dog smiling with owner having a camera about to take a picture

Pet Photoshoot Tips

Author Icon from KONG Company

Your guide on how to take the best photo of your pets!

If you’re anything like us, your social feed is constantly flooded with hundreds of insta-cute pups. How do you set yourself apart to make sure your dog gets the attention they deserve? Well here are some tips and tricks from KONG’s photographer.

Know your subject

Before approaching your furry subject, it is important to ask questions ahead of time to understand the likes or dislikes of your model. When taking photos of dogs with toys always ask the pet parent what types of toys they like to play with most, what time of day they are most active, if they do well in unfamiliar settings and if they have any allergies or if they are driven by a certain type of treat. This way you have an idea of the best environment and accessories to have on hand before you start shooting.

Treats, toys…and funny noises

Being able to capture a dog’s attention can be a challenge. So, having some tricks up your sleeve to command their attention can be key so they aren’t looking at a…squirrel! Have an assortment of treats on hand that fits the needs of every pup, or if the dog has a sensitivity make sure their parent brings some of their kibble or favorite toy. A squeaky toy is a must-have for all photo shoots. For many dogs it’s a great way of getting their attention, especially if you hold it right next to the camera. This way the subject looks like they’re looking at the camera even if they’re just wondering when you’re going to play a game of fetch. In the case that you don’t have a treat or toy-driven dog, making funny noises that a dog doesn’t hear every day can be a winning tactic. As silly as it sounds (and you may sound) squeaking, barking, meowing or imitating another animals can get some great looks and head tilts out of your subject.

Be Patient

Animals don’t always understand your actions when a camera lens is right in their face. For many it can be unnerving and they need time to get used to you and the equipment. Whatever their hesitation may be, give ample time for them to get comfortable in the space. This way you are able to highlight their real personality through your photography.

Get low

Vantage point is everything! Getting low to the ground to be on your subject’s level ensures that you are able to focus on the most part of any portrait, their eyes. Some useful tools for shooting low outdoors are a kneeling mat used for gardening and an outdoor blanket. This way you stay comfy and clean all while snapping the best possible photos of your furry friend.

Most importantly have fun! Animals pick up on energy and tone so if you’re having fun and making it a light-hearted event, then they will feel the same and you will be sure to capture memories that will last a lifetime.

Related Articles