May 07 2009

Spinster aunt attaches clothespin to nose

Bert, skunked

Bert, skunked

When you look up heartwarming in a dictionary, if it is a good nature-crap dictionary, it will say, “The sense of satisfaction and well-being emanating from a golden retriever who has just been skunked and has dashed forthwith into your house to rub his entire body on the side of your bed.”


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  1. The Hedonistic Pleasureseeker

    Sigh. Time to shave the dog again.

  2. Babs

    Stunning photograph! Terribly sorry for the bedroom de-skunking and dog de-skunking chores, though.

  3. Medbh

    Shaving will help, but you need a de-stinking agent as well.
    Tomato juice doesn’t work at all.
    Our dog would just lick it up as if we were bathing her in a tribute snack in reward for biting a skunk.

    4 cups white vinegar diluted in 8 cups warm water.
    Shake some baking soda on him too, for good measure.

  4. mir

    Oh Bert. Chez Twisty’s going to smell like a tire fire for weeks.

    Back when I lived on acres of the nature my dog got skunked. It’s hard to recall the chronology- it was probably before she rolled her face in a porcupine carcass (stinking quills! in her EYES!) but after she cornered a monster raccoon and it promptly dislocated her tail (it hung like a sad windless flag for a week).

    Dogs are beautiful, like happy, smelly ids. I wish THEY ran the world. Bert for SCOTUS!

  5. dr. fantastic

    Did the dictionary have a picture of my dog in there too? Featured would be his frequent ear infections which make him smell like rotting cheese (words fail me here) and propensity to snore loudly under my desk while I’m trying to work.

  6. B. Dagger Lee

    I kind of like the smell.

  7. yttik

    “4 cups white vinegar diluted in 8 cups warm water.
    Shake some baking soda on him too, for good measure”

    Guaranteed to create a foaming dog that would make Cujo envious.

  8. Lu

    B. Dagger Lee, me, too. But not in my house, though, which is a crucial point.

  9. Pinko Punko


    BertLT sandwiches, anyone?

    Oh Bert, how could you.

  10. Ron Sullivan

    Ah Bert. Always sharing the Luvvvvvv!

  11. pheenobarbidoll


    I can laugh because it’s happened to me many, MANY times.

  12. slythwolf

    Open your windows, hang out outside as much as possible until the indoor skunk-ness is eliminated. When this happened to me, I was stuck in the house for a few days for an unrelated reason, and I was sick to my stomach the whole time.

  13. Cute Bruiser

    Oh Load, my cat did that once … but he took the added measure of somehow rubbing the stink on ME so I had to shower with the stinky little furball. Tomato juice does NOT work. Actually, I didn’t find that vinegar helped much either. Nor do the skunk soaps sold at pet stores. I just had to wait out the stink — as did my co-workers, ha ha!

  14. Jeni

    Oh, how that brings back memories of being a dog groomer. The “official salon skunk shampoo” did jack squat, so we often used the following potion instead:
    -Bucket of warm water
    -powdered laundry detergent (1 scoop)
    -liquid dish soap (2 big squirts)
    -oxyclean (1/2 scoop)
    -baking soda

    Swish together, then apply to dog, carefully avoiding any mucous membranes or eyes. Let sit no more than 5 minutes (obviously pretty caustic), then rinse thoroughly.

    They still smelled somewhat skunky, but much less so than pre-chemdip.

    Part of my vet student self cringes at that combination and it’s potential toxic effects, but my more callous side says “anything to deskunk. Anything.”

  15. birkwearingblamer

    Bert!!!! He’ll never learn to leave those skunks alone, will he? LOL.

  16. Sutton

    Is Bert wearing an electric training collar??

  17. intransigentia

    On Mythbusters they used a mixture like this with considerable success:

    1 quart (or liter) of 3% Hydrogen Peroxide, H2O2. (Use fresh
    (unopened) hydrogen peroxide (H2O2). Hydrogen peroxide eventually turns into water (H2O))
    1/4 cup (50 ml.) of Baking Soda
    1 teaspoon (5 ml.) of Liquid Soap

  18. PhysioProf


  19. TallyCola

    Sorry to hijack the comments Twisty, but I was wondering if any New Zealand blamers could give me a hand?

    I have a friend from Scotland doing a postgrad in social work, and she is heading to New Zealand for a few months to do work with woman Maori survivors of domestic abuse. She is looking for contacts in/around Auckland/North Island in quote “race and/or gender equality non-profit sector”.

    Help a sister out? I can pass on any information you have, or get you in contact with her via facebook.


  20. undercover punk

    Observing aloud: Twisty Faster owns a male dog.
    Thinking aloud: This leads me to surmise that T.F. does not consider canine gender to be an especially relevant quality when selecting a pet.

  21. auntieintellectual

    I thought maybe you’d been reading that face transplant patient Connie Culp’s assailant (and husband) will be released from prison in three years. That stinks enough to make me reach for a clothes pin myself.

