Skunked Dog

The story of my first skunked adventure with my dogs.

a Photo a Day” blog post is postponed until tomorrow 🙂

Last night I let the dogs out for their ritualistic, before bed time tinkle.  When I hear Sam barking his “I’m super scared and trying to scare something off” bark I run to the door and when I open it two things happen at once: the reek of skunk floods my nostrils and Haley bolts inside.  Curiously though, Sam stubbornly stays outside.  I get nervous because I can’t see a thing and I assume that, since Sam is rooted to the spot, that the skunk is possibly dead or wounded at his feet.  I dart back inside and frantically run around the house turning on the porch light and grabbing my iPhone for a flashlight so I can see what I’m dealing with.

Sam looked unscathed and was alone but had crazy eyes.  I proceed to call him again but he wouldn’t budge.  Finally he moves but only in a tiny arch that keeps him as far away from the back of the house and the door I’m summoning him to as his harness will allow.  I don’t want to dawdle around for fear of the skunk rushing me or Sam so I result to bribing.  I pull out some dog food shake it until Sam forgets the threat long enough to answer my call.

I leave him on the harness in the porch so he can’t touch anything else.  Now that both dogs are safe I go find Haley to check if she stinks.  She does.  In fact, the whole room does because she went directly to the bedroom and rolled all over the bed.

I call her into the bathroom and she is wonderfully obedient as usual.  I tell her to stay while I fetch a towel and a couple other bath necessities and get to work.  I lift her into the tub.  This makes me laugh, as usual, because she does this spread eagle, disjoined air sprawl.  Once she is in I set to work.  I soap her up once, then twice, and then I give her a sniff.  She still reeks but now I can at least pinpoint the place on her body where the smell is coming from.  But I need another plan since the soap proved mostly ineffective.

I leave my shivering dog in the tub while I research solutions.  I found one that required hydrogen peroxide, baking soda, and dish soap; I didn’t have hydrogen peroxide but decided I would have to give it a shot anyway.  I think it helped but she still reeked.

I take a break to give my oddly patient Sam a sniff.  I smell his face. Nothing. I smell his back. Nothing.  I smell his belly.  Nothing.  And I am so convinced at the naughtiness of my dog that I smell every inch of him but I still don’t get even a slight whiff of skunk.  I’m completely floored.  How is it possible that my disobedient, trouble-making Sam was the good dog tonight.  I suddenly realize that he was somehow smart enough to recognize the threat without having to investigate AND had the good grace to alert me of the issue.

Even though Sam doesn’t smell, I’m so convinced that he had to be the culprit that I actually entertain the idea that I’m so used to the smell already that I simply can’t smell it on him.  But that doesn’t hold up because when I go sniff Haley again there is no mistaking that she definitely was skunked.  So I let Sam off the hook and bring him around the house as my investigator.  He promptly reveals to me any areas Haley touched with her skunk face and I gather up all that stuff and pop it in the wash.  I give Sam a grateful pet and squeeze and get back to the bathroom to attend to Haley.

I just sit on my bathroom floor for a while… pondering what I can possibly do to get rid of the stink.  My eyes fall on my Sabon Body Scrub.  I shrug and think “well, it’s worth a shot.”  I am hoping the oils in the scrub will replace and overwhelm the skunk oils.  I scrub her once. Sniff.  And she actually smells significantly better but I still have two troublesome spots to deal with. I scrub her two more times and decide the scrub can’t do any more for me.  So I try the baking soda/dish soap blend again and she’s about as close to clean as I can get her I think.

I lift her out of the tub, dry her off, make her sit, and rub tea tree oil on her face.  And I did it!  After three different methods of washing and a little tea tree oil my dog is odor free!

It is midnight but I quickly give Sam a bath just because I’m already at it, wash myself (half to get the now pouring sweat off of me and half to secure my own odor-free state), rotate the laundry, make the bed with spare sheets, and crawl into bed with my two clean, but semi-damp pups and fall asleep smiling.

2 thoughts on “Skunked Dog

  1. My mom recalled my grandma washing Peanut (her dog) and puppies when she was a kid because of a skunk incident. They ALL were touched with the horrible smell. She bathed them in a big jar of canned tomato juice. 🙂 I’m proud of Sam for not misbehaving.

    • Man! I heard about tomato juice. Didn’t have any of that either but I suppose it works since it’s the most common natural remedy. And I was so baffled that Sam was clean!

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