Tips for including your Dogs in your Family Portraits

Oh man, Puppers are my FAVOURITE! You can usually find me sitting on the floor with a dog on my lap, no matter where I am.

My dog Zazu is a part of our family, he will forever be my first baby and even though he’s now destroyed 7 (SEVEN!!!) pairs of my shoes, I love him, and he’s a part of my family. So why would I have family portraits that didn’t include him?

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I love it when my clients include their dogs in their portrait shoot! and while it does create another level of chaos it can be fun and the images we create, I can almost guarantee they will be some of your favourites.

In saying that, there are some things you can do to ensure the whole “kids and animals” process doesn’t become a drama!

  • BRING TREATS - I can hear your dog agreeing to this dot point already

  • Don’t try to wear them out immediately before your session. - instead, taken them for a long walk or play a few hours before hand. Trying to run your dog right before your session will only excite your dog (who will think it’s time for playing) and make them extra slobbery!

  • Be Chill - Your dog can pick up on your body language and your negative emotions if you are stressed and anxious your dog will know which can make them stressed and anxious.

  • remember, you’re asking lots of different commands of your dog. Sit here. look at me, don’t come. These are probably commands you wouldn’t normally ask of your dog all at the same time. So be patient, remember they don’t understand what’s going on or why you’re asking them to do all these things.

  • Be Patient - I have nothing else I would rather be doing than hanging out with you and your dog. I won’t stop photographing until I KNOW I’ve nailed it.

  • Dogs are like toddlers, they need breaks too! Let them run and roam around and then when we come back to them they’ll be fresh and ready to go!

Hopefully this helps! Zazu is currently chewing on my shoelace (which is on my foot) because I promised him a trip to the dog park one I finished writing this!