less aggressive than the previously mentioned wasps, it’s important to know how to identify them:

  • They are mostly black in appearance but may have light-colored markings. Mud daubers can be identified by their thin, thread-like waist.
  • Nests are usually located in covered areas such as porch ceilings, sheds, and attics.
  • These wasps are less social than other types, often preferring to be solitary.
  • Mud daubers aren’t as aggressive and will only sting when directly handled or threatened.

How to Prevent Wasps in the Summertime

Wasps are a normal part of life, especially in the summer. It’s important to keep an eye out for nests forming on or near your property. When outdoors, there are several things you can do to keep wasps at bay. Keep food and drinks indoors, seal your trash cans, and know where to look for nests near your property. Never swat at a stinging insect, as this could make it more likely to sting you! If you see a nest or wasp problem forming, contact the wasp control team at Loyal. Our wasp removal is safe and quick to bring you peace of mind.