Make Your Dog Insta-Famous with These Photography Tips

Make Your Dog Insta-Famous with These Photography Tips

Photo via Pexels

Post by Shelley Bowling

 

Did you know that merely looking at cute dog pictures can increase people’s well-being? Though we didn’t need research to tell us that, Psychology Today is just one source whose data supports the conclusion that pet photos make us happier. Start spreading joy (and boosting your Instagram following) by employing these doggie photo tips from Paws n Claws Foundation.

Get Strategic About Wrangling Active Pups

If it’s a cute puppy or super-active dog you’re trying to photograph, it can be hard to get them to sit pretty for a picture. Fortunately, there are a few strategies that can help get your dog to cooperate.

One way to slow your dog down is to tire them out with plenty of active play before your photoshoot. Most breeds need a lot of exercise anyway so activities like long walks, tossing treats into the grass for hide-and-seek, and going somewhere new (preferably a park or natural area) are beneficial.

Invest Time in Training Your Dog

Most dog owners teach their dogs’ essential commands for both safety and convenience. If you haven’t yet taught your dog to sit, start there. Chewy recommends spending 15 to 20 minutes per day practicing this skill before moving on to other commands.

You can use commands to get your dog to cooperate during photo shoots, as well as keep them out of trouble when you’re done snapping pictures.

Embrace the Spontaneity

Though wriggly puppies can be challenging to photograph, if your subject simply won’t settle down, going with the flow could create an epic photo. Some blurriness is acceptable if coupled with cuteness and a nice backdrop, but you can also use burst mode to capture multiple shots.

Plus, Instagram lends itself well to video content, and by filming your dog versus photographing, you might capture some amazingly adorable shorts. Then, convert videos to GIFs for free, and make your dog a social media star.

Add Props for More Fun

Incorporating props into your photoshoot is fun for your dog, but it can also add interest to your social media. Your puppy’s favorite toy might interest them long enough for a portrait, but a novel treat or prop could be even more intriguing.

Think about props you might use for a person — clothing items, glasses, hats, lights, balloons, bubbles, and even canine-safe snacks — and get creative. Some of the best Instagram dog accounts feature pets that act like humans, and it works! While you shouldn’t copy another Instagrammer, check out other accounts for inspiration on capturing your doggo’s best angle.

Use Natural Light When Possible

Though you can create ideal photography conditions in any space, heading outdoors is the simplest way to harness light. Observe your dog at different times, and note how the light influences the setting

Any natural lighting, from sun rays via the window to dappled afternoon light under a shade tree, can offer perfect picture-taking opportunities.

Give Perspective a Chance

Your dog probably does plenty of adorable things throughout the day that you could take snapshots of. But if you’re haphazardly snapping from the same angle every time, you might be missing out on some great images for social media.

Changing up the perspective can refresh your photos and add interest to your Instagram grid. Photography Pro recommends trying all angles; from above, from below, low-down (great for small dogs), from the hip, and even via reflections.

Know Your Audience

Though dog photographs can add interest to your Instagram, unless you’re solely promoting your pup, diversity is key. Throwing in an occasional dog photo can fit with any branding, but overdoing it might not delight your audience, depending on your demographic.

Though most influencers focus on creating a cohesive, on-brand Instagram feed, consider what your social media goals are.

Depending on your motivation, your dog’s pics may be the focus of your content or a happy aside you post every once in a while.

Even if everything your dog does is adorable (and Instagram-worthy), it does take some effort to capture their essence via photo. With these tips, you’ll be prepared for your pup to sit, stay, and slay on social media.

 

A Guide to Downsizing Smoothly With Your Pets


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Post by Shelley Bowling

A Guide to Downsizing Smoothly With Your Pets

There are many bonuses to switching to a smaller home, including fewer expenses and upkeep. Downsizing can also be a part of a larger lifestyle switch to a simpler life. If you have pets, however, they won’t see things from quite the same perspective. Your pets, likely, will simply become aware that things are changing rapidly, your house is suddenly chaotic and possibly full of strangers coming in and out, and suddenly they are in a new space that is not only unfamiliar but smaller.

With that in mind, Paws n Claws Foundation shares some guidelines for keeping your furry, scaly, or feathery friend happy during your move, and as you settle in your new, smaller abode.

Figure out wants and needs

When you look for your new residence, have a clear picture of what characteristics are non-negotiable, and which are merely desirable for both you and your pets. For instance, it may be necessary for you to find a new home that is located at a reasonable distance from your place of employment. For your pets, you may need a sizable yard for the dog and perfect corner for your parakeet. In the arena of wants, you may be looking for a home with a particular style that suits your personal aesthetic. For your pets, on the other hand, you may be hoping to find a place that is conveniently located near your favorite park, or your vet.

Determine what you can afford

If you are downsizing to save money, you may be hoping to still have a decent amount of space inside and out. So, check out property values in different neighborhoods, and see what you can reasonably expect to buy in terms of size, location, and amenities.

If you are downsizing to simplify, focus on other characteristics you are looking for when determining what fits your budget. This goes for moving into a smaller rental home or apartment. The good news is that you have plenty of options when it comes to square footage and amenities in apartment complexes: there are a couple dozen available houses for rent in Vero Beach. If you need to get a mortgage to purchase your new home, be sure to read up on the process and acquaint yourself with the going rates, depending on the type of loan you want.

Putting your house on the market

Selling your house can be even more of a headache than hunting for a new one. Find a good agent you can trust, early on, since they’ll take care of a lot of the legwork for you. You will also want to arrange for a home inspection prior to the sale, to better determine how much you can ask. When staging your house for sale, try to keep your pet out of the way, both for the sake of their own stress levels and because it’s better to keep home pictures as neutral as possible.

