How to Train Your Dog to Look at the Camera

Train your dog to look at the camera. Take pictures of your dog that you'll cherish forever, by using the 5 easy to follow tips for taking a picture of your dog in this article!
Want a picture of your dog focused and smiling at the camera, not staring off to the side or a blurry mess because you took the picture right when they started to run off? Of course! And fortunately it’s not as hard to train as it may seem.

Use the 5 techniques below and you’ll soon know all you’ll need. Continue reading to learn how to train your dog to look at the camera!

Make Noise

All dogs will respond differently, but one of the first things you should try to get your dog to look at the camera is to simply make noise. It can be something human, something mimicking dogs, high-pitched, low-pitched… just experiment.

Whatever gets your dog’s attention long enough to snap a photo is perfect. It may even need to be something which makes you feel a bit odd (like barking or using a funny voice), but it might work out with you capturing that adorable dog head tilt.

If you’re using words, that’s perfectly fine. Just remember that enticing their focus towards you by saying things they connect with a favorite toy or treat needs a payoff. Otherwise, they’ll quickly learn to ignore them (and likely other commands).

Dog Toys

You can probably immediately picture your dog’s favorite toy (and the noise it makes, if applicable). Now think about the effect that it has on your dog when they’re shown it, or hear its squeak. Think that could help with your picture-taking? Of course!

To use this method, simply hold up one of your dog’s favorite toys near the camera. If it squeaks, you should definitely make use of that as well to get their attention while you are taking their photo.

One thing to remember, though, is that this may excite your dog so it might not be your best option if you’re looking for a calm photo of them sitting. But for a picture of them with a huge, adorable smile this is just the method you need!

Food Treats

What dog doesn’t love a tasty treat? Just the sound of a box or bag opening is enough to send most of ours dog into a frenzy. And there’s a couple of ways you can use this advantage when it comes to getting the perfect photo of your dog.

Show your dog the treat, and if they’re fairly well-behaved you can hold it in your hand and give them a sniff too. Next, give them the command to sit. Once they do, they should be looking up at you showing their love with a big smile… picture time!

But if your dog has not learned the sit command yet, the treat can still help you get your picture. Wait for your dog to calm down, then get yourself ready to take the picture while holding the treat right next to the camera.

Your dog should be captivated, and their focus will be right towards the camera allowing you to get a great photo.


If you’re out on a walk or at the park, it’s inevitable that your dog’s attention is going to be all over the place. While this will make many photos difficult, it’s still an opportunity for some wonderful shots of your pup.

Notice your dog curiously staring off to the side at another dog in the park? Simply get into their line of sight. They’ll either switch their gaze directly to you (and the camera), or just look through you which should still make for an excellent picture.

Combining this method with the earlier techniques should work great for environments with a lot going on, especially if your dog has trouble focusing their attention in places like that.

Photography Techniques

Many dogs will be confused or distracted when your face is hidden by the camera. This can result in them running up to you, or simply putting an expression on their face which won’t make for a nice photo.

What you’ll need to do here is get the camera focused beforehand. Next, while keeping it off to the side, quickly bring the camera into position and begin snapping pictures when your dog is looking photo-ready.

This will likely take some practice to get right, and as with many of the previously mentioned techniques is probably best applied with something additional such as making noise or squeaking one of your dog’s toys.

Now that you know the process, all that’s left is to go create some memories with your wonderful dog! Be sure to pin this in case you need a reminder before the next time you’re looking to take that perfect photo of your pup!