Written by Shutterfly Last Updated: Dec 11, 2019
When it comes to sending Season’s Greetings, the best Christmas cards include the furry family members. And, as if it wasn’t hard enough to get everyone together for your holiday photo, including your pets adds even more of a challenge. Whether they’re full of energy, need to stay on a leash, or they see a squirrel, there are many obstacles to overcome in order to capture a picture-perfect moment. Although you may be unsure about wrangling your dog into the Christmas portrait this year, once you get the shot, you’ll realize all the slobbery licks to the face were worth it. As you gear up for the holidays, use these Christmas card ideas with dogs along with our top tips and tricks to get the paws-itively perfect family Christmas photos.
Dog Christmas Card Ideas And Tips
Taking a Christmas card photo with adults is one thing, but throwing kids and dogs into the mix can make things much more difficult. However, there are plenty of ways to capture festive photos of your tail-waggers. You just have to get creative. Including everything from outfit ideas, photoshoot locations and tips for getting and keeping your dog’s attention, these are some of the best solutions for taking family photos with your dog.
1. Wear Comfy And Coordinated Clothes.
Before you pose for the camera, you should plan out what your family will be wearing for your Christmas photos. First and foremost, make sure that everyone is wearing clothes that they’re comfortable in and that they don’t mind getting a little dirty. Chances are someone will have to wrangle the dog at some point so just make sure that your outfits aren’t ones that need to be dry cleaned. There’s something about color coordinating outfits that really ties everything together. If your family is planning on wearing similar colors or patterns, get the same colored accessory for your dog. Even if it’s just a bow or bandana, adding a festive piece to your dog’s attire will make for a very cute touch.
2. Dress Fido For The Occasion.
If you feel like only adding an accessory isn’t going to do the trick, you can also dress your dog up for the photos. Make sure you avoid putting your dog in something that might harm them or cause any sort of discomfort. Play it safe with reindeer antlers, a Santa hat, or an ugly Christmas sweater, if they’re comfortable with it. Just remember that if your puppy isn’t comfortable there is no way you’ll get the shot. You should also avoid wrapping your dog in Christmas lights or putting him or her in a stocking.
3. Stick Close To Home.
On a day that’s filled with capturing special moments and a whole lot of love, a destination photoshoot location may sound appealing. Although, when you’re including your four-legged friends in your photos it can be beneficial to stay closer to home. Your dog is used to his or her daily routine and sticking to where there are familiar smells and surroundings will make it easier for your pup to listen to your commands. Plus, you may even be able to take some shots of your dog off the leash, which will be sure to unleash a whole lot of holiday cheer.
4. Get Your Dog Tired Before The Shoot.
No matter how calm your puppy may be, it’s still going to be difficult to get him or her to stand still with everyone gathered around. Dogs are a smart breed and will most likely pick up on all of the excitement. With everyone all in one place, it could be easy for your dog to mistake the Christmas photoshoot for playtime. Before you take your Christmas card photo, wear your dog out by going for a walk or playing a game of tug-o-war.
5. How To Get And Keep Fido’s Attention.
Consider your dog’s personality when it comes to getting him or her to look at the camera. Having a squeaky toy or something that they want on set could be the perfect distraction for your dog. Most dogs are food-driven so it won’t hurt to keep a couple of extra treats in your pocket. You know your dog better than anyone else so go with what you think will work best. If you’re unsure, set up a trial run and see what you can do to keep your puppy’s attention.
- If you have someone behind the camera it will make it easier to get your dog to look at the camera lens. Just have the photographer keep a toy or treat near the lens.
- If you are using a tripod to get your Christmas card shot, designate someone to be in charge of getting your dog’s pose ready while everyone else says cheese.
6. Don’t Forget To Take Breaks.
Don’t put the toys or tug-o-war rope away after the pre-photoshoot playtime and don’t expect your dog to keep full attention for a whole hour. If you get to take photos for ten minutes, you’re doing great. Set up the shot with praise and treats and after you take a couple of frames, let your dog go crazy. Dogs will be dogs, so remember to have patience.
7. Be Prepared To Take Lots Of Photos.
Have your photographer take as many photos as possible. Or, if you’re taking your Christmas photos yourself, make sure to set the self-timer a handful of times. You never know which click may end up with the perfect candid shot and most of the time, the best photos are the ones that aren’t posed.
