The holidays are here and if you’re like many pet lovers, you want pet photos of your adorable furry family members. However, many pets are not great models. In fact, some are downright resistant to showing their cuteness to your camera.

Planning and preparation are the keys to good pet photography. So, in the spirit of the holidays we’d like to offer you five ways to get a great shot of your pets.


1)  Make sure your lighting is good – Nothing ruins a picture faster than bad lighting. Go outside or get near a big window during daylight hours. If you use a flash, your pet will likely get red-eye which detracts from your picture. Plus, flashes can scare some pets.

Cats posing pet photography Holistic Select

2) Aim for a quiet moment – When your pet is tired they may be more likely to accommodate you. This is especially true if you’re dressing them up in costume. Speaking of costumes, if you plan to turn your pug into an elf for the occasion, you might want to have someone else dress them so that you’re ready with the camera as soon as the hat goes on. Every second counts!

Dog Mountain Holistic Select pet photography

3) Get on their level – Your pet is shorter than you. Consider kneeling on the floor or the ground to photograph them. You never know what magic may happen when you’re on their level.

Upside down dog pet photography Holistic Select

4) Go for the element of surprise— When your pet is happily playing, quietly start snapping away. You can have a helper call your pet’s name so she looks up. Have your finger on the button when this moment comes.

Dog smiling Holistic Select

5) Hire a professional – If you want to ensure fantastic shots, nothing beats a professional photographer. Pennsylvania based photographer Terree O’Neill Yeagle says, “Pet photographers are experienced with capturing moments quickly and keeping pets engaged with the camera.”


So there you have it–great lighting and patience are some of the keys to successful pet portraits!

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