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Pet Happenings August 2011

My Dog Got Skunked... and other Pest Problems
by Jessica Turquette

We get asked the same two questions consistently during the summer months at the Moab BARKery. The first question is, what do you do when your dog has been skunked at 2 am and the store is closed? The second question is, are there natural products that control fleas, ticks and mosquitoes? We thought we would share the best answers we have found to help you deal with the pest that your dog tries to mess withPhoto of a skunk as well as the ones that try to mess with them.

If you’ve ever had a dog that decided to pick a fight with a skunk you know that the outcome can be rather unpleasant for your dog, your home, you and really anything that they touch. So what do you do when your dog has been skunked at 2 am and the store is closed? Here is a simple recipe of common household items you can mix together to get rid of Fido’s new fragrance (hint: it works on cats too!)

Skunk Rinse Recipe
Mix this formula fresh (it can’t be stored)

  • 1 quart hydrogen peroxide (the 3% hydrogen peroxide variety)

  • ¼ cup baking soda

  • 2 teaspoons Dawn dishwashing liquid
*If you have a large breed dog, you may need to double, triple or even quadruple the mixture. Wear gloves to keep the skunk smell off you.
Don’t wet down your pet. Apply the mixture to your pet’s dry coat from the collar back toward the tail. Don’t pour it near the eyes because the hydrogen peroxide solution can burn them. Use a sponge to apply the solution to your pet’s chin, cheeks, forehead and ears, being very careful not to go near the eyes.

Graphic of man giving dog a bath while skunk watchesLather the mixture into your pet’s coat and skin. Rub the solution around for about five minutes or until the skunk smell starts to dissipate.
When you rinse the head area, tilt your pet’s chin upward so the solution does not run down into the eyes; instead allow the water to run back off his neck. Do a complete rinse once the smell starts to decrease, then repeat the entire process again if necessary. You may need to repeat the lather and rinse process up to three times if they took a direct hit. Make sure to completely rinse the solution off your pet. Your final rinse should be very thorough to ensure there is no irritation.

If you don’t want all the hassle of mixing up a batch for yourself the Moab BARKery carries Skunk off (premixed and ready to use) for convenience. It pays to keep it on hand for dogs and cats that just want to “play” with their stinky skunk friends.

Many people don’t want to risk endangering the environment, their pet or themselves by using chemical means for pest control. Some people have sensitivities to certain chemicals; others just don’t want to do it so they seek out natural preventions and remedies. So, are there natural products that control fleas, ticks and mosquitoes? There are many products on the market for pest control on your pets, some are natural and some are chemical based.

Chemical based products that are “spot” treatments are actually considered to be carcinogenic by the EPA, and there are many reported cases of serious side effects and even death so make sure to follow the instructions (read them twice!) and use the smallest dose possible to ensure your pet suffers little to no side effects. If you have a little dog or a dog that is unlikely to be exposed to these pests consider natural treatments only. The smaller the animal the more likely you are to overdose them! We subscribe to a great newsletter (and recommend you do too) written by Dr. Becker at Mercola Pet. We also frequently share her articles on our Moab BARKery Facebook page so you can find the subscription link there too. Here is some invaluable information about pest control she wrote about recently:

Protect by Pet Naturals of VermontTo truly keep your dog or cat safe from fleas, ticks, mosquitoes and other annoying critters, a repellent – we recommend Protect by Pet Naturals of Vermont – is only one part of a total program of protection. There are several other things we recommend you adopt as part of successful pest control …

Feed your pet a balanced, species-appropriate diet — Parasites are drawn to the weakest hosts they can find. Feeding high quality food to dogs and cats improves their health and strengthens their immune system.
Give frequent baths — Bathing your pet with a natural, non-toxic pet shampoo will not only help keep pests away, it will also make it convenient for you to check your pet from head to tail.

Grooming and brushing — regular brushing or combing (with a flea comb if fleas are the problem) will help you find pests on your pet’s fur and skin. Plus, it makes their coat look fantastic and it can provide a great bonding experience.
· Tidy up your indoor environment — there are many ways pests can find their way into your home. They fly in, crawl in or ride in on pets and people. Keeping your floors, drapes and furniture clean and vacuumed will help prevent fleas and ticks from anchoring themselves in cracks and crevices. Keep your pet’s bedding as clean as possible.Skunk trying to be friendly with dog

Examine your outdoor environment — since tick, flea, and mosquito infestations start outdoors, take the time to inspect the area around your house and take action where you can. For example, ticks and fleas thrive in bushes and undergrowth. Keep your grass cut and leaves raked to limit the places around your home where pests can hide and breed. Mosquitoes prefer standing water so by eliminating it, keeping your rain gutters clean and keeping your pets indoors during the early morning and early evening hours you will prevent any contact with them.

Visit your vet regularly — your holistic vet can be a great partner in keeping your dog or cat in optimum health, which will reduce the likelihood your pet will be an attractive host for pests.


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Moab Valley Humane Society August 2011 Events

August 2011 Humane Society Event Dates

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