DIY Photography Tips for Your Shichon Pups

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Whether you’re adding a new four-legged friend to the family or just wish to capture the joy he brings you, getting professional photos taken of your shichon is a great way to freeze a moment in time. Working with professional photographers, however, can be both expensive and stressful, particularly when they have limited experience working with dogs. Animals are unpredictable, and dogs can be difficult around strangers, so today our team has sought advice from the pros and has some great ideas to help you take your own excellent photos of your teddy bear shichon puppies at home.

Be Prepared

The first step in taking great photos of your shichon, or any other pup, is preparing for the photo shoot. Professional photographers will recommend you take your pet to the groomer no more than three days prior to your shoot appointment. It’s a good rule of thumb for home photography as well. Laura Moore, a pet photographer in Oregon, explains: “You always want to avoid creating stress for the dogs, so a trip to the groomer and a photographer too close together is a recipe for disaster. We always recommend about three days between appointments, especially for first timers.”

Next, be sure you’ve got a nice, clear area that you can use as a stage and backdrop for your photos. Clutter, even in the background, will detract from the cuteness of your shichon puppy, so avoid it. Aim for clean space, choose a solid background (brick walls, wood panelling, or your pup’s bed could be great choices), and try to find both of these in a well-lit area. Lighting can make all the difference between catching those special little tufts of hair around her ears and having a flat, boring photo.

Finally, Moore says you should stock up on your shichon’s favorite tiny treats. “Bribing them, especially when they’re puppies, is a great way to get closer to exactly what you want,” she says with a laugh. She’s quick to point out that with puppies all bets are off and you can only really hope for the best – by starting with great preparation.

Visualize the Results

Above all else, you know your pup best, so think about the things they enjoy, and which things bring the cutest faces and poses to them naturally. Work with these in mind as forcing a dog to strike a pose can be close to impossible. While you’re visualizing think about all the cute and wonderful toys and accessories you may’ve wanted to pick up for your pet but skipped because they seemed “pointless”. A photo shoot is a great excuse for purchasing a couple of frivolous items. Props matter, especially while your shichon is still an adorable, fluffy little puppy. How cute would it be to have a canvas mounted above the mantle of your pup in a vintage hatbox or makeup case?

Take Your Time

“The hardest part for me,” says Moore, “Is clients having limited time and a pup that’s hard to get to know. I’d rather take the puppy for a play date and get to know their personality for a few hours before shooting than try to cram it all into a two-hour slot.” The same will hold true for you, though you don’t have the obstacle of trying to get to know your shichon, you do have to try and convince the young pup that they’re interested in doing the things you want to do. Doing solid staging and other prep work is a big help here, but be prepared to make a number of attempts over a few consecutive days to get the results you’re after. This is extra important if you are trying to learn the basics of a new camera or how to get the most out of your phone’s camera.

If you’re not sure that taking photos of your shichon puppy is going to end well for you, reach out to a professional pet photographer in your area. Moore says it is best to talk to the photographer you are considering, ask them about their experience with puppies and young dogs. The puppy period only lasts weeks, good luck capturing the best of it!

About Kristin

Master reviewer of all types of products. Love XL Fountain Sodas!! Cheer Mom extraordinaire. Socialite to all things small town and founder of Come socialize and connect with me.


  1. Kimberly Flickinger says:

    Your dog is precious. I have doxies but will keep these tips in mind. Thank you for sharing.

  2. Anna Mitchell says:

    That is just so adorable!

  3. Amber Ludwig says:

    Omgosh I just adore puppies!! Surround me in them and puppy pictures!! <3

  4. Jessica D. says:

    This is some great advice & helpful tips! What a cute puppy! I’ve never heard of this breed either I must say they are beautiful!

  5. ellen beck says:

    I had no idea what a shichon is, it looks like a good mix of breeds. I prefer larger dogs bu if yu are a fan of toy size this is a cute dog.

  6. This picture is so adorable!! I have never heard of this breed either, but I suppose you could take pics of any kind using these tips. 🙂 Thank you so much for sharing!

  7. Linda Manns Linneman says:

    This dog is so cute. I have never heard of this type of dog before. These are some great tips you shared. Thank you so much. God Bless

  8. This is good information. I never heard of a Shichon before, so I had to look it up. I’m in love!! I’ve been looking at different breeds, as I’m hoping to have a dog , and I’m fond of both Bichon Frise and the Shih Tzu – a good way to get the best of both!

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