Archive for the ‘Dog Books’ Category

Saying Goodbye Sympathy Book and Card Line

October 18, 2012



As many of you know who are familiar with my photography, two years ago we lost our beloved dog Charlie. While I had loved and lost dogs growing up, I hadn’t experienced the heartbreak of losing a dog as an adult. We adopted Charlie, a border collie/ greyhound mix, back in 1998 when I published my first book Why We Love Dogs. I took countless portraits of him over the twelve years that we had him. Nothing really prepares you for the loss of a family pet but the one thing I know from going through the experience, is that it helped me immensely to talk with other people who had shared the same loss.

At the time when we said goodbye to Charlie, Erica Salmon, my friend and writing partner on our book Dogma, was also mourning the loss of her bulldog Peaches who was 15 years old at the time. Erica and I both knew that we needed somewhere to put our grief and realized that there might be a way to alleviate or share in a loved one’s grief if there was a book about such loss. After many months of development the concept of Saying Goodbye was born. Our thinking was it would be a simple book of comforting words and black & white timeless portraits that people could give to friends and family when a pet passed. I know if someone had given me such a book, it would have brought me a great deal of comfort.

We found a great partner who shared our passion for this kind of project. For many years, I have worked closely with Sharper Cards in Calgary, Canada and they seemed like the perfect partner to bring our vision to reality. Sharper Cards and their US counterpart Smart Practice are due to release Saying Goodbye this January 2013. they will be offering the book as a part of their extensive vet network throughout the US and Canada. We also have a companion sympathy card line which you can view a few samples below:

The idea was to make the book available to anyone who wants to be able to share it with a friend, so please feel free to contact me directly ( if you would like to have access to the book. If you are a vet office or work in a vet office and you want to arrange for your office to carry the book, you can contact Sharper Cards directly at

The cover of Saying Goodbye features Zipper, a yellow lab, I photographed several years ago. Sadly, Zipper passed away this year, but I know that her owners find comfort in her lasting images and memories they have of her. Many of the dogs and cats featured in the book also have passed away and they are honored in the dedication page.

Dogs from Ground Zero

September 11, 2012

Back in 2001, a few weeks after Sept. 11th, I was sent to photograph the dogs working at Ground Zero by Bark Magazine. I was living in Red Bank, NJ at the time so I took the train into the city and made my way down to Ground Zero. I knew it wasn’t going to be an easy assignment but I knew I had a job to do and I felt like all the experience I had up until that point, had prepared me for that moment. Part of the reason I was given the assignment is that I had photographed a book called “Working Dogs. Tales from Animal Planet’s K-9 to 5 World” (Discovery Books/Random House) in 2000, and several of the dogs featured in Working Dogs were search and rescue dogs.

Below are some of the photographs that I took on that day and that were published in Bark Magazine the Fall of 2001.

“Loki at WTC”

“Loki with Vets and Police Office Ulmer”


“NYPD Canine Unit Hat”

Additionally, my publishing company, Andrews McMeel, had asked if I had any photographs of dogs with the American Flag. I didn’t but I told them I would be honored to go out and take some. I took my dog Charlie around my neighborhood. It wasn’t hard finding American Flags in front of homes – almost every other house had one on their front porch. This picture is the result of that shoot. Charlie is no longer with us, like so many others that day. Here’s my tribute to them.

“Charlie with Flag”

Published in Dogma 2002 (Andrews McMeel Publishing)

Looking back at all of these photographs brings back all of the heartache and hope of those days following September 11th. I lost a friend that day. This post is dedicated to Jim Walsh, one of the nicest guys I ever met.

Erin Go Bark! Irish Dogs and Blessings

March 17, 2011

Happy St. Patrick’s Day! Here’s our book Erin Go Bark! Irish Dogs and Blessings written by my husband John O’Neill. Believe it or not Erin Go Bark! was published ten years ago (March 2001). It features dogs from Ireland (Spaniels, Border Collies, Terriers etc) with unique and original Irish Blessings.

Here are some of my favorite pics from the book:

May you always understand what is being said to you.

May you welcome the ones you love and even the ones you don’t.

May Mother Nature always give you the best baths.

May you always eavesdrop on good news.

May you seek revenge on the person who named you “Scruffy.”

May you see the inside of the door as often as you see the outside.

May your local open early and close late.

May your owner never play off-key.

Let us forever bless the witty soul who invented dog clothing.

May your friends always sing your praises behind your back.

May you never get bored just shooting the breeze.

May the mailman never keep you waiting.

Hound for the Holidays

November 19, 2010

A favorite Holiday book of ours!

A few years back, John and I collaborated on Hound for the Holidays. I gathered many of my favorite dog subjects and asked their owners if I could take their portraits. Some of the scenarios were quite funny. Here’s one of Corky with a big bow around her neck:

Big Red Bows

Another favorite was Dodger in his little booties:

Warm Mittens

Here’s one of my favorite images of my dog Charlie being hit by a snowball:

Snowball Fights

Getting dogs to do the silliest things was part of the fun:

Old-fashion sleigh rides

And of course, the holidays wouldn’t be the holidays without a pug in antlers at Rockefeller Center!

The Christmas spirit

I even took pictures of a group of dogs ice skating, sitting on Santa’s lap and sipping hot chocolate. Hound for the Holidays was a lot of fun to write as well. The text captures all of things we can enjoy during the holidays – the things that really matter: fireside chats, frosty mornings, fresh snow, window shopping, welcoming wreaths, catching snowflakes on your tongue, snowmen and candy canes.

We hope you enjoy our tribute to the holidays.

Happy Holidays!

Kim Levin & John O’Neill

Frenemies featured on

June 16, 2010

Frenemies. Cats, Dogs and Lessons in Getting Along was featured Monday, June 14th in the book section of the Today show website. Frenemies features images of cats and dogs together combined with text by Christine Montaquila, my writing partner, about friendship and the art of getting along. We’re thrilled that decided to plug our fiesty book. We always thought it was a unique concept so we’re glad to see it finally getting it’s due. Check out the slideshow at:

Frenemies is available in all major bookstores and on

PhoDOGraphy on

April 29, 2010

Hi all –

My book PhoDOGraphy. How to Get Great Pictures of Your Pet (Amphoto Books/Random House) was recently featured on a new book review website. Go to:

Here’s the cover of PhoDOGraphy in case you haven’t seen it. PhoDOGraphy features over 100 color and B&W photographs and details all sorts of tips on how to take great pictures of dogs. Here’s the thing – It is written both for the photo-enthusiast or amatuer photographer who loves dogs, as well as the professional photographer who would like to expand their portfolios to include the family pet. You can get a copy of PhoDOGraphy on or get a signed copy on my website

I’d love to hear from you if you have any questions about pet portraiture. Feel free to contact me at

Dogplay Featured in People Magazine

March 17, 2010

We’re very excited to tell you that Dogplay was featured in People Magazine – the March 29th issue on newsstands today. We got a great review. Check it out. Dogplay is available nationwide in all major bookstores. You can get it on, or any bookstore.