It’s all about pets and the people who love them

My name is Barb Hays and I’ve been wild about animals…all of them…my entire life.

Pet portraiture is more fun than I ever could’ve imagined. Rolling around in a grassy field, splashing through water, or exploring urban landscapes with a dog as the star attraction is my idea of the best-day-ever!

It’s a great big, diverse world in our little microcosm of coastal Virginia and northeast North Carolina, so there’s no lack of wonderful and unique locations for photos sessions.

Is your pup an urban sophisticate, or a beach bum? Is he or she a night-on-the-town sort, or more of a humble hammock hound?  There’s really nothing better than allowing a pup’s personality to shine wherever it is he or she truly lights up.

Barb Hays, Pet Portrait ArtistI spent more than 25 years in the animal sheltering field, so I’ve had plenty of experience with every type of dog from happy, bouncy to shy and sensitive and everything in between. I haven’t yet met a pup that hasn’t been a bonafide supermodel. I promise your derelict dachshund, your hyper husky, or your cantankerous Cairn terrier will be a perfect fit for professional photos and beautiful artwork you’ll be proud to display in your home.

When I’m not hanging around with my own furry and feathered menagerie at home, I’m usually outside hiking, biking or exploring the world.

Pet photography takes me places I may have never gone and affords an opportunity to meet some of the most incredible and passionate people that I would otherwise never meet. Each dog I have the opportunity to photograph results beautiful images that portray his or her individual personality. There’s always an abundance of sloppy kisses and wagging tails too!

Every pet is truly a work of art and I promise your pet is too. If you’re ready to have an amazing and unforgettable experience, let’s get your session scheduled!

“I saw a Windhound of the rarest kind, a sort of unicorn. Magic and Mystic, in its own world, misplaced somewhere between the heavens and earth, poised for a moment on its timeless journey. Blessed are the custodians of the Windhound, for they are guardsmen of an ancient treasure.”


Where does the name “Windhound” come from?

I met my first Afghan hound as a young girl and I’ve been enchanted with these whimsical and elegant sighthounds since that time. These high-speed athletes run like the wind; thus, they are sometimes called Windhounds.

I’ve adopted many Afghan hounds over the years, while also providing temporary foster care for numerous rescued Afghans and greyhounds as they awaited their new homes. I love all dogs, whether mixes or purebreds, but my heart belongs to the mysterious and ancient breeds known as the Windhounds. It seems fitting to pay homage to these wonderful dogs who have given me so much joy to honor their lives and memories through my photography business.

Why choose me as your pet photographer?

I speak their language.

No matter how laid back, wild, unruly or just plain silly, I’ve interacted with all kinds of animals during my career in animal sheltering, so there isn’t much they can conjure up that will surprise me. I understand unique personalities and behaviors better than most and I’ll work hard to bring out the very best in your pet using only positive reinforcement and a whole bunch of noisemakers, toys and tasty treats.

There’s no pressure.

Our time together is meant to be fun for you and your pet. While we’ll have a general plan in mind, your dog will dictate how we go about each session. If your pup needs frequent breaks to burn off energy, I’ll bring out the tennis ball. If he or she is more of a low-key type, we’ll find a quiet spot and have a good ear-scratching session. This is their time to shine, so they’ll be the ultimate architect and we’ll adapt to them.

Quality matters.

I use only professional-quality camera equipment and post-processing software to make your pet look his or her best. I have many years of experience photographing animals and understand how to capture their individual charm. In the post-processing phase of our session, I will remove leashes, and other distractions from the images. I will make color corrections and tone balancing as I fine-tune each image individually. I offer only the highest quality art, so your images will bring a smile for decades to come.

I have years of experience.

I have a degree in Animal Science and a degree in Psychology/Animal Behavior. I know what makes animals tick and it certainly comes in handy with pet photography. I’ve also been lucky enough to photograph thousands of shelter animals of all species over many years. There is nothing better than knowing a deserving animal found the next love of their life because of a high-quality image.

Your satisfaction is my highest priority.

This isn’t a weekend hobby or side hustle for me; it’s my full-time profession. I promise you’ll have a fun experience with the highest level of service from start to finish and our session will result in amazing images from a dedicated professional.