Poodle Forum banner

1 - 14 of 14 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
716 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
Lacey has developed a very strange habit whenever I try to take a picture of her and she knows I’m doing so.

She almost immediately starts to blink and narrow her eyes likes she’s tired and continues “narrow” blinks until she completely closes her eyes. Just like a sleepy dog or toddler.
It’s not due to being tired though because she does it every time and her eyes go back to normal when I stop taking pics. Also, if I just act like I’m on my phone and she doesn’t know I’m taking her picture then she won’t do it.

I can’t figure out why she does it. She started doing it at just over a year old and has continued to do it for the past 5-6 months. I haven’t changed anything different and I’ve been taking pics of her since she was a baby. I dont use the flash function.

It makes it hard to get pics of her with her eyes fully opened. Many of them look like this:

473103


or this

473104


Very strange.
 

·
Super Moderator
Peggy Sue, Standard Poodle Born May 2019
Joined
·
8,780 Posts

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
3,603 Posts
Sorry, hit enter before I meant to. You said you don't use the flash function. I wonder if it went off accidentally on its own. My phone does that. So annoying. I'd try and desensitize your dog to the presence of a camera. Pick it up, treat, set it down, treat. That kind of thing. It's tough when we want to snap a picture and the dog makes a face, or ducks their head.
 

·
Premium Member
Mia, Christmas in June 2010
Joined
·
2,702 Posts
Mia does something similar. I interpret is as a calming signal: she sees the camera as direct eye contact, so she squints her eyes as a sign of non-aggression. Maybe?
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
4,000 Posts
My boys don't look at the camera if they can help it, so different problem, but a professional photographer friend showed me that making (funny) sounds with my mouth gets them to look, and to occasionally give some priceless expressions :).

Twyla tells her crew "Cookie", if I remember right.
 
  • Like
Reactions: Porkchop

·
Registered
Joined
·
716 Posts
Discussion Starter #8
Hmm, these responses have given me lots to think about and look more into.

I trained Lacey when she was a puppy by giving her treats and praise whenever she stayed still for photos. I’ve stopped the treat part long ago but generally still praise. She’s always been a pro at staying still and posing for pics, looking directly at me. She enjoys the attention and positive reaction she gets.

Since the blinking started, no matter if I say nothing, praise calmly or praise in an excited happy voice, I still get the same slow narrow and blinking/sleepy eyes after about 5 seconds of pointing my phone at her. There is no change in her response.

I keep the auto flash feature off since the phone takes better pics in low light without it. I love that technology!

Ive recently been testing this. I can point my phone in her direction but if I act like I’m only paying attention to the phone and keep looking at the screen, I can take a pic and she won’t narrow or slow blink. But if I shift my eyes to her and she knows I’m taking a pic the slow blinks and narrowing begin.

She’s used to the presence of the phone in my hands and it facing her. But obviously something changes when my gaze shifts to her too.

I’ve never interpreted it as a negative reaction since Lacey isn’t the subtle type to let me know if she doesn’t like something. Her body remains very relaxed when the narrowing and slow blinks happen. Her eyes do the same thing when I scratch her favorite spots on her body.

It could be positive “shortening of the eyes” as PeggyTheParti shared. The info from that link is something I’d never heard of, thank you for sharing!
Or it could be that she feels stress and is doing a calming signal. I could definitely see it being the later if I used an actual camera to take photos of her since she wouldn’t be so used to it’s presence and it has an obvious lens. Either way, I could try treats again and associate a word with it. Only good comes from that!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
738 Posts
Hmm! I thought the eye slow gaze was only a cat thing. That article had a ton of good info on dog body language.

I like your choice of the gold tag on apricot/light red Lacey. It looks really elegant. I want to get Basil a collar fit for a princess.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
716 Posts
Discussion Starter #10
It is very cat like!

Thank you! I wanted to get her a simple gold tag that looked like a piece of jewelry.

Collars are one of the most fun things to shop for in my opinion. A lot of my favorite styles aren’t adjustable so I had to wait until Lacey was full grown. If you haven’t checked out Etsy for collars, I highly recommend it. So many unique choices. You’ll find one perfect for Princess Basil.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
7,552 Posts
You might have unknowingly reinforced this behavior. Like saying « good girl » because she was being still for the picture while she had her eyes closed, or was closing them. Some dogs make associations really fast, and poodles are so intelligent and willing to please !

Can you try reinforcing when she keeps her eyes wide open ?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
738 Posts
It is very cat like!

Thank you! I wanted to get her a simple gold tag that looked like a piece of jewelry.

Collars are one of the most fun things to shop for in my opinion. A lot of my favorite styles aren’t adjustable so I had to wait until Lacey was full grown. If you haven’t checked out Etsy for collars, I highly recommend it. So many unique choices. You’ll find one perfect for Princess Basil.
I can't wait. We have a beginner cheap-o adjustable no frills no gimmics basic nylon leash. My basic understanding is that spoos finish growing around 12 months, and Basil's just 9 months old.

I wasn't aware that non adjustable collars existed until now. It sounds really bougee. A rose-tone gold anything might look good too. I was questioning if it's possible to pull off pearls on a collar. I thought "heck yes... Only could a poodle pull it off. Fabulous is our birthritght. We are loud like lady ga ga's dress as the inaguration!"

I couldn't find anything on "non adjustable leash" or "fancy" or a combination of similar keywords on etsy. You have really good taste, let's be honest, what do I search on etsy for your style of collar?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
716 Posts
Discussion Starter #13
@Basil_the_Spoo I think YOU have really good taste, so I appreciate the compliment. I’ll send you a private message with some info to help your collar search!

@Dechi that’s also possible! I’m thinking she’s just getting better at using her eyes for facial expression to communicate with me as she’s getting older.
 
1 - 14 of 14 Posts
Top