Jennifer Waters


Do you know that feeling?

That feeling you get when you bring a new animal home and it’s afraid of you and afraid of its shadow, and your heart breaks for whatever happened to make your new animal feel this way?

You move slow and you stay home a little more and you leave a trail of treats under the bed leading to where you are sitting. Waiting. And just as you think you’ve made a huge mistake…

She comes to you. Riding low and ready to run, but curious and making the effort. Then maybe you feel a little purr at your touch. Then one day, she doesn’t flinch when you raise your hand to pet her head. Then you notice she doesn’t run when you walk in the room, and suddenly, you’re bumping foreheads together and sharing the same pillow and introducing her to all your friends!

Oh, that feeling! My first child was this cat. Her name was Flower, and I believe she taught me everything I know about empathy, patience and love for animals. About building trust and fostering bonds. About seeing the world through an animal’s eyes, not forcing my human views on her.

Those lessons are a big part of who I am today and why I enjoy animal photography so much. It takes patience. It takes compassion. (And yes, it takes a fast camera.) I have all those things.

When I became a pet photographer in 2011 I took thousands of photos of my three Boxers, Tyler, Lily and Georgia. I realized that what makes me happy—truly, full-up happy—is to do something that they love. To get out in the sun and unhook the leashes and watch them run until their tongues hang out the sides of their mouths. Until one of them finds a mud puddle or jumps in the creek, even as I’m yelling at them not to do that! Until I know that they will sleep off the rest of the day, exhausted and happy.

I call those Good Dog Days.

Days when the dogs get to be dogs and do all the doggie things. And the only thing better is getting to do those things with the people they love by their sides.

I want to create a Good Dog Day for you and your pet. Even better, I’m going to photograph the results! You get to be fully present with your dog* so you get to remember this day in memories….and in the beautiful, sentimental artwork that we create—forever.

Reach out and tell me what a Good Dog Day would look like for you and your pet. Or take a minute to meet the Grumpy Pups (full disclaimer: only one out of three is grumpy). I’d love to have you visit my Portfolio…I kind of put my heart into it.

I think you might spot some feelings you recognize.


* (or cat, horse, rabbit, alpaca, rat…all animals are beautiful and hey, I started out as a cat lady)

Jennifer Waters, grumpy pups pet photographer

Photos by Christina Heyboer of Closer to the Heart Photography

Jennifer Waters, grumpy pups pet photographer

Jennifer Waters, grumpy pups pet photographer

As Seen In

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Springer spaniels in a field of Michigan wildflowers

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