To prevent my decoys from picking up odors during the off-season, I store them in a shed along with other hunting gear I want to keep as odor-free as possible. A week or so before hunting season, I set the decoys out to be washed by the rain, sun and wind. From that time on, I handle the decoys only with clean gloves, and often rubber gloves. After I set them up in the field, I spray them liberally with either Atsko No-Odor or H.S Scent-Away.
You don’t need deer scent to lure deer into a decoy, but I use it because the scent encourages deer to hang around the decoy longer, and that gives me more opportunity to make a good shot. I’ve used a lot of different scents through the years, but the types I’ve used with best success for the past 15 years on buck decoys are buck urine for pre- and post-rut, and tarsal gland scent for late pre-rut and the rut. With a doe decoy I use Primetime Estrous Doe Urine.
I don’t place scent directly on a decoy, but rather put a stick in the ground between the decoy’s hind legs, hang a scent-wick on the stick and apply the scent to the scent-wick. I also like to use tarsal glands from a previously killed buck. When I’m done hunting for the day, I remove the scent-wicks or tarsals and place them in a Ziploc until the next hunt.