Preparing your pet for your move

Packing up for a move is never easy or stress-free, but it’s important for you to try to keep the stress element from affecting your pets. Of course, some pets are easy-going and just accept whatever comes their way. Many others are sensitive, however, and find change disruptive. In this case, it might be wise to make arrangements with a pet sitter or kennel to keep your pets safely out of the way of the bustle, on moving day.

Make sure you have all your pet’s favorite foods and comfort items easily accessible and pack extras of anything you’ll need during the move itself. Also, you should make sure you have located a good vet in the area you are moving to, as well as any groomers, sitters, or other pet care providers whose services you may require.

If you need to purchase additional accessories or items for your pet as part of your move, check out product reviews from vets before making a purchase to ensure you choose the safest cage, harness or carrier. You’ll be able to purchase with confidence knowing that a veterinarian has approved a given product.

Other moving day preparations

A smooth moving day takes a lot of prep, beginning months in advance. That’s why it’s critical to make a checklist so you can prioritize accordingly. Start by breaking everything down into manageable tasks. It can all be pretty overwhelming if you leave it until the last minute. But if you write out a schedule of tasks, and check them off methodically, the process will be less stressful for you and for your pet.

This should include finding and contracting with a moving company, decluttering your home, getting rid of junk, donating excess belongings, packing what you intend to take with you, scheduling utility shutoff, and taking care of address changes. For a list of movers, search online for ‘moving companies near me’. You can read reviews from customers of various companies to find out about their quality of service. Once you find a few that look promising, reach out to them to get a quote. Professional movers can make moving days much less stressful.

Keeping your pet happy on moving day

Whether your pets stay with you or with a pet sitter is up to you; you will need to figure out which option will be less disruptive for them and easier for you. Some things you can do to keep your pets calm and happy include setting them up in their own space with their favorite toys or comfort items, taking them for walks, or asking a friend to help by keeping them entertained. When it is time for the actual move, set your pets up comfortably, and have a place prepared for them at your new home, with familiar objects so the new setting is not too jarring.

Settling into a smaller house

Let your pets get used to the new house slowly, one room at a time, so they don’t get overwhelmed and can explore their surroundings on their own terms. Try to reinstate your routine as soon as possible, keeping everything as unchanged as possible, from your prior residence. Make a point to pet-proof your home too. This means keeping cords wrapped up, ensuring no small objects are on the floor and securing anything heavy.

Getting your pets used to your new home may take a little time, so don’t push it. Just stick with them and give them plenty of attention, affection, and support as they get adjusted to things. If possible, try not to leave your pets home alone for very long, during your first few days in your smaller house. If they don’t have the room to move around inside or in the yard that they used to have, try to find a park or other outdoor area where your pets can play and burn off energy.

Downsizing your home doesn’t have to be difficult or traumatic for your pet if you anticipate challenges and plan to meet them, and remain aware of your pet’s needs during the process.

Donate to Paws n Claws Foundation today to support our mission of reducing pet euthanasia and promoting pet adoption!

4 Ways to Grow a Business While Bonding With a New Pet

4 Ways to Grow a Business While Bonding With a New Pet

Post by Shelley Bowling

Whether you bake treats or create artwork, turning your skills into a business is both an exhilarating, and at times
overwhelming, process. If you are welcoming a new animal at the same time, you might wonder how you will find a
balance between your professional endeavors and your precious pet. Following these four tips helps ensure your
creature feels loved while still growing your new business.

Paws-N-Claws Foundation is dedicated to facilitating pet adoption to reduce euthanasia. Make a donation today!

1. Create a Business Plan
One of the best ways to maximize time for your pet is by structuring and organizing your business from the get-go,
thereby preventing any future issues. Improve your chances of success by developing a business plan before selling
your goods or services.

A business plan includes a company description, how your business will be structured, how you will sell your
services, and what financial products and funding are needed. If you need a bank loan, you might be required to
present this information for review. Read over this ZenBusiness – Start a Business Guide to learn more about
planning your business.

2. Market Your Company
As with a solid business plan, the better you market your company from the start, the better your chances of high
sales, which gives you more flexibility in your schedule with your pet. Develop a marketing plan to promote your
new business.

According to one report, the best-performing forms of digital marketing are social media, search engine
optimization, pay-per-click, and email. Social media and email marketing are fantastic options as they do not cost
any money. Simply create free business pages on social media sites, and use email templates to communicate with
consumers.

No matter which avenue you choose, be sure to create a well-designed logo for your business. Strategic logos create
brand awareness, make a strong first impression and separate you from competitors.

3. Schedule Pet Time
Whether your animal is older and slow or a young pup full of energy, nearly every pet needs some bonding time
with its owners, especially if he or she is new in the home. Penciling in time to spend with your new pet prevents
you from consistently missing one-on-one time with him or her.

For example, if you have a social dog, schedule play dates with other friends and their pooches. Another option is
taking your pet to a dog park to run around and meet new friends. If he or she has social or behavior issues, pet
training classes are a great way to bond and teach manners.

4. Invest in Toys
Even with scheduled play or snuggle time, there will be moments you need to be alone to focus on work. Make sure
your pet has plenty of toys to keep him or her entertained during this time.

If your pet hangs out by your desk during the day, get toys that are quiet for your office. The last thing you need is a
squeaky toy going off during an important phone call. If you have a fenced-in yard, a doggie door is a wonderful
addition to the home; your pet can go out and play whenever he or she wants.

No matter where you are at in your entrepreneurial journey, finding ways to balance your time with a new pet can be
tricky. Following these four tips can help you dedicate time and attention to both your job and your animal.

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