If there’s one thing you’ve probably noticed, it’s that I love dog photos. I love taking them, looking at them and sharing them. I hope that you do too, otherwise I am probably really annoying.
As much I love the photos I take, I really love a professional photo shoot. If you haven’t had a professional photographer takes photos of your dog, let me tell you, you are missing out. Seeing your dogs captured just being themselves in perfectly lit, beautifully shot photos creates memories you will always treasure.
To celebrate National Dog Day, I wanted to share some photos of my favorite guys taken by Brittany Graham, of Boots and Bee Photography. Brittany has taken photos of them before and I loved them so much I asked if we could do an outdoor photo shoot. Brittany does dog “model calls” from time to time, as she also provides photos for Darwin Dogs blog, so keep an eye on her Facebook page for the next chance to get photos taken of your dog.
These photos are also special to me because Roscoe and I just celebrated his one year Adoptaversary on Monday. One year ago I took Roscoe in as a foster for Central Ohio Pomeranian Rescue and then quickly realized he was right where he belonged. These photos really capture how far he has come in a year from the scared little guy he was. He is still my shy guy, but he is so much happier and more confident (and snuggly) now than he was!
I also came across this great quote in this article (which you should definitely read) that I thought was perfect for National Dog Day. Pretty much sums up how having a dog in your life just makes everything better.
“Life is hard but it’s like Homer has taught me to use and take everything for the better rather than keep a negative attitude,” Koehl says. “Dogs just have a way of showing you the life you deserve to live.”
Who doesn’t love to see dogs dressed up parading down a runway? I know I do! This past Sunday I had the chance to see some very fashionable dogs hit the runway in the latest fashions and most stylish apparel.
Organized by the Cuyahoga County Animal Shelter, “Pawject Runway” raises funds for the shelter and awareness for the dogs in their care looking for a home. In addition to dogs strutting their stuff on the runway, Pawject Runway featured demonstrations from local trainers, vendors, food, games and a beautiful day on the lake! New this year, there was also a bikini contest! This was probably my favorite part since I think dogs dressed up in bathing suits is totally hilarious.
All dogs of the dogs that walked the runway will have their best picture voted on (photos will be shared for voting via the shelter’s Facebook page) and the dog with the most votes will be crowned the Cuyahoga County Animal Shelter’s cover dog. The winners are unveiled in November once the calendar is released.
From the Parma Animal Shelter: Bella is a female Collie mix who is 1 year old and weighs 62 lbs. She is up to date on shots, heart worm negative and spayed. Bella is a great dog and like all young dogs, obedience training would be preferred because she loves to jump and is excitable. For this reason it would be best if she went to an adult family with older kids 16 and up. We’d love for her to have a fenced in yard to burn off all her energy. Bella knows how to give you paw too! Please email: firstname.lastname@example.org for more information about Bella.
Easter is fast approaching…have you gotten your dog’s photo taken with the Easter Bunny?
To be honest, I’ve always found the Easter Bunny to be creepy, and I don’t normally get seasonal photos taken of my dogs. But, one of my friends from Central Ohio Pom Rescue was posing as the bunny at Style Mutt so I said I’d come by. I was a little worried about Roscoe, but I knew Catherine (the bunny) would be really good with him.
As I imagined, Roscoe was pretty scared and Hunter was mostly confused. All of the pictures, though, were adorable. Here it is – one of the best Easter Bunny photos ever taken (the best, in my opinion).
I hope I didn’t traumatize Roscoe too much. The photo was taken by Portraits by Martha (www.portraitsbymartha.net) and part of the proceeds went to Secondhand Mutts.
If you still need to get your dog’s photo taken, Hoppy Paws, Peter Cottontail, whatever you want to call him or her, will be at Grateful Dog Bakery and the Cuyahoga County Animal Shelter this weekend!
Cross another one off the bucket list- Hunter has fulfilled his dream to be a professional dog model. (I don’t think it was a dream of Roscoe’s, but he was a good sport).
A couple weekends ago, Hunter and Roscoe got their shot to hit the big time as dog models. Late last year I signed them both up for Brittany Graham Photography’s dog model call. Brittany provides stock photos for the Darwin Dogs blog (a must read for every dog owner) so she put out a call for dog models on her website. Brittany needs dogs of all kinds – shy, hyper, old, young, big, small – for the blog as well as her own personal pet photo projects. I knew that with their opposite personalities, hyper Hunter and shy Roscoe would provide a wide range of different photos that she can hopefully use. And, of course, I couldn’t resist a chance to get professional photos taken of them.
They were both total naturals and Brittany got some really great photos. I think Hunter knew exactly what was going on. Once I pulled out his toy, he started hamming it up, running around and giving her some great action shots. I love how Brittany was able to capture the personalities of both dogs and get such great photos of them just being themselves at home. (Brittany is also great with dogs, by the way, and her calm, positive demeanor put Roscoe, who is often wary of new people, right at ease.)
Here are some of my favorite shots from the photo shoot.
And my favorite:
Hunter wanted me to add that he is available for photo shoots and special appearances and to contact his agent (which I’m guessing is me?) for bookings.
