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Ask an Expert: Pet Grooming

Heidi Baroun, owner of Heidi's Elite Pet Grooming, is here to answer your grooming questions.

Pets that love to romp outside welcome the return of warm weather, but the higher temperatures come with an increased importance of keeping your pet safe in the heat and tick-free.

Grooming is an important part of combating this. It prevents matting of the coat and undercoat that can cause many unexpected problems.

In this inaugural edition of Ask an Expert, Heidi Baroun, owner of , is here to answer your grooming questions.

Baroun has been grooming pets since 1998. At her Hopkins business, she pampers pets with gentle brushing and baths. And she knows the power a treat and a belly rub can have toward convincing pets to allow inspections of those hard-to-reach places.

Baroun will be answering your grooming questions through May 8. She will also connect readers who have basic pet health questions to local veterinarians.

So post your questions in the comments below and check back later to see the answer. 

Heidi Baroun May 04, 2012 at 01:51 AM
The dremel is also the best way to deal with the dewclaw. Because the dogs don't naturally wear down this nail, the kwik grows out longer making it prone to being cut and bleeding. You can get a dremel at any of your local hardware store. You should always have some styptic powder on hand incase you do make a nail bleed. Lastly, less is always more when it comes to cutting a dogs nails. If you take the nails too short you run the risk of making them bleed. Until you get comfortable on judging where the kwik begins just take off less and do them more often. You will know you took enough off if you see a black dot in the middle of the nail. That is the beginning of the kwik.
stephanie perron May 09, 2012 at 02:30 PM
We have two golden retreivers. How can we keep their ears clean and dry? And should we be trimming their hairs inside the ears?
Heidi Baroun May 12, 2012 at 03:13 AM
I would say definitely trim the hair around the ear canal. That hair holds in moisture and decreases air flow in and out of the ear. This causes the perfect breeding ground for bacteria. Be very careful when trimming this hair so you don't knick the skin. I would flush out the ears before and after baths and/or swimming. If you flush the ears before the bath or swim, the ear cleaner that stays in the ear canal prevents excessive water from staying in the ear canal. Make sure you use an ear cleaner with a drying solution in it. After the bath or swimming, make sure to wipe out any of the wax or dirt that has loosened up after you flushed them out.
Matt Porath May 30, 2012 at 09:14 AM
I washed my dog twice (3 weeks apart) with Hartz ultraguard flea and tick shampoo deep conditioning for dogs. She seems fine but I just read some scary info about Hartz products. I'm wondering what you think of this product?
Heidi Baroun June 06, 2012 at 04:47 AM
Matt- Hartz products are usually a lower brand of products. I'm not sure what the ingredients are in the shampoo, but I have have seen that a lot of flea and tick shampoos are pretty harsh on a dogs skin and coat and you have to be careful around the eyes and mouth. I would like to know the main ingredients in the shampoo and I could tell you a little more about it. Do you use Frontline or any other flea and tick preventative? If you do, a flea and tick shampoo is not necessary. I am a little suspicious of the terms flea and tick shampoo and deep conditioning used on the same bottle. Flea and tick shampoos are pretty harsh and drying on the skin and coat so in order to get an actually "deep conditioning", you would have to use a seperate creme rinse or conditioner. There are a lot of marketing ploys that are used to get people to buy a bottle of shampoo. If you want to let me know what some of the ingredients are in the shampoo, I can let you know if there are any issues with any of these ingredients.

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