  22. Twisty


    Ha. The hyperbolic understatement of this remark made French onion dip squirt out of my lobe, for some reason.

    Is Bert wearing an electric training collar??

    Hell no. It is a GPS device. I would not electrocute a dog under any circumstances.

    Observing aloud: Twisty Faster owns a male dog.
    Thinking aloud: This leads me to surmise that T.F. does not consider canine gender to be an especially relevant quality when selecting a pet.

    You surmise incorrectly.

  23. SargassoSea


  24. larkspur

    This is great! I’ve been wanting some Bert news! Now he’s stinking up the joint, bless his heart. His skunking reminds me of a friend’s Jack Russell terrier who managed to find some inadequately buried abalone guts in the yard (his dad dives for abalones in season, brings them home, and cleans them on the driveway, and, of course, now buries the guts way deeper), dug ’em up, then luxuriated in the putrifying mess till he was green (only his fur: it was the humans with the green faces), and romped up to his family, delighted with himself and puzzled, but also delighted, by the amusing way in which everyone ran from him. It took three baths to get rid of the big stink.

    How’s Stanley? Skunk-free and lovin’ it, I hope.

  25. Orange

    Oh, my. Does this mean it’s time to relocate la familia Faster to a new Twisty Compound?

  26. Sutton

    Hell no. It is a GPS device. I would not electrocute a dog under any circumstances.

    Well, I wouldn’t have thought so. It did finally dawn on me (when I had no internet access with which to retract my question and apologize for impugning your–whatever, I can’t think of the word I want here) that it was a radio tracking collar.

    I apologize for even asking.

  27. larkspur

    Sutton, this is one of the limitations of the internets. In person, you can almost immediately clarify, saying something like, “OMG, of course not, that’s just the first thing that popped into my mind, but upon further review (of like two seconds’ duration), how on earth could that be a shock collar? On a Twisty dog? No way. Obviously.

    Just like, in actual corporeal existence, you can trade snarkcasm while tossing popcorn at each other, and everyone knows it’s a raucous kind of joke. But in cyberspace, oh dear, declaration of war.

    Personally, I think it was Twisty’s critter ethics that you didn’t impugn.

  28. Caitlin

    Oh, yuck. My sympathies, Twisty. Bert may need to be an outdoor dog for a week or six.

    I’ve had to endure a three hour car ride with a freshly-skunked dog before. It was foul, but on the plus side we cleared customs as soon as they smelled us coming.

    That’s a marvellous picture!

  29. Heather

    My lab killed a skunk and came in dripping skunk juice. The only formula which worked was the peroxide one intransigentia offered you. That is what the vet recommended. We had skunks living in our backyard so I got to test it out quite a few times. Oh joy.

  30. Casey

    Skunkage on a dog is sort of inevitable, but skunkage on your bed linens? Blarg. I’ll never complain about my Lab fighting with my hen over a dead mouse again.

  31. fsteele

    “Guaranteed to create a foaming dog that would make Cujo envious.”

    If it was me (with a spare bedroom), I’d leave the skunked sheets on the bed for a while, hoping he’ll rub the foam on the bed too.

  32. Felicity

    Like an actual skunk we Britains only see in cartoons? I only know the one from Bambi, do they really cause that much trouble stinking so much?

    I imagine they’re real cute until they lift their tails up ;)

  33. Lauren O

    I imagine they’re real cute until they lift their tails up

    They are extremely adorable, and simultaneously to be avoided at all costs.

  34. Shopstewardess

    Bert got skunked, and you can still take pictures like that one? I’m in awe. I hope it was a long lens.

  35. estraven

    OT (sorry) NYT title on woman murdered: ‘lives of student and stalker collide’. Collide? Is this at all appropriate for premeditated murder?

  36. Spiders

    Tally, I should be able to chase up a few contacts for you. I’ll message you at SRH when I do.

  37. Antoinette Niebieszczanski

    Even the de-skunked ones are stinky. Cut off your nose, you’d still smell it through your ears. Skunks got the ultimate defensive weapon.

  38. slythwolf

    If you can’t run, stink!

  39. TallyCola

    Thanks spiders! I’ll keep an eye out.

  40. Megan

    Nothing really deskunks a dog.
    My golden got hit in the face in September ’08. When Gus gets wet, you can still smell it on him — 8 damn months later.
    I’m sorry.

  41. larkspur

    …I’ll never complain about my Lab fighting with my hen over a dead mouse again.

    Casey, this is highlarious, and since apparently (and tragically) you don’t have video, I would love to see either a dramatic re-enactment, or a cartoon.

    Uh. Not so highlarious for the mouse, of course.

    Skunks: I think it is around January in my part of the world when skunks feel especially inclined to procreate, which makes them stupid, bless their hearts, and they make ill-advised dashes across roadways, and then, yes, there is often a Final Stink cloud wafting over the land.

