Puppy Photography

Our Top 4 Tips for taking pawsome puppy pics!

 Ever wanted to capture your puppy in the pawfect photo but frustrated by the lighting conditions or when your puppy decides it’s suddenly camera shy!? We can relate! Here at Banksia Park Puppies, we take many puppy photos per week for our website and customers, and we usually need to work with whatever Mother Nature decides on any given day and the personality of each puppy. We don’t have any professional gear or fancy setups, usually just a basic DSLR camera, the subject ie. the puppy and location ie. the park. We are sometimes asked by our Banksia Park Community for tips on how to take good photos of dark coloured puppies and puppies in general, so we thought we would help you out! We definitely aren’t professionals but our years of puppy photography experience will certainly get you started – all you need is your puppy/dog, any camera of choice, a location, and our Top 4 Tips!
Lighting
Time of Day
Position
Persuasion
Read on for our 4 Top Tips plus a BPP Top Tip & Insight to help take your puppy photography to the next level:

Tip1

Tip 1. Lighting

This is one of the most important tips for capturing a great snap of your puppy as well as for photography in general! The best lighting conditions are: light shade, overcast and sunny.

Light/open shade:

This means on the edge of a shady area just before the full-sun area. Light shade areas can either be under a tall tree, shade cloth/sail, verandah or near a building. When your puppy moves deeper into the shaded area you can risk losing its features due to low lighting and black puppies can ‘disappear’ in the dark background. Unfortunately, mosquitoes love the shade as well especially on a warm sunny day so be prepared with some insect repellant. Mozzies usually aren’t a problem for puppies with thick coats but keep an eye out for any that try to get into your puppies delicate areas.

Overcast:

Is when the sun is covered by clouds or sometimes smoke/pollution. This is one of the best weather conditions for capturing details in puppies! Overcast conditions produce soft lighting instead of the contrasting strong lighting and dark shadows on a full-sun day! Sometimes overcast days means rain which is not always great for your camera! It is fine for your puppy/dog to experience being rained-on and most of the time they will enjoy it – just be mindful that your puppy is fully dried-off on a cold/rainy day!

Sunny:

A Sunny day always make a photo look warm, bright and cheery! The light is great for not only showing up most puppy features but also capturing the glistening highlights in their fur, eyes, and whiskers! Try to avoid a full-sun aspect especially on hot Summer’s days which can cause your puppy to over-heat and become dehydrated.

These cute Cavoodle siblings have been positioned under a single large tree. As you can see in this photo the puppies are in an open-shaded position just on the edge of where the shade meets the light. This means that it isn’t too shaded/dark but also not too bright/glary from full-sun! This light-shade position means that details are captured in the puppies fur, eyes etc. without harsh dark shadows. This photoshoot was in March (at the start of Autumn) which is still fairly sunny and warm. Because of the warm/sunny weather, it was taken in the evening between 3 and 4pm which means that the sun and light were softer than in the middle of the day and of course cooler in temperature!


Tip2

Tip 2. Time of Day

Sometimes the time of day cannot be controlled especially when your pooch has pulled a super cute pose and you need to capture it asap! Whether you have been selective about the time of day or not we will help you out with the what works best during that time!

Sunrise:

This is a magical time of day when the sun slowly emerges from the horizon and produces a warm and gentle light source! Some mornings may even have the added bonus of mist which can make for an interesting/mysterious photo and your puppy will look magical!

Morning:

Photos in an open area are pawfect for this time of day! The light is still soft during the morning which will capture nice details of your puppy and you won’t need to use a shaded area.

Midday:

The middle of the day is generally too sunny and bright (unless overcast) but is a great time to use light/open shade! If you need to take photos this time of day (especially during hot Summer days) pose your puppy under trees, a verandah or shade sail. It is also a good time of day if you like photography or black and white photography with high contrast ie. strong lights/whites with strong darks/shadows.

Afternoon:

This time of day is overall a good time for puppy photos! During Summer it can sometimes still be quite hot with strong light but is a great time of day to capture the glistening highlights in your puppy’s fur, eyes and whiskers.

Evening/Sunset:

Evenings are another amazing time of day for puppy photography enthusiasts. A sky and horizon filled with warm colours and soft warm light make puppy photos look semi-pro! This is a great time of day to capture the detail of your puppy as well as have a beautiful backdrop!

