When is the right time to capture your dog portraits?
You might know that someday you want to capture some special photos of your dog, those precious moments you want to cherish and keep the memories you've shared together strong and close to your heart.
But when is the right time to capture those dog portraits? Is it while puppy is small - those fleeting moments that pass by so quickly? Or is it when he's become the beloved best friend that you've shared so many memories with?
Here's a look at some of the best times to get your dog portraits:
It's so exciting when you welcome a new puppy into your family! Puppy normally comes home between eight and ten weeks, and everything is new and exciting as he settles in to his new home and family. It's a huge milestone, and this is the perfect time to capture some special memories - because all too soon these cute puppy days will have flown by and you'll have forgotten just how small he once was.
My sister's dog, Dave, had his first photo shoot with me when he was just 11 weeks old - and he came home when he was 8 weeks, so he'd had about 3 weeks to settle in to his new family. This was great as bonds were already being built with family members.
As well as portraits, it's great to capture photos that show the bond between puppy and his new family, just like this one of Dave and Debbie. This also shows how tiny Dave once was - he's quite a sturdy labrador now!
PUPPY'S FIRST YEAR
There are so many changes in puppy's first year, as he grows from a cute, cuddly puppy into a gorgeous dog that will be your best friend and companion throughout his life.
This is the time he'll go through the biggest changes as he grows into those big paws and floppy ears that are so cute when he's small, and going through the gangly stage when he's all paws and legs and tail.
You'll help him discover his new world and share adventures together. He'll become part of your family, bond with your children and become their trusted playmate, and grow into being your four-legged best friend.
Capturing the memories you create together in the first year is extra special, because these are the building blocks that will form the basis of the lives you share together. The special memories that you'll back on that will make your heart overflow with joy, every time you see them.
Puppy days are great, because they're cute and cuddly and filled with fun, but as puppy grows he begins to develop his own unique character and adorable personality that makes him YOUR best friend.
It's little things like that cute head tilt when he realises - "ooh - you've got a treat?", the crazy way he runs across the fields with ears and tails flapping, or perhaps the way he snuggles up with you on the sofa at night - the sofa you said that he wouldn't be allowed on at first.
It's something that can only come from having had your dog in your life for a while, as you grow and experience life together.
Capturing the memories that truly represent your four-legged best friend - and not just a portrait of a breed - is something for you to treasure always and will instantly transport you back to those crazy fun adventures you've shared together
The beauty of capturing memories is that it's not just about a few posed portraits, it's about the times you've shared together. That could be a walk through the woods, a special place you often visit together, or a cozy cuddle at home.
It might be the moment he gazes up at you with those adoring puppy eyes, or a quiet moment as the two of you sit together and just watch the world go by.
The love between you and your dog is so precious, and sometimes the very best moments are when you're together - so why would you miss those out?
Moments shared together are just as important to capture as poses and portraits - so don't be afraid to jump in front of the camera yourself and create cherished memories of you and your dog together.
Nobody likes to think that the time could be approaching when you have to say goodbye. As your dog reaches his twilight days, you'll cherish the times you share, because you know those days that he'll walk by your side are becoming fewer and fewer.
For the dog who's been by your side since he was a pup, the richness of the life you've shared is immense.
My sister's old boy, Leo, was part of the family for almost 13 years, since he was two. He had been with my sister and her husband since before they were married, seen the births of both of their daughters, countless holidays, good times and tough times - through it all he'd been there as part of the family. A gentle, loving soul all his life, he began to slow up with various health issues, although sometimes he forgot to be dignified and would prance around like a puppy still!
Although we didn't know it then, a brief half hour to take a few photos last October would be the last time I photographed him. Those photos, simple and ordinary yet capturing his gentle soul, would be something for us all to treasure when he passed over the Rainbow Bridge a couple of weeks before Christmas.
You never truly know how long is left, so capturing those moments when your dog is older is just as precious and important as capturing his first few weeks at home as part of your family.
YOUR OWN PHOTOS
Capturing the everyday moments is just as important as the special memories.
The special memories, the milestones - those are the ones that you might invest in, and ask a professional dog photographer to capture you something that you will treasure forever.
But the everyday moments are just as precious. The moments when your dog gives you THAT look that means he knows you've got a treat. Or when he snuggles up with you in the evening. Or the funny things he does that just make you laugh.
Sometimes you really do just need to grab the camera you have and make memories, whether that's with a point & shoot camera or just your iPhone or Android.
But perhaps you just end up with blurry photos that don't really encompass the memory you want to treasure.
With just a few simple tricks, you can capture those everyday moments and keep them close to your heart. Check out my FREE cheatsheet to help you get better photos of your dog with your smartphone! To find out more, click here: https://sandiepownerphotography.co.uk/top-tips-download/