A transplanted Southern Californian living in North Dakota Idaho, with some insights on life with deaf dogs, a gluten free spouse, and the occasional mischievous garden gnome. Thank you for visiting and I hope you enjoy.

Friday, June 13, 2008

Skunkles the Dog

Just when we had fallen into a nice rhythm of calling Shaak Ti "Lumpy" (she had a weird growth on her neck and is on antibiotics to get rid of it) she had to go and undergo another traumatic event that has caused her to get a new nickname. Now when I say traumatic, I don't mean traumatic for her since every experience so far, even the ones that leave her exhausted and bloody are fun. Even a trip to the vet is fun. When taken to the vet last week to have the lump examined she was so nervous and scared that she was playing and wrestling with another doggy patient in the waiting room. So when I say there was a traumatic event in the household, I usually mean one that caused me and the Gluten Free Girlfriend to jump out of bed at some Gawdawful hour and lose significant amounts of sleep. Yes, sleep loss is traumatic indeed.

Around 4:45 in the morning she gets up and charges, charges out of the bedroom, out the doggie door and goes crashing through some bushes in the yard, barking at full volume. I'm only slightly conscious of the barking as I'm still in the throes of warm sleepy time. It's only when I hear her come back in the doggie door and begin rolling/clunking around on the living room carpet that I become fully awake. And upon hearing the commotion, my first conscious thought is "crap!!!". Now after a late night mouse chasing episode of a few weeks ago, I make the assumption that she's actually somehow managed to catch a mouse, and is now in the living room, playing with the mouse, throwing it back and forth and generally spraying mouse parts all over the living room. In retrospect, that would have been a pretty good alternative.

I spring out of bed and into action, running to the living room hoping to get there before the Gluten Free Girlfriend awakens and finds her precious pooch mangling a mouse carcass in the house. As I get to the hallway and turn into the living room, Shaak Ti is bounding happily towards me, and that's when the smell hits me. Fully hits me. Nutty, a bit garlicy, overwhelming, in your face, in your nostrils skunky goodness. I grab Shaak Ti (now I've got skunky goodness all over me) who thinks this is some sort of cool new game, haul her into the bathroom, and put her in the bath tub. By now Gluten Free Girlfriend is also awake and realizes the situation, though she wasn't fully awake enough to curse about it. Strangely she's surprisingly coherent and effective during these early morning dramas.

The Gluten Free Girlfriend starts bathing Shaak Ti, I grab some tomato soup from the kitchen and bring it to her so she can start bathing her in tomoatoey goodness and hop on the computer to research skunk smell removal. After a bit of looking I find the following formula
- 1 quart hydrogen peroxide
- 1/4 cup baking soda
- 1 tablespoon of dish soap
which ended up working very well. You just have to make sure not to get it in the dogs eyes, which was difficult considering she got sprayed right on the head. I scaled down the formula a bit as this would have made a lot of stuff, and brought it in to the bathroom to help in the bathing process.

As Gluten Free Girlfriend repeatedly bathed Shaak Ti, I set to fixing the house, lighting every scented candle we had, setting out bowls of baking soda, opening all the windows, washing the rugs she had rolled on, and putting down carpet cleaner powder. After an hour or so, the house smells terrible (really really terrible), Shaak Ti has had multiple consecutive baths, and it's almost 6:00, time for us to get up anyways. Except for the fact that she's had to be bathed for the last hour, Shaak Ti is almost completely oblivious, and would probably chase that same skunk this minute if she had the opportunity.

My internet research also turned up the following statement from a veterinary website: "In regard to skunk and porcupine encounters, there are two types of dogs. Those who learn the first time, and those who never learn". Sigh. Guess which type of dog I have?

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