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Working With Animals

January 10th 2020 by CH

Read time: 3 mins

https://www.ch-video.com/portfolio/ch-christmas-video-2019/

“Never work with children or animals” – William Claude Dukenfield

We’re all about making exciting, engaging and clickable content here at CH, and sometimes that can mean working to a difficult brief. Even if we come up with the idea ourselves!

Back in December 2019, we decided to enlist some of our furry friends for starring roles in our annual Christmas video (who doesn’t love to watch cute dogs mess about?)

To give the content purpose, we wanted to help raise donations and support for a local animal shelter in Berkshire (DBARC), so we linked through to their page as well.

Working with dogs was a first for us.

But after some initial teething problems (excuse the pun), we learnt a few things:

Food is the Director

It doesn’t matter who speaks, the person holding the treats is the one in charge. When working with dogs or generally trying to get a dog’s attention, don’t go empty handed!

Dogs Don’t Love Cameras

Most dogs have no interest in looking down the lens. This makes that cute puppy eye shot tough to achieve. But using a long lens (135mm) is the best option for getting those all-important close ups.

Just ‘Go with it’

No matter how much you plan ahead, it rarely goes to plan! We started our day with roughly three different ways to film (with no idea whether we could get any of it) and had to abandon the complex shots on the day, simply because some of our stars didn’t feel like doing a particular trick when we needed them to.

When you’re working with dogs or any animal – be flexible, have plenty of rest breaks, respect their needs and allow them to do what they do best.

As a result of our Christmas video, DBARC received over £800 in donations and the video itself has had over 15k views on their Facebook page.

In conclusion – shooting (and editing!) this video was really fun for us as a team but best of all, it was for a great cause. Win win.

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