Do I Have Enough Photos Of My Dog?

So, last week this happened: the shit hit the fan. Hard!

The office manager (i.e. my Yorkshire Terrier Aidan) had been a bit picky about his food again, not unusual since he fancies himself a gourmet. Only this time, he was getting picky about every new “menu” on offer within 24 hours, so I booked him a vet’s appointment.

Monday morning came and he totally refused his breakfast. Very unusual. By the time we got to the vets an hour later, his kidneys were not coping, he had water on the lungs and his heart was struggling.

My little boy was fading away. To understand just how terrifying this was, you need to know that office manager is not his first job with me.

Many years ago, when I was fleeing an abusive relationship and money was extremely tight, my anxiety levels reached crippling proportions. Aidan sensed when an anxiety attack was looming, and he would go crazy, jump on top of me, lick me and bark until my nerves were back on terra firma. He did an amazing job as mental health assistance dog and saved me from a lot of pain. He was never trained for it, he just did it.

Despite having spent many happy years with him since then, during which his “therapy services” were not required, realizing I might lose him that very day got me wondering, do I have enough to remember him by? The answer was no. It was no, because I have not taken any photos of him these past 3 months.

No big deal, you might think, since I got thousands of photos taken over 12 years. But just last month I noticed how different he looks form a year ago. I have photos of his greying goatie beard, but none of his moustache going all white. He looks like he just drank milk.

Look at those pants! Not a typical portrait photo, but typically him, and that’s what I like to document.

I nearly missed my chance to document his cute milk tache. Nearly! Thanks to the amazing work of his vet and nurses, he is over the worst. He is even starting to eat again. Only doggie junk food though. I can’t blame him for that. I am setting a poor example. Ask me “Crisps or broccoli?” and all you will get is a frown. I mean, is that even a question!

Apart from pampering him senseless, I am also planning a photo shoot for him. Lifestyle photo shoot sounds like all action and fast pace, but it doesn’t have to be. A senior dog photo shoot is still fun, just at their pace.

Aidan loves beaches, so we will be heading to a beach in West Sussex for his photo shoot. Maybe we will just go for a slow walk or have a picnic.

His days of speed and outrunning much bigger dogs are over. I am glad we got photos of those! But now it is time to document how he enjoys life as a senior dog. The photos will be just as beautiful and meaningful, because he will be on the beach enjoying himself. His ears will be pricked up and his eyes will be lit up with joy.

Of course, I will share the photos of Aidan’s senior dog beach photo shoot with you on Instagram and Facebook.

If you are thinking about doing a photo shoot with your senior dog, but don’t want a posed portrait shoot, give me a call or drop me a line. I would love to help you figure out what activity and location your dog would love their photo taken at.

Update: sadly, he got worse again before he got better. But when he finally was well enough, we made a day out of his photo shoot, and he loved it! You can see the photos here.