Getting family photos with your dogs really completes the picture. After all, they’re part of the family! But getting the adorable shot with canine cooperation requires some tricks. This article reveals seven tips for taking perfect photos with both people and dogs, whether it’s for your cherished Christmas family photo or even something more casual or artistic. By following these guidelines, you’ll lower your stress level on the day so that you capture all the good memories.
Strike a pose, and let’s get into it!
Our Fur Babies Are Family, So They Should Be In The Picture!
Family photos are a way to remember a moment in time and, of course, look back years from now to laugh at our outdated hairdos. They’re also an opportunity to remember our fur babies after they’ve passed. So, getting our dogs in the family picture is vital.
Do Dogs Like to Pose for Family Photos?
Dogs are cherished members of the family, but when it comes to photos with the whole pack, some dogs like to pose, while others are skittish or too wiggly. Some dogs seem to have a natural ability to sense the significance of the moment and will sit quietly, looking wherever you want them to.
While some dogs may genuinely enjoy being the center of attention, others may be less enthusiastic about posing for the camera. But if you implement some of our tricks in this article, you’ll likely find that dogs are quick to participate and maybe crack open a smile.
Even dogs who are initially hesitant can often be won over with a little bit of patience, encouragement, and perhaps a few treats.
What Types of Family Photos With Dogs Might You Take?
Annual family photos are a common occurrence. But there are several other reasons to take a photo of the entire pack too. For example, a Christmas family photo with your dogs and Santa is a fun memory to capture. You could get a picture with the whole family standing around Santa and your dog on his lap.
Many people include their pups in engagement or wedding photos. Your pet is part of the family and part of big celebrations and milestones. You could even have your dog sit for maternity photos. Maybe have it wear a shirt that says “big brother” or “big sister”.
Be creative and have fun with your human and canine family photos. It’s an excellent way to mark an occasion and have a keepsake to look back on for years to come.
7 Tips for Taking Adorable Family Photos With Your Dogs
We all know that dogs can adopt their own agenda once the camera comes out. Unlike simply posing your dog for its own picture, you now have to coordinate with multiple people and animals. Taking adorable family photos with your dogs can be a frustrating task, but here are seven tips to help turn it into a fun and rewarding experience.
1. Use Treats
Why not use one of your dog’s favorite things to lure their gaze and reward them? Using treats to keep your dog’s attention during a photo shoot can work extremely well. These can serve as rewards for good behavior and provide positive reinforcement.
It’s best to have one person designated to have the treats and keep the dog under control during the event. If you have too many people handing out treats, your dog may get way too excited and confused. Also, use small treats, otherwise your pup may spend half the time munching and crunching while everyone else is saying cheese.
2. Bring Toys
Bring along your dog’s favorite toys to keep it engaged and focused during the shoot. If your pup likes squeaky toys, they can be a good way to make it look in a certain direction just before the camera clicks. Toys also serve as boredom busters during lulls in the photo shoot or to perk up the dog if they start getting worn out from sitting still and being corrected.
3. Hire a Dog-Friendly Photographer
If you’re hiring a photographer for the family photo, be sure to find one that’s dog-friendly. Ensure they like dogs, have worked with them before, and have the patience and time to wait for the wiggles to subside. The more experienced ones will likely have a few tricks up their sleeve for getting the dogs to do and look at what they want.
4. Be Patient and Allow Plenty of Time
Allow extra time for a photo shoot when dogs are involved. Be patient with your dog and give it time to relax and get used to the camera. You may also want to let it explore the area and familiarize themselves with the surroundings before you start taking photos.
Have a family member or friend assist you during the photo session if possible. They can help keep the dog’s attention, hold treats or toys, and help with any posing or positioning.
5. Do the Photos in a Place with Few Other Dogs
Choose a location that is comfortable and familiar to your dog, such as a park or your backyard, but also a place with few other animals or distractions. A quiet environment will help your pup relax and be willing to pose for the photo.
6. Keeps Things Fun
Remember that the goal of the photo session is to capture beautiful and joyful moments with your family and dog. Embrace the experience, enjoy yourselves, and let your love and happiness shine through the photos. Play fetch in between poses to keep your fur baby engaged and less restless.
Also, consider dressing up your dog and the humans too! For example, take a holiday photo in ugly Christmas sweaters. Or dress up your pup in a NASA space costume. There are a lot of fun options to choose from and be creative with.
7. Don’t Force Poses
Don’t force poses with your dog. It’s likely to get frustrated or impatient and want to flee the scene. To capture your dog’s personality, get down to its eye level. This perspective will create a more intimate and engaging photo.
Pro Tip: Check out our guide to dog posing for beginners.
Tips for Next-Level Family Photos With Your Dogs
Now that we’ve addressed the tips for actually taking the photo, there are a few other tricks you can employ to get the most out of your efforts.
1. Dress Your Dogs Up!
Some of the best family photos are when everyone is looking their best. Why not include your dogs? It may surprise you to know that dogs have their own fashion lines, streetwear, and accessories. From bling to hats, from bandanas to jackets, you can have a lot of fun coordinating outfits. At the very least, some good elf ears or holiday lights for your dogs’ family Christmas photos will make it all the more fun.
2. Take Lots of Photos, or Video
One technological tip is to put your camera on continuous shooting. This will take several pictures with each shutter burst instead of just one, giving you rapid-fire moments to find the best one. Alternatively, you can video the session and pull a still frame from the video that best captured the perfect looks. Just be sure to have good lighting so your shutter speed is fast and you avoid blur.
3. Good Lighting Is Key
At the risk of overwhelming you, good lighting is our final tip for great family photos with your dog. You don’t need to do anything fancy, just make sure you have enough light that the flash on your camera isn’t needed. This is because the flash will likely put bright reflecting dots in your dogs’ eyes. Of course, if you have a professional photographer they will know how to avoid these reflections.
If possible, take your photos where you have lots of natural light, and shaded or diffused light is better than direct sunlight.
Do Dogs Recognize People in Photos?
Dogs have a remarkable ability to recognize familiar faces, including those of their human family members, in photos. While dogs primarily rely on their sense of smell and hearing to navigate the world, they can also make visual associations.
When exposed to photographs of people they know, dogs may exhibit signs of recognition, such as increased attention, tail wagging, or even approaching the photo. They can pick up on familiar facial features and other visual cues that help them identify individuals.
However, it’s important to note that dogs’ recognition of people in photos may vary based on their individual experiences, eyesight, and image quality. Nonetheless, the fact that dogs can recognize their loved ones in photos highlights their cognitive abilities and the deep emotional bonds they form with their human companions.
Pro Tip: Learn more about the amazing power of a dog’s eyesight.
Make Lasting Memories with Family Photos
Family photos with dogs create lasting memories. It’s so much fun to look back on pictures from years ago when your senior dog was just a puppy. Or to see how your pack has grown from a family of three to five. We hope you schedule regular family photo shoots to make a memory book you’ll cherish for a lifetime.
Do you have family photos with dogs? We would love to see them! Tag us on a photo on social media.
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