One of the biggest concerns I hear from pet owners is their pet is very rambunctious and energetic and they are worried that they won't be able to get the pictures they want. No worries! This is very normal to have these concerns and don't worry because I got you covered! Here are three things I share with my private clients that help make the perfect pet photo session.
Exercise is not only good for your pet but for you too!
Walk Your Dog
Take a walk with your dog about an hour before the session. This will calm them down a bit and they will be more inclined to follow instructions. Just make sure to not walk him/her too much. You don't want them to be sleeping! A sleepy pet doesn’t like to open their eyes for a photo ;)
Mental Exercise Is A Must
Offer a mental exercise before the session. Dogs misbehave because they can be bored. They need to be stimulated! Offer reward-based training so that they can feel well-exercised mentally and not so bored again. Here are a few easy mental exercises that my clients have used successfully in the past:
- Mental Exercise 1: One type of mental exercise is a doggy board game. These kinds of games feature a number of obstacles your dog must complete in order to get a treat. Some incorporate a group of pegs that you hide treats under for your dog to find, while others involve a piece of plastic that the dog has to rotate to find the treat. Puzzle toys also provide mental stimulation and treats!
- Mental Exercise 2: Hide and Seek! This simple game is perfect for dogs. it keeps them stimulated. When they do find you, reward them with a treat.
- Mental Exercise 3: Raw bones provide a great deal of stimulation for dogs. Your dog has to focus on the bone while chewing on it, which makes the gears in his head turn. Remember to always supervise your dog when he/she is chewing.
- Mental Exercise 4: Sports! Dog sports such as flyball and agility are fun. They encourage thinking and provide a bonding experience.
TOYS, TOYS, TOYS
Bring a toy to the session, like a ball or Frisbee. This will keep them entertained and focused on the task at hand. Also, by giving them some exercise right at the beginning of the session, it will allow them to feel more inclined to take some posed shots at the end! You will get both candid playful pictures and posed pictures! My favorite is the Frisbee in different colors – it makes for fun playful pictures ;-)
I hope that gave you some furtastic advice! I know how frustrating it can be to go out to a session with a pet that doesn't follow your commands. On the bright side, having a dog that can be a little rambunctious can make the best candid photos! Also, an extra trip I have for you is to when at home only reward good behavior. Do not give attention to your pet when they behave badly. The more rewards (like treats) you give to good behavior, the more likely they will be good!
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