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How To Remove Skunk Odor From A Dog

How To Remove Skunk Odor From A Dog | Creative Cain Cabin Yep, it happened all of a sudden I caught a whiff of that terrible skunk odor and panicked. The darn dog had tangled with a skunk on our front porch, and with logs being porous the putrid smell came drifting in. It was 10 at night and I was looking forward to a good nights sleep…..NOT…..that didn’t happen we were up until 2 a.m. washing a stinky dog. And when I say we I mean hubby did the dreaded task and I stood by for moral support, I even went to the store at midnight for more supplies. I was quite a sight in my pj’s and I’m sure I was stinking just like the dog and then my suspicions were confirmed. The cashier said, “I smell a skunk”, I had to raise my hand and say, “That would be me, my dog was just sprayed”. How horrifying, I wanted to crawl under a rock. 

It was dark outside and about 40 degrees so we had to bring the dog inside to give her a bath. Just the short distance from the back door to the tub stunk the whole house up. We opened up every window and door, turned the ceiling fans on high and slept in a freezing cold house all night to air out the odor. We also couldn’t let the dog back outside so we were stuck with her in the house too.

I quickly googled what to use and here is the recipe that worked for us…. Our dog is a Shepherd and Shepherds have an undercoat making them about impossible to bath and get rid of all the odor. After several washings she is tolerable but not complete stink free. 

Skunk Odor Removal Recipe
Serves 1
How to Remove Skunk Odor From a Dog
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Prep Time
1 min
Prep Time
1 min
  1. 1 Quart Hydrogen Peroxide
  2. 1/4 Cup Baking Soda
  3. Squirt of Dawn Dish Detergent
  4. 1 Quart Warm Water
  2. Apply the mixture above with a sponge and work it into the affected area. Leave on the animal for 10-15 minutes. Rinse and repeat until odor is gone.
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From experience we have learned the faster you start the process the better results you will have. We started bathing the dog within minutes of her getting sprayed. Also if you can do this outside it will avoid your house smelling. I also recommend wearing rubber gloves if you have them, if not get right to the task. The excitement never ends around our place. Now we are on a mission to find that skunk. 




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  1. This happened to us fairly frequently when we lived in San Diego. The dogs would get skunked and we would have to wash tem. We also had a family of skunks living under the house so they would sometimes let go with their special ‘perfume’ and it would stay in the house for days. On the doorknobs, on our clothes….

    We are experts in Being Skunked!


    1. Claudia, it is such a horrible smell for sure. I was embarrassed to anywhere for days in fear that I smelled. LOL

  2. Oh my gosh Dawn she is a beauty!! Love that photo! Poor baby and poor you!! Our friends had this happen to their Lab last year and they used similar ingredients.

    1. Martian, I think it’s what works best but nothing totally takes the smell away.

  3. Oh my goodness. I have heard of this happening but it’s never happened to Kelly. Two of my co-workers at my old job had it happen though and what a nightmare. It is definitely a smell like no other! Hope the pup is OK now…

    1. Ann, Ya just what I need one more thing added to my list. LOL Not a fun night for sure.

      1. Our Brittany Spaniel was sprayed in the face & was dripping yellow!
        My husband applied A generous amount of Orange hand cleaner to his coat (not sure if that’s the proper name) & rubbed it in.
        That cut the oil.
        He said Go Jo would also work.

  4. I’ve always heard that tomato juice works on skunked animals, but never had to use it, so just wondering if anyone else out there had tried it? I can only imagine that horrible odor for days!! At least you can say ‘been there, done that’.

    1. I had an aunt that used it on a great dane once. She said it seemed to work, but I have also read that using it is an old wives tale and doesn’t work at all, so who knows. All I know is I wanted the smell gone immediately. LOL

  5. Oh, my goodness!! This is good to know. We have two hound dogs and live in a semi-rural community. So far we have not had to de-skunk our dogs. I will keep this recipe handy.

