I'd love to give you a little advice on how to get ready for a portrait session with your pet. For many people, pets are furry members of the family. It comes as no surprise that they want to include their pets in their portraits. Including your pets in your portrait session does require a little extra preparation but it is certainly doable. Below are a few tips to prepare you for your portrait session with your pet.

To make a portrait session work, you will need to get your pet to sit still and behave. Pets can get very excited when new people are around so let your pet become acquainted with your photographer beforehand. Bring treats and toys that your pet enjoys so that you have something to use to grab their attention if necessary.

Keep a leash or harness ready, just in case. Even though your pet might be well trained, it never hurts to be prepared. You may also want to arrange your poses so you can hold onto your pet securely without it looking like you are hanging on for dear life. Your photographer will help you with this and you really shouldn't worry about leashes or harnesses being visible in your portraits. Portraits are all about capturing a moment in time and if that moment includes your pets leash it's no big deal.

If you know that your portrait session is going to take some time, give your pets the chance to take breaks, walk around and drink water. You won’t be able to force a pet to sit still if they are thirsty or agitated.

As a pet owner you probably know how perceptive your animals are to energy and emotions, so it’s important that you are relaxed when you get to your portrait session. If you really want to keep your pets relaxed too, try and arrange your portrait session in a place where your pet will feel most comfortable such as your garden or a park.

For the best results, try and work with a photographer that has previously worked with animals. This will help make the process of photographing your pets even more enjoyable. I have worked with many furry family members for sometime now and a family portrait without your pet may feel incomplete. I always encourage families to include their pets. We welcomed a mini Schnauzer named Sir Henry Archer III into our family last year and I wouldn't dream of leaving him behind for our annual family portraits. My kids would be lost and I think he's the one who keeps them all in line!

I am full of ideas, so if you want some creative ways to incorporate your family pet into your family portraits I am always open for a chat.