As I was driving into town yesterday I passed a dead skunk by the side of the road.
I’ve always had a soft spot in my heart for members of the weasel family, and I’ve also always thought skunks were very cute, so I was a bit sad as I drove by the flattened mound of fur. However, I also told the girls how glad I was that none of the dogs had been sprayed by skunks in all the long years that I’ve had them.
Famous last words.
Una got skunked last night.
Seriously, the real-life foreshadowing of this whole event was uncanny.
It was just a matter of time, I knew that. As my sister said, when you move to the country it’s practically in the fine print that someone is going to get sprayed by a skunk. And yet, I hoped. I thought maybe my dogs were too smart to mess with skunks. After all, we’ve been 11 years incident free.
Nope. Not so. Not anymore.
Behold a stinky dog:Oh, the smell. I don’t even know how to describe the smell of freshly sprayed skunk juice to anyone who hasn’t had the pleasure. It’s a little bit like sulfurous rotten eggs, but worse, like sulfurous rotten eggs mixed with sickly sweet decayed garbage mixed with burning tires. And it gets everywhere.
Una was in the house for less than a few seconds before I realized she’d been sprayed and scooted her right back outside. But the smell stayed. And it moved! It seemed to get stronger! It went upstairs. It went behind closed doors. It made the girls cry even though they were already in bed, with the covers up over their heads.
Skunks really are formidable little creatures.
Poor Una had to spend the night in the greenhouse while we figured out what to do. I felt a little badly about making my elderly dog sleep outside in the unheated greenhouse, but that’s what happens if you get sprayed by a skunk in this family. Persona non grata until the stink is gone. To that end, this morning I did a little research and found this recommended recipe online:
- 1 quart (4 cups) hydrogen peroxide
- 1/4 cup baking soda
- 1 tsp dish detergent
Wearing rubber gloves, I lathered this concoction into her fur and then rinsed it out, and followed with a full shampoo using her regular soap. It seemed to work, but we were outside and it was cold and I couldn’t quite be sure, so I put her in the garage and ran to town to pick up a bottle of Nature’s Miracle Skunk Remover. Another bath and the old girl is back to smelling mostly okay. If you are brave enough to stick your nose into the fur on her chest you will probably pick up a slight undercurrent of sulphurous rotten garbage and burned rubber, but she’s back to sleeping in the house without driving us all away with her stink.
While I was out, I also stopped by Costco to stock up on hydrogen peroxide and baking soda. I have this feeling that this won’t be the last time that there is an offensively smelling dog on my doorstep.
Oh, our animals. They keep life interesting. Or something.