Saturday, October 11, 2008
Yesterday morning, in the dark pre-dawn hours before work, Spanky got sprayed by a skunk. Pete and I noticed that familiar smell near our house, typically in the wee hours of the morning every day as we were heading out to work.
Well, yesterday Pete took Spanky and Adora outside to do their business before we left for work, and the three of them went into the backyard. I was upstairs when I suddenly noticed the smell of skunk wafting up through our bedroom window. My first thought was, "Dammit, they got sprayed." A few minutes later Pete appeared with both dogs and asked me repeatedly to call Spanky upstairs. I figured Adora got sprayed and he wanted to isolate her, so I called Spanky and he ran up and into his suitcase. I immediately noticed the horrible smell permeating every pore of my being.
Turns out Spanky got sprayed and NOT Adora, so I quickly made Spanky run back downstairs and into his cage. The house was overwhelmed in a matter of minutes with the odor, and I can't begin to tell you what it actually smells like in person. Not that normal skunk smell that you and I are used to, but an extremely strong, nauseating odor that smells like a mix of super-strong onions and fecal matter. Yum.
Since we were leaving for work and had already overslept the day before by two hours (and hence got to work very late), we had no time to delay and had to keep Spanky in his cage until we got home to deal with him. He sulked and let us know how unhappy he was with this arrangement.
I got the full story on the way to work. Pete had been outside with Spanky and Adora when the dogs suddenly bolted for the front yard, where the skunk seems to hang out. Pete ran after them, and came around to the front of the house, where he saw the skunk with its back end up in the air, ready to strike. Adora thought the skunk was playing and copied its play bow, ready to have fun. Pete called Adora to him and to her credit, she listened and got away from the skunk. Spanky, however, would not listen to Pete's commands and instead darted after the skunk and was promptly sprayed by the angry creature. Spanky apparently freaked out and was running around our neighbor's front yard, rolling his face and body around in the grass, desperate to get the smelly goop off of him. Pete said he looked like a chicken that had its head cut off, running around in a panic and a look of terror on his face (I would imagine the chicken heads also look terrified, but I didn't ask).
When we got home, we slathered Spanky with a skunk-deodorizing liquid we had picked up at Petsmart on the way. That neutralized the smell for the most part, but the directions said to wait until it was completely dry until we bathed Spanky. So we left him in his cage to dry off overnight, and this morning we're going to give him a good soaking to get that stuff off of him. I'm sure he'll really enjoy that.
I found an interesting website that explains everything you want to know about skunks, including how to remove the odor from pets, clothing, yourself, etc. Very informative, but learning how to wash skunk funk off of my dog is not the way I wanted to spend my Saturday. Hope you're all doing something more fun....
(Skunk photos courtesy of The Skunk Stripe)