B-E-L-L-Y-F-L-O-P! Amazing photos of underwater dogs

Feb. 14, 2012 at 2:42 PM ET

Photographer Seth Casteel has definitely taken animal photography to new heights – or depths – with his hilarious photos of dogs chasing balls underwater.

Seth Casteel/ /
A Yellow Labrador retriever pursues a ball under the water.

Twelve dogs took part in the shoot, including Labradors, a border collie, a dachshund, a bulldog, a Belgian Tervuren and a King Charles spaniel. As you enjoy the photos, take the plunge and read about how Casteel came up with this original and imaginative idea that has everyone laughing.

Q: How did the idea of photographing dogs underwater come about?

A: One of my clients, Buster the Cavalier King Charles spaniel, absolutely loves the water: swimming, jumping, diving, splashing, you name it! During our on-land photo shoot a couple of years ago, he kept jumping in and diving under the water to retrieve a tennis ball. I thought: “I wonder what he looks like under the water?” So I bought a point-and-shoot underwater camera and found out!

Seth Casteel/ /
A Cavalier King Charles spaniel pursues a ball underwater.

Q: Can you explain how an underwater photo shoot works with a dog?

A: Many dogs LOVE the water and within that group, quite a few will actually go under the water on some level. All of the dogs featured in my photographs voluntarily went into the water and under the water, and they all had fun along the way. It also should be noted that I had fun along the way.

Seth Casteel/ /
A black Labrador retriever says hello underwater.

Q: What kind of camera are you using?

A: Canon. I love Canon!

Seth Casteel/ /
A yellow Labrador retriever fetches a ball at the bottom of the pool.

Q: Are you using an underwater camera housing?

A: Yes – I would recommend using a camera housing if you plan on taking a non-water camera under the water. It's worth it.


Q: How old are you?

A: I'm 31, but I look like i'm 26, and generally act about 35.

Seth Casteel/Tandem /
A bulldog exploring under the water.

Q: Why are you interested in underwater dog photography?

A: I love dogs because their range of emotions is similar to those of human beings – that is why we relate to them and why they relate to us. Together, we make excellent friends. With water, dogs have the opportunity to showcase some of these emotions at a level we may not normally get to see. The water brings out a very primal side of dogs, and this can translate as silly, intense or wild. Dogs love to be spoiled by us, but they also appreciate the opportunity to get back to their roots, and I believe the water is just one of the avenues for them to do this. After all, it wasn't that long ago that all of the Boston terriers and pugs we know were wolves.

 Q: What's next for Seth Casteel's underwater dog photographs?

A: A calendar will be coming out this summer, followed by a book featuring many never-before-seen underwater photos of our favorite breeds – all shapes and sizes! multimedia producer Mish Whalen gazes at dozens of puppies, kittens and other adorable animals every day but has never seen dogs, quite like this. Discuss this post in the comments section or hit me on twitter @mishrwhalen