Everyone has a “secret way” of removing the terrible smell of skunk. But most of those simple ideas really don’t work. Beer, tomato juice, even douches have all been proven not to be effective. But if we apply science to the problem we can come up with a simple recipe that really works.
Skunks spray an oily substance that contains thiols. Thiols are what give the skunk spray it’s terrible smell. They aren’t water-soluble, but if you mix hydrogen peroxide and baking soda together it turns them into a water-soluble combo that will wash out of your dog’s fur.
Paul Krebaum published his solution in Chemical & Engineering News in 1993, and it was republished in Popular Science in 2007.* I’ve tweaked his recipe so that it works great on any kind of pet hair or fur.
Secret Skunk De-skunker
1 large bottle of hydrogen peroxide
1/4 cup baking soda
1 teaspoon castile soap
1 teaspoon rubbing alcohol or vodka
1 tablespoon hair conditioner
Mix together and bathe Fluffy in the mixture. Rinse and repeat. If your pet still has a slight smell of skunk, just put a spray nozzle in a bottle of hydrogen peroxide mixed with 1 tablespoon of baking soda and spray him occasionally.
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