Night:

Nighttime can, unfortunately, be too dark for puppy photography and result in a blurry dark photo. However this can be avoided by using the flash option on your camera/phone, a slow shutter speed to capture the most amount of light or the best and easiest option is taking your puppy inside and using home lighting as your light source and furnishings as your backdrop!

Seasons:

Puppy photography can be practiced all year round but our personal favorite seasons are Autumn and Spring! The lighting during these times is favorable as it is generally softer than Summer and lighter/brighter than Winter. Autumn has the added bonus of a backdrop of Autumnal colours/leaves and Spring has beautiful flowers and fresh green grass!

This photo of a gorgeous Cavador puppy was taken in the morning between 9-10am, early April. It was a beautiful time of day as the sun was peeping through the trees in the park. In that particular spot, it was still a bit too shady so the puppy was located where soft light was streaming through the trees. The surrounding area was shaded so the puppy became the feature and her light coloured fur and pink harness really stood-out against the darker background.


Tip3

Tip 3. Position

Your puppy’s pose and position can take your photography from paw to pawsome! It’s all very well to pick the best time of day and lighting but then forget to your pose your pooch in a flattering position or realise that your black Cavoodle magically disappeared into a dark coloured background. To avoid fluffy-butt pics or puppy-chameleons here are some tips to help you out!

Puppy Position/Pose:

A good way to position your pooch is to face it towards the light source. This will enable your puppy’s beautiful facial features to be highlighted and visible in the photo. Facing your puppy forward like a portrait is the most well known and flattering position! When you and your puppy get confident you can try different poses such as side pose, action shot, sleeping pose (easy-peasy) etc.

Background/Backdrop:

Backgrounds are often overlooked and understated but can make a big difference to the overall vibe. They can make a puppy either stand out and become the feature subject or recede and blend in with the surroundings. Here at Banksia Park Puppies, we like to use green grass, trees, and our park environment as our background/backdrop and theme. Not only are these a part of our puppies upbringing and our business brand but this backdrop enables all coat colours and puppy breeds to stand out and be the star!

Indoors:

We mainly take puppy photos outside using natural light and the natural environment but there are times and weather conditions where this is undesirable and uncomfortable for our puppies so indoor photography is required! Our indoor set up is basic but gets the job done so we are unable to recommend a professional set up but here are some basic tips for indoor puppy photography…
Try to use as much natural light as possible by posing your puppy near windows or a see-through door. If the area is windowless or if it is nighttime turn on the lights or get creative and use a lamp as the light source and play-around with puppy poses, props and backdrops!

BPP TOP TIP:

Some photographers say don’t work with children or animals for the very reason that they are unpredictable! But don’t worry, you’ll enjoy puppy photography, even more, when you switch your camera setting to ‘Action/Sports’ or adjust your camera’s manual settings to a faster shutter speed! Why’s this? Well, the quicker your camera takes a photo frame the more likely you will be able to capture your puppy playing, running, bounding and just being a puppy! When puppies are awake they are always on the move and using a general camera setting or slower shutter speed will result in missing the pawfect puppy moment and instead the photo will look like a blurry blob against a backdrop! On a camera phone go into the camera’s Settings, then Camera Modes, then Edit Modes and select (or drag and drop) Sports or Action mode (phone settings may differ per device brand and model).

The ‘Sports’ mode with the fast shutter speed helped to capture these cute Cavoodles in action! This photo was taken in the middle of the day and in a full-sun aspect but as it was at the end of Autumn the sun/light wasn’t too strong. The puppies are also facing the light, so no harsh visible shadows across the puppies’ bodies.


Tip4

Tip 4. Persuasion

You maybe be thinking woah hold on a sec – these tips are all very well but how do you encourage your puppy to pose and obey your instructions in the first place!? Don’t be disheartened, here are some handy ideas to help your puppy comply.

Doggy Toys:

Squeaky dog toys are the best tool when enticing or distracting your puppy for a photo. The noise can even cause your puppy to head-tilt or perk its ears which makes for the cutest pic!

