Pets are the fun furry additions to the family. They make us laugh, they're playful, sometimes they like to cuddle,  they're kind of naughty, they always have a paw of support and a soft coat to stroke, they take the most comfy naps, but most of all, they love us with every fiber of their being. Naturally I won't have to try and convince you that their mug should be plastered throughout your camera reel; I will just show you some simple, basic techniques to adequately capture that little lovable creature that stole your heart.

1. In their Element

Sleeping, eating, playing, getting loved on, breaking the rules... These are the things your four-legged friend lives and breathes for. Snap that picture, because while in the moment they may not be more than mundane these are memories you will one day cherish!

Pro Tip: If you're manually adjusting your camera, I recommend a fast shutter speed when shooting fast moving creatures. If lighting conditions are poor, set your camera at a higher ISO to compensate for the fast shutter speed. Make sure your camera is ready before you startle them with the click of a shutter. You probably only have one shot at this; unless of course Mr. Whiskers is a heavy sleeper and also happens to be deaf.

2. On their Level

Most pictures of your furry pal are taken from above because, you know, you're tall and pets are lower to the ground. Switch it up. Get right on their eye level. It creates a more real-life picture. If they're awake, your stance will also pique their curiosity for a nano second which will make them even more photogenic as they try to decide how to react to your prone position. Squeaking, barking, growling, and any other odd embarrassing behavior is also advised to get their ears perking and head cocked. Again, fast shutter speed is key.

Pro Tip: Number one rule that goes for any subject with eyeballs: FOCUS ON THE EYESSimply pointing your lens in the general vicinity of your pet is not always adequate. You can get away with other features being out of focus if the eyes are sharp. Eyes in sharp focus always create a more compelling image. 

3. Get the Details

Padded paws, wiry whiskers, that cold black nose, snowflakes on the eye lashes.... These are those details on Miss Sweet Paws that define her. Get those details. 

Pro Tip: Rules are made to be broken, so this is the part where you completely disregard everything I just told you about sharply focusing on the eye balls. Set your aperture as wide as it goes for sharper details and get that nose framed by a toothy grin, the snow kissed eye lashes, or those darling soft padded paws.

Unfortunately not all the pets pictured belong to me. Winston is our C'nardly Canine (C'nardly tell what he is), and Gomez is our deaf feline dictator. I would like to also thank Vince the Spaniel, Raven the Husky, Jade the Boxer mix, and Kitty the Tree Hugger for their photogenic cooperation in this compilation.