I first met Bindi last March when I photographed her and “little brother” Cosmo for my Tails of Sydney book. She was already starting to show signs of her age but I was still shocked when I got a message in January asking if I could schedule an urgent session before she was given her wings. As I said in my last post, Bindi was living with pretty bad arthritis. Her owner was doing everything to keep her comfortable but in January she learned the devastating news that her darling girl had a very aggressive type of bone cancer which was inoperable. I was on the other side of the country when I got the news but I scheduled a shoot at their home as soon as I got back.

I had mentally prepared myself for a very sick dog, not the same happy girl I’d photographed 10 months prior. Despite everything she still lit up the room with her smile.

smiley senior dog on couch very grey

senior red dog on couch smiling very grey

I brought her a toy, like I do for all my clients, but I wasn’t even sure if she’d be interested in it. Turns out she was. She definitely was!

old dog on bed chewing favourite ball

elderbull on bed with favourite ball

Cosmo had lived with Bindi since he was five months old. They had a very special bond and gorgeous matching smiles to show it.

two old dogs lying on bed together smiling

happy white staffy on owners bed

smiling white staffy on owners bed

After I was finished rearranging the bedroom furniture we moved outside to the courtyard.

staffy smile

happy fat dog on sun lounger


senior dog with white hair smiling at sunset

old dog lying with head on paws

When we said our goodbyes I got a massive lump in my throat. I’ve photographed a lot of dogs that have passed away before I ever got to see them again but knowing that I’d definitely never see Bindi again really upset me. It’s taken me a long time to write this post for that reason.

Our session was on a Thursday evening. Bindi made it through the weekend but early the following week she let her owner know it was time. Their vet came over and she passed away peacefully at home. She was a special girl who’ll be missed by many.

We’d discussed Cosmo at the shoot and how he’d cope on his own. The plan was to adopt another dog once they’d had time to grieve. Several weeks later I saw my client commenting on posts on the Fetching Dogs Facebook page so I sent her a message offering to put in a good word for her when she’s ready. She replied with a photo of her new Staffy that she’d just adopted from the pound. She thought she’d wait longer but with the storms at the time there were so many dogs at the pound and she felt it was the right thing to do. I wholeheartedly agreed and insisted on dropping her product order over so I could meet the new addition. Our eldest Staffy, Angel, is twelve and a half now. Sometimes I get pangs of sadness that when she leaves us we’ll never own another dog as funny as her. Well, Pippi is just like her – right down to the ninja bed-wetting when things don’t go her way! It was so lovely to meet her. I have a feeling she’s going to bring a lot of joy (and naughtiness) to that household and help Cosmo and his person to heal. I’ve been told that I’ll get to photograph her once she’s learned some manners. I can’t wait.

In my eagerness to meet Pippi I never did photograph the acrylic collection and album from this session but there’s a flip-through of the album on my Instagram now. It combines photos from both of Bindi and Cosmo’s sessions with me.

If you’ve been thinking about booking a shoot with me now is my favourite time of year – it’s not too hot, parks and beaches aren’t busy (especially during the week) and I can wear my ugly vest with many pockets without people asking how I’m not boiling! Check out my website for more details.

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