Author Interview: Seth Casteel, Author of the NY Times Bestseller UNDERWATER DOGS

In celebration of my latest humor book, RED DOG / BLUE DOG: WHEN POOCHES GET POLITICAL (Running Press, August 2012) and the book proceed donations being made to no-kill shelters, I am featuring interviews with other dog book writers. It’s very exciting to shine light on books from other writers who also share a love for canines.

This time it’s Seth Casteel, award-winning photographer and New York Times Best Selling Author. His series of Underwater Dogs photographs (that led to the 2012 book UNDERWATER DOGS) have been seen by hundreds of millions of people around the world. Seth’s work has been published in National Geographic, The New York Times and in hundreds of other magazines, newspapers and calendars. You may have also seen him on Good Morning America, EXTRA, The Insider and Inside Edition. He has traveled the world in pursuit of his passion, working with animals on five continents. His non-profit organization,, helps to increase adoption rates at animal shelters through better photography. He is based in Los Angeles and Chicago and is the proud “dad” to two dogs, Nala the mini-labradoodle and Fritz, the Norwich Terrier.



Currently own dogs? Tell us their names, breeds and one amusing fact per dog.

Nala the Mini-Labradoodle and Fritz the Norwich Terrier. I have a photo-realistic tattoo of Nala on my left arm! Fritz’s favorite activity is chasing lizards.

What is your book about?

Underwater Dogs is a photography book exploring the brilliance of dogs from below the surface.

When did it come out? Publisher? Any notable awards or praise for it?

October 2012 / Little, Brown and Company. It made the New York Times bestseller list.

What inspired you to write this book?

At a routine on-land photo shoot, a little dog named Buster the Cavalier King Charles Spaniel decided he would rather be in the pool. Watching him jump in again and again, I wondered, “What does he look like under there?” I’m interested in the emotion of dogs, and as it turns out, the water is a great way for dogs to express themselves.


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How did you find your agent?

The series of Underwater Dogs photos became popular on the Internet overnight, resulting in millions of views. Dozens of agents approached me about the book. It was all pretty overwhelming!

(Read tips on how to query a literary agent.)

What has been the biggest surprise or learning experience you’ve seen through the process of seeing your book(s) get published?

It’s difficult to be an artist and make a living at it. This experience has proved that you can be a struggling artist one minute and the most popular photographer on the planet the next. I hope that my experience gives hope to other artists out there. Believe in an idea and anything is possible.

Tell me about a fun moment or proud experience you’ve had with your book and readers since the book was published.

I receive a lot of e-mails from people all over the world who have taken the time to tell me that this series of photos has made them smile. It makes me so happy that these Underwater Dogs are bringing joy to so many people. I can’t think of a better compliment than that.

Think of your dog (or a past dog perhaps). If you could compare them to one celebrity, who would it be?


Favorite of these dog movies? — “Best in Show,” “101 Dalmatians,” “The Shaggy Dog.”

“Best in Show” all the way!

Where can people find you on the Internet?

What’s next up for you, writing-wise?

Just moved back here to California to begin working on a new book project! Very excited!!!!!


RED DOG / BLUE DOG is a humorous photo collection of
dogs doing stereotypical liberal and conservative things,
assembled all in good fun. It released in Aug. 2012 from
Running Press and has been featured by USA Today,, The Huffington Post, and more.



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