Skunks Under the House-HELP!!!!! : LUSENET : Countryside : One Thread

Help!!!! We have a 100 year old house and I think that we have skunks under the house. Are there any repellents that I can use to keep the skunks away??? The smell is killing us and we can not keep opening the doors, windows and turning on the fans in the middle of winter.

-- Esteban Burchard (, January 11, 2002


If they are spraying they are scared, let them calm down, set out some food for them. Once they know you aren't a danger to them they will not spray. Then you can trap them, or shoot them when they are out away from the house, (they will learn to follow the food dish) Until then keep your pets put up because skunks can have rabies.

-- Thumper (, January 11, 2002.

I heard that using mothballs work, if you should shoot a skunk 9 out of 10 times it will spray.

-- Dave in Ohio (, January 11, 2002.

The food trick works . I relocated a family of skunks from my shed to the woods across the back field and now just throw a few scraps at woods edge to keep them there.

-- Jay Blair in N. AL (, January 11, 2002.

Mothballs really work!!

-- DW (, January 11, 2002.

Moth balls don't work! Getting them out from under the house with food will; but the only way to get rid of the ones under your house and prevent them from returning is to catch them coming out and shoot them when they are away from the house. Don't shoot one next to the house because they will always spray. Skunks travel up to 5 miles per night and most likely you will have one, two or more coming and staying under the house. I got eight so far and still have skunks under a house. Been 4 yrs and they keep coming. I don't live on the place, so they dig under a concrete foundation (pier & beam) and make themselves at home. I have even poured cement into the first hole; they dug another. When the foundation was completely enclosed, they came out from under the house by busting through the aluminum vents. They are a pain when they get under a home as you can attest. If you figure out a better way let me know. By the way my neighbor lives a mile away and he to has the same problem and he has killed a half dozen in one yr. They do carry rabies so be careful. I tried mothballs in ammonia; sprays, loud music, they just ignored that. I even put up an electronic bell-ring when they approach. Guess what, he/she went under the house and sprayed. I thought he would go away.....not so. Once under the house, they will come back. I haven't tried dogs, as I do not live on the place to take care of the dogs. Good Luck!

-- milam gerick (, January 11, 2002.

Try using bowls of ammonia or rags soaked with it. You'll have to keep repeating the process as they dry out.

-- Christina (, January 11, 2002.

Yikes are bringing back some very bad memories!! Same thing here the first year we moved in. There were racoons living in the house and skunks under the house in the crawl space. I do believe I have tried most of the rememdies mentioned..sorry they did not work for us.

One must have gotten into the mouse poison and sprayed a BUNCH before finally dying. One we trapped under there...yep, it sure did go off..but I was just tickled to finally get rid of it. It has been three years now, and no more skunks. I am not sure what to attribute that to. One things is the dog scent around here. The other thing is we have some new fences up. I had read that skunks remember places they have stayed and will come far so good here. You could try to live trap them..but I did not want to.

I wish you well and know that I sympathize with you and your ongoing battle. I can recommend putting vinegar on the stove and boiling it to cut down on the skunk smell in the house. If you can reach where they have sprayed (we could not) a mix of hydrogen peroxide and baking soda are supposed to chemically change the spray and rid the odor. Good Luck!

-- Sher (, January 11, 2002.

The ammonia-soaked rag worked for me. Only needed one rag and they left.


-- (, January 11, 2002.

Ole was in Sven’s hardware store and happened to mention that he was having quite a problem with small animals, particularly skunks, living under the house. Sven suggested that he try some traps. A week later, Ole was back in the store and said that the traps weren’t working. Sven suggested he try putting mothballs under the house. A week later, Ole was back in the store reporting the same results. Sven suggested a cat. With the skunks still there a week later, he finally suggested putting a lutefisk under the house. The next time Ole was in the store, Sven asked him if the lutefisk had worked. “Ya”, replied Ole, “But now a family of Norwegians has moved in.”

-- Steve - TX (, January 11, 2002.

The ammonia worked for my Dad. He had called the extension agent and he had Dad put agricultural ammonia under the porch. About asphyxiated him, but the skunks beat feet and never came back.

