Mary and I were invited to Umatilla, Florida to a home with 2 Dogs, 2 Horses, 14 Cats and a Donkey. We set up our pet photo studio for the pups, but the Horses, Dakota and Nesa stole the show.

Our expertise lies with Cat and Dog photography, but meeting these two Horses was a magical experience. They’re much bigger than Dogs obviously, but have such sweet and gentle personalities. They also have over 50 acres to run around, a barn to keep them cool and lots of hay and carrots to eat.

Their owner originally scheduled us for her pups and asked if we could take a “quick photo” of her Horses. If you know us and how we work, there is no such thing as a “quick photo”.

Before you scroll down and read about the rest of our day, if you have Horses and are interested in getting them photographed, please reach out to us at

We know that Horses are big, but Dakota may not realize how big he is. He tried to hide originally behind this very thin tree. As you can see, he’s not a very good hider!  Once he knew we were okay, he actively participated in the shoot. The carrots helped too.

Nesa, the Mare, loved modeling for us too. She was in her barn when we were playing with Dakota and she was very vocal. Jealous maybe?

A good photo of a Horse has an upright body position and their ears facing forward. We struggled initially to get Dakota’s ears to face the camera, but once we stopped talking to him, he laid them forward. A few people on Facebook suggested a feed bucket or a small flag to get their attention.

We always try and bring out the animal’s personality when taking their photo and horse are no different. We gave Dakota some carrots to munch on and it resulted in a few smiles.

He also stuck his tongue out at us. He’s the perfect model for AGoldPhoto!

We stayed in the shade created from the barn mostly as these were taken around 2 PM. The sun was setting to the west and east was to Dakota’s right, our left.

Dakota was a former Race Horse and is now in his 30s. His owner got him when he was 8, so they have been together for a long time. He listened very well to her and it was amazing to see.

We also met Dillon the Donkey who protects Nesa and Dakota.

Dakota wanted to make sure we got his good side!

If you’re interested in having us photograph your horses, please reach out to

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