Including Your Dog in Your Engagement Photos | Engagement Session Tips

If you have a dog, your engagement photos might not feel complete without including them! Dogs have a special place in our hearts and are a part of the family. So why not include your furry companion in your engagement photos? Not only does it make for a great memory, but it can also add a unique element to your photos. When it comes to including your dog in your engagement photos, here are a few tips to ensure that both you and your dog are happy during your engagement session and you get the most out of your engagement shoot.

Tips to Include your Dog in Engagement Portraits

Talk To Your Photographer Ahead of Time

You definitely don’t want to just show up to your session with your dog. Your photographer has spent time scouting and planning your engagement session.  Bringing a dog could throw a huge wrench in those plans, especially if the location isn’t pet friendly. Instead, communicate with your photographer well in advance. In doing so, they can plan how best to accommodate you and your dog and ensure you get photos you’ll love!

Ask Someone to Help With your Dog

If you plan to bring your dog to your engagement session, ask a friend or family member to tag along to help take care of your dog. Your dog won’t be in every picture and having someone there to help while you’re taking photos of just the two of you or even take your pup home half way through is extremely beneficial. You definitely won’t be relaxed if you are trying to watch your dog while smiling for the camera! Having someone there to watch your dog will help your pup stay calm and comfortable and ensure that their needs are met, whether they need a drink of water or a bathroom break.

Arrive Early 

It’s also important to arrive early to your photo shoot. Arriving early gives your pup a chance to acclimate to their new surroundings and get their energy out before the photo shoot begins.  Try to go for a brief walk, play fetch, or perform another activity before the session to help tire your dog out.  

A worn-out dog is more likely to behave during your photoshoot. Even if your dog seems super relaxed at home, they sometimes get a burst of energy at a new location. If your dog has already gotten their energy out, they will generally be more responsive to commands, ensuring you get great photos.

Bring Along Plenty of Supplies For Your Dog

Bringing treats or toys along are a great way to reward your pup and keep their attention during the session. Bring anything you think will help them to stay happy and comfortable.  I recommend bringing bottled water and a small bowl in case your dog gets thirsty. 

Invest in Neutral Collar and Leash 

When it comes to your engagement photos, it’s important to make sure that you and your pup look great. To avoid any color clashing, I recommend investing in a neutral colored collar and leash. Many leashes come in bright or bold colors and may clash with your outfits or the scenery distracting from the photo. Take your dog’s fur color into consideration too! Neutral colors, such as white, black, or tan, look great in photos and can help highlight your dog’s fur and provide a more cohesive look!  You could also get a cute little doggy bowtie or bandana if you want to dress up your dog a little! 

Bring a Lint Roller

You should always brush your dog before leaving the house to get any loose fur off, but if your dog sheds a lot, bring a lint roller! Lint rollers make it easy to remove dog hair from your clothes in between shots.  Even if your dog doesn’t shed that much, I still recommend bringing a lint roller, as some dogs shed more if they are nervous. Being in a new or different location, around new people like your photographer, might make your dog a little nervous and cause them to shed more than usual. However, the more relaxed you are, the more relaxed your dog will feel!

Including your pup in your engagement photos is a great way to share your love and include this important member of your family. With a little bit of preparation, you can make the most of your engagement photos with your dog and create some unique and memorable photos. Not to mention, the photos will be filled with love, laughter, and the best kind of smiles.

Amber Dawn Photography specializes in light and airy, natural, and romantic wedding photography.  With a penchant for estate weddings, Amber strives to create timeless images that reflect the romanticism in soft hues, capturing for posterity the many facets of the love that is the reason for the celebration.  To view more of Amber’s work, click here to view her wedding portfolio. If you are interested in learning more about working with Amber, please inquire with her today! 

Here are more resources and tips for your engagement photos!

When to Schedule Engagement Portraits | Engagement Session Scheduling Tips

How to Prepare For Your Engagement Session

Choosing The Right Location For Your Engagement Session

9 Styling Tips for Engagement Photos | What to Wear to your Engagement Session 

Reasons to Capture your Engagement Session at your Wedding Venue

5 Reasons To Do An Engagement Session With Your Wedding Photographer

The Amber Dawn Wedding Photography Experience | What To Expect


Including Your Dog in Your Engagement PhotosWhy you should include your dog in engagement sessions




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Philadelphia & Bucks County, Pennsylvania, photographer specializing in Wedding + Engagement Photography