Skunk basics

Skunks are primarily solitary animals. Just like humans, they have five toes on their front and hind feet. They have elongated nails that aid them in digging for insects and grubs. Skunks are omnivorous and will eat a variety of insects, wild fruits, and small vertebrates, like mice and eggs of ground nesting birds. Their only natural predator is the great-horned owl.

Benefits of skunks

Despite their bad reputation, skunks do bring a few benefits. Skunks are excellent at rodent and insect control, including pests like black widow spiders and scorpions. Skunks also help to keep roadsides clean by eating carrion.

What to do if a skunk sprays you or your pet

You can buy a skunk odor remover or make your own at home. If you choose to purchase one, we recommend Nature’s Miracle Skunk Odor Remover, available at the Pasadena Humane Society & SPCA’s Shelter Shop.

Homemade remedy

This remedy can be used on both pets and humans that have been sprayed.

Ingredients:

  • One quart 3% hydrogen peroxide
  • ¼ cup baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon liquid dish soap
  • Rubber gloves

Mix all ingredients. Wearing the rubber gloves, wet down your pet and massage the mixture through the animal’s fur or on your own skin for three to four minutes. Rinse.