Friday, August 15, 2008

De-Skunking Your Dog

In an effort to drive even more traffic to this site than arrives here via the search for "heart shaped rocks" or even the old faithful "baby possum" posts, I've decided to share the sure-fire remedy for de-skunking your dog. Why, you may ask, the sudden interest in de-skunkifying dogs???

Yep. It happened. Sparky and Emma, in what I believed to be their normal frenzied pursuit of one of the cats that frequents the front porch, met their match tonight in the form of a skunk.

I'm pretty sure they're both emotionally scarred at this point; I know I am. It's after midnight as I sit here with all the windows open in an attempt to air out the house. In my panic at the sight of them going after a skunk on the porch, I opened the front door very wide and the odor came flooding inside. It's a nauseating mixture of nastiness like I've never known, as if an oil refinery invited a sewage plant to a local bonfire and they both jumped in the flames.

I bathed them immediately in regular dog shampoo which seemed to only anger the odor, causing it to jump onto ME. After Google searching and confirming in more than one
official-looking place that tomato juice really doesn't work at killing skunk odor, I found this recipe.

1 quart hydrogen peroxide
1/4 C. baking soda
1 tsp. laundry detergent

I had to soak them down in this mixture and let it sit on them for 5 minutes. This is where most of the emotional scarring occurred. Sparky and Emma aren't used to me splashing freezing cold, irritating liquids on them and then forcing them to stay in the bathtub while they shiver like full-sized doggy-shaped vibrators. They were a sad and pathetic sight to say the least.

But, that mixture DOES work. And thank the Lord for a roommate with a well-stocked medicine cabinet because I've never even considered owning a quart-sized bottle of hydrogen peroxide. Go roommate!

I was absolutely exhausted and headed for bed 2 hours ago when this event occurred. And now, well now, I'm still having a hard time taking deep breaths since the odor is not just lingering, it seems it's propped its feet up and is making itself at home. Ugh.

We're definitely sleeping with all the windows open tonight. Hopefully, I'll eventually be able to rest. For those of you in the weeks and months to come who arrive here via the nastiness of an evil skunk, I feel your pain.

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kurt_t said...

One time years ago Natalie and Flo were at the screen door just hissing and spitting and arching their backs, and I walked over there to see what the commotion was all about, looked down and saw the business end of a skunk pointed right at me.

As the cats sauntered away into the living room, you could just see the little thought balloons over their heads that said "Our work is done. You can take it from here."

Good thing for me the skunk was too busy digging grubs out of the compost bin to be bothered with launching an attack.

The good news is most dogs learn their lesson after one good blast and steer clear of skunks from then on.

Cats not so much.

CRB said...

Well I guess I took the easy way out, I just took my dog to the vet. I came home from work when I got out of my car I could smell the skunk, but I lived in the country and that was common so I went on in the house, WOW the smell was so pungent and strong I thought the thing was in my house, I called Sampson my not so smart Cocker Spanial and he did not come, by now my eyes are burning along with every orifice in my head I check every room looking for my dog because we are going to get out of the house. I can not find him. I go outside and all around the house calling him I hear a slight growl followed by a whimper. Our house was on a pier and beam and Sampson was under the house, when I was able to see him it was a sad but funny sight. He was growling at his self and then would wine, He finally crawled ever so slowly to me as the band Lynyrd Skynyrd says "That Smell, cant you smell that smell" Well my ex wife had accidentally let him out at lunch and he was a little more curious than he should have been. Well that was over 20 years ago and I will never forget THAT SMELL.

Robert said...

No kidding! I use basically the same recipe, but I use pet shampoo rather than laundry detergent. Stuart loves to chase skunks, and this tried and true recipe is AMAZING!