Be on the lookout or these suckers are going to get you

Be on the lookout or these suckers are going to get you
SEATTLE – Bed bugs are back, and they're hungry.

Last year, hundreds of people across Western Washington woke up with itchy, red bites.

LaDonna Frazier was one of them – her body is covered in bed bug bites. Every welt and scar on her body marks a spot where bed bugs had drilled for blood.

"They want your blood and that's just that!" she said. "They want to eat!"

These tiny vampires find you by detecting the carbon dioxide you exhale while you're sleeping. They can get a year's supply of food in one night.

And they're not just in your bed - they live in any nook or cranny in your carpet, in your clothes, or even in the furniture.

"I'm traumatized," Frazier said. "I can't sleep."

Frazier says they treated her like a human blood bank. The suckers got her fiance Gary too.

"There were bed bugs sitting right (next to me)!" Gary Sparks said.

It's enough to drive you buggy.

"The bed bugs are the perfect storm," said Grant Gummow, the national account manager for Sprague Extermination. "You have something that most people don't know about, but it's supposed to be something where one in three people have them in the future."

Gummow says bed bugs are so small they're often hard to see. That's where April the wonder dog comes in; she's trained to sniff out bed bugs.

Within seconds after going inside Gary and LaDonna's place, she gets a direct hit. April stops and uses her paw to point out the hot spots.

Beds bugs were found in the living room, bedroom and closet.

"They want our blood and we bite back, don't we?" pest control technician Echkard Mullar said.

Dogs can even smell eggs no bigger than a millimeter.

Pest control companies say bed bug calls are up 70% in the last 2 years.

They Like To Come Along For The Ride
"Bugs are master hitchhikers," Gummow said. "You can pick them up almost anywhere."

One woman, who was too embarrassed to be identified, said they crawled into her suitcase and came home with her from trip. She recently stayed at a youth hostel in California and when she found bed bugs, she bolted.

Weeks later, she found them in her posh Seattle condo.

"You want to freak out, it's scary, it's overwhelming," she said. "And you just want to get rid of them you want to clean and clean and clean until they're gone."

No amount of cleaning will get rid of these blood suckers, but baking them will.

Bed bugs are attracted to heat, but if it's too hot - they die.

"When (bedbugs) hit 120 degrees, it's actually cooked, fried, it's dead!" Gummow said.

The Heat Is On
Sprague Pest Control agreed to show us how it works and get rid of the bugs in Gary and LaDonna's apartment at no cost.

Four giant heaters are put in place and will raise the temperature inside to 140 degrees – 20 degrees over the needed temperature to be sure -- and keep it there for hours.

Anything that won't melt under the intense heat is put in plastic bags, so they can bake the bugs out. Nine hours later, LaDonna and Gary can return to their apartment.

"This is the first time I walked in here and didn't feel a jitter," Frazier said.

The only thing the couple couldn't save is their mattress. Mattress Liquidators agreed to give them a new one delivered at no cost.

"I can't believe this is finally over," she said.

The all night buffet is closed.

"I know one thing – I'm gonna sleep good tonight," Frazier said. "I haven't had a good night's sleep in two months!"

Pest control experts insist bed bugs are hitchhikers, so inspect your luggage carefully when you travel. High heat from a dryer can kill bed bugs in your clothing.

Last year, the EPA said bed bugs are a pest of 'significant public health importance.'

For more information:

National Bed Bug Summit

The Bed Bug Registry

Washington Ecology bed bug information

Sprague Pest Control