“I found these on my dog’s quilt”, writes Mary about the yellow creature pictured below. “They are very tiny, less than a quarter inch. It was the bright colour I noticed and I zoomed in with my camera. I’m in Ireland.” Now, Mary sends in a plethora of photos, which is always very helpful, and they all show us different things. Three of them depict this bright yellow creature: the first (below) shows us more details about its coloration (the darker spots amidst the bright color), the second shows us that the critter is enveloped in a stringy matter, or perhaps that the stringy matter is appendages growing from its body, and the third shows us the creature on top of a ten cent Euro coin, giving us a size comparison to show us how small it really is. Oddly though, Mary sends a fourth picture of what looks like a ball of tangled hair.
So, what could that mean, assuming this last photo is related to the yellow organism? Our best guess would be that this yellow creature is the pupa of a clothes-eating insect, and that the ball of black hair is either a larva hiding in the food it is eating (clothes-eating pests often eat loose hair and fur, which is why they are often found in pet beds like that of Mary’s dog). Assuming that this is some type of clothes-eating pest, Mary has really nothing to worry about with regard to her dog’s health, or her own health. They are overall harmless, though we should point out that some species, like the carpet beetle larva, can cause an allergic reaction which results in a rash.
Where there is one pest, there are surely more. We recommend that Mary search the rest of her home for more of these: she may find them under upholstered furniture, in dresser drawers, on her own bed, and in wardrobes. If she discovers more of these, then she might be facing an infestation. To best way to control and eliminate such an infestation is through vacuuming and laundering. We recommend vacuuming the entire home, as there could be roaming larvae and/or eggs scattered throughout the home. After all, there are textile items in almost every room of a home. Likewise, we suggest laundering any infested, or potentially-infested, textiles at the highest temperature they can withstand. She might have to repeat these steps a few times over the course of two weeks to fully eliminate the infestation, provided there is one.
In conclusion, we think it’s possible that Mary found the pupae of some type of clothes pest. Now, while insects are immobile during the pupal stage, that doesn’t mean that there aren’t other insects in adult or larval form roaming her home. We suggest she take a look and see if she is experiencing an infestation, so that she can take action as soon as possible. We hope this helps and we wish Mary the very best!
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