Lens-Artists Challenge #61 – Precious Pets
“Until one has loved an animal, a part of one’s soul remains unawakened.”
For the past few weeks our challenge has addressed a number of photography skills – framing a shot, finding different perspectives and combining multiple elements in a single image. This week, let’s relax a bit and share something just for fun – our precious pets.
“Dogs do speak, but only to those who know how to listen.”
Here in the U.S. (as well as in China and India), the most common pet is a dog. Dogs are loyal companions – sharing our moods, our homes and most importantly, our love. The capture above features Geneve, a gorgeous Bernese Mountain dog. Despite very hot, humid conditions, she was willing to spend an hour posing on Kiawah’s beach in her naturally thick coat because her beloved human and I asked it of her. What is that phrase “no greater love”? Interestingly, a recent study by the Mayo Clinic confirmed a long-suspected fact that dog owners are more likely to have better heart health – perhaps that explains why the U.S. celebrated International Dog Day this past week.
“Once a cat loves you, it loves you till the end.”
On the other hand, in Switzerland, Austria and Turkey the most popular pet is a cat. In my experience (and prevailing opinion), most of us are dog OR cat people but not usually both . To me, cats have always seemed a bit more aloof, except to the (typically) ONE person with whom they choose to bond. They do not come when called, do not do tricks on demand, and only eat when they are darned good and ready – not before. I suppose that simply means they are the smarter of the two species – just sayin’ 😊.
“Our pets are our family.”
Dogs and cats may be the most obvious subjects for today’s challenge, but there are a number of other, less predictable choices. Exhibit A – the alpaca above. The beloved pet of a family in upstate New York, he (or she) loves to trot down to the front-yard fence to greet passers-by. One wonders whether the family invites her to sit by the fire on a cold winter’s evening as one might a dog or cat – or if there is a cozy alpaca bed available at a pet supply store near you!
“We could all learn a thing or two from our four legged friends.”
Another less-than-obvious choice might be an equine companion. Just ask Anne Leueen at Horse addict about her faithful steed Biasini. Horse and rider often times know each other as well as can be imagined, working together in a dance of stunning coordination. Love and trust between them is a critical component of their performance.
“Pets understand humans better than humans do.”
Many people have birds as pets – both large and small. Although you may not think of a hummingbird as a pet in the traditional sense, having spent several days at my brother’s home in Colorado I now have a new appreciation for these small creatures. He and his wife keep their feeder well-supplied and out of reach of other wildlife. The hummingbirds are on a constant journey back and forth between their nests and the feeder, lining up patiently for their turn. Happily I was able to capture the little beauty above snacking on an iris in an area near his home before it headed out on its winter migration – which can include up to 2000 km (1200 miles) without a break.
“Love is love, whether it goes on two legs or four.”
You must admit that a woman holding an ox on a leash is not something you see every day. This scene greeted me one afternoon during a visit to a very remote area of China. Do you suppose if the ox decided to take off, the thin rope the woman is holding would serve its purpose? I’m guessing probably not. I’m also guessing this will be the only “ox as pet” photo we’ll see in this week’s challenge responses.
“Our pets are the kids who never leave home.”
I’ve closed today’s post with an image of Hallie, a beautiful Retriever with a heart of gold. She sweetly led me through the colorful marshes as her mistress and I searched for (and found) stunning vistas and roseate spoonbills on nearby Seabrook Island. Her white muzzle may indicate advancing age, but in her heart she’s still a puppy. Isn’t that one of the many things we might learn from our pets – to be forever young at heart? That along with giving love unquestioningly and enjoying the simple things – a master class in living life to the fullest.
Patti, Ann Christine, Amy and I look forward to seeing your take on pets, both expected and surprising, in your responses this week – extra credit for any images that make us smile or better yet, laugh out loud 😀. Be sure to link to this post (IMPORTANT NOTE: Please be sure to link to the original post, Links posted within the Reader are not working correctly) and to use the Lens-Artists tag to help us find you. For instructions on how to join us, click here– and of course be sure to visit Patti’s Pilotfish blog next week for Challenge #62.
