Imagine this, you’re outside enjoying the crisp fresh air and mother nature. Out of the corner of your eye, you see something black and white, and you’re sure it isn’t your dog. You see the familiar white stripe on the black fur, and your first instinct is to run! Once in a safe place, you’re left wondering if you can ever come back to that spot without the threat of a skunk spraying you.

While skunks are not really confrontational animals, and they don’t really pose that much of a threat to humans, they will attack if they feel threatened. Of course, this isn’t something you would want to do, as threatening them would result in you getting sprayed! A better way to get rid of skunks is to scare them away using a few methods that we’re sure would work:

Let There Be Light! - one of the best ways to scare a skunk is to shine a light. Skunks are naturally nocturnal, so having light makes them very scared and sensitive, and they’ll most likely scurry off. It’s also like shooting two birds with one stone, as getting lights installed outside can also be used for your own security. Make sure to point your lights on areas where there’s the most activity, like garbage cans, sheds, and dark areas where they can possibly hide. Motion-activated lights are better since you don’t need steady lights in these areas, and it will save you money on your electricity bill.

Scary Sounds - a sonic repellent emits a high-frequency sound or vibration that animals can’t stand. These sounds can’t be heard by our ears, but animals typically can’t stand them, causing them to run as far away as possible from your house. You can set them up in your perimeter wall or fence or near your house, but we strongly advise against this method if you or your nearby neighbors have pets that they keep outdoors. You might end up scaring your own pets away while they’re out playing, and we don’t want that of course!

Fighting Smell with Smell - most commercial odor repellents consist of liquid or granular repellents that typically have a predator’s urine as an active ingredient. This makes skunks and other wildlife animals think that there’s a predator nearby, or they have crossed their territory, causing them to scurry away in fear. Keep in mind that this is a short term solution, since animals tend to get used to scents, and they’ll ignore it if they’re hungry enough. Make sure you place your odor repellent a good distance away from any doors or windows to avoid the scent wafting inside your house.

Tip: Skunks also hate strong smelling bars of soap or deodorizers, so if you don’t want (or hate) the thought of urine in your lawn, then soap will do just fine!

DIY! - DIY solutions can be great when you’re dealing with skunks. One solution is spraying a mixture of castor oil and dishwashing detergent. Dilute it with water and spray it in areas where you think there’s skunk activity. Be careful, you don’t want your plants smelling like oil and soap!


Removing the smell can be tough, but one household solution can really help in getting rid of the odor. You will need 1 quart 3% hydrogen peroxide, ¼ cup baking soda, and 1 tsp liquid detergent. Mix this in a large, open container and make sure to use it immediately.

NOTE: Do not cover or store the mixture, as it will explode. To get rid of the extra solution, dilute it heavily with water and pour it down the sink.

Go back to the Woonsocket wildlife removal home page.