• ... home of Ontario's premier pet photographer. This is where the photos of scruffy dog photography meet the heart and soul behind all of those fun and wacky photo shoots and the long hours in the digital darkroom ... a behind-the scenes peek into the zany life of a pet-exclusive photographer and her two trusty sidekicks. For more details on illona and the mcscruffies, check out the "about" section.

    What you will find here is the past several years of blog entries -- selected client shoots, sneak peeks, facebook recaps, news and announcements, promos and specials, as well as info on canine health and general dog chat. (NOTE: previous years of blog entries have been archived.)

    So, grab a cup of jo, give your scruffnut a beef tendon to gnaw on, and enjoy the photos and ramblin's.

put a little scruffy in your winter ~ {Waterloo pet photographer}

as a cold snap grips scruffyville, i figured it was a good time to blog some winter shots.  and as promised, it is my mission to try to blog at least a decent portion of the sessions shot last year.  during the actual heavier shooting seasons of spring, summer and fall there is seldom time to do any serious blogging, so this is my narrow window of opportunity!

so let me introduce to you Chewy and Huxley …

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exactly how handsome are these two boys?  Huxley — Mr. Dark and Handsome — had actually been entered in a previous scruffy dog facebook contest and i’d remembered seeing his photo … but what i had remembered was a schnauzery-looking, little scruffnut … and what bounded out of Kathy’s car was this long-legged, scruffy man!  i was stoked … what a handsome man!

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of course, Chewy is no slouch in the Looks Department.

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and while Huxley was all go-go-go …

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… Chewy was Mr. Poser.

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so while Huxley showed off his running skills …
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…and his super mad pouncing skillz!
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brother Chewy showed off his superior posing talents.
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of course, no session is without a scruffy dog ball or two … and Chewy was only too happy to oblige with some retrieving …
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and some crazy leaping skills himself.
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i’m not entirely certain what Huxley thought he was hunting in the snow, but his skills were definitely honed.
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thank you for introducing me to your fabulous boys, Kathy.  it was a pleasure to capture their images!

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Holly Garner-Jackson - Haha! super work!

Joni A Solis - Leaping lizards — I mean dogs — what fun!

Brittany May Garrett - Great stuff! Love the action shots against that pristine white background. Lovely.

Debi Livingston - awesome!

Michelle Bradshaw - Gorgeous shots illona!!!!

lucy mcshortypants ~ {Waterloo, Ontario pet photography}

for those of you who follow scruffy dog on facebook, you’ll already have met Lucy … now, with the heavy fall shooting over, with the rush of Christmas orders completed and picked up, and with the holidays behind us, it’s finally time to catch up on some blogging!  and i couldn’t think of a better entry than Lucy’s.  if this girl and her ears don’t make you smile, i’m not sure what will!

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we started Lucy’s session in her home where she showed me her favorite spots …

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…and her favorite toy, which is basically any plastic bottle.

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but Lucy was ready to go!  …ready for adventure!
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so we headed on out to see what adventure we could rouse up.

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Lucy enjoyed the big woods …

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although she was not to keen on the sappy pine needles stuck between her toes!

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and with 2 1/2″ legs, the long grasses almost swallowed sweet Lucy whole!

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mom and dad told me that Lucy doesn’t care for walks much past the mailbox … but this mighty girl proved them to be both liars!  she ran…

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…and ran!
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and she was a trooper when it came to exploring  new places.

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and she even proved to be a savvy balancer.

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thanks for introducing me to your wonderful girl, guys … it was a honour to capture her images and an absolute pleasure to meet and work with you!

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Jess Kamp - I love your angle, I am a proud dachshund owner so “on my belly – in the dirt” is my go to move :)

Holly Garner-Jackson - Those ears and those sturdy little feet are awesome! Well done!

Norma Rowley - Awesome ! You really captured her beauty and personality.

Robin Schmidt - Lucy Mccutiepants! Every shot heartbreakingly sweet.

Fran Klaas - This may be my very favorite work of yours!

Herman & Daphne Greening - We’re proud grandparents of this beautiful little dog. Lucy really outdid herself. Beautiful work!

Michelle Bradshaw - OMD she’s cute!!! Beautiful shots as always Illona!!!!!!

Donna Rigg - Her family must adore the images you have captured of their beautiful wee girl. I would hate to have to choose just 1 image, they are just so perfect :)

Di Fisk - Such an awesome series. How will they ever choose?

Helen - What a pretty girl and beautiful photos to capture her character.

our annual year-end client roundup ~ 2013 ~ {Ontario pet photographer}

once again, i am thrilled to present you with our annual year-end video.  most photographers put together a year-end blog entry as a retrospective of their year, but here at scruffy dog we started our own tradition over the past few years: a video to celebrate all of our clients and sessions in the past year.

the 4-leggers in this video are all clients from our 2013 sessions.  what you will see is one photo of each scruffy from every session … and let me tell you, that is no easy task: choosing just ONE photo from each client session!  fortunately for some of our clients, one session is not enough, and for those with two (or more) sessions in 2013 — namely our Seasons Sessions — they will appear once for each session.

and the result? over 150 scruffies!  what a stellar year!

unfortunately, with this high number, i am unable to include photos from rescue sessions shot throughout the year … and the slides do go by pretty quickly … so don’t blink!

also of note, with this year’s video (unlike in past years) i have laid out the images in the order that the sessions were shot … this way you are able to follow along and see the scruffy dog year unfold!

as i watch this year-end video back myself, i realize that in spite of many personal struggles and losses this year, as well as some significant equipment obstacles, we had another darn amazing year here at scruffy dog.  i must credit SDP’s absolutely wonderful clients and the many inspiring scruffies that i meet each year.  i am forever and deeply grateful for the spirit and support of not just my clients, but also the steadfast and loyal supporters of SDP over the years.  every single one of you — client, follower, supporter, marketing partner, fan — plays a vital role in making scruffy dog what it is today.

so, thank you.  each and every one of you, thank you.  this is for you!

again, thank you, clients, for being a part of the scruffy dog family and a part of our history. and thank you, SDP followers for your continued support over the years. ENJOY!


Holly Garner-Jackson - Super illona, and your music choices were great. I can’t imagine how you choose from all of your fabulous images!

Lise Charest Fratin - Wow

Keri Lyn Tomal Barham - Absolutely fabulous!

Norma Rowley - I am so inspired by the photos that you post, and the information you share. You make me want to work even harder at my craft, to capture the unique personalities of the animals that I photograph and draw. I’m hoping to schedule either a mentoring session or a critique of my portfolio and/or website in the near future. I wish you and your scruffies a happy, healthy and prosperous 2014 !

Andy Mathis - Love this “a year of scruffies”

Linda Gemmell - I smiled from start to finish…..Thank you

Shannon Taylor - Super! This collection of your year’s clients warmed my heart and put a smile on my face. You have a real gift Illona. I wish you an AMAZING 2014!

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