If you've visited Sacramento recently only to take a deep whiff and wonder, "Damn, they've got some skunk weed up here," you would be half right. See, hordes of horny skunks have come out of rural areas and into the city to look for mate—and their mating ritual isn't pretty. When females find their mate, make love, and end up with buns in the oven, the pregnant ladies "ward off other suitors with a foul-smelling spray." Hence the stinky stench blanketing the state capital.

"They are everywhere," animal trapper Stephen Andert explained to FOX40, saying that several hundred skunks "more than normal [are] inside of city limits looking to hook up." The skunk occupation will grow as the months pass, culminating in May "when the offspring are born."

What can Sacramentonians do to stave off unwanted critters and their horrific-smelling spray? "Keep your dog and cat food indoors and keep your lawn cut low, also, leave clearance under your bushes," Andert suggests.

If you come across an amorous skunk in your yard, call Andert at Creature Catchers Wildlife Management at 530-885-7378. Skunks are actually very mild-mannered, but spook and spray easily if startled. But what should you do it your dog or cat gets pelted with an awful-smelling squirt? About.com has some tips:

1. As soon as you realize your dog has been sprayed by a skunk, don some rubber or latex gloves and old clothes and look her over for bites or scratches. Also check her eyes for redness or discharge. If any injuries are found, you should contact your veterinarian before proceeding.

2. Time is of the essence here - the longer you wait to begin the process, the harder it will be to remove the stench. Get set up for bathing your dog outdoors or in an easy to clean area of your home (laundry room, bathroom, etc). If indoors, open a window to save your nose!

3. Apply a small strip of eye lubricant (such as Puralube) or 1-2 drops of mineral oil to your dog's eyes. This will help protect the eyes in case any of the solution splashes or drips in.

4. In the plastic container, combine 1 quart hydrogen peroxide, 1/4 cup baking soda and 1 to 2 teaspoons of liquid soap. Add lukewarm water if needed (for larger dogs). Mix ingredients well. The solution will fizz, as a chemical reaction is occurring. Use immediately - do not store.

5. Do not soak your dog with water prior to bathing. Promptly begin cleansing the affected areas thoroughly, massaging the solution deep into your dog's coat. You may wish to use a sponge or washcloth. Avoid getting the solution in the eyes, ears or mouth.
Allow the solution to remain on your dog for at least five minutes (longer if strong odor persists).

6. Rinse your dog well with lukewarm water. Repeat steps 3-5 as necessary until odor is gone.

7. Dry your dog well and give her a treat!

Fore more information on de-skunking your pet, go here.