What My Dogs Give Me

winchester va pet dog portrait photographer

Winchester VA pet, dog portrait photographer

 I never liked dogs growing up and I never understood why other people did, as a matter of fact I have had a fear of dogs most of my life. It didn’t matter whether the dog was large or small, if it barked and had teeth there was no place in my affections for it. I am a country girl and grew up around plenty of farm animals that we fed and they in turn fed us but dogs were not my pals.

 Five and a half years ago during a particularly stressful time in my life I decided that I would like to have a dog. The decision was partly to surprise my husband with something that I knew that he would love and partly because I had decided that it was time to face my fear and conquer it. Now, no one in their right mind who already needs 36 hours in a day, has their hands full with a ton of projects, volunteer work and running a business which requires them to manage multiple details for others comes to this conclusion that they need to add another detail to their own life. But that is what I did.

 The rationale was complex bordering on convoluted. I needed to schedule my own life as well as I was scheduling the events of my clients, I needed more exercise, I needed a partner for motivation and I needed the security that comes with having a companion with you.

Winchester VA Pet Portrait Photographer Joy

So, I got a dog, a female, a big one (well initially she was little, an Italian Mastiff I named Nosirrah (Nuh-sear-ruh) which is the reverse spelling of the middle name of both my husband and my son.

It was obvious that once I brought that beautiful little eight week old puppy home that I would be on the giving end. I had to feed her, provide shelter for her, train her, comfort her and help her adjust to her new “forever home”.

Fast forward five years and Nosirrah is 100 pounds, a sober, affectionate, jealous, guardian, protector and exercise companion and I officially am a dog lover.

Studio pet portrait photography Northern Virginia

In fact, the benefits that I derived from this experience were so great that one dog was not enough so I got another, a male that we named Nocheski (Nō-chess-ski or Nōach for short).

Washington DC pet portraits outdoors

Dog owner outdoor portraits Nocheski, now six months old already weighs 75 pounds and is a special V-Line mastiff mix of Presa Canario, South African Boerbel and Argentinian Dogo. I have never seen a happier more precocious dog in my life. He is as funny and animated as a cartoon and as carefree as a summer day.

With all that I may have given my dogs, what my dogs have given me in return is priceless.

A consistent routine, I am up early each day to “let the dogs out” (pun intended) and start to get a handle on what’s important. I get plenty of exercise motivated by our mutual need to get outside and take long mind clearing walks. I have the security of two protective guards as we stroll along and take in the day. At last my fear of dogs has been replaced by a love for my own two and a healthy respect for other dogs that I encounter.

This has been a real learning experience for me and hardly anyone can believe that I have   become a dog person.

I think that the distinct personalities of these two wonderful animals were masterfully captured by Joy Rahat, specializing in Branding and Contemporary Portraits.  First, she was able to work with them to relax and we did these beautiful indoor pictures only minutes after their two-hour ride to her studio. Lastly, she photographed us all taking a walk on a nearby trail, enjoying the last of the Fall colors.

– Events USA Founder, Carolyn E. Howell
To learn more about Carolyn click here.