Hi everyone! Meghan here, and coming at you with some tips and tricks for your next photoshoot with your family's fur members! I have two lovely fur babies of my own, who I absolutely love and adore! Since they were puppies I have taken thousands of photos of them. Lately I've been getting inquiries about photoshoots that involve dogs. I've gotten questions such as, "Do you allow dogs to come along?" "My dog is pretty excitable and energetic. How do I keep them under control while taking pictures?" Or, "I don't want my dogs in EVERY photo, but I also don't want to just leave them in the car as we continue the session. What do I do?"
WELL, have no fear! In this blog post I will share with you all my best tips and tricks to solve all your dog photoshoot problems, and allow you and your pup to have a really fun photoshoot experience.
The first question I usually get is, "Do you allow dogs to come along?" The answer is a resounding YES! Your dogs are an important part of your family right here, right now. Why not celebrate by including them in some of your photos? I think it's great to document your entire family in this season of your life. I wouldn't include them in EVERY photo and location we go to, but I would definitely include them in some.
Ok, so here are the tips and tricks I use to get pups to look at the camera, smile, and have a great time. (Also, it saves YOU some stress and anxiety when it comes to bringing your dog along because now you'll be prepared!)
1. Get to the location EARLY! Trust me, when your dog has already explored, sniffed everything, and is now comfortable in that space, it's easier to get their attention. Let them explore for about 15 minutes beforehand. You won't regret it!
2. Bring a family friend with you who will be the designated "dog-keeper." During your photoshoot, you won't want your dog with you in every single photo, so bring someone extra along to walk the dog, keep them happy with some toys, etc. while we finish the rest of the shoot. That way you won't have to leave your dog in the car by itself, and they can get some extra exercise without any extra work from you! In addition, it's a HUGE help to you if someone who isn't dressed in their nicest clothes could wrangle the dog back to their pose if need be.
3. Bring their favorite treats and toys! I said before that I have two dogs of my own, and they are motivated by two different things. Ellie is motivated by food. Cody is motivated by toys. You know your dog, so bring whatever motivates them. Usually, I'll put that favorite toy or treat right above my camera so they're looking and smiling directly at me! Once we're done in that pose, they get their toy and/or treat.
4. Practice a "stay" or "hold" command for 1-2 weeks before your photoshoot! A lot of dogs already know these commands, but if this would be new for your pup, try it out! Have them "stay!" for 10-20 seconds before giving them a reward afterwards. During your photoshoot, you will give those commands again and now it's a "normal" command for the dog! This makes taking their photo soooo easy!
5. Tired dogs tend to listen better, so if there's any way you could take them on a long walk or the dog park to play before your session, do it! Especially if you have a hyperactive pup, this will save you some anxiety if they're already a little tired.
Well, there you go! Hopefully this list gives you confidence when planning your next photoshoot with your sweet pups! Until next time,
Ready to schedule your next photo session with Meghan? Click here for more information!