Me with my muse, Bailey!

About Allison Shamrell Photography:

Thanks for visiting my blog! My name is Allison, and I work in San Diego, CA, capturing the personalities of dogs and cats of all sizes & temperaments. I do photo sessions on location and in-studio, wherever my clients prefer! My photography style is natural, playful & soulful.

Here on my blog, I tell the stories of recent sessions and events. You might even find an insight or two into the behind-the-scenes side of my business! I hope you have fun looking around!

If you would like to receive a quick little email to let you know when I publish a new post, see the button at the bottom left of this page! Thanks! :)

619-357-6624  ~  ~  3251 Adams Avenue, Suite C, San Diego, CA 92116

Officially Voted the Best Pet Photographer in San Diego, 2014-2017, by the San Diego A-List.

Tag: ‘park’

Rocky the Labrador Mix at Balboa Park (Photos)

Monday, December 11th, 2017

I can’t tell you how thrilled I was to get together with Rocky the labrador mix at Balboa Park the other day! Repeat clients are SO much fun to work with, and since I already know Rocky’s likes/dislikes/personality we were able to jump right into the session without wasting any time. So it was no surprise when, just like in his last session, Rocky posed like a total pro. He’d do anything for his mom – and the laser light she carries around for him! (Yes, I said laser light – maybe Rocky is part labrador, part cat?!)

So we visited all the most scenic parts of Balboa Park for our session – the gardens, the lily pond, the theater, and even the Spanish Village. And we have some gorgeous images as a result!! I’m excited to share these with you, and even more excited to share the rest of the photos with Rocky’s mom!


In-between greeting his many admirers, Rocky posed for a few photos near the lily pond… Balboa Park was surprisingly crowded during our session, but he didn’t let the crowds distract him. (Even when a few dozen teenagers came over to “awwwww” at how handsome he is! And I mean, who can blame them, right?!)

labrador mix in balboa park


Rocky had a scary visit to the vet recently – I got chills when his mom told me about it. Thankfully, he’s fine now, but for a generally-healthy dog it was a big surprise… because no one likes to be told that their dog needs to spend the night at the vet’s office. But he’s back to his healthy, cheerful self now – thank goodness!!

labrador mix in park


Oh Rocky. You’re adorable.

balboa park picture


Sara – I still can’t believe December snuck up on us so fast! It was so great to spend time with you & Rocky again – I’ll see you soon! :)


Jackie the Poodle Mix – Photos in Old Poway Park

Friday, November 3rd, 2017

I’m excited to introduce you to Jackie the poodle mix today – because I think her alter ego is Kelly Clarkson!

That’s right, you heard me. I think the American Idol star is actually Jackie’s idol, because she sings Jackie’s theme song: Miss Independent! If you’re unfamiliar, here are some of the lyrics:

“Miss independent
Miss self-sufficient
Miss unafraid
Miss out of my way

I simply can’t think of a better way to describe Jackie. She spent our session doing exactly what she wanted to do, regardless of what we wanted her to do, haha! It’s not every day that I work with a dog that isn’t motivated by treats or toys, after all. She was perfectly content to wander around Old Poway Park making friends (2-legged and 4-legged) and occasionally chasing the ball or paying attention to a treat, but only when the mood struck her. But we still ended up with plenty of adorable photos – and don’t worry, it’s not like she’s a solitary, antisocial dog: she loves her mom! That much is abundantly clear, to anyone within minutes of meeting them. And it’s no wonder why – turns out, Jackie’s mom was not looking for a dog to adopt the day she found Jackie! But when two paths are meant to cross, they’ll cross, and Jackie changed her mom’s life that day, in a way only a cheeky little poodle mix ever could. (Kelly’s song “You Found Me” comes to mind…) Ever since then, they’ve made each other’s lives immeasurably better, and it was truly an honor to document their beautiful & unique relationship.


This is Jackie! With that sweet face, no wonder her mom wasn’t able to resist when they met each other that day!!

poodle mix close-up


She was occasionally interested in my tennis ball. I’m so glad I was ready for those brief moments, haha!

poodle mix playing


What a cutie pie. Jackie, you make me smile.

poodle mix dog photo


Jessica, thank you for braving the insane crowds at Old Poway Park with me! I’m so excited to share the rest of Jackie’s images with you soon! :)


Encinitas Photo Session with Connor, Milo & Domino

Tuesday, October 31st, 2017

I’m pretty sure that if I were Connor, Milo & Domino’s parent, I would have rock-hard abs and plenty of wrinkles around my eyes. Why? Because if our session was any indication, these dogs would keep me laughing literally all day long!!

