Striped skunks breed from February to March, and need a den site to do so. Female skunks will look for potential nesting sites in late winter. Den sites include:

  • Under homes
  • Beneath decks and porches
  • Within or beneath sheds
  • Within wood piles
  • In crawl spaces underneath the home

Skunks will also use the deserted burrows of other animals. If they’re desperate, they will dig a burrow. The nesting is where a lot of the damage that’s caused by skunks can occur. Their claws are quite sharp, and can dig or tear through a lot of material, including metal screens and vents.

Feces and odor contamination can also cause a lot of problems. The smell from a scared skunk is not pleasant, and if they’re allowed to breed within a space, the smell will continue to get worse.

Digging in or around den sites, scratching and chewing from within the den site, and of course debris caused by skunks can all cause significant damage within and around your home.

Threats Posed by Skunks

Skunk spray is certainly the first threat that most people think of when skunks are mentioned. Skunk spray is extremely potent and can linger on clothes, animals, skin, and other organic materials for weeks and even months.

Skunks can also cause significant damage within and around their denning sites. Because they’re looking to support babies, they will forage for almost anything, including garbage, pet food, and insects found in turf and garden areas.

How to Get Rid of Skunks

Skunks are a difficult animal to remove, and the process is complicated. There are a number of steps that homeowners can take to help prevent or get rid of skunks, including:

  • Don’t feed skunks
  • Keep pet food indoors
  • Seal all garbage cans
  • Use secure containers for compost
  • Close all entry points, paying special attention to spaces underneath structures

If you already have skunks, don’t close den sites! You’ll end up causing more damage as the skunk family tries to dig their way out.

Contact Pioneer for Skunk Removal

Removing a skunk on your own property does not require a special license, but unless you’re familiar with trapping animals, we don’t recommend it. There are local companies (including ourselves) who are happy to perform this service for you, minimizing your risk of coming into contact with a skunk.

At Pioneer Pest Management, we take care of everything, including blocking the den after skunk removal. We also make sure to treat for other insects that might attract skunks, so they won’t come back. Because we look at your entire home and yard, your skunk issue can be completely eliminated.

How Skunks Can Damage Your Home in Portland OR and Vancouver WA

Serving Customers on the East Side:


Portland | NE Portland | Gresham | Happy Valley | Clackamas | Milwaukie | Mt Tabor | Belmont | Lloyd Center | Laurelhurst | Hollywood District


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Downtown Portland | Beaverton | Tigard | Hillsboro | Cornell | Sylvan | Cedar Hills


And in the Vancouver WA Area:


Downtown Vancouver | Fruit Valley | Hazel Dell | Felida | Cascade Park | Camas Washington