Doggy Treats:

Most puppy/dog owners love to spoil their pooch with treats and this is a great way to entice (errr bribe) them to pose for a photo! Some puppies and dogs can even perform cool tricks with the use of treats which makes for a great action shot!

Peanut Butter:

What paw-pal doesn’t love peanut butter!? Best of all it can be smeared onto or under most objects which can not only keep your puppy occupied but entice them to pose in the pawfect position! Just remember to use the low-sugar/salt variety and use only as a treat as overconsumption of this high-fat condiment can lead to weight gain in most dog breeds.

Play-date:

Is your puppy a stage-9 clinger and you don’t fancy taking photos of your feet!? All good, a fun distraction is key and that usually involves a play-mate. If you have a relative or friend with a paw-pal bring them along for a dual photo shoot! Distraction, playtime and lasting memories all in one, minus the feet pics!

Training:

Puppy training is beneficially for your puppy regardless if it’s intended for those pawfect puppy snaps or not! We recommend Ian The Dog Trainer, but there is also puppy training information on the internet and YouTube!

Exercise:

You’re channeling a celebrity puppyrazzi, but you realise that your paw-pal is on red-cordial! This is an ideal time to burn up your puppy’s extra energy and take them for an exercise and play session! Even a walk around the park can calm your puppy enough to sit still and pose!

Assistance:

Finding it challenging juggling a puppy and a camera!? That’s where an assistant can come in handy! It’s best your puppy/dog knows the assistant so they are comfortable when being handled and will listen to their commands. Your assistant can be useful to hold your puppy and then quickly move out of the frame, yet still be close enough to keep your puppy out of potential danger. They can also interact and play with your puppy and be a part of the photoshoot.
BPP INSIGHT:

Here at Banksia Park Puppies our puppies are usually too young for rigid puppy training and to understand what a doggy treat is and we prefer our adult dogs to eat healthy well-balanced meals and not be treat-obsessed so doggy treats are only limited to special occasions and for dental health! So you may be wondering what puppy photography persuasion tricks do we use? We actually use sound! Either whistling, calling out “pup-pup”, “puppy” or dog’s name or using a squeaky dog toy to get their attention. We mainly work solo when taking our puppy photos and rarely have the luxury of an assistant to hold or distract puppies while we take pictures, so using sound is simple and it works! For our photoshoots, we like to capture our puppies acting naturally so we place them down in a section of the park and let them do their thing, which is always entertaining and makes for a spontaneous snap! If we want them to look at the camera we will call out or whistle to get their attention – pretty basic but gets the job done! For our 6 week photos, our puppies are still at that age where they are calm enough to sit still and be puppyrazzied! For the active and older puppies, they are photographed in the Puppy Playground area or in a section of the park where they can run and play but still have their photos taken!

How do you get your puppy or dog to pose and produce pawsome photographs!? Share with us your tips below… 

Jett the Cavoodle is 6 months old!

She has had her first groom and boy did she need it!

Her shedding stopped after the groom at 6 months and so we only had 2 months of light shedding while she moved into her adult coat. The change of colour is super interesting to watch. Our Jett actually got a little darker which was interesting – lots of puppies go lighter so its interesting to watch. You can certainly tell when they need their first groom – you can see their adult hair under the puppy hair very clearly and the puppy hair starts matting and is hard to keep under control. So if you think your puppy needs a groom it probably does – trust your gut! If you are taking your puppy to the groomer from early on they will give you advice as well.

Jett is now able to follow orders super well. We continue to use Ian’s ‘Uh-uh’ method and it works super well! She is always in my office while I work and knows she has to stay in her bed now (although she gets FOMO and wants to go outside if there is anything happening out there!). She is well behaved now and a pleasure to take places and have inside or out. She follows commands super easy. 6 months things seem to get a little easier – although she still steals a sock every time she is inside! and shoes… she loves shoes. Having a well trained dog has made having Jett a pleasure. Ian’s training (which we now give away complimentary with all puppies) is amazing and helps you just tweak your training to get a dog who follows your commands and who you just adore being with (along with good breeding of course!).

 

 

Puppy Prices!

