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News & Views December 2015 Issue

A Salad Dressing Approach to Cleansing your dog

Fruitless efforts to de-skunk the dog(s)

Coincidence, or wry cosmic humor? Only the two black and white dogs I’ve ever had in my life ended up sprayed by skunks.

Ellie’s first skunking occurred during an elegant dinner party we were throwing for a friend’s birthday. We took her out for a quick romp in the middle of the festivities and bam, she got it right between the eyes…and all over her muzzle and flank. Even the lobster thermidor we served couldn’t keep our guests from departing. It was quite a sight — we bathing Ellie in the tub while people politely but quickly began taking their leave.

But much more than quite a sight, it was quite a stench!

We did what so many Internet sources say to do, washing her in tomato juice. When that didn’t work, we tried vinegar. Ellie soon ended up smelling to some degree like an interesting Italian salad dressing. But much more than that, she continued to smell like, well, like skunk — for weeks.

Until it happened again. Then she smelled intensely like skunk, for the better part of two months. Fun.

Franklin is already seven years old, but he only recently experienced his own first skunking. We knew it would happen eventually. It was never a matter of “if” but, rather, “when.” Anxious, impulsive goofball that he is, he always thinks he has to “handle” everything, and it was just a matter of time before he met his black and white match. And like Ellie, he then met it again only a few weeks later.

This time we dispensed with the kitchen ingredients and just bathed him in dog shampoo. It didn’t do much good. No, that’s not true. It didn’t really do any good.

But we didn’t have to suffer with the pungent odor going up our nostrils and down our throats like a burn. It turns out there is a tried-and-true potion for neutralizing skunk odor on dogs. It’s not necessarily perfect. The skunk scent can linger to some degree. But it works much better than ingredients you’d toss lettuce in. See page 4 for details.

I should note that despite his Dennis the Menace ways, Franklin will not be punished for his recent attempts to tell the skunk a thing or two. On the contrary, he will soon be celebrating a wonderful holiday, with everyone around and presents under the tree for both him and our other dog, Rosie, so they know they are loved as much as everyone else in the family.

What presents? No final decision yet, but there are some pretty good choices out there to provide them with novel fun. Check out the article that begins on page 8.

Happy tails to you,
Lawrence Lindner
Executive Editor

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