5 Tips You Need To Photograph Senior Pets

Updated: Jun 13

Only the lucky ones in life would experience an unexplainable bond with a senior pet. We often see adorable puppies and kittens taking over the internet. Still, elderly pets deserve just as much – if not more – love and attention. And they deserve to have their photos taken and framed up on your wall.

No matter how senior your pet is, they have all developed their own unique, loveable markings or features. Document the soulful eyes, the toothless goofy smiles, and patches of white across their face.

Here are five tips on how to photograph your senior pets:

Let them ease up


Cat on a bed being stroked by an elderly woman at home.

Elderly woman stroking and petting a cat on a bed by ramonespelt, 123RF.


Make sure your pet is comfortable. Your pet’s relaxation is the most important thing. We can tell when a human is tense or ridden with anxiety in photos; the same goes for pets.

Follow their body language to gauge if your pet is comfortable or stressed. It also helps to understand your pet’s favorite spots and preferences and let them get used to the camera and shutter sounds before snapping away. If your pet wants to retreat to their comfy bed after sitting out in the sun, let them.

If a senior pet isn’t very mobile anymore, don’t force them to run around the field just for a photo. It’s good to remember that you don’t have to go to a photography studio for a good photo shoot. Sometimes the best locations are where your subject – in this case, your senior pet – feels most at home. 

Senior pets tend to have weakened eyesight and hearing and can get disoriented easily, so be patient and follow their pace! If you see any signs of anxiety, back off. 

Capture their unique personality


Cat sitting like a loaf in front of a laptop screen.

Cat sitting in front of a laptop by osobystist, 123RF.


Every pet is an individual. They come with their quirks and peculiarities that make them unique. Photographing these little moments will stir up great fond memories in the future.

Does your senior cat love bath time? Does your dog love to cuddle up with its favorite toy every night for bed? Whether it’s them sleeping in a funny position in their special little corner, camping next to you whenever you watch television, or their funny expressions when catching a frisbee. These are all moments to remember your pets for years to come. 

Unlike the young ones, senior pets have a different demeanor to them. Instead of being high energy and excited all the time, senior pets have a touch of seasoned calmness that might just be their old age catching up to them. There’s so much beauty in that, be sure to capture it.

Get in the photo


Happy dog and owner posing and hugging a field of flowers.

Dog hugging owner in a spring flower meadow by ksuksa, 123RF.


Even if you absolutely despise being in front of the camera, having a portrait taken with your pets is something you wouldn’t want to miss out on. 

There are many subtle ways to be in a photo without showing face too if you’re camera shy. It could be a kiss on your pet’s cheek or your hand holding its paws. If you don’t have anyone to take the photo for you, set up a self-timer and let it snap away as you and your pet do your favorite activities together. Just be natural.


Elderly man on a park bench reading with his two dogs and a cat.

Elderly man with dogs and cat on a park bench by budabar, 123RF.


These photos can be little slices of life, which is a priceless thing to capture. Your pets are only here for a part of your life. But for them, you might be their whole life. We can’t recommend this enough.

Capture their age


Close-up shot of senior dog sleeping.

Sleeping dog’s fur and eyelashes close-up by akchamczuk, 123RF.


You may want to remember the moments when they had buckets of energy, but senior pets are seniors – very well-loved seniors. Not every pet has the luck and opportunity to grow old in a loving family, and that’s something worth remembering and celebrating. 


Close-up shot of cat whiskers, cat fur, and nose.

Cat whiskers, nose, and fur close-up by svetikovav, 123RF.


Zoom in on their whiskers and eyelashes that have turned white over the years. Remember their blue-tinted, cloudy eyes that track you when you prepare food in the kitchen. Or how they slowly roll over for a belly rub. 

Document their day-to-day


Top view of dog sleeping peacefully on a quilt in bed.

Dog sleeping peacefully on a quilt by lindsayhelms, 123RF.


Sometimes your favorite moments with your pets are the simplest ones. For example, cuddling up together before bed, waiting at the door when you get home from work or walking their favorite route around the block. It could also be essential moments like giving them their insulin dosage of the day.

Photos of your senior pets don’t have to be extravagant. After all, if you have a senior pet, it’s likely that these have become a part of your daily routine, and it is precisely these quiet moments that you will remember the most. It’s also where they feel the most comfortable. 


Disabled senior dog standing using a dog wheelchair with someone on a road.

Disabled senior dog with a dog wheelchair by akimovs, 123RF.


Don’t wait too long

Sometimes your favorite moments with your pets are the simplest ones. For example, cuddling up together before bed, waiting at the door when you get home from work or walking their favorite route around the block. It could also be essential moments like giving them their insulin dosage of the day.

Photos of your senior pets don’t have to be extravagant. After all, if you have a senior pet, it’s likely that these have become a part of your daily routine, and it is precisely these quiet moments that you will remember the most. It’s also where they feel the most comfortable. 


Happy dog wearing a birthday party hat and receiving a cupcake with a candle.

Happy dog wearing a birthday party hat by seventyfour74, 123RF.


 

If you’re a dog owner: There are other ways to photograph them too, especially if they’re young! Check out these ideas on how to make your dog model for photos. While you’re at it, be one step ahead in your content creation with this guide on trending keywords for the month of April!

#animallover #seniorpetphotography #petphotography #animalphotography #doglovers #oldpets #catlovers

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