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Skunks are known for their notorious and awful smell, which probably none of us can stand for even a minute. I know I gag immediately and have to get away from it. And as we all know, it is hard to remove odors from our pups when they get into something bad smelling, and removing skunk smell can be the most difficult if you follow the popular recommendation.
The infamous foul scent of a skunk comes from its anal scent glands, which is meant to be used as a weapon to defend themselves from predators in the wild, such as bears, foxes, and others. Unfortunately, both we and our dogs are also seen as enemies. The skunk’s liquid spray can reach up to 10 feet, and may even cause temporary blindness or irritation of the skin.
There are two of these scent glands, which produce chemicals that contain sulfur, such as butyl thiols and methyl mercaptan. The result is a smell that is like a combination of rotten eggs, burnt rubber and garlic, which is clearly a very foul smell. (They stink so much that laboratory samples of these chemicals come in sealed glass ampoules, not in screw-top jars.)
Removing skunk smell
The only good thing is that skunks cannot reproduce the stink bomb again for about 10 days, so you or the dog won’t get a second helping. However, this does not alter the fact that the dog still stinks, and you need to take remedial action.
One thing you need to remember about a dog getting skunked is to never take him to a local vet, because most of them will turn you away. Getting sprayed is not a medical emergency, and the odor can ruin their building and practice for a long time.
Forget the old “tomato juice” remedy — it works, but not well. The following home remedy for removing skunk smell usually is sufficient to remove the smell with one treatment.
There is a good skunk odor-rinsing home remedy that is easy to prepare and apply for your dog. Here is what you need to do:
- Prepare a bowl that can be thrown away (disposable).
- Put in 4 cups of hydrogen peroxide.
- Pour in half a cup of baking soda.
- Add 1 teaspoon of liquid soap.
- Mix all of the ingredients together in the bowl.
- Remember to wear protective gloves so that you do not absorb the foul odor of the skunk.
- Use a wash rag to apply the mixture vigorously to the areas that have been sprayed. Do not apply to the eyes and in the mouth of your dog. Applying to the muzzle and face obviously can’t be done as vigorously as to the rest of the dog.
- After you have applied the remedy to your dog, don’t wash it off or rinse it off immediately; let it sit for about ten minutes, and then rinse thoroughly.
- Repeat this two or three times if needed, depending on how strong the smell is on your dog. One treatment normally is enough.
The above mixture works well for an average sized dog, with average-length hair. For long-haired or large dogs, add more peroxide. For smaller dogs use less peroxide.
The following YouTube video shows the entire process:
A good dog shampoo normal bath can be used for the final step in treating your dog. And as for your clothes, you can use laundry soap, baking soda and hydrogen peroxide to get rid of the smell.
Removing skunk smell can be quite challenging to completely clean from a dog if the dog was sprayed on the face. However, it can be done without difficulty even though it does take a little time and patience.
Have you or one of your fur babies ever been sprayed?
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