10 Tips for Capturing the Best Photos of Pets

Happy staring into the camera, looking up with a big smile, taken by one of our dog walkers in Columbus, Ohio.

Our pet sitters and dog walkers in Columbus, Ohio pride themselves on capturing photos of pets in their care to share with pet parents. And they’re amazing at it! These photos not only showcase aspects of the services they provide, but also capture the unique personalities and intricacies of the pets themselves.

Straight from our team’s collective expertise, here are our top 10 tips to help you capture those paw-fect little moments, no matter the occasion or circumstance:

Pet Emergency 3

1. Get Down to The Pet’s Level

Eye-Level Engagement

One of the most important tips for capturing great pet photos is to get down to the pet’s eye level. This perspective not only makes the pet the star of the photo but also creates a more intimate and engaging view. Whether you’re taking photos of a playful puppy in the park or a curious cat at home, getting down to their level will make a significant difference.

2. Capture Their Attention

Use Treats, Toys, and Noises

To get that perfect pose, use treats, toys, or even unique noises to grab and hold the pet’s attention. A treat or favorite toy can make a dog sit still just long enough for you to snap a great picture. Try making interesting noises to perk up their ears and get them to look directly at the camera. Better yet, hold a toy or treat right next to the lens while making a noise and you’re sure to capture their full attention, resulting in an adorable, focused shot that pet parents will love.

Photo of a cat on its back, waiting for belly rubs. This was taken by one of our cat sitters in Columbus, Ohio.
This photo was taken by our team member, Allison. With her creativity, she managed to get the kitty to look at the camera while lying on its back with its paws adorably tucked in!

3. Master the Lighting

Avoid Backlighting and Shadows

Good lighting is crucial for capturing clear and vibrant pet photos. Avoid backlighting and shadows by using natural light whenever possible. For indoor shots, position the pet near a window to take advantage of soft, natural light. For outdoor photos, aim for early morning or late afternoon when the light is softer and more flattering. If you’re taking photos at night, ensure you have a good flash to avoid dark or blurry images.

4. Opt for a Natural Backdrop

Incorporate Natural Elements

Choosing the right background can enhance your pet photos significantly. Opt for natural backdrops such as a flower-filled garden, a park with colorful leaves, or a clean, open space. Avoid cluttered or dull backgrounds that can distract from the main subject of the photo.

5. Shoot Continuously

Capture the Perfect, Candid Moment

Pets can be unpredictable, so use the continuous shooting mode on your camera or smartphone to take multiple shots quickly. The more photos you take, the higher the chance of capturing the perfect moment. This is especially useful for action shots of pets running or playing.

6. Utilize Smartphone Features

Burst Mode and Live Photos

Modern smartphones come with fantastic features like burst mode and live photos, which can be invaluable for pet photography. Burst mode captures a series of photos in quick succession, allowing you to choose the best one. Live photos capture a few seconds of video around your shot, providing more options to find the perfect frame.

7. Ensure Clear, Sharp Images

Keep Your Hand Steady

A steady hand is crucial for capturing clear, sharp images. If possible, use a tripod to stabilize your camera or phone. Focus on the pet’s eyes to ensure the most engaging and sharp part of the photo is in focus.

8. Experiment with Angles

Move Around for the Best Shot

Don’t be afraid to move around and try different angles. Sometimes, the best photos come from unexpected perspectives. Try shooting from above, below, or from the side to capture the pet in a unique and flattering way.

9. Capture Happy Faces and Diverse Activities

Showcase Their Personality

Photograph pets while they are engaging in various activities to truly capture their personalities. Whether they are playing fetch, lounging in the sun, or simply giving you a happy smile, these moments are precious and will be cherished by pet parents.

Photo of a dog smiling, taken by one of our dog walkers in Columbus, Ohio.
This photo was taken by our team member, Megan! She has a knack for capturing the unique personalities of the pets in her care!

10. Patience is Key

Wait for the Perfect Moment

Patience is essential when photographing pets. They might not always cooperate, but waiting for the right moment or expression is worth it. Stay observant, be ready to snap quickly, and you’ll be rewarded with photos that truly capture the pet’s character.

Bonus Tip: When in Doubt, Take Selfies with Pets

Show Your Friendly Face

If you’re a pet sitter or dog walker in Columbus, you can never go wrong with any type of selfie taken with the pets in your care. Pet parents love receiving photos of you with the pets as it adds the perfect personal touch to services you provide. Make sure to capture both you and the pet looking happy and relaxed.

By following these ten tips, you can take your pet photography to the next level and delight pet parents with beautiful, memorable photos of their beloved pets. Happy snapping!



Hello! Thanks for visiting our blog. I'm the proud owner of Columbus's own Hands N Paws, started in 2018 to bring joy to pet parents. See you in the next post!

