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Monday, April 5, 2021

Pooch Pawlor

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Fernando Maldonado grooms dogs in high style

Dog grooming has officially turned into a work of art. Fernando Maldonado, owner and groomer/stylist of Fernando’s Pooch Pawlor, LLC, is one local man creating beauty in unique places — poodles!

“My favorite part of my job is creating beautiful art with these wonderful dogs and seeing the owner’s expression,” Maldonado said. “I have created wonderful friendships along the way as well.”

Maldonado, a dog-lover from way back, owns five standard poodles himself. “I took them to different places to be groomed over the years, but the result was very mediocre and disappointing,” Maldonado said. “I struggled to find the right place to take them.”

Maldonado, who used to live in Europe, once learned how to make substantial ice carvings. “I told myself, hey, if I can carve 500 pounds of ice, I most definitely can groom a dog,” Maldonado laughed.

So, he started with his own dogs, and word got around. When everyone saw his poodles out on walks, they inquired who did their hair. When Maldonado confessed that he did it himself, Fernando’s was inspired. “Friends would bring their pets over, and I would groom them, and one thing led to another,” Maldonado laughed. “Now here I am, six years later, grooming dogs as a business. I opened a shop about a year ago in the back of my home.”

Located at 1073 Boulevard St. in Shreveport, Maldonado grooms and styles poodles, doodles and any breed of dog that allows him to use his talent as a groomer/stylist. Appointments are required and are available between 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Monday through Friday. Saturdays are by special request only.

Maldonado has tips for pet owners to keep their dogs looking sharp between appointments. “The best thing pet owners can do is comb and brush their pet thoroughly and regularly,” Maldonado said. “That keeps the dogs from becoming matted and consequently ending up with a shave.

It also helps make the grooming a pleasant experience for the dog.” Frequent matting can, in extreme cases, cut off circulation and even cause hematomas.

Maldonado’s Pooch Pawlor is unique not only in their style and designs but in the customized attention they give each appointment. “Unlike other salons, we schedule appointments specifically for that dog. During that time, we try to socialize with the dog individually and make it a pleasurable experience for them,” Maldonado said. “Most dogs are anxious about going to foreign places, let alone having their owner leave them for several hours. We try to get the dog comfortable and make it a calm and joyous experience.”

And that’s what it’s all about for Maldonado — the dog’s happiness, comfort and appearance.

“Always remember to let them be pets,” Maldonado advised. “Dogs will be dogs! So let them get dirty and let them have fun, but remember to clean them after. They are our loyal companions and deserve to be treated well.”

He warned against using human products on animals. “This can be very harmful. Make sure to pay attention to your dog’s skin condition and select the appropriate dog-friendly shampoo,” Maldonado said. Fernando’s Pooch Pawlor uses Artero and Les Pooch product lines, and he recommends those.

So, not only has Maldonado worked on ice, poodles and doodles, but he has other experiences in his repertoire that serve to enhance his unique skill. “I previously worked with shearing llamas and alpacas for a friend in Texas,” Maldonado said. “It’s similar to standard poodles because of their hair. It was an experience, to say the least!” “I hope to continue this business for many more years to come,” Maldonado said. “This is my passion, and I can’t imagine doing anything else.”

To make an appointment for your pooch, please email fernandospoochpawlor@gmail.com or find them on Facebook at Fernando’s Pooch Pawlor.

ON STANDS NOW!

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