We smell them before we see them. Around the corner comes a red-eyed, sad-faced, foul-smelling creature which no one has to tell us just had an unfortunate encounter with a skunk. In many instances, it is not the dog’s first humbling encounter.
Although the skunk musk does have a lingering effect, there is a quick homemade “shampoo” recipe discovered in 1993 by chemist Paul Krebaum. It works as well as, or better than, tomato juice or many of the over the counter products, and most ingredients are found at home.
1 quart 3% hydrogen peroxide, ¼ cup baking soda, 1 tsp liquid soap (such as Ivory or Dawn dish detergent). Mix these ingredients together, shampoo the dog (avoiding eyes, nose, and mouth) and rinse thoroughly.
Most of the time, the only concern with a dog who has been skunked is the terrible smell. In some cases, if the spray is focused on the dog’s face, conjunctivitis of the eyes or dermatitis of the lip folds or nose can occur. In very rare instances, something more serious, such as Heinz body anemia, can develop from spray directly into the mouth. Consult your vet if you have any concerns. Of course, keeping your pet up to date on his or her rabies vaccinations is also important for their safety.