Critters: Out and about with your dog in the fall

Fall is a good time for walks with an enthusiastic companion. CREDIT: Courtesy of Debra Bell

Fall is a good time for walks with an enthusiastic companion.
CREDIT: Courtesy of Debra Bell

Fall is the time that many folks consider their holiday gift giving. In addition to embracing the colors of the season and the cooling air, fall is when people are soaking in the outdoors and being active with their pups.

So if you’re one of those folks who are going out and about with your dog this fall, here are some ideas of ways to capture your fall escapades through the lens. But safety first: Always make sure that your dog is on leash, especially when hiking or out in public. Always set your pup up for success and remember to treat constantly!

Go leaf peeping. Take your pup for a ride and head out to a park or trail with lots of leaves. University campuses are also great places to find color. Once you get to a colorful spot, settle pup in with the foliage behind her or nestled into a pile of leaves. If your pup knows “stay” or “sit” these are great behaviors to work on while pulling in colorful backdrops.

Bring the color or symbols of the season home. Who says you have to leave home to capture fall images with your pup? Bring home a pumpkin, put together a pile of leaves, or purchase a couple of mums and set up a mini studio in your front yard. Plus, when you’re done using the pumpkin in your photos, you can carve it, cook it and feed it to your pup!

Go for a walk and take some friends. Sometimes you need a second hand to create great pictures. Have a family friend or family member to assist you by keeping your pup engaged (and treated).

Attend a fall dog event — but only if your pup does well with dog events. Not all dogs like being around other dogs but if your pup is social and well mannered, consider attending a fall dog-centered event. Or schedule a holiday pet portrait session where your pup can shine (and create some darn cute images for holiday gift giving).

Here are some events that are coming up soon:

  • Barks in the Parks, Gardiner, Sept. 10, to benefit the Gardiner Dog Park.
  • Whisker Walk, Sept. 17, 9am-2pm, Harbor Park, Rockland to benefit the Pope Humane Society.
  • Soldiers Pace Canicross Race, Sept. 18, 8 a.m.-1 p.m., Smiling Hill Farm in Westbrook; Admission: $25. Register online at or call 207-885-1290 for information.
  • Paws on Parade, Saturday, Sept. 24 on the Bangor Waterfront, 8 a.m.-Noon. Benefits the Bangor Humane Society.
  • Bark For Life of York County, Wells Harbor Community Park, Oct. 2, 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Admission: $15 for the first dog, $25 for two dogs. Proceeds benefit the American Cancer Society.

Debra Bell is a freelance writer, graphic designer and the owner of Bell’s Furry Friends

Photography (a division of Bell Imaging & Design LLC). Bell’s Furry Friends Photography has been named Bangor’s Best Pet Photography Studio in 2014–16. Debra and her husband Bill, are owned by a Maine coon cat named Olivia and two greyhounds, Laura and Buddy. See her work and learn more about Bell’s Furry Friends Photography at

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