Top Tips for Working with Animals

It was W.C Fields that said “Never work with children or animals” but the team here at Vintra have routinely flaunted that rule and in the last month alone we’ve done both, even on the same shoot! Exploiting the cute factor is always a great way to catch peoples attention, some of the most popular videos on the internet of all time feature our furry friends, so we thought we’d share a few of the teams favourites before we share some tips for getting the best from your shoot featuring animals.

 

Vintra's Tips

Most recently we spent the day with one of our favourite clients, DogsTrust, so we thought we’d share everything we’ve learnt from working with them and their canine companions over the past few years, about getting the best out of the talent.

1. Don't Get Distracted by the Cuteness

Remember you still have a job to do and as fun as fussing over a bouncy puppy is, you're there as a professional (I can't say we've never broken the first rule)

2. Crouch/Squat/Lunge/Lay

Get down to the animals level if possible, this is where the action is and how you get the golden shots.

3. Be Patient

Animals don't take great direction, but they can sense when you lose your cool, stay calm even if the "talent" isn't playing ball and sooner or later you'll get your shot.

4. Avoid Large Groups

As fun as a crowd of puppies may sound, it doesn't make life any easier (believe us), they're hard to control and in some cases can be stressful for the animal too if they’re not already socialised.

5. Listen to The Experts

If you have an Owner, Handler or Trainer on hand, follow their lead and let them know what you’re looking for, if it’s unrealistic they’ll very quickly tell you and more often than not they’ll have great ideas of their own.

That’s just our top 5, there’s plenty more to bear in mind so if you’re looking at a video project involving animals (or kids, you’ll find all the above is relevant), get in touch and we can share our experience.