From Love-A-Stray in Avon: Betty was found as a stray in Avon Lake near Sweetbriar Golf Course in 2014. She was not claimed so Love-A-Stray helped her, to keep her from going to the overcrowded County Pound. Betty is approximately 48 pounds and about 4 years old. She is an interesting mix? Looks to have Beagle, Black & Tan Hound and some Terrier. Betty is partially blind in one eye but unless we told you, you would never know. She is completely housebroken and very well behaved. Betty was evaluated by Komplete K9 Training and they do not recommend her for a home with cats and she would need work to properly socialize her with other dogs. Betty is not aggressive, she just wants nothing to do with other dogs and basically ignores them. To learn more about Betty, visit: https://www.petfinder.com/petdetail/30417825.
I think the only thing getting me through the winter at this point are snuggles from Roscoe. It’s especially exciting because Roscoe gives affection so relucantly, and usually from a distance. So even though I know he is using me for the warmth, it still makes me happy when he scoots on over to me for snuggles. His snuggles and watching Hunter play in the snow are the only thing keeping me from jumping in my car and just driving until it’s warm.
Even if we are all over the winter at this point, it seems that Cleveland dogs know how to make the best of the season. I asked you all to share with me some of your favorite photos of your dogs enjoying the snow (or in some cases, enjoying avoiding the snow) and got some great photos. Since I think we all need a reminder right about now, here are Cleveland dogs teaching us that winter can be fun.
From Rescue Village: Sunny is a cute senior beagle who is looking for a place to live out his golden years. He was found as a stray, but the outdoor life wasn’t for him. He is hoping for a nice comfy bed and a loving family with older children. This little guy still has plenty of energy for sniffing around his back yard and going on walks. Sunny is currently available through Rescue Village’s foster program, if you would like to meet him please call (440)338-4819 or visit http://geaugahumane.org/animals/adoptable_dogs.html for more info.
Dogs all over Ohio got dressed up last night to cheer on their hometown team as they beat the Oregon Ducks for the National Championship. Cleveland dogs, in particular, went all out showing their support for their team. Check out these dogs who are definitely celebrating today (after they recover from last night’s party).
And these two dogs, who were hoping to have a home in time to watch the game, but had to settle for watching it from the shelter. Contact the Cuyahoga County Animal Shelter (http://www.cuyahogadogs.com/) and inquire about Dellavedova in kennel #51 (left) and Melody in kennel #4 to give these OSU fans a home.
I’m sure these guys have already ordered their National Championship gear. You can get yours here: http://bit.ly/1ALENM0
Thanks to Angie, Tammy, Anurag, Katherine and Cindy for sending me pictures of their dogs.
It’s a tradition that every year I take a holiday photo of my dog. Although I don’t send Christmas cards, I still like to have a festive photo of Hunter to share with friends and family.
Lucky for me, Hunter is pretty good at taking photos. I usually only have to take a few shots to get a good one. He is always smiley and goofy, and he is very comfortable with the camera (he’s had a lot of practice).
Here are photos from our first Christmas together and last year, two of my favorite photos of him:
This year I had the challenge of getting a photo of Roscoe, my foster dog. Roscoe is a shy, scared dog who doesn’t know the sit command and doesn’t like being picked up or having anyone walk toward him. Although he is fairly treat-motivated, he won’t always go for the treat if he is too scared.
Needless to say, it took some time to get a good photo of him and even longer to get one of the two of them together. Here are some outtakes from the session. For some reason, I had a hard time getting the dogs close to my tiny tree.
I might have put a treat in front of the tree to get him in the shot.
You have treats?
Where’d Roscoe go?
Cheese! Can I have a treat now? Roscoe got one!
Um, I’m just going to walk away slowly…
Roscoe photo bomb!
And, here are the best photos:
Any my favorite:
Although I am no photo expert (as you can see above), I have spent a lot of time taking pictures of my dog and I think I’ve learned a few things. Here are some of my tips for getting a good “posed” photo of your dog.
Carry a lot of small, chewy treats. Choose a high reward treat, not something they get all the time, so that they are especially excited about the treat.
Keep a squeaky toy on hand or try the app “Pet Snap.” Pet Snap is a photo app that takes pictures and provides sound effects to get your dog’s attention. You can choose from noises like doorbells, meows, squeaky toys, barking dogs, crumbling paper, etc. (My favorite pic was a result of this app).
Set up your scene, whether it’s in front of a Christmas tree, out in the snow or wherever and wait. Sometimes your best photos will come after your dog has settled down and isn’t so focused on trying to figure out what you’re doing. Or, you may even get a better photo than you tried to pose. If you have to walk away for a bit, do it. It’ll be worth it to get a calm, relaxed photo of your dog (see the photo above of Roscoe laying next to the tree, this came several minutes after I stopped trying to get a posed photo)
Keep snapping! Just keep taking photos. It’s kind of basic, but important. Sometimes it’s hard to get your dog to be still but the more photos you snap, the more likely you’ll get a good one. You don’t want to get frustrated and give up too soon!
Here’s a cute one I got once the “shoot” was over. Back in their natural state, being best buds.
Happy Holidays from Hunter, Roscoe and me. I hope you all have a wonderful and relaxing Holiday season!