Last week you responded to Amy’s FRAMING challenge with some terrific examples.
Have you seen these?
Beth of Wandering Dawgs showed us how landscapes can be framed in multiple ways
Debbie Whittam showed us a creatively humorous framing of a sweet little pet
Abrie of Abrie dink hardop (Abrie thinking out loud) shows us how South Africans are framing their famous Table Mountain
Taking care of a pet, especially large pets really is and important part of life.
And it is a big job too and is really awesome.
Thanks for stopping by and adding to the fun
And you too, for your wonderful blog!
Haha love the bad hair day. You crack me up !
LOL That was the idea 😊😊
Excellent shots, beautiful, touching quotes, marvelous presentation.
Again, nice shots on a topic that could easily yield sappy ones but in your hands hasn’t.
Thanks Ellen, tried to inject some fun in this one. Much appreciated
what a heartwarming post!!! loving them all….the beach beauty is certinly a beauty….love hallie’s spunk!!
Great captures of our fury friends Tina 🙂
Thanks very much MT!
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such a fun topic – and like the ending one of Hallie and the photo effect
Many thanks Yvette – been many years since our dog passed but I think of him often as do many of our other responders with their own “best friends” apparently!
yes – they will live on with us for a long while – and it seems your lens-artist theme comes out at the start of the month and that is a slow posting time for me – so I did not quite get the post out that I wanted to – (as I noted on my blog) but I do have one more comic to share (from Linda) that I will try and come back to share – you will love it
Tina, I love your choice this week!! Here is the link to my entry: https://mycolorfulexpressions.com/lens-artists-photo-challenge-61-precious-pets/
A fun and last-minute response to your challenge Tina:https://wp.me/p2owKx-1eO
I love your “Bad Hair Day” let’s just say I can relate.
Terrific thanks Amy!
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Great post as usual!
On a television network, there is an ad that asks if you are of cats or dogs and the answer is… I am of dragons!!! That’s me! and that’s why I couldn’t participate this time, sorry, I couldn’t find one… 😉
Well, maybe it was also some lack of time 😦 At least I’ve been able to enjoy your pets.
Thanks for stopping by Ana. You’ll have much to offer on today’s challenge no doubt!
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a bevy of beagles to cheer you!
Thanks for participating Lindy
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Hi Tina. I love the photos and thoughts in this post! The “ox,” however, is not an ox, it’s a water buffalo. They are used extensively in farming in Southeast Asia.
I loved this post. I have recently just lost my dog, and dogs truly are our best friends. I can understand the same thing between a horse and their owner, as they have to build trust and a relationship to be able to do the things they do. All pets have different relationships with their owners, and all are equally important.
Well said Madison. So sorry for your loss
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Aw…all your photos and words brought me to tears (loving pet kind of tears). Pets are special, yes they are!
Thanks Sherry – they sure are 😊
Of course—spell correct got me Shelly 😡
You’re welcome, thank you for the opportunity to play along this week and for hosting the prompt!
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a topic I can totally work with, my first ever entry… https://cathathome.blogspot.com/2019/09/pawsome-pets.html
I wanted to join in with the framed topic….boy I had some good ones….but I forgot which blog was hosting.
Hello Cath and welcome to the challenge. Lots of wonderful pets! Your post won’t let me comment in WP. Can u add a Lens-artists tag?
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Love the bad hair day one! Here’s mine – https://myheart2heart.blog/2019/09/05/walking-your-pet-can-be-challenging/
Thanks, and appreciate your joining us!
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Oh the pets that we love, there are all kinds: Ducks, chicken, pigs, water buffalo, monkey ….
Yes! for hummers, Tina. I consider them as part of my daily life now. Thanks for a fun assignment.
My pleasure for sure Perpetua 😊
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Beautiful images! ❤ Here is my pet photo story on my new blog. Only dog is mine, but he's a handful.
Thanks MMM, loved your creative post
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