How Long Does Skunk Smell Last and How Can it Be Eliminated?

 In Tips & Tricks

Skunks are common pests in urban and rural Quebec. The often venture onto residential property in search of food.

When threatened, skunks defend themselves by spraying a foul-smelling substance from their anal glands. Humans and pets alike can fall victim to the spray, and the smell can last indefinitely if steps aren’t taken to get rid of it.

As an exterminators in Montreal, we are often confronted with these problems. In this article we will explain why skunk sprays, how long the smell lasts, but most importantly, how to remove the skunk smell.

Why do skunks spray?

Skunks are unusual animals. Their defence mechanism consists of spraying their target with a repulsive smell. The spray tends to be very effective, causing the threat to flee.

When skunks feel threatened by a human or another animal, they usually exhibit the following behaviour:

  1. Lifting their tail
  2. Stamping their feet and hissing or growling to intimidate the target
  3. Curving into a U shape to view the target and aim their rear end

If these warning signs aren’t enough to scare away the threat, the skunk will spray, contracting its anal glands and emitting a viscous liquid.

If you come across a skunk, it’s best to get away from it as quickly as possible to avoid being sprayed. A pest prevention service can help you avoid encountering skunks on your property.

Interesting fact: Skunks can spray 6 times in a row and reach up to several meters away, so if you see one, get as far from it as you can.


How to get rid of skunk smell

If you’ve had the misfortune of being sprayed by a skunk, there are a few techniques you can try to get rid of the smell.

Take a bath or shower ASAP

If a skunk sprays you, the first thing to do is to take a bath or shower as soon as you can. This will get rid of most of the spray, although the odour may not dissipate immediately.

Use degreasing soap and lather yourself thoroughly to remove as much of the skunk smell as possible. Don’t hesitate to rinse several times.

Use baking soda

After bathing or showering thoroughly, the skunk smell may still linger on your body. In that case, you can try a baking soda bath.

Dilute 3 to 5 cups of baking soda in your bathtub and soak in the solution for at least 15 minutes. Baking soda is a powerful deodorizer that can help eliminate the skunk smell.

How to get skunk smell out of clothing

Unfortunately, it’s tough to get skunk smell out of fabric, and some say the only solution is to throw the contaminated clothes away immediately.

However, there are a few things you can try to get rid of the smell. Soak your clothes in a mixture of water and white vinegar for a few hours to leach the smell out little by little.

How to get rid of skunk smell in your house

Follow these steps to clean your house after a skunk has sprayed.

Mix bleach with warm water (50 ml of bleach to 1 litre of water) and use a cloth to clean and deodorize surfaces that have been sprayed.

For fabrics on couches and curtains, use the same method as for clothing.

What to do if a skunk sprays your pet

Skunks can sometimes spray dogs and cats. Don’t worry, there’s a way to get the smell out of their fur!

Mix 1 litre of 3% hydrogen peroxide, 1 litre of water, ¼ cup of baking soda and one or two tablespoons of dish soap. Use the mixture like shampoo on your pet, rubbing it into their fur and then rinsing thoroughly. Be careful not to get any in their eyes!

The same mixture can also be used to get rid of dead mouse smell.


How long does skunk smell last?


Skunk smell takes 14 to 21 days to dissipate completely if the right cleaning measures are taken. Good ventilation is another important part of the deodorizing process.

If nothing is done to counteract the smell, it can last for months, if not longer! That’s why it’s so important to know how to get rid of skunk smell and act quickly after being sprayed.


Contact E.Exterminateur to get rid of skunks

Skunk smell isn’t dangerous, just objectionable. However, the pests can transmit rabies, so it’s important to stay away from them.

If you come across skunks on your property, it’s best to call an exterminator who offers skunk removal services. They will be able to assess the extent of the problem and take the necessary steps to resolve it. For effective pest control, contact E.Exterminateur without delay. Our team will come to your home to deal with the skunk infestation. Get a free consultation from our exterminators today!


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