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You’ve Been Skunked

Author: Nicole Stewart | Date: October 1, 2012

This might be a funny show to watch, but only if when Ashton Kutcher came popping out of the back, he took your dog away to be bathed and didn’t bring him back until he was fresh as a daisy again.

A dog getting skunked is really no laughing matter.  It is a horrendous smell that can get into your house and stay well past your dog’s de-skunking.  My dog Denver, who has now passed, spent one summer getting skunked 4 times!  I swore that if I could find one, I was going to dress her as Pepe Le Pew for Halloween to shame her into sense.

I was reminded of this yesterday when I went out into my yard and found that it had been completely torn up by a grub-eating skunk in the night and then a colleague’s dog was skunked over the night.  It’s that time, I guess, so look out.

The question you might be asking is what do I do if this happens?!?

Here’s a recipe for getting that smell out:

1 quart of 3% Hydrogen Peroxide

¼ cup baking soda (not powder!)

1 tablespoon of liquid dishwashing soap (Ivory if possible)


  • If your pet is big, you can double the recipe
  • Get the concoction deep into their hair, all the way down to the skin.
  • Make sure to really saturate the areas of direct hit, if you can discern them.
  • Keep solution out of eyes and have plain water ready just in case it does get in there.
  • Let it sit on your dog for about 5 minutes.
  • Rinse thoroughly with lukewarm water.
  • Repeat if necessary, and it likely will be.

It would seem to make sense that if you have a repeat offender (let’s hope you don’t!) you could make this remedy so that you have it mixed at a moment’s notice.  However, this solution combines ingredients in such a way that if you were to this, the bottle would eventually explode, so unfortunately, you need to make it fresh each time, but be sure to have the ingredients on hand.

If you know that skunks are in your area, you can take a few precautions:

  • Be sure to go out before your dog at night and make some noise in hopes to clear the yard.
  • Take your dog out on a leash and carry a flashlight.
  • Practice a Leave It (meaning don’t touch that thing) cue both during the day and in the dark so that if your dog starts to dash, you may be able to stop them.  This takes some training to get to that level, but it’s very possible.  You might also keep your dog from getting uber-skunked, just skunked from a distance.

So, since I know that we’ve got skunks on the prowl in my area, I’m out to stock up on Hydrogen Peroxide and the rest.  Once your dog’s been skunked, you never forget it!

What’s your best dog vs. skunk story? Share it here.



I feel like I am a much better dog owner now that I am educated.

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