Thursday, February 28, 2008

Dixie and the Skunk

Yesterday morning, a little after 6 a.m., Dixie and I went out for her morning walk. As usual during that time of day, I let her off leash. We were sauntering along, not more than five minutes into it, me still half asleep and her sniffing something known only to her every two feet or so. All of a sudden she perked up, looked up and took off across the street.

At first I thought she was going after a cat. Then I saw it wasn't a cat at all. Dixie came to a stop about 4 feet away from the lifted tail and got a squirt of skunk juice right in the face. I came up after her, saying all too late, "Dixie, no!" And then there I was, standing in the midst of the odorous spray that was wafting over me. Dixie was sneezing as I pulled her away and back across the street.

We watched the skunk nonchalantly meander across the street, climb up over a short retaining wall and disappear into bushes ringing a neighboring house. Like two rubes, we stood there gawking - and stinking.

When I got back home I left Dixie out on the front porch, along with my coat and gloves. My first thought was that I could bury all three items for about a month to get rid of the smell but somehow knew that wouldn't solve my problem. So, instead, I got on-line.

I googled "eliminating skunk odor" and found a website of a veterinarian in Dallas, TX. On the website they had a remedy that had been developed to treat a cat that had been sprayed by a skunk. The remedy was: one quart of hydrogen peroxide, 1/4 cup of baking soda and a teaspoon of liquid soap mixed together. You then wash the pet in the solution. I only had a pint of hydrogen peroxide; however, I was desperate, it was 6:30 a.m. and I had to go to work. I knew if I didn't do something right then and there my house, my dog and me would be quarantined forever.

Getting out a mixing bowl, I dumped the peroxide in, shook out a quantity of baking soda, poured in some dishwashing soap and called it even. It was not a time for exact measurements.

I put Dixie in the bathtub, being thankful for having brushed her out really well the day before, and hosed her down. Boy, did she stink! Slowly and methodically I washed her with the solution, careful not to get it in her eyes, eventually dumping the rest of it all over her and rubbing it in with vigah (that's how they say vigor up here in the Bahstan areah).

After rinsing her off I smelled her and found that she only had the faintest of eau de phoofey. It worked!!

After work I went to the store, got two quart bottles of hydrogen peroxide (one as a reserve; you never know) and washed my coat, gloves and clothes in the solution. All of the smell came out of them, as well! Well, almost. The palm of one glove, the left one given that I'm left-handed, still smells. But, hey, I'm happy as a pig wait, wrong analogy.

I'm happy that I found a solution to a problem that I thought would be un-resolvable. And, knowing that it will probably happen again, I'm glad I have a remedy on hand that works.


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