Have a pup? Want to include them in your engagement photos? You’re not alone!

We have many clients who have included their dogs in their engagement photos. So we thought we’d give you the inside scoop on what an engagement session with your dog along looks like!

Preparing for your Engagement Session

For more preparation help, check out our engagement session preparation post! That post covers more tips for what outfit to wear for your engagement session, color palate inspiration for your engagement session outfits, how to select a location for your engagement photos, and so much more. You can view this guide HERE!

Couple poses with their Siberian Husky and Golden Retriever for engagement portraits.


Keep in mind that you may be moving extra during your session when including your dog! We suggest not choosing a super short skirt or dress, however we can accommodate to whatever you select. Also consider the color of your dog’s fur! If you’re set on wearing black but your dog has white fur, bring a lint roller for outfit touch ups!


Make sure the location that is selected is dog-friendly. We typically try to pick parks that may not have as many people or a lot of distractions so that your dog can be as focused as possible! We can also visit the location before the session to find an ideal time with less foot traffic to help your dog stay more focused. Nervous about having your dog out and about? We can also talk about doing your portraits at your home! An in-home session can help you and your pup feel comfortable and at ease from the very start. This is also our recommendation if you want to include other furry friends!

Couple kisses their Corgi during engagement portraits in Oakland. Photography by best Oakland photographer.

Bring along another person!

This is our number one, must happen tip for bringing your dog along to your engagement session. While we’d love to say your dog will do so well that they are in every photo, that’s unfortunately not realistic. Bring along another person to hold onto your dog’s leash while we do some photos without them.

Couple walks their dogs during engagement portraits.


While most of your engagement session is free-flowing and natural, typically time surrounding your dog is pretty straightforward and more directed. We have a pretty standard set of poses: kneel down or pick up your dog (depending on size), kiss your pup, walk with your dog. These poses vary based on the size, training of your dog, and temperament during the session.