-- Debbie in Mo (, January 11, 2002.

If possible, dig down a foot down and a foot out. Attach chicken wire to the foundation of the house with the wire going down and then out \_ leaving a small area open where you know they go in and out. At night when they go out to search for food (you can put flour or lime in front of the open hole to see if they have walked through it), finish putting down the wire and cover with dirt. When they return, they will try to dig back under but will keep hitting the wire. Since the wire goes out flat a foot more, they cannot dig under it. If any are still under the house when you close it, they will be able to dig out but usually not able to get back in. Since they cannot get back in, the will leave, hopefully, not to the barn or shed.

-- Dee (, January 11, 2002.

Oh ma;n do you have my pity. We have tried mothball, rat poison, even antifreeze, traps( we caught a possum). We strung light under the house to drive them out. Nothing worked. The only thing that worked was leaving them only one way in and out, taking the screen of the window. I am a really light sleeper and I could here them come out at night. I would wake up my husba;nd and he would blast them. ;That worked. I did find to help with the smell as soon as I got a whiff of it I would open all the windows and crank the heater. That kind of seemed to help. I hate skunks. ;Good Luck.;

-- (, January 12, 2002.

I had luck using speakers placed under the house and playing load music during the day, when the skunks were trying to sleep. Also shot a few of them, so between the two, got rid of them.

-- BC (, January 12, 2002.

I've always been able to catch them with a Hav-A-Hart trap baited with dry cat food. I've never had one spray including the one I caught in the barn and then had to drag outside.

Follow up with a headshot using a .22.

-- Darren (, January 12, 2002.

Set a trap then just throw a cheap tarp over the trap and insert the hose.. unconscious within 30-60 seconds; death within 3-5 minutes... Plus NO Blood which could be contaminated.

Also works well on rats under the concrete barn floor.

Some say the lawn mower works better 'cause it doesn't have pollution controls.

-- ~Rogo (, January 12, 2002.

put a garden hose under where the skunks are and let run for a few hours at a time.the shunks will get uncomfortable and leave.This may take a few times to do,but they won't spray and will leave on thier own.

-- terry westPut a (, March 17, 2002.

Holy Cow can I sympathize with this topic. We just moved into a 50 year old home in a mid-city neighbourhood. The house had been vacant since August of 2001 after the owner moved out. We knew that there were animals living along the side of the home but didn't know quite how bad it was until we actually moved in 2 weeks ago and were awakened by noxious fuel odours (skunk) at around 1 or 2 in the AM. We trapped 6 of them in a regular wildlife trap and drove them over to a different province across the water. I later found out that this was illegal but ask me if I care much. We then tried filling in the holes with concrete from Home Depot which was also unsuccessful (they simply dug around them). The problem is horrendous as I have come tooo find out that they have been here for up to 15 years! I called a Wildlife Removal company who quoted me over $10,000.00 to remove them by digging a trench, installing a one-way door and then building a cement/chicken-wire barrier 2 feet down along the edge of the entire house (all 2400 sq feet of it!!). I don't think so... My husband and I have now started to poison them with Warfarin rat poison. We haven't had any sprays for nearly a week. At night, I mix reg. hamburger with mayo and peanut butter, then I add nearly half the bag of poison. I put the toxic "meatloaf" in an aluminum pan right near the dens so that I can keep track of how much they are eating. When the plates remain full for 2 or 3 nights, I'll know that they are finally dead and will remove the carcasses from the burrows. We are also having stamped concrete poured around the pool and up to 4 feet along the house right up to the lip of the foundation. This will give them no place to dig and will improve the look of the backyard. If any of them remain buried during the day when all of this is going on, they will surely be crushed under the concrete. Listen, I would rather put up with a brief odour of decomposition then indefinite skunk spray odour. People noticed it in stores, my children went to school smelling bad. It's awful. Although many people will advise against poisoning (they fear that the skunks will return to the nest to die), the truth is that skunks will be in search of water after consuming the poison and may indeed die en route to water or at the water. One week of heavy poisoning ought to do it. I am tired of being nice.

-- Andrea Cullen (, March 17, 2002.

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