The Associated Press
EUGENE, Ore. — Two dogs sniffed around the Eugene Public Library late Saturday, looking for bedbugs.
Luckily for patrons and staff, the beagles found none, and it’s hoped a recent outbreak has been eradicated.
The first bedbug was discovered in early December, when a customer found it on an upholstered chair on the third floor. Bedbugs were then found in seven other chairs on the library’s third and second floors. All eight chairs were treated with a pesticide, and the areas where the chairs had been located were vacuumed.
The beagles were brought in Saturday night. The Register-Guard newspaper reports the cushion on a bench near the first-floor checkout desk caught the beagles’ attention. Though no bedbug was spotted, the cushion was placed in a bug-killing heat tent as a precaution.
Other than that, the dogs found nothing suspicious.
“There’s a lot of relief that this continues to indicate that this was an isolated, one-time occurrence, and that we were able to effectively treat it,” library spokeswoman LaVena Nohrenberg said Sunday.
The library is visited by more than 3,000 people a day, making it one of the city’s busiest municipal buildings.
Officials believe bedbugs were first brought to the library a couple of months ago, because it takes about that long for their eggs to hatch.
The parasites typically live close to where people rest or sit for long periods of time. They don’t carry disease and Lane County Health and Human Services spokesman Jason Davis said that bedbugs are considered “a nuisance,” not a health threat.”
Three days after the first bedbug was found, the library put up notices informing the public of the discovery.
Library staff also provided leaflets for patrons to read about the outbreak, and plastic bags to store belongings while visiting.
The notices have been removed, but the leaflets and plastic bags remain.
The leaflet asks visitors not to bring bedding or sleepwear into the library. If someone brings such items to the library, they are urged to put them in the plastic bags.