Updated On

December 31, 2023

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    Skunk repellents are items, odors, or active devices which are used to repel skunks. A skunk repellent is designed to make an area repugnant to skunks so that they, essentially, turn up their noses in disgust and go somewhere else.

    Repellents can be sonic devices, motion-activated lights, or offensive odors. They can be used alone or in any combination.

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    What Are Skunk Repellents?

    Skunk repellents are exactly what the name would suggest. They are devices or odors that work to repel skunks and keep them out of the area where the devices or odors are placed. It is important to note they are not poisons. Repellents don’t kill the skunks or harm them in any way at all.

    Read Also: What are the best traps for skunks?

    How Do Skunk Repellents Work?

    There are three different types of repellents; odors, sonic noises, lights. Each has a different mode of action.

    Skunks have a very acute sense of smell which they can use to locate grubs and other tasty items they eat. Olfactory repellents attempt to use their sense of smell against them by filling the air with odors that skunks find repugnant.

    Here’s an example of a homeowner using vinegar to deter skunks from living under his shed

    These are tools or devices that emit sounds, both sonic and ultrasonic, to deter or repel animals of all kinds. Sonic sounds are those that are audible to humans while ultrasonic sounds are those sounds above 20kHz that are not audible to human beings. Dog whistles are an example of an ultrasonic device.

    Many animals can hear those sounds and may be repelled by alternating pitches or annoying bursts of sound in those ranges.

    Motion-activated flashing lights will scare some animals and prompt them to run away.

    Are Skunk Repellents Effective?

    As of this writing, there are no registered skunk repellents anywhere in the world with a proven track record of success. Testing with commercially available repellents has repeatedly demonstrated a near-total lack of effectiveness.

    Repellents may initially alarm skunks simply because they are new and different. Very quickly, however, the animals will learn that the repellents don’t hurt them. Once that lesson has been learned, they will ignore the repellents as if they didn’t exist. Since repellents, by definition, don’t actually do anything to harm or injure the animals, their track record is exceedingly poor.

    Don’t be fooled on this score by glowing reviews online. Many of us in the pest control industry are convinced that those are reviews or reviews done by people who work for the manufacturer. While we don’t have any proof of it, many of the reviews are so glowing and so over-the-top in contrast with the actual results, logic dictates they can’t be anything else.

    How To Use A Skunk Repellent

    Most repellents come with instructions from the manufacturer. Follow those instructions and hope for the best.

    Are Skunk Repellents Safe Around My Pets and Children?

    Yes. They don’t and can’t hurt the animals, therefore they don’t and can’t hurt your children and pets.

    Top 5 Best Skunk Repellents

    Are you short on time or just want a quick answer?

    1. Peppermint Essential Oil
    2. BONIDE PRODUCTS INC (BND2361 Animal Repellent Granules)
    3. Safer Brand Critter Ridder Animal Repellent 
    4. Lulu Home Ultrasonic Animal Repeller
    5. Natural Armor Animal & Rodent Repellent Spray

    Natural Armor Animal & Rodent Repellent Spray

    Using natural ingredients, this animal repellent spray by Natural Armor chases away skunks while keeping the environment safe from pesticides. It uses mostly peppermint oil which skunks hate. It is also useful for deer, raccoons, and rodents.

    It comes in a ready-to-use, one-gallon spray container. This makes it convenient to use without the need for special equipment.

    The all-natural ingredients mean there are no unpleasant odors. It simply leaves a fresh, peppermint fragrance when applied.

    Natural Armor stands behind this unique animal repellent spray. It offers a 30-day, unconditional money-back guarantee. So, there is no risk of trying it.

    Uses only natural ingredients
    Effective for a wide range of animal species
    Convenient packaging
    30-day money-back guarantee
    Gallon container prone to leakage
    May not be as potent outside the perimeter of a home
    May not be as effective for rodents

    Peppermint Essential Oil

    This is a four-ounce bottle of peppermint oil extract. It has a long glass dropped and instructions on how to mix it for use. It is all-natural, therefore it is completely safe. The concentrated oil may produce a slight burning sensation if you get it on your skin. It is a very good cleaning agent that leaves the house smelling fresh.

    It has a nice smell
    Good for cleaning the house
    Detailed instructions to use
    Doesn’t repel skunks

    BONIDE PRODUCTS INC (BND2361 Animal Repellent Granules)

    This is a three-pound jug of granules containing dried blood, putrescent whole egg solids, and garlic oil. Scatter the granules around the area you want to keep the skunks out of. The odor will probably repel you more than it will the skunks. It doesn’t have any other use that we know of.

    Easy to use
    Strong repeller
    Smells bad
    Doesn’t repel skunks

    Safer Brand Critter Ridder Animal Repellent

    This skunk repellent by Safer Brand also works on dogs, cats, and raccoons. It uses a combination of black pepper, capsaicin, and piperine to keep pest animals away from where they don’t belong.

    Its long-lasting granules work for up to 30 days. They can be applied by hand or with a fertilizer spreader. They also come conveniently packaged in a shaker container.

    Critter Ridder works by overwhelming the taste and smell senses of the target animal. This method encourages them to leave the area to find food in another location.

    Although the ingredients are safe for the environment, they quickly repel unwanted animals like skunks. This animal control method is not only humane but also highly effective for long-term pest wildlife management.

    Safe for indoor and outdoor use
    Convenient shaker package, no need for equipment
    Environmentally friendly
    Works up to 30 days when dry
    May need reapplication after it rains
    May require several follow-up treatments
    May not work well for all animal species, check the label

    Lulu Home Ultrasonic Animal Repeller

    The idea behind a repellent is that it creates a situation that the target creature either finds unpleasant or is afraid of and makes them run away. One such device that we have shown you earlier is the ultrasonic animal repellers.

    LuLu is one such device that uses a laser tripwire to detect when an animal is within range and then blasts it with an ultrasonic sound that doesn’t harm the animal but certainly scares it away.

    Lulu comes in a weatherproof housing unit so you can place it anywhere without worrying about the rain destroying it, and that same weatherproof case is also very durable. Even if it takes a little knock, it won’t be the end of this product.

    One of my favorite features about the Lulu brand is that it is solar-powered. While some might say most ultrasonic repellers will need several batteries every three to four months, which increases waste and costs. Lulu just runs off the sun.

    This product has an adjustable knob, which allows you to change its frequency to deter different sized creatures.
    This product is waterproof.
    Lulu is solar powered and eco friendly.
    Lulu does need to be somewhere that gets constant light to keep its charge.

    Final Thoughts On Skunk Repellents

    Repellents don’t work. There’s no easy way to say it or sugarcoat it.

    If you have a skunk problem, the only reliable way to deal with it is to trap the skunk or put out poisonous bait. If you call a professional pest control operator, they will use one of those two methods because there is nothing else to use. If you have any kind of objection to those methods then you’re stuck with the skunks.

    If you’re looking for professional pest control help, use the tool below to get estimates from local professionals:

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    Editorial Contributors
    avatar for Ed Spicer

    Ed Spicer

    Ed has been working in the pest control industry for years helping 1,000's of homeowners navigate the world of insect and rodent management.

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