How to Get Rid of a Dead Animal Smell Under a Deck

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Things You'll Need

  • Gloves

  • Protective clothing

  • Eye protection

  • Plastic bag

  • Rake or shovel

  • Hose

  • Commercial odor neutralizer

An animal can die beneath an outdoor deck and create an offensive odor.

Dying skunks, raccoons, opossums, rodents and small domestic pets often seek refuge beneath an outdoor deck when hurt or dying. The darkness provided by such a location provides the ailing creature with a feeling of comfort. The animal often passes away unbeknown to the homeowner until the telltale smell of decomposition begins. During hot, humid weather, the decay rate of a carcass often becomes more accelerated. You will need to seek out the source of the odor, remove it and deodorize the area to remove the offensive aroma.


Step 1

Dress in protective clothing such as long pants and a long-sleeved shirt. Wear gloves and eye protection.

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Step 2

Crawl under the deck. Locate the dead animal. Scoop it into a plastic bag using gloved hands, a rake or shovel. Tie the bag closed. Dispose of the animal's carcass appropriately.


Step 3

Hose off the area under the deck using water. Thoroughly saturate the area to rinse away body fluids, flies and other pieces of decay.

Step 4

Spray a commercial odor neutralizer onto the area where the dead animal lay. Follow the directions on the odor eliminator when applying. Consider using an odor neutralizer that contains citrus to add a pleasant scent to the area.


Have the dead animal's carcass professionally removed if you believe the animal may have died from rabies or another zoonotic disease.


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