It wasn’t so very far in my past that I would scoff at a silly animal dressed up in clothes or costumes. In my time photographing the homeless animals of the Roanoke Valley SPCA my opinion has drastically changed. Not only do I use the props, clothing and whatnot, I buy them and bring them in! …. The reality is I continue to do anything and everything I can to show the animals in the best light possible for adoptions. By dressing up the animal, it can help a potential adopter “see” the family in the dog or cat. So you may thing the hats and jewelry are silly, but in the end you did look didn’t you? …. and maybe even smiled a little?
So with the holiday season upon us, we try to fit in a few seasonal themed shots each week. The shelter is able to use these for promos and it can help “expand” the animal’s portfolio. The idea is to keep it simple and fun for the animal. Some will definitely disagree but for the one or two great shots it is worth the effort.
Here are just two of the many found on the adoptions site. Daisy, the sweet dog (Australian Kelpie mix) modeling the stretchy red and green collar complete with bells. Julius, the very serious orange tabby with his festive holiday lights kerchief.
P.S. At no time is the animal’s comfort, safety or emotion ever compromised for the perfect shot. If the animal is in any type of distress over being dressed up simply move on. Not every animal is meant for these type of shots.