You want family photos and are trying to decide if you should include your pet. Animals can be such a huge part of our families, bringing so much joy and laughter! Of course, the reasons to include your favorite pet can be endless, but here are my top 4. Plus a bonus! Keep reading to find a list of tips for safe and stress-free pet sessions.

"Until one has loved an animal, a part of one's soul remains unawakened." -Anatole France

Reason #1: You have a new pet to celebrate

A new pet can bring so much joy to your entire family! And that is worth celebrating. Talk about a good way to get genuine smiles and laughter in your family photos. These are moments that you want to capture and be able to look back on. Every family pet touches your family in a unique way. Taking the time to get family photos with your new pet can be a fun experience for the whole family!

Reason #2: Your pet is towards the end of their lifespan

Unfortunately, pets just don't live forever. They bless us in so many ways during their lifetime, and then we just can't help but tell stories about them after they are gone. If your family pet is towards the end of life, take the time to document how much they mean to you. You will walk away with images that capture the connection you share, memories that last a lifetime!

This "dog mom" knew that her babies were no longer babies and wanted to remember every detail about them. We had an amazing session just enjoying the dogs and their personalities. And she will treasure these photos way into the future!

Reason #3: Your pet is also adjusting to the new baby

As your family grows and changes, so do your pets! They know when mom is expecting, and they have to adjust along with the rest of the family. Including them in Maternity or Newborn Photos can add another layer of meaning and help tell your family story. Don't miss the opportunity to capture how much the family dog enjoys getting in the mix with all the siblings and the new baby.

Reason #4: You live on a farm and have baby animals

Because what is cuter than kids with kids, right?! Whether you live on a farm or have a farm you can go to for a photo session, kids with baby animals are just precious. It is hard for a child to not smile while they hold something so small and cute. The springtime miracle of life on the farm and your family's joy at observing it is absolutely worth capturing! Farm sessions and all of their beautiful chaos are one of my favorites.

So now that you want to include your pets in your next family photos, here are some tips for safety and a successful photo session:

  1. Consider your pet's personality. Make sure they are comfortable around strangers.
  2. Arrange for a location that your animal is familiar with.
  3. Expect to take extra time to let your pet warm up to the photographer.
  4. Bring treats!
  5. Bring along a friend or family member that can hold the animal when they are not in the photos.
  6. Schedule the pictures that include your animal at the beginning of the session.
  7. Have a safe place for your pet when they are finished so your family can finish the session.
  8. Be flexible and go with the flow!
  9. Enjoy your pet!
  10. Safety first! Never compromise on safety to get a certain photo.

As a family photographer, I love to include pets whenever possible! These are just a few of the reasons to bring them along for family photos. I hope this helps you feel more confident to include that special fur baby next time you get pictures done. Don't hesitate to ask about pet sessions here in Southern Oregon. I would love to help you capture the connection that you share in memories that last a lifetime!