 

We receive lots of questions about our puppy prices and how we set them. Prices for puppies around the world seem to be in hot debate with some people wondering at what owners are willing to pay for the joy a puppy brings to their family, while others understanding that the care that is put into breeding a dog that is healthy, happy, and perfect for their lifestyle is important. We definitely understand that it can be daunting for some future puppy owners to justify paying a high price for a puppy or a dog especially when general life expenses can make finances tight. You may have noticed that Banksia Park puppy prices have increased since the beginning of the year and you may be curious as to why. Well, here we will explain in detail our reasoning for our puppy prices and why we are conscious of trying to make our gorgeous puppies affordable for the average family as well as covering our costs. In turn, you will also gain insight into the level of care and attention that goes into raising our puppies and parent dogs as well as running our family business!

 

Inflation:

It is common for our puppy pricing to slightly increase each year to keep in line with the rising costs of inflation. Inflation is the general and gradual increase in goods and services. It can be inconvenient to pay more for the same product or service, but it keeps our economy healthy. You might be wondering how does this affect our puppies? Well, products such as dog food, hay, medicine etc. and also services such as labour hire, veterinary costs and energy bills gradually increase with inflation and in turn, we adjust our puppy prices to keep in line with that.

The Bill:

The puppy breeding industry of Victoria and in turn our family business has been affected by a politically based Bill that was passed in Parliament late last year. This has been one of the main reasons for our puppy prices to increase! With fewer mum dogs to breed with, there will be fewer puppies for us to sell and potentially fewer puppies up for sale and available for families in Victoria as well. Even though the Bill will not be fully enforced until April 2020, we have already made changes and one major change is the rehoming of many of our parent dogs. In order to comply with the laws, we will need to reduce the number of our mums to fewer than 50. This will mean a big drop in numbers, but we are very mindful of gradually rehoming them over the next two years to ensure they find the right homes to go to! In the near future, we will have fewer puppies to sell but of course they still require the same amount of attention with higher costs to raise due to less economies of scale. This means that we need to pay more for the same amount of care and focus. Victorian puppy market prices will increase but we are very mindful of not increasing our prices in line with competitors but instead offering fair pricing for outstanding puppies based on meeting our costs with the services we provide.

Vet:

Veterinary care is often understated, but what it achieves for our puppies, parents and animals in general, is amazing! We have great relationships with our local Vet in Sale, Victoria and Boronia Veterinary Clinic in Melbourne. All our puppies are Vet checked at 6 weeks of age. The Vet microchips each puppy and checks that they are healthy and developmentally ready for sale at 8 weeks of age. Having regular and professional medical care ensures that our puppies and parents are kept healthy and that any potential ailments are prevented or treated ASAP! This professional medical care does come at a price and we feel it is absolutely worth it. The Veterinarians come out to our property twice a week, and sometimes we even drive to Melbourne to get an expert opinion. We need to pay all these costs which include 6-week checks, rechecks, microchipping, vaccinations on puppies and parents, pre-mating checks, post whelping checks, 12-month checks, fitness to breed checks, any medical checks in the meantime, questions on everyday happenings, rehoming checks and desexing checks. As you can understand this is one of our biggest investments at Banksia Park Puppies. While we are very happy to invest so much in Veterinary care, this along with our wages are the biggest ongoing costs we have every week.

 

DNA Testing:

At Banksia Park Puppies we test all our parent dogs by an independent genetic analysis service. This service screens the blood samples of our dogs for every DNA disease currently detectable in their breed type. The potential for genetic disease varies for different breeds and cross-breeds, so different and appropriate screening tests are used per dog. You may ask why we go to these lengths to have all our dogs tested in this way? DNA test results help us determine which parent dogs should be used to breed our puppies. Healthy puppies are important especially in the long term when we want them to have long and healthy lives with their new families. Testing is a speciality service and comes at a price but we feel it is well worth it. Not many puppy-breeding providers indulge in this service, but we intend to set a great example in our industry.

It is important to note that a lot of the potential genetic diseases are rare and are not known in Australia but being proactive is the best way of keeping Australian dog’s safe. For more information and a list of potential genetic diseases in dogs visit our blog DNA Testing.

