Hold your nose! First-ever British pet skunk beauty pageant


The first UK pet skunk beauty competition has been held in Birmingham and, apparently, it didn't kick up a stink.

Hairdresser Sandra Vaughan, a devoted skunk owner herself to Effy and Pepe Le Pew, threw the event at the Birmingham and Solihull Rugby Club to educate people about the animal and to coincide with Exotic Pet Awareness Day.

Sandra said the emphasis at the contest was firmly on looks, with categories including Best Tail, Best Nose, Best Fancy Dress, Best Male and Best Female.

The animals arrived in an array of wacky outfits, with one dressed up as a bumble bee, and another pair sporting Rooney and Coleen England football kits.

However, Sandra told the Daily Mail that the fancy dress idea didn't go down so well with everyone: "We only had one problem, one of the judges at the last minute decided he didn't agree with dressing animals up and refused to judge the fancy dress."

Thankfully, somebody else stepped in at the last minute.

Cute little Jordi Alba, aged one, posed for pics (below) with her Best Female and Best In Show trophies.

Skunks are well known for squirting a foul-smelling fluid as a defence mechanism when they feel threatened or are under attack.

Sandra described the smell as "horrendous – like a mix of wild garlic, onion and every acid you can think of", but said it is a very rare occurrence.

But, she tells the Birmingham Mail, there's a lot more to them than a bad whiff, adding: "They are so loving, like cats. But whereas cats decide you can love them, skunks need love. They are very affectionate. Pepe likes to get on the sofa and snuggle up."

World's strangest animals

World's strangest animals