Tuesday, August 7, 2012
Bark for Love
“Cristina has the ability to capture the personality of a dog in a single moment.”
LONGVIEW At Piney Woods Live magazine, most of us have beloved rescue animals in our lives. Several members of our staff started to notice some amazing photographs of pets up for adoption on Facebook and posted by pet photographers Cristina and Christopher Lozao, owners of REC Photography Studio. Their Facebook page is appropriately named Bark for Love.
After following their work for several weeks, we were pleased to see how many of the pets were actually being adopted and excitedly watched as the number of their Facebook fans grew. Piney Woods Live’s sales manager Suzanne Warren says, “Cristina has the ability to capture the personality of a dog in a single moment. She catches the glimmer in their eyes or the way their tongue hangs in a certain way. She sees it; she knows it; and she grabs it.”
Cristina and Christopher Lozao, in their spare time, foster pets available for adoption. After Christopher started a full-time job, Cristina started volunteering at the Humane Society of Northeast Texas. She quickly noticed how many animals were being adopted versus how many animals were being euthanized.
According to the National Council on Pet Population, of the 1,000 shelters that replied to the National Council’s survey, 4.3 million animals were handled. An astounding 64% of the total number of animals that entered shelters were euthanized. Considering that only 1000 shelters participated in that survey, one can only imagine how staggering the total numbers are. After seeing firsthand how difficult pet adoption can be, Cristina decided it was time to take action and help out her furry friends.
Cristina stumbled upon the inspiration for Bark for Love from a photographer in Houston who photographed rescue animals to promote adoption. Because of her photography background, she immediately saw the brilliance of the concept. According to Cristina, “People will look at a dog with a bow around its neck before they will look at a sad animal in a cage.” Cristina actually picked up photography from her husband. “I didn’t really like photography until I got into animals. I think I relate to animals more than I do to people,” she says with a burst of warm laughter. “I have been called the dog whisperer on several occasions.”
Her talent for relating to animals is clear from the pets’ comfortable expressions in her photos. Cristina has a remarkable eye for finding creative ways to accessorize the dogs. A simple string of pearls can entirely capture their personality. She is able to take animals that society has given up on and show their personality with bold backgrounds, glittering jewelry and, let’s not forget, lots and lots of tutus. The photos make you think about how much that Australian shepherd is going to make you laugh or how that chocolate lab could be your best friend.
Cristina has a way of making the animals unforgettable. So much so that just two months after she started the Bark for Love program the Humane Society of Northeast Texas surpassed their standard adoption rate by 200 adoptions. Every dog that has appeared on the Bark for Love Facebook page has been successfully adopted. Cristina and her husband both volunteer their time, talent and funds to make Bark for Love possible.
At Piney Woods Live, we have fallen in love with Bark for Love and their cause and would like to help. In the months to come, we will be featuring four Bark for Love rescue animals available for adoption. If you have not already done so, please take the time to like the Bark for Love Facebook page and, by all means, feel free to share the photos or adopt an animal!