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The terms of this agreement are as follows: “Client” refers to you, “Company” refers to us (Hands N Paws), “Team Member” refers to the person from our team providing services for  your pets, and “Team Members” refers to the Hands N Paws team as a whole.


It is important to inform Hands N Paws of any specific emergency instructions or medical conditions related to Client’s pets. This will help ensure the safety and well-being of pets during emergencies.

In case any of Client’s pets need emergency veterinary treatment, Team Member will contact the designated vet on file and/or a local emergency vet. Team Member will also communicate with Client and/or emergency contacts regarding the situation.

Client gives permission to Team Member to transport the pet(s) to a veterinary clinic and/or make treatment decisions (except for euthanasia), especially if it’s a life-threatening emergency and/or Client cannot be immediately reached. Client is responsible for any veterinary fees incurred. 

Client releases Hands N Paws from any liability for any damage or harm to pets or property that occurs beyond the reasonable control of Team Member during the provision of emergency veterinary care. 


To comply with local laws and ordinances, it is required that all pets have the appropriate vaccinations and licenses before Company begins services. For further information on these requirements, please visit the Ohio State Bar Association’s website at https://www.ohiobar.org/public-resources. Client should also check with his/her veterinarian to determine which vaccinations/shots the pet requires. 

For safety reasons, we encourage all dogs and cats to wear an ID tag or collar that includes name and contact number while Team Member is working with them.


To ensure access to Client’s home during scheduled services, Hands N Paws requires that Client purchases a lockbox and places a spare house key(s) inside of it for Team Member to use. Client can purchase the lockbox on Hands N Paws’ website by clicking Buy Your Lockbox. Once it arrives, the lockbox should be programmed with a unique four-digit code. The lockbox should then be placed on the main door handle or in another secure location, and the lockbox code and location information must be entered in the Client’s account on Precise Petcare.

Alternatively, Client may elect to provide a code for entry via a garage door or electronic keypad and if so, must enter all necessary codes in Precise Petcare. Client is strongly encouraged to purchase a lockbox, however, to ensure that Team Member can access pets at all times during scheduled services, especially in situations where the power goes out or batteries die and Team Member need alternative access to the home.


All Team Members have access to Clients phone number, but are instructed to only use them when necessary or for urgent purposes during services with pets. Hands N Paws prioritizes the privacy and confidentiality of phone numbers as personal information.

All correspondence between Client and Team Member should be centered around Client’s pets and the services provided. If Client has inquiries regarding scheduling, cancellations, app-related matters, or any company-related concerns, these are to be directed to the Company via the office number: (614) 636-6644. The Company’s client support team is available during office hours, Monday through Friday, 9am-5pm. We are closed on Saturdays, Sundays, and Federal Holidays. The Company will make contact with Client outside of office hours should there be any urgent need for communication.


In order to provide the best possible service to pets, it is crucial that Client provides Team Member with detailed and up-to-date information regarding their pets. This information should be accurate, complete, and accessible through the Client’s account in Precise Petcare. Team Members can only work on the basis of the information that is available to them through the Client’s account in Precise Petcare. Likewise, Client acknowledges that the accuracy and comprehensiveness of the information they provide directly impacts the quality of the services delivered. Client, therefore, takes full responsibility for any consequences that arise from inaccurate, incomplete, or outdated account information.


Arrival times for services occur within a two-hour period. Team Members are unable to guarantee exact arrival times due to various factors that may affect scheduling and travel times. To accommodate these considerations, we use time blocks rather than specific times. Client will see this in the dropdown menu when Client selects Arrival Time in the request service form within their Client account.

While Team Members understands that Client may have preferences regarding arrival times, it is essential to acknowledge that Team Members cannot guarantee meeting those specific requests. Flexibility is needed in order for Team Members to accommodate for needs of other Clients on schedule.


For the most up-to-date and detailed descriptions on service offerings, please visit our website at www.myhandsnpaws.com.


The following service surcharges may apply under certain conditions:

Last Minute Service: A fee of $15 per service will be charged for bookings made with less than 24 hours’ notice.

Holiday Service: A fee of $20 per service will be applied for services provided on the following holidays: New Year’s Day, Easter, Memorial Day, Independence Day, Labor Day, Thanksgiving Day, Christmas Eve, Christmas Day, New Year’s Eve.

Additional Pets: Base pricing for services includes up to 2 pets. For each additional pet beyond the initial two, an additional fee of $7 per pet will be added.

*Additional fees may apply, as discussed/negotiated between Company and Client. 


Hands N Paws strives to accommodate as many service requests as possible. However, the approval of service requests is subject to the availability of Team Members. Upon submitting a service request, Client will receive a confirmation or declination email/notification indicating whether Hands N Paws can fulfill the requested work. Sometimes, this may take up to 48 hours or more.

