Easygoing and slow to move about, the skunk rarely hurries to move out of your way, and it makes no exception for your curious dog. In fact, a skunk’s trick is to let you get very close to him before it gives you a “parting gift”, which is why your dog will usually always get sprayed.
Once your dog gets on the wrong side of a skunk, you won’t have any problem realizing it. There will be a very strong odor and your dog’s eyes will most likely be hurting due to the spray, so he will probably be pawing at them. Dog sprayed by skunk has such an offensive odor that some describes it as burnt rubber, dog poo, and rotten eggs combined.
Skunk spray is actually oil based, that means that you cannot just wash it off with plain water. Its like olive oil on your favorite kitchen towel, simply rinsing with water will not remove the stain.
The differences are: skunk spray smells REALLY bad and is harder to get rid of. You will hear all sorts of different opinions on how to remove skunk smell from dog but few of them rarely work. The old wives’ tale of using tomato juice just really does not work either.
If it seems to work, it is just because you are getting used to the smell actually. This is a phenomenon called Olfactory fatigue. It happens when one has been exposed to a particular smell so long that he/she has become used to it and thence finds the smell less noticeable.
Since skunk spray is comprised of sulfur-based chemicals and thiols, you will need something with peroxide to neutralize the sulfuric compositions.
Here Is What You Should Do If Your Dog Sprayed By Skunk
Of course you want to keep the dog sprayed by skunk out of your house. It will not take long to get into everything you own in the house.
If your dog got sprayed and was led inside your house for just a few minutes, the smell will continue to linger in your house for a long time.
So as far as possible, keep your dog outside. If your dog just has to be inside for some reason, try and isolate him in a room with open windows and close the door. You will need to inspect your dog’s eyes and skin for any problematic symptoms after the spray. If you notice a problem from the spray in your dog’s eyes, try and rinse them or use some saline solution to help. If the problem is too severe, bring your dog to the veterinarian.
You should also check your dog for any bites or scratches. If your dog has been bitten by the skunk, you should take him to the vet as soon as possible because the skunk may carry rabies. You should then wipe the dog.
Try and find the location that got sprayed and wipe some of the spray off. The spray is usually found at the neck or shoulder area where the dog turned to try and avoid the spray.Always use a paper towel or some cloth that you can throw away later to wipe the dog.
Of course you want to protect your hands with some sort of gloves while you wipe. Remember to localize the wiping at the affected areas only, you don’t want to spread the spray by wiping across the non-affected areas on your dog’s coat.
How To Make Your Own Skunk Odor Potion?
Time is not on your side here because the longer you wait to treat the dog, the harder it is to get the smell off. Make sure you have all the ingredients that you need on hand for this process because you must act fast in this situation. This potion has worked for many people and is a favorite home solution. All thanks to Paul Krebaum, a chemist that came up with this:
What you need to do is to mix 1 quart of 3% hydrogen peroxide, ¼ cup of baking soda and a teaspoon of powerful liquid soap, something concentrated, in an open container.
You will observe some fizzing chemical reaction from the mix, but it’s not something to worry about as the gas is not toxic. Prepare adequate amount of this potion depending on the size of your dog.
How To Remove Skunk Smell from Dog? (Step-By-Step Instructions)
Attend to your dog sprayed by skunk as soon as you can.
While wearing gloves and using a cloth, apply the potion all over your dog while concentrating on the place that was the skunk’s target. Do not get the potion into the dog’s eyes, ears, nose or mouth.
You have to leave the potion on for about 5 minutes so it can do its job, then rinse it all out and do it again unless your dog smells normal already.
Ask someone who has not been with the dog all this while (so he or she is not “suffering” from olfactory fatigue) to see if there’s still any bad odor. If your dog still smell of skunk spray, then repeat Step 1 and 2 again.
IMPORTANT: As the potion is a gas-producing chemical mixture, you cannot keep the mixture enclosed in a container. Pressure will build up over time in the closed container and cause the container to explode. The shrapnel can injure someone nearby, not to mention the mess you need to take care of later on. Keep it in an open container to avoid a build up of pressure. After using the mix, throw what’s left over away.
One thing to note as well: because it is peroxide it could bleach your dog’s fur. Hence, do not leave the potion on your dog’s fur for more than 5 minutes, else this may damage your dog’s fur and affect the texture and color of the coat.
If you are still not comfortable about using peroxide or if your dog is sprayed on the face as well, consider adding white vinegar and reducing the amount of peroxide in the mixture or use vinegar to replace the peroxide completely in the case of ‘deskunking’ the dog’s face.
Should I Visit the Veterinarian After Dog Sprayed by Skunk?
If the skunk spray got your dog in the eyes and the eyes are extremely irritated, it is a good idea to go to the vet. If you notice any skunk bites, send your dog to the vet in case the skunk has rabies. If the dog sprayed by skunk seems very weak, tired, foamy at the mouth or is getting nauseated, you may need the vet’s help.
However, usually though, all the dog will need is some rest and food after a good wash down. This should keep your dog happy and it will recover from the trauma soon enough. Hopefully, your dog is smarter the next time it encounters a skunk.
Image Credits: Bottom – Tomato Juice on Dog sprayed by skunk, By desmorider, Creative Commons Attribution 2.5 License.