    1. Carrie, I even went out and purchase all the supplies to have on hand in case it happens again. It wasn’t fun driving to the store at midnight to get more.

  6. crafty.grandma says:

    What a beautiful dog!!!! Poor thing! Our dog got skunked when we lived in the city – totally unexpected – it was terrible!!! I think we used tomato juice and it worked, well sort of…..when we moved to the country that what my greatest fear. Sadly we lost our poor lab/boxer in April. However, we get whiffs of eau de skunk every once in awhile….I find the cow smell is just as bad especially when the wind blows our way but the worse smell is the one from the slaughterhouse which is a good 5 kim from here. Oddly enough it is right near a beautiful golf course which my husband found out the first year we moved here!! Ugh!
    Hope your dog is doing better and I’ll keep the recipe handy in case any of the neighbor’s dogs get skunked. Leave on 10-15 minutes – good luck with that!!!

    1. OMG I bet the slaughterhouse is horrible. My hubby thinks chickens are the worst smelling thing, but to me there’s something about pig urine that turns my stomach. I grew up with cows and never noticed a smell but we had lots of property so no smelly animals were close to the house.

      1. crafty.grandma says:

        lol! that’s the worse part – we live about 2km from the closest farm that has cows! when we lived in the city we complained about the smell from the refineries which were some 10 km away but because of the wind we would get wiff of it. We’ve got used to it pretty much or we just stay indoors!! LOL!!! so much for the fresh country air but it still beats the smell of car exhaust, fire/police sirens, airplanes and loud buses!! sure don’t miss that!

        1. Yes, I hate city smells. We spent a winter in LA California and the smog and exhaust from cars was horrible. I would rather have farm smells for sure.

  7. She is beautiful Dawn, so far we haven’t had Buster stinking yet and it’s a wonder because we live near the woods!

    1. Rondell, we always have a dog get sprayed in their lifetime. So this is the second occurrence for us 🙁

  8. Dawn, when I read the title of this post I said out loud, “Oh, NOOOOOOOO!” I feel your pain! Thanks so much for this de-skunk remedy! I’m so happy to have this on hand!!!!
    Hope your beautiful dog and your and your family and home are all skunk free!

    1. Yvonne, the dog got wet this weekend and it seemed to reactive the smell. Yuck!!

  9. Beautiful Dog. We had a Shepard when I was a kid..I loved her so much. What a great remedy Dawn. Hopefully, we won’t need it, but if we do, I have it:)

  10. Oh no!! When we were kids and living on a farm, we often had to deal with skunks and smelly dogs. Sorry you had to deal with it so late at night!


    1. Pam, I guess no time is a good time. What a horrible smell 🙁

  11. Cheryl Major says:

    What a beautiful dog you have Dawn. Skunk has to be one of the worse smells. Most smells on the farm are mild compared to a skunk. Thanks for the recipe. I hope I will never need it, but I have it if I do.

    1. Cheryl, It is a horrible smell and my dog got wet in the rain this weekend and it seemed to reactive the smell 🙁

  12. This recipe also helps if your dog has rolled in coyote poop, which is an odor nearly as bad as skunk and one that lingers even after bathing. Coyotes use their excrement to protect the area where their pups are and to warn others away. For some reason it seems to attract dogs, even those who don’t normally roll in bad smelling stuff. (speaking from experience) And yes, getting wet seems to bring it back.
    You have a beautiful dog. I’m sure she thought she was protecting you from that terrible wild animal.

  13. That used to happen to my big dogs all the time. My big girls are gone now, but I used to buy several bottles of Nature’s Miracle in the biggest sizes I could get and keep it on hand. It’s available in pet stores and feed stores…..and it does work miracles on skunk-sprayed dogs. As a side note: I worked with a woman whose dogs got skunked and then jumped in bed with her! Despite giving her dogs and herself good scrubbings, no one could walk into her office for two days without getting a whiff. LOL

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