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Dogs in Engagement Shoots


Bringing Your Dog To Your Engagement Shoot


Bringing your dog can be such a wonderful personal touch (especially if you refer to your dog as a furbaby!). BUT it can add some stress to your shoot. Picture this: You’re already nervous for your engagement shoot. I am capturing some sitting down photos of you + Fido and he’s not havin’ it. He’s bouncing around, hitting you in the face with his tail and practically vibrating with excitement. I want to tell you that this is perfectly normal!! We just need to be patient and breathe through this, and give the dog some grace to be a good boy.

  1.  Bring a nice collar & leash!! Nothing too loud (skull print, Harley Davidson, hot pink.. haha). I like something timeless and classy, like plain leather or black. (I have a special leather collar & leash for Robin for photos!). Depending on where we are at (if we are at the home farm) I might ask you to take the collar off for a few photos.
  2. If he is shedding, give him a thorough brushing before the shoot so the shedding won’t be so bad. Nothing is worse than having a white mat of hairs on your black leggings for the rest of the shoot!
  3. Depending on where we are walking for photos – I am more likely to bring in the dog towards the middle or the end of the shoot.┬áThis way I can knock off some of your nerves about being photographed FIRST, before adding the stress factor of Fido!
  4. If possible, make sure your dog is well exercised before your shoot. Nothing too crazy, but while your finishing your hair in the house, why not get hubby to toss the ball for the dog in the backyard a few times? This will burn off some extra energy so your pup isn’t vibrating during your shoot. OR, make sure he gets to play in the yard for an hour before the shoot.
  5. Usually I will get the two of you “in position”, usually kneeling or sitting on the ground first. Then we will find a nice spot for your pup (usually between you 2– so he is comfortable and confident). Then I will ask you to look at me and smile— it’s my turn to take over!! I will get the dogs attention/ears while you guys smile at the camera!

I hope these suggestions help you prepare for bringing your dog to your photoshoot!! The key is to smile, and laugh it out!! These shoots sometimes don’t go as planned (or how you’d hoped) but I’ve always been able to get the shot!! Photographers– stay tuned for a Part 2 on how to photograph couples + their dog!

Chow for now!

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