Be prepared if your dog gets sprayed by a skunk. Get the skunk smell off of your dog quickly with a tried and true Skunk Recipe, and the smell out of your house with a simple natural solution. Read on….
Yesterday I received an urgent message from our dog walker – via email, phone, and text – so I knew it was important. In passing by our house, she had noticed a skunk sitting smack in the middle of our front walk. A skunk in broad daylight, so brazenly sitting on our front walk, in the middle of the city?
Disaster averted by her call, it sent a chill down my spine realizing how close I had come to walking out our front door with Abby, our dog, and reliving the nightmare of a few years back. Totally unprepared, late at night, last duty call of the night, it had happened. The small urban back yard had seemed a safe bet with a six foot fence all around. How naïve that had been. Seconds later, Abby’s first tangle with a skunk ended badly – for her, for us and for the skunk.
It was a long night of calls to the police and animal control, and hospital visits – for Abby and for us – rabies shots included. The stench was nauseating. But luck was on our side in two regards that night – we had a 24-hour drugstore nearby, and we had the “Skunk Recipe”, given to us by our vet weeks earlier, which we had stashed away for “sometime”. It worked wonders, as did our natural solution for “de-skunking” the house, which by now reeked in most every room.
Time is of the essence when your dog gets sprayed by a skunk, as are a few “Don’ts”. Don’t spray your dog with water or wet your dog with tomato juice. It will only make the smell worse. Instead, in a bucket mix 1 Quart of 3% Hydrogen Peroxide, and 1/4 Cup of Baking Soda. The solution will start to fizz. Add 2 Teaspoons of Dawn Liquid Dish Soap and mix.
Wet your dog thoroughly with the solution, being very careful not to get it into your dog’s eyes, nose, mouth or ears as it will not only sting, but can be harmful. Use a sponge with a small amount of the mixture, and use great care. Unfortunately the face often gets the brunt of the spray, so it can’t be skipped. It’s best a two-person job – one person to hold your dog, one person to apply the mixture. Also be aware your clothes may be bleached if the solution gets on them.
When your dog is thoroughly covered, knead the solution into your dog’s fur and let the solution sit for about 20 minutes to neutralize the odor. Then start the rinsing process, again being very careful around your dog’s face. We used a dry towel to protect Abby’s eyes, nose, mouth and ears. If your dog’s eyes become red and swollen – either from the skunk spray or from your bathing – an immediate trip to the nearest vet/animal hospital is warranted.
After the solution has been rinsed off, bathe your dog with a moisturizing natural shampoo (oatmeal works well), as the skunk mixture can be drying and can irritate the skin. In some cases, the mixture may lighten your dog’s coat, although we did not find this with Abby, who has a pure black “saddle-back”.
Abby successfully de-skunked, we now had to contend with the stench in our house. Luckily, with some open windows and a simple natural solution, this was pretty quickly remedied. In deep bowls (in case the bottles tipped), we placed small bottles of vanilla extract with the tops off in every room. It worked like magic. A word of warning – you must use extreme caution here – the bowls must be placed high up on shelves, mantels, or other places your pet(s) cannot reach, as vanilla extract is toxic to pets.
We know Abby will likely be skunked again someday, and although we don’t relish that thought, we are at least now prepared. Even though the skunk recipe is not a solution that can be pre-mixed, the supplies can be kept handy. Under our sink we now have a “skunk kit” with all the necessary ingredients, along with the “Skunk Recipe” taped to the top of the box – armed and ready!