Family Christmas Card Picture Ideas With Dogs
There are many different ways to incorporate your dog into the family Christmas card this year. Use the following Christmas card picture ideas with dogs to help you get the perfect photo. When it comes to your family holiday card photo, if there’s one thing that’s for sure, it is that your furry friend needs to be included. Use the following photo ideas to help you decide how you will incorporate Fido in the family holiday photos.
8. Ready For A Close-Up.
If you have a small dog, pick up your pooch and take advantage of getting warm and snuggly with him or her. On the other hand, if you have a 100 pound Labrador Retriever, don’t attempt to pick him or her up instead, just lean down and get close.
If your dog is a little more on the hyper side or if you are taking your Christmas photos at a location that your dog isn’t used to, then it is a good idea to keep him or her on a leash.
10. Use His Or Her Natural Habitat As A Backdrop.
Taking your photos somewhere your four-legged friend is used to will surely make your pup more comfortable with the camera and all of the excitement. When it comes to location, think backyard, inside the house or a nearby park you frequent often.
11. Use All The Photos You Can Fit.
Choose a dog Christmas card that allows you to add multiple photos. If you already have the perfect solo shot of your pup you would like to include in your custom Christmas card then select a card that features multiple photos. This way, you’ll be able to add the family photos you took and also solo shots of the furriest member.
12. Try For An Action Shot In The Snow.
Nothing says, “Happy Holidays!” quite like a dog dashing through the snow. Action shots can sometimes be the easiest to get since you aren’t trying to keep your dog’s attention or get him or her to sit still and look at the camera. If you live in an area where it doesn’t snow, try out the sand. There’s nothing quite like a beach-themed Christmas card.
13. Have Your Pooch Represent The Whole Family.
If for some reason your family can’t all be in the same place at once to get a Holiday photo, you can send a photo of your dog from everyone.
14. Try A Unique Angle.
Try taking the photo from a new and interesting angle. For example, taking a photo from above to showcase ta Christmas wrapping covered floor would make an excellent holiday card idea. Or get down to their level and take a dog’s eye view photo.
15. Present Them With A New Toy.
Highlight the Christmas spirit in your dog’s eyes by giving them a new toy. Take the photo right as the see the gift or as they begin to play with it. Your pup is sure to show some serious gratitude, making it the perfect Christmas photo.
16. Give Them A Sign.
For an extra cute prop, give your pooch a sign to hold up. Whether it says “Merry Christmas!” or “Time to fetch some presents,” your loved ones are sure to love receiving the photos as a Christmas card.
17. Get Silly.
Don’t be afraid to show off the silly side of your pooch. Dress them in an ugly Christmas sweater, pose them in an old-fashioned photoshoot, and capture all the funny expressions they’re sure to make.
Dog Christmas Card Sayings
If you are including your dog in your Christmas card photo you can also go one step further and top of your Christmas messages off with a few dog Christmas card sayings. These are some of the cutest and funniest Christmas card messages that all of your recipients will appreciate. Mix and match these dog-friendly greetings with a few of your own words for a very hairy Christmas sentiment.
- We Woof You a Hairy Christmas!
- Merry Christmas from our Pack to your Pack.
- Have a fetching Christmas!
- Unleash the holiday cheer this Christmas!
- Have a paws-itively amazing Christmas.
- Sending you pugs and kisses this Christmas
- Canine I just say…you’re the best!
- Paws a moment this Christmas to reflect on what the season is all about!
- Merry Christmas. Hope it’s not too ruff!
- Hounding you to have a Merry Christmas!
- Dog bless you this Christmas!
- Sending you all our puppy love this Christmas!
- Happy howlidays! Hope Santa Paws brings you lots of treats.
- Santa’s little yelper wants to wish you a Merry Christmas.
- Have a warm and fuzzy holiday!
- Wishing you Peace, Love, and Licks!
- Johnson Family Tails of 2016
- Have a Doggone Christmas!
- I’ll do anything for a Cookie.
- Deck the Paws.
- Wreck the Halls!
- Fur you, From us.
- Feliz Navidog.
- Yappy Holidays and a Happy New Year
- It’s never chew late to wish you a Happy Holidays.
Resources Related To Dog Christmas Cards
Pets are a special part of your family and your holiday cards should reflect that. These pet Christmas card ideas and tips will not only help you make your Christmas card unique but also make it a lot easier to achieve the Christmas photos you envisioned. Once you’ve got the perfect shot, send out your perfect Christmas card to show off your furry friend for all to see.