Man, it just doesn’t get much worse than this. Four skunks dug their winter burrow under Karen McCullough’s house in Sheffield Lake, Ohio. Last November, McCullough and her family started hearing scratching noises under the kitchen and living room floors. The scratching set off the family’s dogs and cats that would bark and hiss and paw the carpeting. The skunks responded in the manner of their tribe — they sprayed, and sprayed, and sprayed.
The over-powering stench caused the McCulloughs to spend most of the freezing winter with their windows wide open. Their clothing, couch, chairs — everything! — still smell of skunk half a year later. McCullough said it’s been embarrassing to have to apologize to friends for the way she smells. “I’ve cried a few times. Inside, I’m having a nervous breakdown,” she confided.
Trappers finally lured the skunks from their den and the family is now living in a cramped hotel room while workers replace all their flooring. They’re also pouring a concrete slab to replace the original crawl space under their home. McCullough isn’t taking any chances on a repeat.
Skunks, groundhogs, raccoons, mice and possums can create some serious problems for homeowners. Particularly in newly developed areas, loss of habitat can force these wild animals to seek a substitute in your warm, cozy home. These animals can bring rabies, mites, ticks and fleas with them. For your safety, trapping and removal should only be performed by experienced wildlife control professionals.
Skunks are more than just a smelly problem. Skunks can work over your shrubbery causing expensive damage as well as carry rabies.
Skunks in the urban setting will frequently dig burrows under your shrubbery. This behavior can not only permanently damage your expensive bushes, but can create problems for gardeners and children who happen to come close to their dens. Skunks are mainly nocturnal creatures, but if disturbed can not only spray, but can terrify a hapless victim by its threatening postures and barred teeth.
Before a skunk sprays, it will typically rise up on its front feet elevating its rear for better aim higher up, like a predator’s face and eyes. The liquid not only smells awful but stings and is hard to wash off. As they are mainly nocturnal, your children will probably never come home smelling like a skunk, but your pets may. Dogs are typical and frequent targets as they are territorial and will try to route out skunks from their dens without understanding the consequences.
Once skunks have moved in, the best way to remove them is to trap them and then release them in a wooded area. One of the most frequent calls to animal control is for skunks. Unfortunately there just isn’t much redeeming about them and they can be difficult to trap and remove as they are intelligent, but they are just acting like the wild animals that they are. As we build up more of the nesting areas and territories, skunks are driven right into our own neighborhoods. It is not their fault, but it sure is trouble for all of us.
The stench is nauseating. My eyes won’t stop tearing. Each breath is painfully permeated with noxious odor. Even with the windows tightly shut, the foul smell permeates our house. This is the third night in a row that a skunk has bombed our yard.
Unlike Flower, the skunk in Disney’s Bambi, real skunks don’t exactly have a delicate perfume. As anyone knows who has driven through skunk territory, the malodorous odor permeates a wide area and lingers an unconscionably long time. Skunks seek out comfy accommodations, using their sharp talons to dig under porches, decks and backyard sheds, undermining foundations in search of a cozy shelter.
They’ll munch on your plants, plunder your garden, dig up your lawn searching for grubs, snack on pet food left out for the dog or cat, even sample the garbage. They can douse you or your pet with their penetrating spray from a distance of 7 to 10 feet, quite a feat for a critter the size of a large house cat. Their dens harbor disease, breeding fleas, ticks and mites which can threaten the health and safety of your household pets and even your children.
I can tell you from personal experience that no amount of tomato juice or douche will completely eliminate skunk odor on a dog — and after you wash your pet, on you. Skunk odor clings to skin and hair and fur for long, suffering weeks, no matter how many times you shower. Having barely survived a skunk bombing two years ago, our poor old pooch is confined to a short leash on well-supervised walks until we can locate and roust the skunk from our yard. No more romps around the backyard for awhile, a disappointment for both Rascal and our children.
Getting rid of a skunk is no job for amateurs. If someone’s going to wind up on the wrong end of an angry skunk, you want it to be a professional, paid to take the hit! That’s what we’re here for. If you have a skunk problem, call the wildlife control experts at Stern Environmental Group. To find out more about our superior wildlife control services, click the post title. Visit our website for more information about our complete professional pest control and pest management services. You’ll sleep well tonight when you get “Stern” with your pests.