Myth or Fact? Most people would say the best way to remove skunk smell is by taking a bath in tomato juice. This is a myth. It is believed that tomato juice works because at high doses of skunk spray the human nose quits smelling the skunk odour and the tomato juice can be easily detected. This is often referred to olfactory fatigue.
What seems to work the best is this recipe:
4 cups of 3% hydrogen peroxide
1/4 cups baking soda
1 teaspoon of liquid detergent
Mix in large bowl without a lid. Be sure to discard any left over solution. If the mix is stored in a covered container it may explode.
De-skunking tips: Try to remove the smell from people and pets first. The longer the odour remains on things it will be more difficult to remove. It would be best to do the de-skunking outside. You will want to avoid getting the oils from the skunk odour on carpets and furniture.
Removing skunk smell from carpets can be difficult. What ever solution you use, be sure that it doesn’t discolour your carpet. It would be best to try in a small area first. Once you wet the carpet use paper towel to absorb the liquid. The skunk smell should also be absorbed in the paper towel. For the best outcome, treatments should be applied as soon as possible. Depending on how long the smell goes untreated and the fibres of the carpet, professional carpet cleaners may be needed. Professional carpet cleaners use deodorizers and sanitizers. These may be helpful with the persistent smell.
Clothing that has been sprayed heavily by skunk may hold the odour. Some fabrics can hold on to the odour for a long time. Try using the recipe in the washing machine then re- washing with laundry soap.
Skunk smell can linger indoors. Try boiling vinegar. The home should smell like vinegar and once the vinegar smell is gone, so should the skunk smell. If smell is still lingering try placing vinegar in bowls are place around the room. Try leaving the bowls for about 24hours and the vinegar absorbs the skunk smell.
If skunk smell needs to be removed from porches or decks the most common solution used is 1 cup of bleach diluted into 4 cups of water. Ensure that bleach does not discolour the surface.
It is unlikely that any solution will completely eliminate the entire smell the first time. It may take several attempts before the smell is gone completely. Calling professional carpets cleaners may be the best solution to removing the smell quickly and effectively. When dealing with skunk odours it may be best to wear gloves to avoid transferring the oil to your hands.