Warning: This post contains strong and disturbing photos of euthanasia and animal suffering.
Every year in North Carolina, over 250,000 animals are euthanized because there is no one willing to adopt them and care for them. This averages to nearly 700 animals killed daily. NC-based photographer Mary Shannon Johnstone has been on a mission to draw public awareness to the issue of animal overpopulation. Her gut-wrenching project, titled “Breeding Ignorance,” offers an brutally honest look at the conditions inside animal shelters and the tragedy of beautiful (and often healthy) animals being put down. Read more…
LaNola Kathleen Stone is a New York City-based professional photographer and dog lover who uses her talents and free time for a very heartwarming cause: Stone visits the dog pound near her home and specifically asks to shoot portraits of the dogs that are the “least likely to be adopted”, some of which have been there for over half a year and are likely in danger of being put down. Read more…
If you’re a dog lover, you’ve got to check out the photography of 17-year-old photographer Jessica Trinh. Her two main photo subjects are her two dogs: a Golden Retriever named Chuppy and an Australian Shepherd named Daisy. Over the past few years, Trinh has captured hundreds of beautiful and creative portraits of her furry happy-go-lucky friends, aided by her keen eye for spotting gorgeous lighting and happy expressions. We dare you not to smile as you look through the images in this post. Read more…
For the past two years, 37-year-old photographer Tou Chih-kang has been capturing the last moments of dogs at Taoyuan Animal Shelter in Taiwan. His roughly 400 portraits show the dogs — most of them abandoned by their owners — moments before they’re put to sleep. His mission is to raise awareness and encourage responsibility among pet owners:
I believe something should not be told but should be felt. And I hope these images will arouse the viewers to contemplate and feel for these unfortunate lives, and understand the inhumanity we the society are putting them through.
70% of dogs in Taiwanese animal shelters are euthanized after a brief 12-day waiting period, and it’s estimated that around 80,000 dogs will be euthanized year alone — a high figure for a country that has a human population of only 23 million. Tou’s project, titled Memento Mori
, can be seen here.
“Doggie Style” is a cute series of fashion photos shot by photographer Emily Shur for Paper Magazine. They’re pretty different from ordinary fashion photos: Shur had her human models face backwards while holding dogs facing forwards. She writes,
This shoot was presented to me with this image of my husband and The Baroness as the impetus and inspiration. A lot of these dogs belong to friends. Some I found via friends. All in all it was such a funny day and shoot. I loved it… even when one dog, who will remain unnamed, peed on my softbox.
Back in June we shared a cool (and nauseating) video of some guys throwing around a GoPro camera attached to a stick. YouTube user Lorduss1 recently did something similar… except with his dog. He mounted a GoPro camera to a stick, gave it to his dog, and then chased the dog around the yard.
Back in September we shared the story of Teresa Berg, a photographer who volunteers her time to take professional quality adoption photos for dogs in shelters. Sadly, similar efforts to save dogs through photography aren’t always encouraged. A woman named Emily Tanen was fired from Animal Care and Control of New York City back in May for her photos of dogs scheduled to be euthanized. Her crime? Violating the group’s strict photo policy, which includes a rule prohibiting showing humans in photos. The New York Times writes,
When she started working at Care and Control, Ms. Tanen said, she believed that the animals were photographed poorly and that the images failed to convey the warmth of a potential pet.
With her art background from her studies, Ms. Tanen decided she could do a better job with her $1,500 Nikon.
[...] Ms. Tanen said she tried to comply with the rules, but sometimes felt her judgment trumped her superiors’. She continued to show people’s hands touching a dog, even after receiving a warning against doing so. “I think they just didn’t want photos of animals that they were about to kill looking cute and adoptable and happy with people, but they said it was because their research showed that photos with people didn’t encourage people to adopt,” she said.
You can see some more of Tanen’s photographs here (be warned: they show humans).