Skunky Dog Bath

I walked in the house after getting home from work and it was a lot like opening those nasty dog bones and taking a big whiff.  It was potent and nauseating!  Apparently the dogs had been running around outside after my husband let them out, and they must’ve run all over the fields, finally running into ANOTHER skunk. I say another, because it had to have been about the 15th one or so since I started keeping track. These things are thick around here for some reason, and even though it’s only February and they should be hibernating, they are already roaming around because the weather has been in the 50’s and 60’s.  I took a whiff of both dogs.  Foxy didn’t smell at all.  She is a seasoned skunk dog by now, having already had plenty of altercations with them in previous years.  And along with that, many numerous baths and getting tied outside, so she has (hopefully), figured out that she should leave them alone.  Brodie, on the other hand, is the new dog in town and has not had ANY experiences with skunks.  He is also very inquisitive, so OF COURSE, he was the one that smelled to high heaven.

Brodie

Brodie

LUCKILY, I had a quart of hydrogen peroxide.  So I mixed up the peroxide with 1/4c of baking soda and a teaspoon of liquid soap.  Now the hard part started.  I had to get the dog into the bath.  But then I decided I would take him into the shower, where I could shut the door and keep him corralled.  Except he didn’t want to come in!  AT ALL!!!  He put on the brakes!  Do you know how hard it is to drag a dog into a shower when their back legs are locked in reverse?  It took me 9 tries to get him in and it was such a struggle and a game of wits!  Pulling didn’t work, pushing didn’t work, different angles didn’t work, lifting didn’t work, I think maybe eventually he just gave in.  But once he was inside he was great!  Sat so nice while I scrubbed him all down, he didn’t even mind that I was pouring water all over his head. He was perfect and I couldn’t believe it!  Then I turned the shower off and tried to get him to shake off while he was inside, to minimize the damage to the bathroom walls. I figured out that if I messed with his ears enough, that I could get him to shake his whole body.  That worked really well the first few times, but when I let him out, I couldn’t believe how much water was still left –to be flung all over the bathroom counters, walls, mirrors and pretty much every available exposed surface.  Ugh!!!  Then the sprawling and rubbing commenced.  Sprawl on the rugs, rub on the clean towels within reach, rub on the counter, rub on the door, sprawl on the towel that I threw down after wiping him off.  So I let him out of the bathroom, and he continued to sprawl and rub on everything in sight, including the couch and the carpet in the living room.  Meanwhile, I was wiping down the WHOLE bathroom, and cleaning the masses of dog hair that had collected in the shower. This was not fun, NOT fun at all, really it wasn’t!!!!

So the dog was pretty darn clean, the bathroom was relatively hairless, but there was still odors being emitted from the rugs.  Now they would need to be washed!  Actually, the whole house needed to be fumigated, but I had to get outside and figure out where this said skunk was. I had to determine if he was going to get into the chicken house or was just after the dog food or what exactly. I decided to walk around the perimeter of the house and garden to see if I could smell where it had all happened.  No luck there, and not even over by the chicken house, which is the main draw for them.  I pulled out the live trap and set it up with dog food, after hiding all the available dog food and cat food and gathering all the easy pickings of eggs.  Now my work was done outside for the night, and as I enter the house, again the mudroom reeks.  Ugh.  I will have to wash these rugs also!! The washer will be busy for a few days… Then it dawns on me.  How am I going to let them out at night, and be assured that they don’t get in it again?  I ponder and decide if that happens, well, they are just going to get tied up outside, and that’s all there is to it.  I’m not going to go through all this again in the middle of the night.  NO WAY, NO HOW!!

It’s time for bed, the dogs are sleeping.  We will see how the night goes, and if anything besides a barn cat shows up in the live trap in the morning.  The hum of the washing machine lulls me to sleep, with a little slight touch of ambiance of skunk wafting through the air…..

++++UPDATE:  The next day, the only thing the trap caught was last spring’s chick!  I will have to continue to check it every night and see what eventually shows up……

Last spring's chick has yet to learn about checking out the dog food in there.

Last spring’s chick has yet to learn about checking out the dog food in there.

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