Sylvan the Dog | Flagstaff Pet Photographer

A few times a year I’m called by clients for a Ginger Session, an end of life celebration photo session. Ginger Sessions are named after my heart dog, my darling, sweet and precious Ginger Dawg who walked with me as my best friend from 1999 until 2007. They are a profound part of my business of being a pet photographer.

KT called me to photograph the handsome Sylvan right before he gained his angel wings. Even though his legs were not strong enough to carry him, his spirit was bright and loving. Just look at those eyes!

As I worked with Sylvan, I keep getting the message, “I’m ready, tell them it’s ok“. So, I honored that nudge and that’s when the tears started flowing. Sylvan’s moms knew it was time, but it’s never an easy choice to make.

How did I get that message and trust it? (spoiler alert….getting the message is easy, trusting it is actually the hard part)

Photo of a dog in the sunshine during a pet photographer session by Melissa Dunstan Pet Photographer

About five years ago, I met the lovely Sharon Loy. She’s an animal communicator and needed updated images for her website and was looking for a pet photographer to work with. She mostly does remote readings, but because she needed images for her website, I followed her to several local client’s homes to capture her work. That week forever changed my life.

Black and white photo of a dog outside in the sun by Melissa Dunstan Pet Photographer

I always knew that our animal friends connected to our hearts in ways I couldn’t describe, but working alongside Sharon showed me a glimpse into a world that solidified my beliefs of our deep ability to communicate with our pets, our connection with all animals, and also the afterlife. I clearly remember sitting in my car after the first photo session and crying. It all made sense. They are here to help us along our journey, to help our souls grow, expand into love and to be the best version of ourselves that we can. What a gift they are to us.

Photo of a dog wearing a bandana outdoors in the sun by Melissa Dunstan Pet Photographer

However, earth bodies are limited and that brings the inevitable…saying goodbye to a beloved family member is never easy. But I’m so honored to be able to capture some loving and beautiful images of pets before they have to leave this physical place. But, I know with every ounce of my being they are still nearby. They continue to walk beside us every step of the way. Teaching, guiding and loving. This is their work with humans.

A dog staring in the distance by Melissa Dunstan Pet Photographer

Over the years I’ve taken a few animal communication courses, online and in person.  I’ve come to be able to tap into the frequency of animal communication.   The messages I’ve received have been profound, fun and loving.  Boy, if any of you knew how much your pets love you.  Y’all, it’s BIG LOVE.

In my pet photography work, I get messages all the time. Sometimes I share, sometimes I don’t. It’s important to respect the space the human is in. Some are just not quite ready for their pet to give them guidance, at least in words. But, they always do get the lesson, even if it’s not quite black and white at the time.

Black and white photo of a dog in front of a tree at Lowell Observatory by Melissa Dunstan Flagstaff Pet Photographer

Sylvan, it was an honor and privilege to have met you. Keep looking after your family and keep sending them signs. They know you’re nearby.

Thank you for the beautiful words KT, and thank you for trusting me with this precious time.

I can’t believe I haven’t been able to write sooner, to tell you how stunning your photos of Sylvan are. They bring tears every time I look at them; and I have no idea how I will decide which ones to order. Thank you for being so intuitive and for capturing his beautiful spirit. 

KT Thompson
Black and White photo of a dog with his eyes closed in contentment by Melissa Dunstan Pet Photographer
A dog in a bandana smiling at Lowell Observatory by by Melissa Dunstan Flagstaff Pet Photographer
A dog outside during his end of life celebration by Melissa Dunstan Flagstaff Pet Photographer
a couple with their dog who is dying during an end of life celebration by Melissa Dunstan Flagstaff Pet Photographer

If you would like schedule a pet photography session, please contact me or fill out the form below. I’d love to be your pet photographer. Thank you!

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