Pet Lifestyle

6 Expert Tips for Photographing Dogs at Home

Follow these simple tips to capture Insta-worthy photos of your dog like a pro.

Want to take good photos of your dog at home? Today we’re sharing a few expert dog photography tips to help you out.

And take it from us: as well as being the editors here at Pretty Fluffy, we’re professional pet photographers too!

You’d be surprised just how easy it can be to take amazing Insta-worthy photos of your dog at home. The best part is, you don’t always need a professional camera to perfectly capture your pup’s personality and adorable features. Once you’ve practiced a few of these tips, your smartphone will do just fine.

Ready to join the pupparazzi? Read on for our top 6 tips for photographing dogs at home!

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 6 Dog Photography Tips to Take the Best Photos of Your Dog at Home


6 Dog Photography Tips You Can Try at Home

 6 Expert Tips for Photographing Dogs

#1. Work with natural light

Natural light is the answer to capturing your dog’s best features when at home. Soft, filtered light is best!

When photographing your dog at home, position them near a window or door where they are close to a natural light source. Just be careful of harsh sunlight though – this can easily be diffused and softened by hanging up a thin white sheet across the window.

Generally speaking, we don’t recommend using artificial lighting such as lamps and down lights. These can have the unwanted effect of altering the natural colour tone of your space and your dog, and create unwanted shadows.

Besides, it’s always fun to find nice pockets of light around your home to get creative with!

Stylish mini pomeranian with bow tie - 6 Expert Tips for Photographing Dogs

#2. Focus on your dog’s eyes

We all know the popular saying, “Eyes are the window to the soul.” And this certainly applies to our furry best friends! That’s why focusing on your dog’s eyes is a beautiful, effective way to capture an insight into their personality and soul.

And if you really want to bring a depth of emotion and connection to your photographs, look for catchlights – those little white reflections of light in your dog’s eyes.

Capturing these can easily be done by having your dog face a window, door or natural light source to create the reflection.

 Portrait of maltese x shitzhu - Tips for Photographing Dogs at Home

#3. Get their attention

This can be done in several ways. While most pet parents use dog treats as their go-to, we generally prefer not to. Controversial we know, but we swear by it!

After all, what we love most about in-home pet photography is capturing a dog’s true personality at their most calm and content. Using treats can switch your dog’s mood from easy-going to intense in under a second, which is reflected in the photos.

So, what else can you do to get your dog looking at the camera? Try holding a toy right by the camera lens. Or, hold their attention by placing the toy in front of their nose, then bring it back slowly to just above the lens.

Honestly, you don’t even need a toy…any random item around the house can work. At many of our shoots, Shell pulls out her lip balm and taps it on the camera. Dogs are often so mesmerised by it as they haven’t seen it before!

Making strange noises works a treat too, but if you don’t fancy your skills you can always go with an animal sounds or squeaky toy app (we have four of these on our phone!)

Aussie shepherd on tan leather couch - 6 Expert Tips for Photographing Dogs at Home

#4. Get down to their level

One of the best ways to capture your dog’s features is by getting up close, and down to their level.

If your dog is laying on the ground, lay flat on the floor, stomach down, and position your camera or smartphone in between the two of you. If they are sitting on the couch, crouch down so you’re at the same height. 

Taking a photo from your dog’s perspective can really bring depth to the image. It’s like you’re seeing the world just as they do. 

 French bull dog giving puppy eyes - 6 Tips to Take the Best Photos of Your Dog at Home

#5. Declutter your background

Your dog may be the cutest on the block, but if your space is cluttered with bright or unsightly objects such as clothes or coffee cups, these will detract from the main star of the show.

That’s why it’s always a good idea to quickly scan your environment and background before taking your photo, and declutter if necessary. 

Trust us on this…you don’t want to take an amazing shot, only for it to be ruined by something in the background you hadn’t noticed earlier!

Black and brown toy poodle on bed - 6 Simple pet photography tips

#6. Work with your dog’s mood

In our opinion, the most beautiful photos of dogs happen naturally. Therefore, the best photos will of course depend on your dog’s mood!

Try to be patient and spend some time watching your dog going about their day. When the moment is right (it may be a yawn, a stretch, or glancing at you) then start snapping away.

Capturing natural, spontaneous moments will reflect your dog’s true temperament and personality, resulting in a beautiful photograph you’ll want to proudly show off to the world.

Cute toy poodle photo - 6 at home pet photography tips

Before you go…!

We thought you might love these pet photography articles too:

Or you can find more tips and information at our Pet Photography section.

 6 Professional Tips to Take the Best Photos of Your Dog at Home

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