 

Health Guarantee:

To ensure our customers’ peace of mind we offer the highest health guarantee for our puppies and dogs! At Banksia Park Puppies our aim “…is to breed the healthiest, most vibrant puppies possible, with a placid temperament, lovely nature and the instinctive ability to become loyal and faithful companions. These puppies will grow to be the perfect addition for families, especially those with children.” We keep this in mind when we sell each and every one of our puppies and dogs but we understand that unforeseeable health ailments can arise! Our Puppy Consultants are on hand to assist with helpful before, during and after service and know the right services and Vets for referrals. Health Guarantees are invaluable especially during a potentially stressful and sad period if your paw-pal happens to require extra care! We don’t know of any puppy-breeding businesses that offer the level of service and financial assistance that we offer and we pride ourselves on this. Read here to see what your Banksia Park Puppy is covered for under the Health Guarantee.

Lifetime Guarantee:

Here at Banksia Park Puppies we understand that life can throw curveballs! We empathise with our Banksia Park families especially when tricky life circumstances mean that you may no longer be able to care for your puppy or dog. It is a huge and difficult dilemma for a family to face, but we believe a Banksia Park puppy is a part of our extended family for life. We prefer to know where our puppies and dogs are homed and so offer this lifetime guarantee. The guarantee means that if you have carefully decided that you are no longer able to care for your Banksia Park puppy or dog that we will rehome it for you! That can be a huge weight lifted off your shoulders especially during a stressful life-event! So, how does a lifetime rehoming guarantee affect puppy prices? It only marginally affects the cost of a puppy with the potential cost to re-advertise and sell the puppy/dog to an owner or family that will be personally vetted by us to ensure they are a pawfect match!

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Team Members:

A major and invaluable part of breeding and raising our puppies is our Team. Their hands-on round the clock care and love ensures that our puppies and parents are happy and healthy. Our team knows each one of our dogs personally, from their lovable quirks to their moody-moments! This attention to detail not only makes for a happy dog but also is also handy in the event of picking up on potential illness early. Puppy and dog documentation and archives are also very important and ensure thorough record keeping and future referencing. We have high standards for our team which we include in our Induction Manual, “Every worker or volunteer at Banksia Park Puppies, no matter your ‘title’ or the particular work you do has a very important role; to make our dogs the happiest and healthiest that they can be. We want you to see your role as an employee at a 5-star hotel.”

We understand that without our team we would not have such a smooth-running business. Some of our team members are trained in Animal Husbandry and grooming and many have learnt on the job with hands-on learning and further education, which we highly encourage. Here at Banksia Park Puppies in Stradbroke, we employ 30 team members from our local area, some of which have mild disabilities. At our Information Centre in Chirnside Park, Melbourne, we employ a further 10 team members who deliver impeccable sales service and puppy advice. We also hire local tradesman and handyman to maintain and improve our facilities. Team member and labour costs are a big part of the price of our puppies but we personally feel that it is well justified. The round-the-clock care, hard work and passion for animals can’t be skimped on!

 

Enrichment:

Our team extends to our Socialisation Staff, who ensure our parent dogs and puppies receive a great start to life with continual learning and development. Socialisation involves physical exercise that is provided with play and running; mental stimulation with interactive toys and new experiences; and emotional stability provided with the regular love and care from our team with pats, cuddles, conversation and support! Enrichment is very important for puppies especially during the 7-12 week developmental phase known as the Human Socialisation Period. If puppies are nurtured correctly during this period and beyond, they will grow into happy and confident adult dogs. Positive experiences and human interaction early in life lead to a well-rounded dog and therefore a happy family!

 

Marketing:

To maintain a professional and successful business and to ensure that our families receive photos and the best information wherever they are across Australia, our photography and marketing team is required! With many social media platforms these days we want our families to be able to interact with each other and us wherever they are most comfortable. Photography and videography are an important part of this and our 6-week puppy photos posted on our website are usually the first image of what a future owner will see of their potential puppy! Videos also show customers their puppy’s temperament and/or that they are happy and healthy especially before travelling interstate. We also have a Banksia Park Puppies Family Group on Facebook so we and our extended Banksia family can stay in touch and watch our puppies grow! We love to see and interact with the families into the future, and we think it’s appropriate for us to interact and be available to answer questions on platforms other than email or phone. Things such as blogs and newsletters help our families learn about the best ways to look after their puppies, about their development, and to stay updated with the things happening at Banksia Park Puppies such as details on mums rehomed or our renovations. Our marketing Team maintains our professional level of service to our families and provides our customers with ongoing and extensive puppy knowledge!

