Dogs make for great photography—they’re cute, they’re funny, and they’re pretty unpredictable. So, if you’re looking for a good photo contest theme, you can’t go wrong with dogs. No matter the nonprofit organization or cause you’re championing, rallying your stakeholders behind a dog photo contest means everyone wins.
Top 13 Dog Photo Contest Ideas
- Dogs Playing Sports
- School Spirit Dogs
- Easter Dogs
- Dog Halloween Costumes
- Dog Days of Summer
- Christmas Dogs
- Cutest Dog
- Dogs at Work
- Sleeping Dogs
- Dogs Exploring Nature
- Pet Prom
- Caught in the Act
We all know that people love their dogs, so it makes sense that they also love taking photos of their dogs. In fact, one Rover study found that 65 percent of dog owners said they take more photos of their dogs than they take of their friends or even their significant others. Plus, 29 percent of dog owners said they post more photos of their dogs on social media than they post of their friends, family or themselves. So it stands to reason that a dog photo contest would be a great promotion fundraiser for just about any nonprofit organization.
Why Host a Dog Photo Contest
Hosting a dog photo contest, especially in partnership with 360PhotoContest.com, is an easy and effective way for any nonprofit organization to raise money for its cause. While a dog photo contest is almost a no-brainer for any organization that supports animals—like rescue organizations, veterinary care groups, animal shelters, etc.—these types of causes aren’t the only fit for a pet photo contest. After all, we think it’s safe to say that a significant portion of any stakeholder group loves their dog and would love to see them in the spotlight, no matter the kind of organization they’re supporting.
In addition to being effective, we think you’ll find hosting a dog photo contest with 360PhotoContest.com is incredibly easy. You don’t have to worry about keeping up with entries and judging decisions—we do all the heavy lifting! All you have to do is determine your pet contest goals and rules, identify a start and stop date, promote your contest via your existing channels, and pick a prize for the overall winner—we’ll do the rest.
The way your dog photo contest works is simple: you provide us with the rules, plus your start and end dates for voting. We’ll program your virtual fundraiser to run on our platform, using our servers, and provide you with a link to promote the photo competition. Then, you’ll use your existing email lists, social media channels, newsletters, advertising, etc., to tell as many people as possible about your contest and encourage them to participate. Participants snap their favorite picture and upload it to our platform, where they then receive a personalized link to promote their photo entry and encourage friends, family, and the general public to vote for it. Voters typically donate a small gift to your organization—usually around $1 per vote—and can vote as many times as they’d like, leading to more donations for your cause.
Once the end date for your contest arrives, we’ll stop the contest, tally the votes and send you the results, along with the money your pet contest raised for your organization. Plus, we’ll send you an organized list of everybody who participated and/or voted in photo competition so that you’ll have their contact information for future outreach. It’s a great way to build your network of donors; all you have to do is celebrate the winning photo.
A dog photo contest will likely attract lots of participants to support your organization. People have so many pictures of their dogs already, they may not even have to stage a new one. Plus, a pet photo contest is just about guaranteed to work with any audience at any time of year. So, the barriers to participation are very low.
Top 13 Dog Photo Contest Ideas
You can make your dog photo contest as broad or as narrow as you’d like. We find many of our partners like to center their contest around a theme to spark their community’s creativity. Here are a few of the most popular contests:
1. Dogs Playing Sports
Yes, you read that right—dogs playing sports. If dogs can play cards, they can certainly play sports.
This is a fun, creative contest idea for any nonprofit organization, but it’s especially an especially fitting sports fundraising idea for teams and clubs. Dogs playing basketball, football, soccer—you name it.
Contestants can put the right jersey on their dogs and turn them loose against the appropriate background to win the prize. We wager that the results will be hilarious.
Have each entrant submit pictures of themselves and their dog, the twist is that the person has to be dressed the same as their furry friend. Sporting silly hats, wearing matching pattern pajamas, the same Christmas sweater, coordinating Halloween costumes, etc. As long as the dog owner and dog are dressed alike, they can wear just about anything.
3. School Spirit Dogs
If there’s one thing people might love as much as their dogs, it’s their schools. Imagine dogs dressed in spirit wear for various high schools and colleges, dressed as the mascot of their owners’ schools, as Homecoming king or queen, and more!
This is a great fundraising idea for school fundraisers . This fundraising idea gives people the chance to have fun with their pet, maybe win a prize, and express the pride they feel for their alma mater. Participants can vote for the dog that they feel shows the most school spirit.
