You love your dog with all your heart. And, naturally, you want to have beautiful pictures of your lovely pet. But if you have ever tried to photograph your four-legged friend, you know how challenging it is to get a dog to pose for the camera. 

Today, we will share with you nine simple tips that will help you photograph your pet like a pro. Let’s get started!

Choose the right time

It will be much easier to take pictures of your dog if you choose the right moment – the moment when your dog is not sleepy and not too excited. 

Let’s face it. If you wake up your dog and force it to pose, you will achieve no positive results. The photos you take will look weird. 

You should remember one simple truth. The dogs are just like people – they want to be photographed only when they are in a good mood. Take it into account when planning a photoshoot. 

Use your dog’s favorite treats

Have you used treats when training your dog to sit, fetch, and rollover? You can use the same tactic when training your dog to pose for photos.

“Dogs see delicious biscuits, juicy bones, and crunchy bacon as a reward to work for. So if you give your dog a piece of treat every time you take a great shot, your dog will be concentrated until the photoshoot end,” says Alexis Brooks, an animal photographer and content creator for WowGrade.  

Here are a few tips for you on how to get the most of using dog treats:

  • Use small treats. 
  • Give your dog one piece of the treat at a time. Your dog will continuously demand more rewards and, as a consequence, stay concentrated for longer. 
  • Reward each step towards the desired behavior. Don’t force your dog to complete a sophisticated task to get the biscuit. 

Get rid of distractions

Does your dog get distracted easily? If yes, make sure that nothing will distract your dog during the photoshoot. You should find a location where there are no cats, ducks, and other animals that may steal the attention of your photo model.

If you want to shoot in the park, look for a place where there are no bicyclists, joggers, and children playing with a ball. The fewer distractions will be around your dog, the more the high-quality pictures you will take. 

Don’t use a flash

Bright flash may frighten your dog or even hurts the dog’s eyes. So please, think twice before using a flash!

If you need to take a picture in the place where there is a lack of natural light, try to use an off-camera flash or swivel the beam of light upward. In such a way, the flash will not go right to the face and the eyes of your dog. 

Also, you can try to place a piece of wax paper in front of the flash to diffuse the bright light. It’s another great way to protect your dog’s eyes from the harmful effect of the bright flash.

Try on props

Do you want your dog to be dressed in new clothes during the photoshoot? Let your dog try on the T-shirt, jacket, hat, or whatever you are going to use a day before photographing. 

Firstly, it will help you to ensure that props fit your dog perfectly. Secondly, it will allow your dog to get used to the cloth and accessorizes and feel more comfortable posing in front of the camera.

Find an assistant

If you have a serious intent to make your dog a social media celebrity, you should plan every photoshoot in advance. You should take your time to choose a suitable location, find props, set up lighting, and… find an assistant. 

Why it’s important to have someone who can assist you during the photoshoot? The point is that most of the dogs don’t like to look directly into the camera. And if you want to take great photos, there should be an assistant standing behind your back. The assistant should clap hands, jump, show toys, and treats to grab your dog’s attention.

Who can be an assistant? Your friend, child, neighbor – anyone who gets along with your dog and who has free time to join you for a photoshoot.

Familiarize your dog with the camera

The camera is a new, unfamiliar thing for your dog. So you should let your dog give the camera a good sniff. Once your dog gets familiar with your photo equipment, it will behave differently.

“Before you start a photoshoot, take a few pictures of surrounding objects. Let your dog understand how your camera works and what clicking sounds it creates,” advises Jennifer Stevens, a dog psychiatrist and psychology writer for SupremeDissertations.

Try out using a “camera creature”

Have you ever heard about “camera creatures”? 

Basically, camera creatures are stuffed toys that can be attached to the lens. They are bright, catchy, and you can use them to grab and retain the attention of your pet during the photographing.

The vast majority of the camera creatures have a squeaker inside. So you can be sure that the squeaky toy sound will not leave the dog indifferent. 

These toys are not that expensive, so we recommend you to try to use them.

Become eye-level with your dog

If you want to get cute photos, make sure that you position your camera in the right way. Don’t stand with the camera. Sit down or lay down in front of your model to place your camera on the dog’s eye-level. Then your pictures will be from the dog’s perspective rather than a “human perspective”.

Wrapping up

Your dog is not a professional supermodel. So don’t expect that you will get perfect pictures from the first try. 

Provide your dog with enough time to get comfortable with the camera, location, props, and other things. Don’t rush the process. Be patient – and your dog will “reward” you with ideal photographs.