These pups live in San Marcos with their parents, and they’re all incredibly unique: Connor is the long-haired terrier mix who doesn’t look like any dog I’ve ever seen before. Perhaps he’s part spaniel? Or chihuahua? Or… who knows?! He’s a sweet, smart boy and always seems to be completely, contentedly happy. Milo is the amber-colored miniature pinscher mix: he looks tough but couldn’t be more of a softie. (Don’t let the studded collar fool you.) And Domino is the high-strung min pin girl, who “protected” us from every dog who walked by during our session! (Whew – we had a few close calls – thanks for the help Domino, you brave little lady!) Together, they form an adorable troupe of tough-but-sweet teddy bears, and I completely fell in love with them.

Our photo session took place in Encinitas, at the new Encinitas Community Park. The dogs did a great job of focusing on the camera, in between scanning the horizon for other dogs (and treats and toys) of course, and I’m loving the photos from our afternoon together!


This is Connor. Clearly, he runs like a total goofball.

encinitas dog running


Domino is always on high alert – honestly, I’m not sure if she ever sleeps! It’d be awfully out-of-character.

encinitas photo session example


This big smile kills me! Milo, you’re so handsome!

encinitas photo session dog


Wright family, thank you for a fun (and hilarious) afternoon at the park! I can’t wait to show you more photos soon!  :)


Photos of Aubrey & Porter, San Diego Dogs in Balboa Park

Sunday, October 29th, 2017

I always love meeting dogs with unique, interesting names. So how cool is it that Aubrey & Porter are named after the cities where their mom found & adopted them?!

Aubrey is a beautiful, silly, always-smiling labrador. Her mom attended a wedding several years ago in Aubrey, Texas, and little puppy Aubrey happened to wander into the reception. So her mom (and a few friends) “smuggled” Aubrey back home! Unfortunately, we scheduled this photo session in a hurry since Aubrey recently got some bad news at the vet… but about a week before our session, that diagnosis got a lot more positive! I’m happy to report that Aubrey is feeling good and doesn’t have to worry about the c-word anytime soon. :)

Her little brother is Porter, a chihuahua mix with adorably floppy ears and plenty of attitude. Although he’s typically a little slower to warm up to new situations & people, the treats we brought to the session helped him quickly overcome his shyness! And yes, he’s from a place named Porter. (Technically Porterville, right Megan?)

We started our photo session in the studio and soon headed over to Balboa Park. Although the forecast said it would be 100 degrees that afternoon (!!!), the weather cooled down surprisingly nicely – thank goodness, I mean it’s October after all, haha! – so I had a great time with these awesome San Diego dogs!


This is Aubrey, in the gorgeous afternoon light! With her trademark flower on her collar, of course.

black dog from san diego


This little nugget is Porter. I KNOW, he’s adorable.

san diego dog in the grass


Aren’t they the cutest pair?!

san diego dogs



Megan & Sebastian, thanks for being willing to brave the heat with me! I’m looking forward to seeing you both again soon! :)


Free Guide to the Best Dog-Friendly Spots in San Diego!

Thursday, October 26th, 2017

When I first moved here with my husband & our dog, we didn’t know anything about San Diego. I’d never been here before and didn’t know Ocean Beach from Oceanside. I was entirely clueless – so I decided that needed to change! I got outside and started to visit different neighborhoods, find my new favorite restaurants, sample some of the country’s best craft beer, and (of course) find the best places to spoil my Bailey. I found a lot of incredible businesses & places, each of them so uniquely amazing that I found myself wanting to stop by on an embarrassingly-frequent basis.

But what good is that information if I’m hoarding it alllllll to myself?

So I’ve decided to share all my favorite spots with you!


san diego guide


Yahoo!!! Click on the preview above (or click here) to get my exclusive list of favorites! It’s a compendium of San Diego’s best parks, beaches, breweries, restaurants, boutiques and coffee shops to enjoy with your 4-legged friends (in my opinion, at least). I hope you LOVE them as much as I do, and if this guide inspires a fun outing with your dog, I’d be thrilled to hear about it! (Perhaps post a photo on Instagram and tag @sandiegopetphotographer to let me know?!)

Enjoy the guide – and drop me a line if I left out your favorite place(s), since I’d love to keep on exploring America’s Finest (and Dog-Friendliest) City!  :)



All Images Copyright Allison Shamrell Photography: | Blog Theme Created by LJP & SLR Lounge