4. Easter Dogs
It’s no surprise that people love dressing up their pets for holidays, and Easter represents a great opportunity.
Picture dogs dressed up as the Easter bunny, baby chicks, or sitting in giant Easter eggs—maybe even wearing their finest Easter clothes or participating in an Easter egg hunt. Depending on the official rules you put in place, your contest participants can get really creative!
5. Dog Halloween Costumes
Dog Halloween costumes are hilarious, so why not capitalize on this spooky holiday with a creative pet photo contest? Tacos, hot dogs, monsters, super heroes, princesses—the list of possible dog Halloween costumes is extensive, so you can look forward to lots of laughs if you make this your dog photo contest theme.
6. Dog Days of Summer
When it’s hot outside, encourage your participants to showcase their dogs staying nice and cool. Swimming pools, sprinklers, lakes, beaches, and more can make great settings for this kind of photo contest, as can accessories. Think sunglasses, life jackets, inflatable rafts or pools, and more. The more props, the better for this fundraising idea.
7. Christmas Dogs
It’s hard to imagine a time when dogs are more photographed than Christmas. Whether they’re wearing Christmas pajamas or dressed as elves or Santa, dogs make a fun and entertaining photo subject for just about any kind of Christmas photo.
Wrapped in Christmas lights under the tree. Sitting in Santa’s lap. Riding in a sleigh full of toys. Your pet contest participants can dress and pose their dogs in super fun and creative ways. Not only will you get robust participation, but we predict you’ll end up with some amazing user-generated content to use on social media.
8. Cutest Dog
Sometimes it pays to keep it simple. You could have participants send in photos to vote on which dog is the cutest. Or even the cuddliest. This is a great way to showcase puppies or pet breeds that are known for being super cute, and this approach makes for a simple and straightforward contest. Participants vote for the dogs they think best bring the cute factor, and every vote means more money raised for your organization.
9. Dogs at Work
With this photo contest, dog owners dress up their dogs and snap a pic of them as if they’re in the workplace. You might see accountant dogs, doctor dogs, police officer dogs, teacher dogs, and many more. This is another good theme that works best with lots of supporting props.
10. Sleeping Dogs
Dogs love to sleep, and they have a crazy ability to fall asleep in some truly challenging positions. A photo contest fundraiser like this one allows dog owners to snap pictures of their dogs in the most unusual sleeping positions, or you can simply highlight the cutest snoozer. The official rules are completely up to you.
11. Dogs Exploring Nature
Who doesn’t love photos of dogs on adventures? This kind of photo contest could feature dogs on hikes, at the beach, in boats, or otherwise exploring the great outdoors. Maybe they’re kayaking or canoeing or just enjoying the feel of the cool grass in a quiet field.
Remember, you can set up your contest rules and parameters any way you’d like, so you can keep this contest as tame or adventurous as makes sense for your stakeholder group. This is also a great fundraising idea for any organization that focuses on conservation or supports a nature-related cause.
12. Pet Prom
Your contest participants can really go all out for this one. You can give your pet prom photo contest a theme, or let your participants’ imaginations run wild. But dogs dressed up in prom-wear certainly can make for some interesting submissions.
You can even divide your pet contest into categories like Best Dressed or Prom King and Queen. Throw in some cheesy backdrops and disco balls, and this kind of contest can provide hilarious user-generated content that you can continue to use over time to raise awareness for your cause.
13. Caught in the Act
As much as we love our dogs, we know they get into mischief sometimes. Whether it’s shredding the couch cushions, jumping up on the counter, or hoarding our shoes, dogs have their quirks and individual types of misbehavior.
Why not allow dog owners to snap a few pics the next time they catch their dog in the act of getting into trouble? Participants can vote for cleverest or even the most troublesome pet. Maybe there’s even a grand prize winner for the Cutest Troublemaker category.
Dog Photo Contests Are a Fun Way to Promote a Cause
A dog photo contest can be an entertaining and effective way to raise money for your nonprofit organization. In addition to raising money, a dog photo contest will engage stakeholders, create awareness for your cause, generate a list of future contacts, and develop a bank of user-generated content that you can use in the future to promote your organization.
If you’re interested in learning more about how 360PhotoContest.com can help make your fundraising photo contest a success, our team would love to visit with you. Reach out today to request a demo of our contest platform, and we can talk you through all the ways our team will support your organization to create a smooth and successful virtual fundraiser.