Growing Old Together – Touching Portraits of Man’s Best Friend by Pete Thorne

Happy Thanksgiving! Let’s remember to be thankful for everyone and everything in our lives.

Pete Thorne is the photographer behind this series of portraits featuring really old dogs. Entitled “Old Faithful,” the series seeks to capture memories of these faithful companions before they finally go into that big kennel in the sky. The series was inspired by Pete’s centenarian grandmother. Realizing that images of old dogs just might have the same impact as those of old humans, Pete called out to dog owners everywhere to have portraits taken of their beloved pooches before it was too late.

The series currently has fifty images in it but it’s bound to grow bigger as more and more people want to have their furry best friends immortalized. It’s a big challenge to photograph these raggedy hounds. Most of them are deaf, some of them are blind, and a few are both.

Pete discovered that in order to get the dogs to pose, he has to direct the owner to catch the dog’s attention. He’d scrunch down to the dog’s level while their owners would crawl around the floor to try and capture the pooch’s attention. As expected, tactics like that don’t always work the first time. It takes both owner and photographer quite a few tries before capturing the perfect pose.

Pete encourages the owners to write a few things about their pets. He said: “The testimonials, often quite touching and humorous, have inadvertently become a big part of the project. I now encourage participants to submit something written about their dog when they contact me about participating in the project. A lot of the stories of these dogs involve rescuing them from pet-mills, foreign countries, and from threats of being put down, so I think the key to a longer and more substantial canine life really just comes down to the love and caring that these old doggies receive from their parents.”

The picture above is of Hazel. She was rescued from a succession of puppy mills by her owner. Her eyes were removed due to pain and no tear production. Hazel also has five microchips embedded in her from every time she was sold to a new puppy mill. Pete also added: “It wasn’t until I started hearing about dogs that I had photographed passing away and having their owners notify me, telling me about their loss, that I realized just how significant and close people become with their pets.”














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For some older photographs of pets, see our post: LOLcats of Yore.