If you are using your smartphone’s camera, you probably have access to digital zoom. It sounds like a great option to help you get closer to your dog for photos…it’s a zoom, right?
No. The emphasis in “digital zoom” is on the “digital” part…basically all you are doing is zooming in on a part of the photo just as you would if you cropped it using a photo editor after the fact. Unlike a zoom lens on a DSLR, which is an optical zoom and uses the optics of the camera to get closer to the subject, the digital zoom just magnifies a portion of the photo.
The best way to get closer to your subject when you’re using a digital zoom is to just step closer. If that’s not possible, just shoot the photo as it is then crop it later. You’ll be able to take more photos without fiddling with the digital zoom!