It’s the end of an era: Taylor retires, but now, there’s Hope

Taylor, at left, and Hope have become best buddies. Both were trained at the Florida Canine Academy to sniff out bedbugs. When temperatures reach about 50 degrees, bedbugs become more active, as do their human hosts.

Taylor, at left, and Hope have become best buddies. Both were trained at the Florida Canine Academy to sniff out bedbugs. When temperatures reach about 50 degrees, bedbugs become more active, as do their human hosts.

By Seattle Housing Authority

Taylor, 11, is retiring after nine years of service as a Housing Operations bedbug inspector. The black lab began her career at Seattle Housing Authority as a 1-year-old after coming to Seattle from Florida Canine Academy, where she received training after being rescued.

A healthy senior, Taylor remains active and “is still obsessed with fetch,” according to her handler, SHA Pest Control and Hazmat Supervisor Karen Peterson. “She is going to miss the daily routine of riding to and from work with me, and seeing all the employees,” Karen said.

Hope, a 1-year-old lab mix, is also a rescue dog, and trained with Karen at Florida Canine Academy. Hope has some big paw prints to fill, replacing veteran bedbug hunter Taylor.

Since she has been in Seattle, “Hope and Taylor have made finding bedbugs a competition and a game,” said Karen. “The two of them are now best friends.”

Hope, SHA's new bedbug sniffer extraordinaire.

Hope, SHA’s new bedbug sniffer extraordinaire.

Hope’s sweet demeanor and personality make her a good fit for SHA. Like Taylor, the new recruit will reside with Karen and her family, which includes several four-legged members.

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