The dog-love butterfly effect…

One of the most amazing gifts of dogs is their ability to have an effect on the lives of innumerable people just by profoundly touching the life of one human. One way this can happen is by making an indelible mark on their human’s life. That person then goes on to change the lives of countless others. It’s the dog-love butterfly effect.  

veteran and his dog photo session

This is the story of Lulu & Dave.

In Dave’s Ted Talk (Do yourself a favor and watch it.) he describes his life as a 19 year old serving in combat in the armed forces. He shares the deadly experiences that laid the ground work for his PTSD to grow. As a combat veteran he offers a remarkable insight into how training for and performing in war, by their very nature, can foster a propensity toward an inability to cope. This is especially true upon return to civilian life.  

woman and dog paw portrait kristen kidd photography

Dave says, “…For a 19 year old kid how do you survive that trauma? This is why so many veterans are struggling with post traumatic stress, because they’re unable to recover from the trauma that we’re sending those young boys over seas. In addition to that the army trains us not to have empathy. How can I be a good war fighter if I care about the other guy’s family? And personally, I took it step further.  I numbed myself emotionally to such a degree that I had to accept the fact that I was already dead. By doing that I was an effective fighter. However this comes at a cost and this cost I experienced when I came back home.”  

pet family portrait photo session with senior dog in home in King of Prussia at Kristen Kidd Photography

It was in this dark space that Dave decided to bring Lulu into his life.

Through the bond that developed, a light was cast into the darkness. He could see a path forward. She taught him to cope, to be patient and to love. She fostered a passion in him to train dogs and soon he founded At Attention Dog Training – an award winning business that prides itself on helping keep happy dogs in happy homes.  

woman and boxer dog portrait in King of Prussia

As they added four-legged family members to their home Dave’s wife, Lesley, became a dog trainer as well.

Together they’ve helped change the lives of countless dogs and their humans by building confidence, improving the quality of life and human/canine bonds through education that caters to both ends of the leash.  

man with senior dog pet portrait in king of prussia

I received a call not long ago with a request to honor their bond and to celebrate Lulu and her legacy through a photo session.

After thirteen years of her unwavering presence in their lives it was time to say good-bye for now. These photos tell the story of the love of one family, their gratitude for the unrelenting force of good Lulu represents and the impact she made on hundreds beginning with the impact she made on one.  

pet end of life session with Kristen Kidd Photography
pet family photo session with kristen kidd photography

This pet family photo session honoring Lulu captured her in her King of Prussia home in Montgomery County where she has lived, loved and thrived with her humans for 13 years.

Kristen Kidd Photography is an individual & family portrait photography studio in the North Wales suburb of Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. We specializes in helping individuals and two-legged & four-legged families stop and reconnect with the love in their lives through fun and unique photo experiences and custom designed wall art collections.