  42. Greenconsciousness

    Speaking of clothespin on noses:


    from the Aayan Hirsi article Phyllis Chesler mentions on her blog Cheslers Chronicles:

    …Women’s shelters have adapted their curriculum (out of a twisted allegiance to the left’s concept of cultural relativism instead of to women)- instead of teaching the women who come to them how to become self-reliant, the shelters facilitate prayer rooms and employ mediators from the Islamic community.

    All this mediation serves only one purpose – that is, to return the woman to the circumstances of abuse she left.

    Here is a system, which was a tool to emancipate, that has been completely transformed to serve the Muslim purpose of obedience. If the wife obeys, then the husband no longer needs to beat her. The matter is settled. “

  43. norbizness

    I thought you were relating something from Skunk’d, that terrible nature program on the MTV Discovery Channel hosted by Ashton Kutcher.

  44. delagar

    Here in semi-rural Arkansas, where our house is maybe a quarter mile from Interstate 540, skunks try crossing the highway once or twice a week, especially in spring and fall, with results you might predict.

    Or maybe spring and fall is only when I notice it, since that is when the windows are open, and the scent wafts into our bedroom, early morning hours.

    IBTP, which drives those big monster Hummers that can’t, I guess, dodge skunks.

  45. nora

    UP: “Observing aloud: Twisty Faster owns a male dog. Thinking aloud: This leads me to surmise that T.F. does not consider canine gender to be an especially relevant quality when selecting a pet.”

    TF: “You surmise incorrectly.”

    They don’t call us bitches for nothing. Speaking here not from a feminist or political perspective, but rather as one who has adopted a couple of difficult/aggressive female dogs over the years (and loves them madly, but would not have them in a household with, say, toddlers — or especially other dogs).

  46. Marla the invisible

    Yes, Felicity, those are the perps. The smell is a cross between boiled coffee, green peppers, and mildew. They stink all the time, but it becomes overpowering when they either spray something or get run over. Some people are nauseated by the smell, others kind of like it. My labs paid no attention whatsoever.

    On a serious note, skunks can be carriers of rabies, so make sure those four-footeds are all up-to-date.

  47. Ciccina

    @ Tally,

    Suggest to your friend that she contact the New Zealand affiliate of International Planned Parenthood Federation. Info about them is here:

    They run a website that discusses abuse among other things:

    Good luck!

  48. marcella

    So sorry to hear about the skunkification of poor Bert.

    Entirely in agreement with Shopstewardess et al: amazing phototudinal pulchritude … and fortitude.

    Coincidentally, last week’s Video of the Week on Science Friday concerned the skunk/dog nexus, precisely: http://www.sciencefriday.com/videos/watch/10214/.

  49. virago

    My dog always got sprayed by skunks repeatedly, and he never learned. My mom just banished him to the garage until the odor went away because she got sick of tomato juicing him (and your right, it didn’t work-said dog spent the night in the garage anyway). I accidently hit a skunk with an ex-boyfriend’s new car, and the smell didn’t go away for a long time. Oh, well, he was an asshole anyway LOL. I was sorry about the skunk though.

  50. minervaK

    Such is the fee we pay for the undiluted love of a good hound.

  51. arlene

    We do not have skunks here in Ireland, but my basset Opus did once- to his delight- find a festering fox corpse in which to roll about. Driving back to the house- a good forty minute trip- was quite the experience. And it took two washes with Clinic shampoo to dampen the stench from his coat, the car however reeked for weeks.

  52. virago

    “Such is the fee we pay for the undiluted love of a good hound”

    And he was a good hound. The neighborhood bully (a nasty teenage boy 3 years older than me) was pushing me around, and the dog bit him right in the ass. Needless, to say, the kid never came near me again (at least when the dog wasn’t around). Unfortunately, for this kid, the dog was almost ALWAYS around. We lived next door, and he would start growling just when he saw the kid riding his bike on the road. Our dog was a pretty big dog on top of it. Most people were afraid of him, but they were fine as long as they didn’t threaten a family member.

  53. TallyCola

    Thanks Ciccina!

  54. Nolabelfits

    I am seriously enjoying the heartwarming nature crap blog.

  55. Comrade PhysioProf

    Ha. The hyperbolic understatement of this remark made French onion dip squirt out of my lobe, for some reason.

    Just wait for the hypobolic overstatement!

  56. Amananta

    I saw a wild skunk once, waddling his cutesy little way across my lawn. I stood respectfully to one side and didn’t make any sudden moves.
    Out here I smell skunk regularly. Not too terribly long ago I heard a dog barking, then yelping, and shortly thereafter the scent of skunk drifted in through the window. I can fill in the details.

  57. clau

    I’d like to go ahead and blame the patriarchy for my little shepherd’s current tire-fire odor contrails, and simultaneously give big ups to the provider of the baking soda solution formula, which is enfoamening the dog as I type.

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