Dog Smells Like Skunk But Not Sprayed!

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By Matthew Jacobson.

Before we dive in, you need to understand some important facts about your dog. The first fact is that a dogs sense of smell is unbelievable. In fact, their sense of smell is how they explore the world around them. The other fact to remember is that what stinks for you, does not necessarily stink to a dog. If dogs stayed away from things that smell, then they would run like crazy every time a human approached them. Humans give off a natural unpleasant body odor and even though we might be able to mask it from other humans with perfume or deodorant, you cannot mask this smell from your dog. So if your dog can stand your body odor, then surely you can show some compassion when your furry friend enters the room smelling like a skunk.

Why a Dog Might Smells Like a Skunk.

There are a few reasons why your dog can smell like a skunk even if he has not been sprayed by one. Dogs rely on their noses to discover the world around them. If a skunk happens to pass by your area, your dog will pick up on its scent. A skunks scent can form  a strong bond with a dog’s fur coat.  If a dog comes upon an area that was once inhabited by a skunk and rolls around in the dirt, then the particles of the skunk scent will bond with the dog’s fur. They don’t have to roll in the dirt either. Just being in the area of the scent can allow the particles to bond to their coat.

A Dog Does Not Have To Be Sprayed To Smell Like A Skunk!

There are other reasons that might explain why your dog stinks. Skunks are not the only animal that spray a pungent odor. There are many animals out there that spray a smelly liquid for self-defense. Some of these animals include opossums, stink bugs, millipedes and even some caterpillars just to name a few. So even if your dog did not tangle with a skunk, are you sure that it did not mess around with another animal?

There are even animals that do not spray a smelly liquid, but yet can smell like a skunk. There are badgers, wolverines, marmot/rock chucks,  and other varmints as well. If you live in an area where these creatures roam freely, then there is a chance that your dog picked up its unpleasant smell from them. Does your dog, go through trash cans, hang around rock piles, or dig in the dirt? If the answer is yes, then there is a chance that they might have picked up their smell from these activities.

Why Does My Dog’s Breath Smell Like A Skunk?

The first question you need to ask, is what is your dog eating? As I mentioned before, skunks are not the only creatures that stink. Are you sure that your dog did not get a hold of a stink bug or a millipede? If your dog puts one of these bugs in its mouth, then that  might explain the horrible dog breath.

Do you keep up on your dog’s dental hygiene? A dog’s mouth might be cleaner than a humans mouth, but they are still full of bacteria. If your dog’s mouth is left untreated, then bacteria will build up inside their mouth, lungs, and stomach. As the bacteria build up, their breath will begin to reflect it. Meaning that their breath will smell bad. This is also known as halitosis. Poor dental hygiene can also lead to plaque build up and gum disease in your dog. If your dog has a gum infection, this might be the cause of their bad breath.

Another factor to consider is that your dog might be licking the skunk scent. Let’s face the facts here, we all love our dogs, but sometimes they can be quite disgusting little creatures. They will lick almost anything they come across. If by chance they did get skunk scent on them, then chances are they will use their tongue to try and get the smell off. The smell does not necessarily have to be on them, it can be on the grass, trees, flowers, shrubs, or anything else it wants to be on. The fact is that if your dog uses his nose to track down the scent, he will probably seal his successful tracking with licking whatever he tracked down.

Also remember that dogs will eat almost anything they come across regardless of the smell. So make sure that last month’s leftovers,are  not the source of your dog’s bad breath problem. Also, I just want to point this out, that dogs will also eat flowers as well. Eating flowers could lead to bad breath in dogs.

Dog Digestion Issues Might Be Causing Skunk Breath.

If none of the reasons listed above explain why your dog smells like a skunk, then let’s move on to digestive issues. You might want to consider changing your dogs food. The type of dog food you use can cause dogs to have bad breath. Just think how bad your breath would smell if all you ate was your dog’s dog food. You would not be able to hold a ten foot conversation with anybody.

If it is not the dog food then there could be something more serious going on inside your dog. If you are really concerned, then we would advise you to contact your local veterinarian. You can also try natural herbal supplements for your dog. You can try a variety of herbal supplements like digestive support, kidney support, or liver support.

Your Dog Has Been Sprayed By A Skunk!

As you can see there are many reasons why your dog might smell like a skunk. Before we conclude, we have to ask the obvious question. Are you sure that your dog was not sprayed by a skunk? If your dog has a strong skunk odor about him, then chances are that he was sprayed by a skunk. Remember though, your dog puts up with your body order so hopefully to return the favor, you can put up with his unpleasant aroma as well.

8 thoughts on “Dog Smells Like Skunk But Not Sprayed!

  1. Kim says:

    Thanks for the input, looked at several sites for an answer and yours was the best.

  2. J Moller says:

    We live in The NC mountains. My dog was sprayed by something but it doesn’t smell like a skunk. I don’t know what the smell is. He went out for a few minutes and came back with this bad smell. Do you know what it could be. Again we live out in the NC mountains.

    1. cschuknecht says:

      Perhaps your dog rolled in something dead? Is that possible?

  3. Ronald says:

    My dog only smells skunky when I give her a bath 2 days later the smell is gone she goes out on a leash never roams

    1. Matthew Jacobson says:

      Is your dog anxious when it gets a bath? Fear or excitement can cause a dog to give off it’s own odor. This odor could be coming from your dogs apocrine sweat glands. These glands release pheromones in dogs, which can be triggered during times of stress or anxiety.

  4. Randy Weaver says:

    It seems like my dog smells like whatever it was near. LIke the skunk example, it’s like the smell gets caught in his fur. So annoying.

  5. Amelie Yates says:

    I can attest! We had a run in with a skunk at 11:30 pm one-night last week. Found the same recipe online, applied it, and Bear was all clean and fresh smelling before going to bed…worked like a charm.

  6. karen moore says:

    my four dogs went out the dog door in the middle,of the night they were only out for seconds they came back gagging with the worse smell. The smell was not skunk, it was more of a chemical smell. I washe d them in the tub and the smell washed right off, but parts of the house not have the same smell. We have a mother fox with 5 pups living nearby. Could this be fox smell?

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