Julia Earhart's photoshoots allow dog owners to remember their terminally ill and senior pets in a unique, heartwarming way
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End of Life Pet Images
Credit: Julia Marie Earhart – Photography by Julia Marie

One metro Detroit photographer is capturing the bond between dog owners and their aging pets at no cost.

Julia Earhart recently started to offer pet parents free "end-of-life shoots" that allow dog owners to remember their senior or terminally ill pets in a unique, heartwarming way.

The Dearborn, Michigan, resident has a two-year-old golden retriever, Benny, and a one-year-old golden retriever-mix, Bonnie, according to The Detroit News.

Earhart has always loved animals, showing this devotion by sponsoring senior pets and supporting animal rescues. These free photo sessions are another way for the photographer to give back to pets and the people who adore them.

Earhart started the free photoshoots after Annelise Nearon asked the photographer to capture the final days of her eight-year-old Lab mix Cudi. Before the shoot, the canine received a terminal cancer diagnosis.

End of Life Pet Images
Credit: Julia Marie Earhart – Photography by Julia Marie

"After that session, it made me realize just how important your bond with your animal, who is sometimes your best friend, can be," said Earhart per The Detroit News.

"Photos aren't something a lot of pet owners might think about doing, but I know how much I love my dogs, and I know how much that would mean to me."

Earhart captures dog owners and their pets enjoying their favorite activities together.

In Nearon and Cudi's case, Earhart captured the two snuggling and walking side by side.

After the photoshoot with Nearson and her dog, Earhart started posting her pet photos in a Facebook group called Downriver and Friends and offered free sessions at no cost in the posts, which is how the photographer's passion project started.

End of Life Pet Images
Credit: Julia Marie Earhart – Photography by Julia Marie

While photographing dogs and their owners during sad periods can be difficult, Earhart told The Detroit News it also brings her a lot of joy.

For now, she is not worried about the free photoshoots being a distraction from her business, telling the news outlet, "People might say, 'Oh, it's just a dog, why are you so upset?' But for a lot of people, their pet is their family member or their child."

"There is a real connection and a lot of emotion that these animals can bring out in us. Witnessing that as a photographer? It fills me with a lot of joy," she added.