Mary Kaye Ashley mka at
Wed Jul 27 20:46:34 PDT 2005

Those of us who are volunteers in the various skunk groups understand how much you love your skunks.  We also understand that at some point in time there may be a change in your life circumstances beyond your control which dictates that you can no longer keep your skunks, regardless of how much you love them.  Perhaps you have taken ill, are moving to a place where the skunks aren't welcome, have had a financial reversal, etc.  Please know that you're not alone and that we do understand that things like this happen in life!  Over the past couple decades we've seen many legitimate and painful situations where this has happened to the most caring and loving of pet owners.  We judge no one and there is NO SHAME in coming to us for help if you need to surrender your skunks to one of our organizations.

Today I rescued six beautiful, pet quality skunks from an Animal Services facility who were literally hours away from being euthanized because that is the policy of this particular facility.  Some government-operated facilities will not accept skunks, and others will but don't have a comfort level adopting them back out to the general public.  If they aren't able to call a properly licensed individual with experience in the respective species of exotic or farm animal, their policy is to euthanize regardless of whether or not the skunk or other animal is pet quality.  Ten years ago my name was on file with this facility, but something apparently got lost in the shuffle due to changes in managment over the years.  Fortunately there was an employee who cared enough to buck the system because she hated to see good, innocent skunks put to death whose only fault in this life was that their family was moving.  Thus began a series of phone calls in which I believe that God/Universe intervened and led someone to finding me and dialing my number.  

If you ever find yourself caught up in a similar situation, PLEASE KNOW THAT WE'RE HERE TO HELP and do not hesitate to contact one of us.  There is absolutely no shame in your situation and we don't judge you and your circumstances.   We just want to do the best we can for your skunks.

On a personal note, if the family involved is still a member of a skunk list and is reading this, please know that your babies are safe in my home tonight.  Their bellies are full and they are getting settled in.  I will do the very best I can for them and you no longer need to worry about what will become of them.  I know that you loved them and I am so very sorry about the sense of loss you are experiencing and for whatever happened in your life that gave you no other choice but to give them up.  You are good people and I fully understand how hard this was for you.

Mary Kaye Ashley
Vice President, National Board
American Domestic Skunk Assoc. Inc.
1311 Hamlin Drive
Clearwater, FL 33764
(727) 532-6830
mka at
mka at

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