 

Food, Shelter and more:

It’s a given to provide puppies and dogs with the basic level of care such as food, water, shelter and a comfortable environment and temperature… but we like to go beyond and provide an extra level of nutrition and comfort like they’re living in a swanky hotel! We achieve this with a nutritionally balanced dog and puppy food appropriate for their level of development; regularly freshened hay as bedding; underfloor heating and wood fires in the sheds in the colder months; fans and air-conditioning in the warmer months; and immaculate hygiene and upkeep with regular cleaning and disinfecting! Although this might seem pretty straightforward, it is labour intensive and costs can add up quick!

We also look to renovate our nurseries and facilities regularly and always provide the best level of care, cleanliness, and facilities possible; all of which require ongoing investment. We cannot stop investing in our property and for this reason we require more than just our daily costs met – to invest in the best facilities requires updates to things like new gates, new concrete floors, new air conditioners and heaters when required. Investments such as swimming pools for the parents to swim in and to enrich their lives we see as ‘necessities’ but which do require high ongoing investment.

 

We hope we have shed light on the processes involved in breeding and raising our puppies and dogs as well as background information for our puppy prices.

Owning a puppy is a life-long commitment and one that shouldn’t be taken lightly. Puppy ownership costs continue beyond the initial purchase price of a puppy and include regular food, grooming, vet checks and accessories just to name a few. We urge future hopeful puppy owners to only commit to a puppy if they have given it much thought and know that they can financially and emotionally provide for their paw-pal well into the future!

We look forward to being of service to you and your puppy throughout its life! 🙂

 

Our Lifetime Puppy Home Guarantee

Your puppy will ALWAYS be a Banksia Park Puppy

Your puppy – no matter how old – will always be a Banksia Park Puppy. He or she will hold a special place in our hearts for it’s entire life. We know it’s parents, we watched it be born, and we raised it and we watched it grow. We will forever hold it in our hearts as a Banksia Park Puppy.

We know you have waited for your puppy, researched him or her, and invested significantly to have him or her join your family. Even though we know that you are dedicated to your puppy right now, you have more than 10 years ahead of you with your puppy.

Sometimes circumstances change. Sometimes there is a death, a divorce, a move, or countless other things which could impact your ability to take care of this puppy.

Rehoming a Banksia Park Puppy

Whatever the reason, whatever the age, if you cannot take care of this puppy and you want to find a new home for him or her, we want you to contact us. 

Every single puppy is a Banksia Park Puppy for life. 

We have a very successful rehoming program, where new families of our dogs are vetted to ensure that they are dedicated and suited to a rehomed member of Banksia Park Puppies. Because you have a Banksia Park Puppy, you can use this rehoming list and our other resources to re-home your dog at any stage of it’s life. If this doesnt suit you or your timeframe, we will organise for your puppy to come to us and we will look after it until such time when it finds a new home. We will always help and we would hate to think of you not contacting us first, so please remember to tell us if you ever need our help.

We hope you have a very long and happy life with this puppy, but if your circumstances change please remember – if you need help contact us first. 

When does my puppy learn?

Ever wanted to know why your puppy is doing something?

Or why he barked at people he has always spent time around?

This picture shows you all the stages that your puppy goes through from a newborn all the way to adulthood! Have a look here for more information on all the stages.

 

 

 

puppy growth

 

For more information on all these stages and what they learn, what to do to help them, and how we work with our Banksia Park Puppies dogs at every stage see here.

Banksia Park Puppies

Banksia Park Puppies – Cavies and Cavoodles

Fun with our Cavie and Cavoodle puppies

We had a good play with some of our puppies we’re keeping here at Banksia Park Puppies. One day they’ll be Banksia Park Dogs! Now they want lots and lots and lots of attention due to being in their critical socialisation period. This is where they do all their learning. So in this time we put loads of effort into training them, playing with them, patting them, and in general teaching them to be around people and kids. Here are some photos of these gorgeous puppies – Cuzzie, Muppet, Muffin, Harlow, Harsha, Harper, Poko and Harlee.