I took my boy into the vet as there were small bumps on inside of tips of his ears that didn't seem to be bothering him but I couldn't explain. Vet thought it was bug bites, maybe from ants. We live up in the mountains with open land and free roam around our property, It also can be quite dusty running around the land up here so I noted his coat not as shiny. You know how clean they like to be! Anyway my vet recommended Skin So Soft bath oil which comes with a pump spray. He said much better for him than any kind of over the counter bug spray and it seems to keep bugs off. You don't need much, smells good and keeps his coat shiny. You may want to try it.
I have a hacksaw blade bent around and with the ends built into a handle. Works wonders - especially with a bit of Vitapointe (human hair preparation) massaged into the dog's fur 20 minutes beforehand.
Otherwise the palm of those riding gloves with bobbles on them and of course, a grooming stone or two. These wear out but are a 'must' in the dog-bag.
Along with the ketchup, naturally !
Massage. You can actually find their sore spots by how they react to your touch.
Indeed you can. When using Vitapointe, I massage it very well in and you can feel any lumps and bumps. And avoid them later with the glove, hacksaw or grooming stone.