If a service request is declined, we encourage Client to explore alternative options or contact our dedicated client support team for further assistance. Company is here to help and find the best solution for all pet care needs.


To ensure a personalized experience for new Clients, Hands N Paws requires a virtual or in-person Meet N Greet before getting started with pet services. These meetings allow us to connect with and onboard Clients and discuss their pet care needs.

All virtual Meet N Greets are free of charge. All in-person Meet N Greets come at a $50 cost. Meet N Greets are no more than 30 minutes in length.

New Clients can book their Meet N Greet on our website at www.myhandsnpaws.com. Existing Clients can book their Meet N Greet in their designated client account in Precise Petcare.


Payment Method: All services with Hands N Paws are to be paid for using a credit or debit card. All major cards, including Visa, Mastercard, Amex, and Discover are acceptable. Client can securely add and store card information within their Client account. Adding and keeping a valid credit card on file is a requirement for requesting any services with Hands N Paws.

Ongoing Services: For services scheduled as ongoing, Client will be automatically charged every Friday for the previous 7 days’ worth of completed, canceled, and in-progress services.

Non-Ongoing Services: For services not scheduled as ongoing, a 50% down-payment will be charged on the day the services are accepted and confirmed. An invoice will be sent immediately. Client has until the date of the last confirmed service to manually pay the remaining balance on the invoice. If manual payment is not made, the remaining total will be automatically charged to the card on file on the date of the last service day on that invoice.

Declined Payments: In the event of a declined auto-charge, Client will be promptly notified. After the first declined charge, Client has a 24-hour grace period to rectify the issue. In the case of a second declined attempt, a late fee of 10% of the invoice total (minimum $10) will be added. Client must be attentive to emails regarding overdue notices.

Payment Terms: Hands N Paws will be paid the agreed-upon amount as discussed, with no exceptions, unless our Cancellation Policy (outlined below) applies and the Client receives a refund in the form of an Account Credit(s). In emergency circumstances, a refund may be issued as transferable credit(s) back to the Client’s card.

Additional Fees: Client may be charged additional fees if Team Members are instructed to, or determine the need to, purchase items for the pet(s) while under the care of Hands N Paws. These items may include pet food or treats, litter or cleaning supplies, transportation to the vet, or emergency expenses for the general care of the pet(s). Hands N Paws and/or Team Member will consult with Client before making any purchases, and will retain and share any receipts as proof of purchase.


When Client schedules services with Hands N Paws, the Company has likely turned down other work so as to devote our time to the work requested from said Client.

Client understands and accepts the Company cancellation/refund policy as outlined below:

– 100% refund is issued as Account Credit if cancellation is made at least 48 hours prior to the scheduled service(s).

– 50% refund is issued as Account Credit if cancellation is made at least 24 hours prior to the scheduled service(s).

– NO refund is issued for same-day cancellations/less than 24 hour notice.

PLEASE NOTE: Refunds are NOT transferable. Should Client be eligible to receive an Account Credit (based on terms above), that will be auto-added to his/her account and applied to the very next invoice with us.


Hands N Paws agrees to provide the services stated in this contract in a reliable, caring, and trustworthy manner. In consideration of these services and as an express condition thereof, Client expressly waives and relinquishes any and all claims against Hands N Paws arising out of or relating to the provision of services hereunder, except those arising from gross negligence or willful misconduct on part of Hands N Paws.

Client understands and acknowledges that the environment in which they are requesting Hands N Paws to complete services is reasonably sanitary and safe. If it is determined that home conditions are unsanitary and/or unsafe at any point in the working relationship, Company will make it known to Client. Action will be taken accordingly thereafter.

Additionally, Hands N Paws will not terminate during a period of scheduled service unless Hands N Paws determines, at their sole discretion, that a serious danger exists to the health or safety of Team Members or pets. If such concerns preclude Hands N Paws from providing further care for the pets, Client agrees to pay for their pet to be boarded at a boarding facility or taken under the care of another party until Client returns. All attempts will be made to notify Client and/or emergency contacts regarding such situations.

Client understands and acknowledges that he/she is responsible for letting Hands N Paws know of anyone who has access to their home during the duration of services booked. Client releases and holds Hands N Paws harmless of all loss, expense, and damage caused by any third-parties entering Client’s home at that time.


This contract will take effect upon digital signature by Client (clicking “Agree & Submit” below) and will remain in effect until terminated by either party. Client may make online reservations for additional services at any time during the terms of this contract, as subject to Hands N Paws availability. All scheduled services will be governed by all the terms of this contract.

Client acknowledges that by signing below, he/she is providing written approval for the provision of services by Hands N Paws during any service period scheduled by Client and confirmed by Hands N Paws. Upon service confirmation, Hands N Paws will be authorized to enter Client premises and perform services without additional signed contracts and/or written authorizations.