Holiday greeting cards and keepsake photos picturing family pets (and sometimes their humans) are increasingly popular, and the time to think about them is now. Many pet stores, mall stores, animal shelters, rescue organizations and commercial photographers are hosting photo sessions over the next few weeks. Among them are a trio of “Santa Paws” photo ops sure to have you saying “awwww” for years to come. They include a photo-with-Santa session on Dec. 10 at Old Town Center in Los Gatos benefiting Humane Society Silicon Valley. It repeats the next day at Hotel Valencia in San Jose’s dog-friendly Santana Row shopping and dining district.
Also on Dec. 11, canines are the stars of the San Francisco SPCA’s annual Santa Paws event at San Francisco’s Sir Francis Drake Hotel, where humans will be welcomed with hot cider and dogs with yummy treats. Other options are offered by Think Massmedia Petography, which will be staging events in Pleasanton on Dec. 3 and 4, San Jose on Nov. 21 and Dec. 12, Belmont on Nov. 12 and 26, and Sunnyvale on Nov. 19 and Dec. 10 (check website for times and specific locations). Another option: Hire an experienced dog photographer and have a custom greeting-card portrait made at a time and place of your choosing. For tips on how to prepare for a pet photography session, check out these guidelines from Petco, which will be offering in-store events throughout the region in coming weeks.