Your customers’ pets are part of their family. As a trusted service provider you need to do the best thing by them too. Here is what to tell customers about pet safety during their pest control treatment.
The situation is familiar: your customer wants the pests gone but not at the expense of the beloved family pet. They might be anxious about booking a pest controller and want to know how to keep their pets safe during the pest treatment process.
How to reassure them that pet-safe pest control is absolutely possible? By taking them through and following a few steps before, during and after treatment. They will quickly realise through a team effort you can keep their furry, scaled and feathered friends safe.
Pet-safe pest control: 5 things to tell your customers
Here’s what to tell your customers about pet safety during pest control to ease their worries. And, win (or continue winning) their business.
Customers should let you know they have pets
The first step is simple: communication. Customers with pets should be upfront about what pets they have when they first book the job. This allows you to tailor the treatment to suit their circumstances, from the type of product used to the location of baits.
Letting you know ahead of time gives you the opportunity to reassure customers that pet safe pest control is possible if precautions are taken. Let them know what to expect on the day. As part of that, advise how they should prepare to keep their pet safe during the treatment.
Let customers know your safety measures
Reassure your customer that you take safety seriously by showing them your Safe Work Method Statement. This lets them know you have their family’s safety at the forefront of your mind, as well as that of their pets.
Your customer might not know that products used in households must be approved by the Australian Pesticides and Veterinary Medicines Authority (APVMA). They will probably find it reassuring to hear there is a national body regulating what chemicals can be used in their home.
Finally, let your customer know you will conduct a thorough risk assessment prior to applying any chemicals to their property. Of course, that includes identifying the presence of any pets.
Do you really need to do a risk assessment each and every time? Click here to find out.
Remove dogs and cats during pest control treatment
The best way to keep pets safe during pest control treatments is to remove them from the area. Also remember to cover their food and water bowls until the pest treatment is well and truly over. Even better, recommend the property owner thoroughly clean them then fill with fresh food and liquid.
Depending on the treatment, it might be necessary for your customers to remove their dogs or cats from the premises completely. That might mean taking them to work, to a friend’s house, to doggy daycare or a boarding kennel.
If the pest control treatment is needed in one specific area, dogs or cats (and maybe even other animals) could be safely restrained or caged away from that area. For example, if the backyard is the problem spot, the pet could be kept inside for as long as necessary. Of course, ensure all entry points are closed so chemicals can’t blow inside.
A dog pen or crate could assist to restrain pets safely during the pest control treatment. These can be hired if your customer doesn’t have one, or you could suggest they borrow one from a friend or their local vet.
Removing pets from the premises or safely restraining them away from the treatment area has the benefit of also keeping you safe. This is especially important in the case of large or aggressive dog breeds.
And we all know dogs and cats shouldn’t be returned to the area until the products used have completely dried and spray drift cannot occur.
Cover fish and reptile tanks
Pet-friendly pest control isn’t limited to dogs and cats, of course. Scaly critters need protecting, too.
If the treatment is to occur inside, your customer should cover any fish or reptile tanks with a heavy blanket. The blanket should cover the tank completely and prevent outside air from seeping in.
Alternatively, fish or reptile tanks could be moved to a room in the house that is not being treated. Your customers should still cover the tank with a blanket and place a door snake or rolled up towel at the bottom of the door.
Remove bird cages from the treatment area
If your customer has a bird, it’s important they move the animal well away from the treatment area. Birds have delicate lungs thanks to their highly efficient respiratory system. So, it’s vital to keep them away.
If the treatment area is inside, your customer should move the bird cage outside. Ideally, as far from the house as possible. They should take the added precaution of covering the cage in a sheet or blanket.
Your customer should ensure the windows are closed during the treatment, so chemicals cannot drift out and reach the bird. The bird shouldn’t be returned to the treatment area until the chemicals have dried and the room has been sufficiently aired.
If the treatment area is outside, birds in aviaries can be temporarily placed in smaller cages and moved inside. Again, your customer should ensure all windows are closed.
By empowering your customers with this simple advice, you can reassure them that they can achieve pet safety during their pest control treatment. After all, taking the time to explain these pet-friendly pest control tips might just be the thing that secures their business then keeps it close.
And speaking of protecting business… When was the last time you checked your professional indemnity and general liability insurance properly covers your current business needs? If you need a check up, contact Rapid Solutions.