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Maltese Shih Tzu Stars in Melbourne Studio

Lesley O'Donnell - Sunday, October 25, 2015

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Meeting Buddy for the first time was tinged with sadness as Kylie had already informed me that he was suffering from mouth cancer and she wasn’t sure how he was going to respond to his treatment. There was an urgency to have photos taken that captured their relationship while he looked happy and well.

What struck me with these two was how close their bond was. Buddy by name and definitely buddies by nature.

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This dear wee Maltese Shih Tzu stayed close to Kylie and, while we chatted about how she wanted simple, interactive photos to remember how close their relationship was, he rested his head comfortably across her knees as if that was the sole purpose of her lap.


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They constantly shared intimate exchanges such as tummy rubs and kisses. As soft as silk, Buddy’s ears were irresistible to Kylie and he adored having them stroked. It was quite possibly his favourite form of affection.

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I think Buddy understood human language because when Kylie spoke to him he would look attentively at her with his nose right up to hers.

Sadly Buddy’s health declined and he crossed the rainbow bridge shortly after these photos were taken.

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Buddy was more than just a dog to Kylie, and indeed her extended family. He was a friend, a cuddle buddy, an exercise partner, a playmate and the perfect foil to life’s stresses. He would always greet Kylie with an enthusiastic welcome when she returned home from work each day. I know she misses him terribly and for the short time I knew him I completely understand why.

His photos will keep him alive in Kylie’s memories forever. RIP Buddy. You brought love and light into your world.

Read stories of other pets I have photographed.

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Three Rescued Dogs Find Love

Lesley O'Donnell - Thursday, October 24, 2013

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I have noticed with the kind caring souls who rescue animals that they often take more than one into their homes. Gayle is no exception and gave a home and her love and affection to these three little tackers.

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Aged 14 the Miniature Fox Terrier is the oldest dog in this family. Not so drawn to affection Pip tends to be rather bossy and cranky with other canines and humans alike. She is very much her own being and not easily persuaded by others.

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Ollie, a 7 year old Maltese cross, is the ratbag of the family who cleverly begs sitting upright on his hind legs. It is a trick that commands him attention and admiration. He also loves to snuggle down in comfort on the soft furnishings or in Gayle’s arms. 

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Gayle described Kenny, the 11 year old Chihuahua cross, as a caring gentleman. He stepped into a very important role when her husband was dying of cancer as, unusually, he was allowed into intensive care to offer his support and comfort. Other patients also found consolation from the opportunity to pat and cuddle him. Sadly Kenny has recently lost his own battle with cancer. This dear wee dog will surely be missed by all who let him into their hearts.



Photographing these three dogs at their holiday house and later at the beach was great fun and I love these three photos of them featured on the back cover of their photo album.
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Melbourne Pet Photography - Camera Shy

Lesley O'Donnell - Wednesday, July 24, 2013



Nadine and Carmen assured me that their dog Lucky was really camera shy. They said that whenever the camera came out he would look away or exit the stage. I thought, “I am sure that won’t be the case with me as the photographer”. But they were right. Lucky was REALLY CAMERA SHY!

Lucky is a rescued Maltese Shi Tzu cross who is a big boy weighing 13 kgs. Although only 3 1/2 years old he acts like an old man who is not going to be persuaded into doing anything he views as juvenile. I think this must be how he saw having his portrait taken.

Really friendly and eager for affection and treats when the camera was not in use, Lucky challenged me every time I attempted to take his photo. He either looked away, turned his back to me or walked right out of the picture. 

His fear of loud noises prevented me from being able to employ my usual repertoire of attraction gaining sounds. If any trick worked it only worked once. Luckily they worked enough times to capture him for posterity. 


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lou goddard commented on 25-Jul-2013 12:21 AM
what a beautiful picture of lucky..he looks so shy ???? just like his owners..what a lovely boy and a lucky one too..xxx
Lesley - Pet Shots commented on 28-Jul-2013 10:04 AM
Thanks for the comment Lou. I think you may just be right about Lucky's owners - they were a little camera shy too!

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Pet Photography Melbourne - Pretty and Petite

Lesley O'Donnell - Monday, July 01, 2013


You could never mistake that this Maltese Shih Tzu is a girl. Lulu is pretty, petite and feminine although this is perhaps not so evident when she is chasing possums, one of her favourite evening activities. Maybe I should borrow her to discourage the nightly visits of a possum to our veggie patch.




Lulu is a happy, friendly little dog who loves to explore the inner city’s nooks and crannies as well as nearby parklands where she meets up with her doggie friends out on their daily walks. She also loves snuggling up to Helen when she is reading in bed. Infact, she just loves being with Helen and I think you can see the mutual affection in this image in the studio garden.

Helen commented to me that Lulu has several layers to her character and that is what I set out to capture. Although she loves to playfully dance with Helen and is a hoot to watch, I love this close up photo as I think she has much to say with those big brown eyes. 

Personally I love how beautifully she wears her feminine collar and her ever-so-soft ears. If she were mine it would be tempting to stroke them all day.



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