Dog Shelter photography

May 27, 2024  •  8 Comments

"Making a difference" is something that is very important to me and this can be directed to a number of things.  Making a difference to a person, a place, a charity or as I will discuss here, animals.  I love animals of all kinds, and I have documented a lot of it in my nature photography.  But I have been a lifelong dog owner and dogs are near and dear to me.  So for the past 6 months I have merged my love of photography with my passion of making a difference to dogs...namely "shelter dogs."

I reached out to a local dog shelter called The Simon Foundation to see if they needed any help with photographing their dogs so they could put pictures of them on their website with the aim of increasing their chances of being adopted.  The timing worked out well since their current photographer was no longer involved with their organization.  They were very appreciative of my offer to volunteer my time and talent to their cause and we set up my first photo session in which I photographed 6 dogs.  I e-mailed them the photos and was thrilled that they were happy with them!

Fast forward 6 months and I have now photographed around 60 dogs and about 20 cats!  The "Making a Difference" motto has affected the dog shelter as well as myself.  The Simon Foundation's adoption rate has increased and many of the animals that have been living here for a long time have finally gone to their new homes with their new owners that will give them much needed love and care.  For me, it is incredibly rewarding to know that I played a part in changing these animal's lives for the better.  Even though I am volunteering my time, I take this very seriously.  I want to completely empty the shelters here so I try to capture images of the dogs and cats to make them look their best.  My goal is for a potential pet adopter to get so emotionally connected with a photo that they feel drawn to come see the animal in person.

To see all of the dog photos I have taken at this shelter, click HERE.  For cats, click HERE.

Scroll down to see some of my favorite dog pics from the last 6 months!

 

 


Bruiser, along with his brother Emmett (see below), are two puppies that were just adopted together!
 

 

 

Captain Jack is a purebred Doberman who is intelligent and loves to play with toys.

 

 

 

Emmett, along with his brother Bruiser(see above), are two puppies that were just adopted together!

 

 

 

Forrest is very affectionate and loves to go on walks.

 

 

 

Gemma is a pit bull-terrier mix that loves running and hiking.

 

 

 

Gretzky is a boxer mix that is a little bit anxious but would do well in a quiet home.

 

 

 

King is a pit bull terrier mix who knows basic commands and is very alert when treats are involved!

 

 

 

Luke has an outgoing personality and I was happy to hear that he was adopted the day after I photographed him!

 

 

 

Merlin is a shepherd mix who came from South Africa, was trained as a working dog and knows many commands.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Pancake had a puppy here at the shelter and both have been adopted together by the same owner!

 

 

 

Pitch was a favorite among the volunteers at the shelter and was adopted soon after I photographed him!

 

 

 

Princess Peach is a husky puppy and was adopted shortly after my photos of her went "live" on the shelter's website!

 

 

 

Sansa is a purebred Husky who loves to play and has lots of energy.

 

 


Comments

Greg and Sandy R.(non-registered)
It is quite easy to see from these fantastic photos that you are a technically skilled photographer but I believe you possess another skill that to many people may not be as readily apparent. I am sure that since most of these dogs have endured some terrible experiences before entering the shelter, they may not be very easy to work with. Fear, aggression, shyness, withdrawal and confusion I bet are some of the behaviors that these dogs may exhibit when you meet them. It seems Oscar that somehow you make a connection with each dog to the point where you manage to capture an image where they are more at ease, relaxed and dare I say, happy! I can see that you make a conscious decision to leave out all human made elements from your photos. There are no concrete walls, parking lots or animals behind steel bars as if they are in prison. Your photos show the dogs in a natural environment without any people since the dog is the intended subject of the picture. All of this combined makes it easy to understand why these abandoned animals are getting adopted. Please accept a big heartfelt "thank you" from me and my wife for volunteering your time to help this shelter.
T.J. Gabrielli(non-registered)
These photos are impressive! Looks like they would be right at home in a magazine. Great work Oscar.
Chris(non-registered)
As someone who volunteers at a dog shelter myself, our photos are not even close to these! If we weren't located on the west coast I'd ask you to photograph our dogs for us lol.

Chris in California
Abigail Raposo(non-registered)
Oscar, these photos are breathtaking! These are not rescue dog photos, these are professional portrait photos! You've captured great poses, vibrant colors, striking expressions and even happy laughter (just look at Luke!). God Bless you for donating your talent to such a worthy cause.
K. Tomlinson(non-registered)
They are all so cute I want to adopt them all! Good work Oscar!
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