TORONTO — Pete Thorne, a Toronto based photographer was inspired to explore the idea of aging senior dogs, after photographing his grandmother for her 100th birthday.
Thorne started putting posters up around the city, at pet stores and veterinary clinics hoping to find elderly dogs to photograph. Thorne got more responses than he expected, and what started out as a visual project, took on a larger significance.
“People started sending me incredible testimonials when they’d contact me trying to convince me to photograph their dog,” says Thorne.
Thorne then created a Facebook page so people could see the images of the senior dogs and to read the stories about each of the dogs. The project has evolved from what started out as digital into print, with Thorne releasing his new book called “Old Faithful.”
Thorne has made his way across Canada photographing senior pups from Vancouver, Winnipeg, Halifax, Ottawa and Montreal, along with dogs and their owners who made the trip to Canada from Seattle and Maine to get their photos done. The heartwarming book includes 75 portraits of dogs from a diverse range of breeds, backgrounds and ages.
When it came to photographing the old dogs, Throne would ask that the owners bring their dog’s favourite treats and toys to help focus their attention and get them ready for the camera. That strategy didn’t always work because many of the dogs were either blind r deaf, sometimes both. If the treats and toys didn’t work, Thorne would get the dog’s owner to help direct the dogs attention to get the shot.
This book is a nice way to honor senior dogs. The photos and stories in the book will resonate with dog owners everywhere.