There are few smells in the natural world that are more distinct than a skunk’s spray. Have you ever wondered whether skunks are bothered by this scent as much as humans are? Learn about why skunks smell so bad, understand how long it takes them to refill their spray and make a plan for contacting humane wildlife control in Vaughan to remove these smelly creatures from your home.
What Makes a Skunk Smell so Bad?
The skunk’s particular brand of perfume is a naturally occurring compound referred to as a thiol, which means that it’s mostly made of sulphur. Sulphur, if you didn’t know, smells like rotten eggs.
Skunks spray other animals (including humans) to defend themselves when they feel threatened. It’s not common for skunks to spray each other during fights over mates, territory, and food, but it can happen occasionally. They usually reserve this malodourous liquid — that’s made continuously in their anal glands — for those who they think will harm them.
Do Skunks Know They Smell Bad?
They do. They’re probably not as bothered by the smell as other animals and humans are, but this is just a guess by most wildlife observers and researchers who have noticed what happens when skunks spray other skunks.
The sulphur compound they contain in their bodies not only smells terrible — it can burn. If a skunk is sprayed, it will rub its nose and try to wipe the smell off using the grass or dirt as a kleenex.
Do Skunks Like Their Smell?
Researchers assume that skunks are used to the smell of their spray because they encounter the smell frequently. This doesn’t mean they like the odour, but because they live in the open air and are usually focused on gathering food and staying away from predators, it may not bother them as much as it does humans or other animals.
Can Skunk Smell Make You Sick?
It can, but it’s not technically poison. This strong sulphur compound can burn your eyes and other mucous membranes if it comes into direct contact with your face. The smell itself may make you feel nauseous.
The worst part of smelling a skunk’s spray, though, is the fact that it may take you days to weeks to fully remove it from your clothes, hair, or surroundings. Ask your doctor or seek out emergency treatment if you or your child has gotten sprayed and is experiencing uncomfortable symptoms.
How Long Does it Take for a Skunk To “Refill” Its Spray?
Have you always assumed that a skunk has an unlimited supply of nasty odour? They actually don’t. After spraying a predator or another animal that simply gets too close, a skunk can take a week to 10 days to completely refill its supply of spray.
Skunks use their spray carefully due to its limited supply, and they won’t spray you without good reason. They try their best to hide right after they’ve sprayed so that the liquid can “fill up” again. During this time, they’re more vulnerable to predators and they act more cautiously than usual.
Get In Touch with Skedaddle Humane Wildlife Control in Vaughan
It can be difficult to know what to do if you find an animal in your home or living on your property where it shouldn’t be. Fortunately, most animals can be removed without an issue and without harm to them (or their babies, if there are any).
Remember not to touch, pet, or handle any wild animals that you find in your home — even if they’re cute! Contact Skedaddle in the Vaughan area to learn more about humane wildlife control and schedule your inspection for skunk removal today.