Our Personal Guide for Perfect Pet Portraits

Posted on August 9, 2016


Anytime that you’re working with animals, there’s going to be growing pains and snags along the way. Your pets, no matter how well-behaved they might be, aren’t always accustomed to the lighting and procedures involved with photography. They might become frightened or a little shy. But when you’ve been in the business as long as we have, you learn a thing or two along the way. So, make sure you check out these tips for successful pet portraits.

How to Get the Best Pet Portraits

Patience is a Virtue

Because pets can’t always act how we want them to, a pet photography session might run a little longer than expected. Usually, we try to set aside at least the first 15 to 20 minutes for an introductory period to acquaint ourselves with your pet.


It’s also important for your pet to become comfortable with their new surroundings during this time. When your pet is happy and at ease, you get better photographs in a more timely manner. 

Leave all your worries and anxieties at the door. You don’t need to stress about your pet’s behavior, getting the perfect shot, or having them “smile for the camera.” We’ve done this many times before and have always had great outcomes.


Pets can usually pick up on any stress in their owners and become agitated themselves. That’s why it is essential that you stay calm, keep your cool and have fun throughout the entire session. Trust me, the results will be more than worth it!

Come Prepared

To ensure the best outcome for your session, take your dog on a long walk before the session so they can use up all of their excess energy. This will make them more apt to sit and stay put for longer periods of time. Also, keep them well-hydrated so we can get both closed and tongue-out photos.


In order to navigate any pitfalls that might arise during your session, try to bring some of your pet’s favorite toys or treats. If they start to misbehave or lose attention, the addition of one of these items might get them back on track.

Also, if you bring their favorite toy, we can snap some pictures of them with it. If your dog loves to play fetch, bring a ball or Frisbee that you normally use. We will be able to photograph your pet doing what they love.

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Topics: Pet Photography

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