Protecting Your Kids from Black Widow Spiders

While many people find all types of spiders frightening, the only spider that you really need to be worried about in the Sacramento region is the black widow. Other spider species are harmless, and unless you have a lot of them, you can generally handle one or two yourselves by killing them or moving them outside.

Black widows are extremely dangerous with a venom that is up to 15 times more powerful than a rattlesnake bite. Deaths are rare, and symptoms most often include nausea and severe pain at the bite site. But children can often experience a more intense reaction from a black widow. By teaching your children about black widows and knowing what to look for yourself, you can reduce the risk of a bite from a venomous spider in our area.

How to Teach Your Children About Black Widow Spiders

Black widows are generally reserved. They will usually not try to attack something larger than them, so when they bite a person, it is usually in defense because they feel threatened. Understanding what black widow spiders look like and how to avoid coming across one can help both you and your children avoid them. Since black widow spiders are common in Roseville, you should go over the following with your children:

  • Know What They Look Like – Female black widow spiders are the ones that bite. Fortunately they have a very distinctive look. Their bodies are usually about 3/4 of an inch to 1 inch wide and shiny black. The underside of the black widow’s belly has a telltale red hourglass shape.
  • Know Where They Hide – Black widow spiders like dark, enclosed spaces. Some of the most common areas to find one around your home or yard include unused corners, behind tools in sheds and garages, inside gloves or shoes that are kept outdoors, in firewood piles, in containers, or children’s toys.
  • Practice Prevention Steps – If you keep shoes, boots or gloves outside, teach your child to shake them out before putting them on to knock a black widow loose if it is hiding inside. To be safer, consider moving any wearable items that are kept outdoors, in a shed, or in your garage inside your home.
  • Regular Clean Clutter – Clutter inside or outside your home provides dozens of hiding spots for black widows. Regularly remove yard waste, have your children pick up their toys, and keep clutter off the floors of your home to decrease the likelihood of coming into contact with a black widow spider.
  • Know the Symptoms – If you are bitten by a black widow spider, you will feel some symptoms such as nausea, cramping, muscle pain and stiffness, sweating, swelling, and weakness. A child who has been bitten needs to go to the emergency room immediately.

The good news is that black widow spiders are territorial and if you see one, there is usually no reason to think that there are a dozen more nearby. Most homes only have one or two at a time. But if you continue seeing black widow spiders or a number of other spiders, a pest control visit from ADAPT Pest can get the problem under control.

Our spider control has a range of eco-friendly treatments that are safe for your children and pets and will give you added protection from all types of spiders. Contact ADAPT Pest Management to learn more about our spider control in the Rocklin, Roseville, Auburn, and Granite Bay area.

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