How long has it been since you had family photos taken? Have you ever considered including your dog in your family photos?
Late last year (yes, I know it's taken me a while to get around to telling you all about it, Fiji does that to you) we had professional photos taken for the first time in over 10 years.
The idea had been floating around for a while and when I saw a request by a professional photographer who wanted to expand their portfolio I jumped at the chance. Leezet from Leezet Photography was kind enough to select Mr MyOodle, Jet and I to have our photo taken. I think Jet that sold it for us.
Before Jet chose us as his humans it wouldn't have occurred to me to include the family dog in family photos and now I couldn't image not including him.
Our destination for the shoot was Natadola Beach, one of the nicest beaches on Viti Levu, the main island of Fiji. The perfect backdrop.
We opted for a smart casual look that reflected our personalities and the location. Mum joked with me, I just wanted to make sure I matched Jet.
Yes, I did consider his outfit matching ours, it would have looked silly if we clashed LOL.
Here's my top tips for successfully including your dog in your family photos!
1. Ready, Aim, Shoot
It definitely helps if you dog isn't camera shy. My mum is convinced Jet knows how to pose for the camera.
2. Take An Assistant
I suggest taking a third person along for the trip so you have a spare pair of hands, it also helps if your dog knows this person. Eta came with us for the photo shoot, she was an enormous help. Jet knows and loves her. Lots of the time Jet wanted to look at me, which is super cute sometimes (see the photo above) but at other times we wanted him to look at the camera. Knowing Eta and having her stand near the photographer (at the angle needed) was ideal.
3. Good Doggie
It also helps if your dog is well trained and well behaved.
4. Did Somebody Say Treats?
Bribery is definitely the answer. Eta combined with more treats than Jet has ever eaten made these photos truly memorable.
It's important you dog looks their best. Consider their grooming schedule when you book your photo shoot. I personally think just before their haircut (but not overgrown) is the best. There's nothing cuter than a fluffy bundle of cuteness. You may also need to consider the weather. Despite how these photos look, it was super windy on the beach that afternoon and my hair was hair sprayed within an inch of it's life.
Secretly, Jet had a little pampering too. His moustache continually blew up in front of his face so I sprayed some hairspray into my hand and patted his moustache back down again. It worked a treat.
Feeling a little 'crazy dog lady' and OTT, I mentioned this to a friend who assured me show dogs a plucked and styled within an inch of the life. Once every 10 years, didn't make me feel so bad.
7. Shall I Lead
Consider the details, the lead you can see in the photos is thin, the colours match and it doesn't clash. Some of his other more practical leads would have looked terrible, some where too long, others too wide.
I would have loved to have him off his lead but that water being just a few metres away would have been way too tempting. We had plans to try him off the lead towards the end of the shoot but by then it was dark and we had a 45 minute drive home, so I didn't want a wet soggy dog in the car for that long.
I've also included lots of tips for the humans preparing for family photo sessions over at my Reelax'n blog. There's a list of considerations including clothes, to makeup and hair. It's worth putting in the effort, you'll be blown away by the results.
Now Is The Perfect Time
If you've ever considered having family photos with your dog, I'd highly recommend it and now is the perfect time, the weather is perfect and entries are still open for the 2017 MyOodle Calendar photo submissions.
You could have family photos done and submit one of the final product as an entry in our calendar (please only send those images with no humans in them).
I also have a list of Pet Photographers who are ready and waiting to take the most amazing photos of your dog.
If you want to win a free photo shoot especially for your dog with one of our volunteer photographers, then you need to act fast, all entries need to be in by 31st March. Please read the details in the link but feel free to email entries to as a some people have been experiencing an error on the forum. (My techy guy is looking into it).
Can you tell Mr MyOodle is our Assistant for this shot?
These little cuties made my afternoon, we'd just finished and they were super keen to say hi. They were especially keen to have their photo taken and even more excited to have a look at the digital image on the back of the camera.
Jet is a huge novelty in Fiji, lots of people can't believe he's real and often joke 'where are his batteries?'