TAGS: dog ownership | grooming

What to do if your dog gets sprayed by a skunk

14 Feb, 2023


Any dog owner who loves taking their dogs to local parks, trails, or any outdoor activity knows that their pups love to explore the areas and sniff around as much as possible. When they are in off-leash areas, our pups do not hesitate to investigate every inch of the site, which can sometimes get them into a sticky situation. If a dog startles or gets too close to a skunk, it will very likely get sprayed, and the aftermath can be a pretty rough experience for both the dog and the owner. This article will go through the steps of removing the terrible skunk odor from your pup if they got a little bit too curious about a skunk and got sprayed. 




#1 - Ventilation 


Bringing your dog into your house immediately after your pup has been sprayed by a skunk is certainly not ideal. If you have a backyard or a porch at home, you will want to leave your dog outside as much as possible. While your dog may not be the happiest, it will allow the smell to start to fade a little bit. Keeping them outside will not eliminate the smell entirely. Still, it will prevent your dog from tracking the odor throughout your home.


Dog Sleeping Outside


#2 - Bathing


The most effective method to remove the skunk odor from your dog is by bathing them with a specialized skunk odor remover or a mixture of baking soda, hydrogen peroxide, and dish soap. The mix is ¼ cup of baking soda, 1-2 teaspoons of mild dishwashing detergent, and 1 quart of 3% Hydrogen Peroxide solution. Work this foaming mixture into your dog's coat and let it sit for 30 minutes. Do your best not to allow any of this mixture to go into your pup's eyes or mouth. Proceed by rinsing thoroughly with warm water. You can also follow this process by bathing your dog with regular dog shampoo.


Dog Being Bathed


#3 - Drying


Either towel dry or air dry your pup completely, and then once they are dry, see if the smell persists. There is a good chance that the smell will not disappear entirely after the first wash.

#4 - Repeat


If the smell has not entirely disappeared, you will need to repeat the bathing process with the solution you made multiple times. Skunk odors are potent and tend to linger. Once you have washed your dog 2-3 times with the solution, there is still a high chance that you will smell the skunk. At this point, you can expect the faint smell to last on your dog for about a week. Let your dog outdoors as much as possible, as the fresh air will be the key to completely eliminating the smell.


Dog Wrapped in Towel


Following these steps should have your dog smelling significantly better instantly. Then, over the course of a week, the odor of the spray should be entirely gone. Hopefully, your pup will have learned a valuable lesson (not to mess with skunks!), and this spray will be a one-time occurrence only.