Skunks and Dogs
Every Dog Parents Nightmare
Cute little creatures from a distance, but up close, skunks put fear into dog parents everywhere!
If your dog has ever had the misfortune of being sprayed by a skunk, it’s a nauseating smell you won’t soon forget! Skunk spray is not the easiest to eliminate from your dog, yourself, or the interior of your home, I speak from experience!
Skunks – A Major Vector Of Rabies
Our dog being sprayed should not be our only concern. It’s important to be reminded that here in Ontario, Canada, skunks are a major vector of the rabies virus. We must be proactive, protecting our dogs and ensuring they are regularly vaccinated against rabies. Check with your vet for rabies vaccination information.
The Stinky Skunk Facts
In Ontario, skunks breed from February to March and the gestation of a skunk lasts eight weeks. Skunks can produce a litter of up to 10 babies.
The spray of a skunk can project as far as 10 feet!
Skunks will (usually) send a warning signal of an impending spray by stomping their front feet, raising its tail, then turning their rear towards the intended victim.
Keep an eye out under garden sheds, porches and woodpiles as skunks like to burrow.
You may notice your grass is turned up and little holes dug throughout, skunks are omnivores and will search out grubs and small insects in your lawn.
Not the best climbers, so keep your garbage and compost bins up high and out of reach.
Dog and cat food – skunks love it! So if you feed your dog or cat outdoors, remember to remove pet food dishes right away and clean up any left over bits of food.
You’ve taken every precaution, but the dog still got skunked, now what?
The Dog Got Skunked – Now What?
1) Try not to panic – I know, easier said then done, but you’ll want to get the situation under control before your dog runs through the house – that’s a whole other topic of cleaning!
2) For your own protection – obtain some rubber gloves.
3) If your dog has been sprayed in the face, use water soaked towels to ease their face and eyes.
Note: Do NOT prepare this mixture ahead of time as it could explode if stored and left in a bottle
1 litre of 3-percent hydrogen peroxide
1/4 cup baking soda
1 teaspoon liquid dishwashing soap (Dawn if available)
Step 1: Bath your dog outside using their regular dog shampoo.
Step 2: With rubber gloves on, rinse your dog in the mixed solution taking care NOT to get any in the dog’s eyes.
Step 3: Rinse dog thoroughly. If necessary, repeat with solution.
Step 4: You may want to follow up with another bath using dog shampoo.
Here’s hoping this is one bathing solution your dog will never need!