DeSkunking & Social Responsibility

Although, I’ve grown up with dogs and currently have 3 dogs residing in my home, I’ve never had one sprayed by a skunk.  Until Monday.  I didn’t know what to do about it.  It was 4am and I may not have been thinking quite clearly. 

skunks cartoon

I awoke to the smell of burning, almost like burnt rubber.  Hubby and I cruised the house looking for something which may have been melting/smoking.   Nothing.  The smell followed us from room to room, along with our weimaraner, Libby.

IMG_0111

Hubby says, “I think it’s the dog”.  It was then that I realized we were dealing with a skunk spray.  The smell was changing to more of a skunky smell verses the burning smell.  Plus she kept flopping down rubbing her face on the carpet, etc.  I took Libby outside at 4am and gave her a bath.  I thought the smell would pass.  15  hours later when I got home from work and a night with the kids at the local big top circus, the house smelled so badly I could hardly stand it.  Judy F was kind enough to give me the magic formula for deskunking.  I thought you might like to know, maybe you already have a deskunking kit on hand but in case you don’t, you will need:  one bottle of peroxide, half a box of baking soda & 1 TBS of Dawn dish soap.   Wearing rubber gloves, mix contents in a bucket, rub onto dog (avoiding eyes & mouth), let sit for 15 minutes, rinse & bathe dog.

DeSkunk Supplies

This eliminated about 95% of the smell and I was extremely pleased!  While we were at it, the other dogs got a bath too.  I was slightly irritated with them that they didn’t not attempt to stop Libby from getting into trouble with the skunk.  As a family, a pack ,or a group of friends, I believe you have a social responsibility to look out for one another and attempt to influence others in a positive manner and dissuade bad behavior.  Did you ever get in trouble because you didn’t stop a sibling from making a bad judgment call?  Yep, me too.  Libby’s canine siblings didn’t get off the hook either.  They should have attempted to stop Libby rather than egging her on and then laughing at the results.  Social responsibility, even in a pack.  That’s my theory and I’m sticking too it.   Baths all around!

Since everyone was nice and clean, I asked them to sit for a  photo.  This was their response, which I interpret as “you can make us sit but we don’t have to be happy about it.  And don’t even THINK that we are going to look at your stupid camera!”     Libby,  Goose & Dakota below, 8 years old. 

Dogs_6-26-12

Then the family came in to help.  Almost everyone was looking this time.  Libby is apparently still mad and Michael just thought this was all hilarious so he was just giggling away at the situation.  Libby, Mick, Dakota, Aby, Goose & Michael.

Libby-Mick_Dakota_Aby_Goose_Michael_6-26-12

We still had an issue with the smell inside the house.  It was bad enough to make my eyes water.  Of course, I couldn’t find anything at the store that Judy or others recommended to clear the indoor smell.  So this is what I used and it cleared the majority of the odor.  Citrus Magic solid upstairs and downstairs plus the entire house was heavily sprayed with the Renuzit Super Odor Neutralizer. 

DeSkunk Air Fresh So things are somewhat back to normal.  The dogs are somewhat clean.  The house smells somewhat “ok” and my eyes are no longer watering when I’m inside.

Thanks to everyone, particularly Judy F who I now have  on speed dial, for the suggestions on deskunking my dog and house.   For the record, several people told me that Skunk Off from the pet stores works really well too.   I hope you never have this problem but if you do hopefully this info will help you as well.

** Cheers ** Amanda – TooTallFritz ** amanda@tootallfritz.com

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9 thoughts on “DeSkunking & Social Responsibility

  1. I am sorry for your problem with Libby – but this entry is just too funny!! Her “sisters” should have absolutely stopped her!!! Bad dogs!!!!! LOL.

  2. I’m glad we haven’t had any skunks in our neighborhood. My dog is in “attack mode” with anything in the back yard 24/7. Oh, and I used to have the same problem with getting photos of her. Until I learned a trick: When she won’t look at me I say “Reba. Want a treat?” and I get about a one second window where she looks at me before running to where the treats are. :-)

  3. I was running once with Pepper and a skunk slowly walked across the trail. I was so glad I saw it in time or else I just know my curious pooch would have been sprayed right in her face. If this ever does happen, I know who to call!!! Thanks for this great post. And your dogs are just so adorable. We’ve been thinking about getting a 2nd one but can’t quite bite the bullet. It would be such a big change!

  4. Not only has my dog been sprayed but so was I! We were quietly at 5:30am minding our own business jogging through the local cemetary (Pascha was on heel) when all of the sudden I/we are smelling skunk! I never saw the skunk, but clearly he saw us, by the time we jogged the quarter of a mile home, we were both gagging and and trying to rub the scent off! I can tell you that a bath by hose at 5:45am in early spring Wisconsin is an EYE OPENER! I used a variation of your mix and was VERY successful for myself and moderately successful with my German Shepherd. We no longer jog through the cemetary, I stick to the roads and sidewalks when it is dark.

  5. ohhhh noooo!! I was dog sitting last summer and one of the dogs went after a skunk. I had never seen one before, so i just through it was a weird raccoon and had no understanding of the gravity of the situation. Luckily Matt was there to intervene and prevent and skunking. What a horrible animal!

  6. I would think the other two dogs were the smart ones and just figured, well, Libby’s got to learn on her own to stay away from skunks. The stinky compound in Skunk musk is a sulfide-based compound called methylmercaptan, or something like that. My brother’s a chemistry teacher at private catholic HS in Indianapolis and once one of the students dropped a bottle of the stuff and stunk up the whole school. My brother will know the chemical way to neutralize it, but he takes a while to respond to emails…so be patient. Will post you the answer later. Somewhere I recall tomato sauce or juice as an antidote, but that won’t work well for carpet and such cause of staining. Hopefully brother chemist will have an answer for de-skunking everything Libby rubbed herself on. Don’t worry…she won’t mess with skunks anymore!

  7. OK…my useless brother responded and just says he recalls the subject but doesn’t remember the specific recommendations and just suggested to Google the subject. And when you do the recipe with the hydrogen peroxide-baking soda-dish soap comes up, as well as another variant with vinger-baking soda-dish soap. Also says using tomato-based products don’t work…just sort-of cover-up the smell for a short period. So…I had to resort to my own logic after seeing what came up online. Here’s my thoughts.

    The issues are two-fold: 1) the actual musk substance on the dog or where rubbed on carpet or other materials, and 2) the air-borne or volatile odor of the musk that lingers.

    Regarding the substance actually on the dog or carpet, using the recipes you already posted with the hydrogen peroxide, baking soda and dish soap should work, but for the carpet and areas where the dog rubbed off skunk musk, you might try adding Simple Green or similar product that is water-based cleaner that dissolves or breaks-down grease and oil. This might help break-down the oils in the skunk musk and help remove it from the carpet when you blot it out. Or better yet, mix the cleanser recipe and swap the dish soap for the Simple Green and use a steam cleaner to go over the carpet.

    The second aspect concerning volatile, air-borne smell, online suggests using air freshners like Fabreze. But I suggest using an Effusion Lamp (which burns flameless using alcohol). Effusion lamps are well-known for getting rid of persistent odors cause it pulls in air that is combusted and destroys the odor. If you got a nice fuel mix with herbal scents and such, it will replace the air with nice smell while destroying the skunk odor it pulls in.

    That’s all I can suggest.

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