As you can imagine, pests have been around for as long as – or longer – than human beings. This is because they are stubborn creatures that really know how to evolve so that the developments that humans make in pest control don’t work as well as they should, or, not for very long, anyway.

So, how did pest control start? Pretty rudimentarily, really. It started with the use of cats and dogs to keep food stocks clear. There were also primitive kinds of pest control substances, such as sulphur, being used in some ancient civilizations, although it was used on a localised scale, and was only used productively on a narrow range of pests.
Fire was another popular option for those who were getting rid of the bigger pests such as snakes or the equivalent of foxes and other large mammals. Again, this was more of a “spot treatment” option. 
The first pesticide, really, was invented in the 1800s, the substance what we know today as DDT. This was used in combination with herbicides such as lemon and lavender to keep pests at bay, especially on ships or in kitchens that needed to keep their food areas and the food itself clean and free from pests that made people sick.
Eventually, it became clear that animal and pest control was less about the chemical used and more about how the practice was being approached. Out of this kind of strategic and pragmatic thinking, things were invented such as the mouse trap (understanding the bait and the thought process of a mouse), etc. This grew very popular and world of pest control grew quickly and developed into the vast range of pest control techniques we know today.
We’ve shifted away from using dangerous chemicals (due to the harm they cause humans) over time. There are many green options out there now, too, that will give people peace of mind when hiring professional pest control in today’s times. There is still a lot being developed in terms of these options, and there is also still a lot of science going into what makes these safer pest control options as powerful as they need to be.
It’s true to say, however, that we’ve come a long way since the original time of using fire and sulphur, though some would say that modern pest control options work in a lot of the same ways as ancient ones. Who’s to say where we’ll end up in the next 100 years or so.