Over the years I've developed a foolproof method to getting great reference photos:
1. Use a camera that allows you to shoot without a flash so that you can avoid that devil dog look!
2. Seat the dog in front of you and either get down on the floor so that the camera is at head level or seat the dog on a table or platform.
3. Have a friend stand behind you and a few steps to either the left or right of your shoulder. Give the friend a treat or a noisemaker. When the dog's attention is on the friend, its nose will be off-center (highly desirable), its far eye will still be visible, and its ears will be at attention. SHOOT THE PICTURE NOW!!!