How to De-skunk Your Dog

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puppy looking at skunk

While most dog owners never have to face the pungent realities of a skunk-baptized pup, those that do will have the experience (and smell) etched into their minds forever.  Fortunately, there are several odor-reducing remedies to rescue your pooch from putrescence! Contrary to the wives’ tale option of scrubbing tomato sauce or mouthwash into your dog’s fur coat, there are Skunk Stench Removers, and products in your own medical cabinet which can get your canine back to his sweet-smelling self!

But bear the warning in mind, if not cleaned swiftly and thoroughly, the skunk smell can linger on an animal for as long as TWO YEARS. So roll up those sleeves, get out the cleaning supplies and go to work as fast as you can!

Step-by-Step Skunk Smell Removal

The skunk smell is actually an oil which grips easily onto hair and clothes, so make sure you are fully covered and prepared to tackle the challenge.  Before you work with your dog, put on rubber gloves, a bandana or hat over your hair, and change into clothes you’d be happy toss afterwards. Keep your dog outdoors and away from his bed, indoor furniture and carpet, or anything else that could be affected.  It also might be worth wearing a face mask or a nose cover while you work- anything to avoid the unpleasant aroma!

Additionally, depending on your dog’s breed, you may be able to trim down a fair amount of the skunk scented fur of your dog’s coat.  This might save you a fair amount of scrubbing, wiping and washing later.

  1. Soak up the scent:  If you are not able to shave the hair off your dog, first attempt to remove the smell from your dog’s fur. Using paper towels, try to wipe away as much of the odorous oil on your dog’s coat as possible.
  2. When this is done, combine together the following ingredients to create an effective odor combatant:
    • Hydrogen peroxide 3% – 1 quart
    • Baking Soda – ¼ cup
    • Liquid dish detergent – 2 teaspoons
  1. Scrub the mixture into the dog’s coat, in the area most heavily anointed first.  Rinse that out to keep the oils from spreading throughout the entire coat.
  2. After the first wash of the strongest area, repeat the process, covering the entire body of the dog, down through his feet, end of tail, and his face.  Be careful not to get the solution in his eyes, as it could agitate him.
  3. Allow the dog to towel dry, and stay outside in the sunshine.
  4. If the scent is still present after the initial cleansing, consider buying some over-the-counter skunk smell removal pet shampoos to rid any remaining signs.

Best De-Skunking Products

  • Earth Friendly Skunk Odor Remover
  • Nature’s Miracle Skunk Odor Remover

Congratulations if you managed to escape unscathed;  but in case your clothes picked up the stench, soak them in water mixed with one cup of baking soda before throwing them in the washing machine.  Scrubbing salt and baking soda mixed with your body wash should also douse the odor left on your skin, while the washing mashing will take care of deodorizing the fabric. A good deep-cleaning will leave you and your pup squeaky clean and skunk-free!

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