September is a busy month for new skunk owners! In September, the kits born in May will be turning 4 months. There were lots of changes in the last few months as kits grow fast, and are starting to look less like a baby skunk. Like other mammals, some body parts may appear to be growing faster than others, but that should even out in the next few months. By now your little girl should weigh between 2lbs and 3.5lbs depending on whether she will be a small, average or large female. Your little boy will be between 2.5lbs and 4lbs depending on whether he will be a small, average or large male.
You should have already purchased a digital baby scale and be maintaining a weight log, weighing the skunk at least once every 2 weeks. This weight log will be beneficial for the skunk’s entire lifetime. Once the skunk reaches his or her adult weight, it will assist you in maintaining the skunk at a healthy weight. It will point to trends that will show if the skunk is gaining or losing weight, this is information your Veterinarian will find helpful. Sometimes the only symptom the skunk is ill, is a weight loss or gain that may, or may not be noticed without the weight log.
The 3rd de-worming should be completed no later than the first week of September, if you are following the schedule. If you started late, or got off schedule, now is the time to catch up. Death from prolapse due to parasites, can be prevented by following the de-worming schedule here.
September is also when 4 month old skunk kits will receive their first canine distemper shots. All vaccines are “off label” for skunks. Remember that skunks do NOT get feline vaccinations and rabies is not recommended as it will not protect them if a bite is reported. Make sure the canine distemper is for puppies and not a combination vaccine. In three years, you will need to decide if you want to run titers or vaccinate once more for canine distemper.
By now you will know if your baby is prone to seizures. At 4 months, you can expand the limited diet used for kits to include a small amount of berries, and a small amount of plant based foods. Make sure you introduce only one new food at a time to prevent digestive issues. If poop becomes stinky or there is amount or size changes, there may be too much fiber in the diet. Please remember that feeder insects make up 80% to 85% of a wild skunk’s diet. They will not have healthy bones, joints and teeth if you do not include insects in their diet.
Soon it will be time to have your little girl spayed, or your little boy neutered. Make sure you are budgeting for these important operations. Girls can be spayed when they are at least 6 months old, and have reached 4 lbs. Boys should be done at 6 months, but hormones can make them less appealing as pets, so some have this done as early as 4 months. Remember that skunks are captive wildlife and it is important to spay and neuter to ensure that they will be a good pet.