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It's the holiday season and that means Santa pictures!  Learn how you can easily get that shareworthy Christmas photo of your dog with Santa.  Click through to read the article.

This is the time of year when you see social media light up with cute pictures of dogs visiting Santa. It inspires us to take our own dog to get that treasured picture of him with Santa. But getting that perfect picture of your dog with Santa isn’t always as easy as it looks. There are some things you can do, though, to make the experience go smoothly and to increase your chances of getting that perfect Santa picture that you imagined.

How To Get The Best Photo Of Your Dog With Santa

1. Have a play session first to tire out your dog

If your dog is a bundle of energy, it’s going to be very hard for him to sit still long enough for a picture with Santa. A dog bursting full of energy is going to be all over the place. Your picture might end up being of your dog on top of Santa’s head stealing his hat or getting tangled in Santa’s beard! This might be entertaining for the people watching but Santa might not be impressed. Your dog might end up on Santa’s naughty list!

If your dog has tons of energy take him for a run or a good game of fetch before you take him to get his photo. This will help to drain some of that energy and help him settle for a photo. A calm dog will be much easier to photograph.

2. Have some of your dog’s favorite treats on hand

Even with a good run or play romp beforehand, some dogs may not want to sit by Santa long enough for a photo. Your dog may have better things to do, like to see if there are any treats in Santa’s gift bag for him. Your dog may need a bit of incentive to sit still for a photo with Santa. Take some of his favorite dog treats with you in case you need them. Ask your dog to sit beside Santa or sit on Santa’s lap if your dog is small enough. Get his attention and make sure that he knows you have a reward if he cooperates.

3. Take your dog for a potty break

The last thing anyone needs is their dog lifting their leg on Santa. This is a surefire way to speed right to the top of Santa’s naughty list. Take your dog for a potty break right before going for your dog’s photo with Santa. This is especially important for a young puppy who can’t hold his bladder for very long. If there’s a long line up waiting for Santa photos, you may even want to get someone to save your spot in line and then take your puppy out for one last pee before he sees Santa. If your dog is a submissive urinator, at home photos or outdoor locations might be your best option.

Santa's Naughty Dog List

4. Groom your dog

Santa does not want to pose with a stinky dog! Give your dog a bath before taking him out for his photo with Santa. This will make him smell better and look better too. If he’s really dirty, give him two baths. If you don’t want to bathe your dog at home, check out the local pet stores or groomers in your area to see if they have a pet bath station for the public to use. This way you have a clean, fresh smelling dog without the mess at home.

If your dog is a coated breed, trim his paws and any other area that needs to be tidied for the photo. If you don’t know how to trim your dog, make an appointment with your dog’s groomer. This way you can get your dog bathed and trimmed al at the same time. Your dog will then look and smell his best for his Christmas photos.

5. Have Santa come to you

Some dogs might not be able to handle the hussle and bussle of Christmas. If your dog doesn’t do well with crowds then see if you can find a friend to dress up as Santa to come to your house to do a Christmas photo of your dog. If your dog doesn’t like strangers, make sure that it’s someone that he knows dressed up as Santa. You might even have to show him who is under that Santa suit.

If your dog doesn’t want to be around Santa, even one that he knows there are other alternatives. Create a Christmas scene and have your dog sit by it and take a photo. Or have a Santa doll or ornament in the photo if you want to have a photo of your dog with Santa. Be creative but always make sure that your dog is comfortable with the situation.

Christmas scene for dog holiday photo.

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Photography Super Bundle 2019

6. Make sure that Santa is dog friendly

Not all Santas will want to do dog photos. Always check first to make sure that Santa is ok with dogs. If you are taking your dog to the mall or to a department store for his Christmas photo, always go ahead of time or call to see if pets are welcome.

There are some places that set up photo opportunities with Santa just for pets. These places will be the best option to get your Santa photo with your dog. These places are usually in a dog friendly location and are set up with pets in mind. Some places to check for Santa photos with pets would be pet stores, grooming shops and veterinarian clinics. They usually advertise their Santa photos on social media or signs posted at the location.

7. Train your dog to sit stay

This is an important one! Of course you can get a nice picture of your dog with Santa even if he doesn’t know the sit stay command but knowing it makes things so much easier. Teaching your dog to sit and stay is not only a great command to teach for getting that perfect photo of your dog with Santa, it is useful all year long. Take a few weeks and have a short training session each day. It won’t take long at all for your dog to learn that sit stay means a good treat afterwards.

To teach your dog the sit command, check out our article Teaching Your Dog The Sit Command. Once your dog knows how to sit you can start adding the stay command to it. To do this, put your dog on a sit. Take one step back, pause and then return to your dog and give him a treat. Keep repeating this until you can move back another step and another. If your dog gets up, simply put him back in his sit where he was originally sitting and try again. Once your dog learns that you want him to stay add the word ‘stay’ when you back away from him. Do this 5 or 6 times once or twice a day. Your dog will quickly catch on to what you are asking.

Knowing your dog is the first step in setting up a positive experience for everyone when it comes to holiday photos. Holiday photos with Santa don’t have to be stressful. Keep it fun and follow these 7 tips and you will be sure to get that shareworthy Christmas photo of your dog that you had envisioned.

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