Wednesday 6 July 2011

How to take the perfect photo of your pet, plus the chance to win a Dulux dog !

This has just popped into my inbox and made me go awww. I've always loved the Dulux dog, so I'm really pleased to see that after a 15 year break, he's come back to our screens. I've always thought he was really cute, although I have to say that the photo I just uploaded of Juliette with Didou (see below) as a puppy is very cute too ! Scroll down to the end to find out how to join in and if you're in the first 50 entrants, you can win your very own Dulux dog (just a toy though !). There's also some great advice on taking photos of your pets from a professional photographer (I hope @needaphone is reading this, not that she needs any help. Rollie is a natural !)


And they say never work with animals or children ! … Dulux gathers 50 Old English Sheepdogs for momentous photo shoot

Ever tried to get the picture perfect shot of the family with pets but struggled to keep your fluffy Fido’s attention or get your feline friend to show the slightest bit of interest? Well now’s your chance to find out the tricks of the trade. We’ve been given a sneaky peak behind the scenes of how a professional animal photo shoot works.

For the last 50 years the Old English Sheepdog has proudly held the top spot as every painter’s best mate. First introduced in 1961, the Dulux dog became a permanent fixture on our TV screens for over thirty years and since then Old English Sheepdogs have won a place in the hearts of the nation. To celebrate this special anniversary, Dulux gathered together fifty of the big loveable canines at a recent Old English Sheepdog meet for the largest group photo of the breed ever organised in the UK.

Dulux worked with internationally renowned animal photographer Richard Austin and TV animal behaviourist Amy Hatcher to create a series of stunning shots of fifty of the ‘Dulux dogs’.

Amy Hatcher comments: “Such a large gathering of Old English Sheepdogs has never been attempted before and it was touch and go as to whether we’d be able to pull it off. It took a bit of work to get them picture perfect but Old English Sheepdogs are really good natured dogs and all those on the shoot were trained show dogs so responded well to our to commands. We think the finished shots really pays testament to this wonderful British icon.”

Richard and Amy gave us some top tips on how to create the picture perfect shot of your pets:

1. Preparation - Scope out the shot you want to take in advance. If you want an action shot make sure you’ve got plenty of space for your pets to run about and play. If you want to do a combination of portrait and action photos it’s best to take the portraits first. It’s far harder to get your animals to sit calmly for a portrait if you’ve got them excited dashing around so draw up a list of the types of photos you want to create ahead of your shoot.

2. Distraction - Whatever animal you’re photographing distraction is key. Some of the best wildlife shots are taken by creating noises or visual distractions to grab the animals attention or spook them into action. If for example your dog has a favoured ball then get a member of the family to throw the ball in your direction so that your pooch runs towards you for plenty of opportunities to take great shots of him chasing his toy.

3. Stay firm – Remember to be firm and discipline your pets with commands. If your pet thinks this is a game they’re more likely to get over excited and make the results of your photo shoot disappointing.

4. Reward – If your pet has followed your commands and you’re getting great results don’t forget to reward them by petting them or giving them treats. When you ask them to repeat the previous exercise they’ll be looking for the next treat so are far more likely to respond to your commands and give you the photo you want.

5. Patience is a virtue – Lastly stay calm and patient. Even for the professionals photo shoots with animals can take several hours to get right. If you’re struggling to get the right shot straight away it might be worth resting your pets for half an hour or so before trying again.

For a sneaky peak behind the scenes of the recent photo shoot visit or watch the video below :

To find out more about the Dulux dogs who have inspired generations of decorators for 50 years and view the ad go to

If you would like a chance to win a Dulux dog soft toy, simply upload a picture of you or your family with your dog to the ‘Snap A Dog’ page at  The first 50 people to upload their pictures will win the prize. Good luck !

Other blogposts you may be interested in :


  1. Some good tips but my cats never face the way I want them to or stay together when I want to take a photo of them both!


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