Old Dog. New Tricks.
Our Shelter Me "Old Dog, New Tricks." program teaches animal-welfare workers and volunteers how to capture, process and promote quality intake and adoption pictures of the animals in their care, regardless of skill, location or equipment limitations.
The objective of the program is to improve the quality of intake and adoption pictures by improving the photography and lighting skills of those who capture them.
As one of the country's most experienced professional shelter photographers, SMP's director, Nanette Martin, developed the training curriculum based on real-life lessons learned throughout her 16-year career as a professional photographer, the last seven of which were spent photographing shelter animals.
Category Animal-Related - Animal Protection & Welfare
Target population Adults
Young Adults (20-25 years)
Definition of short-term success
1. We will present ourselves as a resource at key animal-welfare conferences such as the HSUS Animal Expo, Best Friends Save Them All and the Society of Animal Welfare Administrators conferences.
2. We will conduct a minimum of 5 regional training sessions that each will accommodate up to 50 shelter attendees.
3. We will create a new website, training materials and cheat sheets that will help shelters implement our methods even if they are not able to attend a training in-person.
Definition of long-term success:
Success will be achieved when a majority of the adoptable pet photographs seen online on sites like petfinder.com, adoptapet.com and shelter websites are of high quality and help potential adopters see the true beauty of the pets available so that "fall in love" with a pet and choose to adopt. We will accomplish this by equipping shelter workers with the skills, tools and motivation needed to produce high quality images of the adoptable animals in their care. Our 5-year goal is to teach these life-saving photography skills to 1,250 workshop attendees at 50 workshops around the country.
Program success monitored by:
We will track the number of workshops that we conduct along with the number of attendees. We will evaluate their feedback on the efficacy of the materials we will be providing and optimize accordingly on an ongoing basis.
Examples or evidence of program success:
The Animal Protection Association of Missouri is a great example of SMP's Shelter-Photography Workshop program success. Feedback from the shelter revealed that:
Visitors to their website were spending twice as much time viewing their images as they did before the workshop;
Adoption rates were up;
Marked increase in the number of Facebook followers; and
The entire staff was energized and eager to assist with photographing the animals, even those working at the front desk!