Man’s best friend? Try GIRL’S best friend! Nothing can come between the bond of a lady and her beloved four-legged friend, not even the chaos of a wedding day! With a love like that, you better believe your fur child will be right by your side on the biggest, most love-filled day of your life. Including your dog on your wedding day is easier than it sounds. Here are our top tips and ideas on how to include your dog on your wedding day.
PET FRIENDLY VENUES
First, you have to make sure the venues, church, and hotel are dog friendly. If you are getting ready at a hotel and you want your dog by your side, make sure they allow pets. If your dog will be at the ceremony, whether at a church, park, or farm, you should make sure they allow dogs too.
- Walk down the aisle, alone or with a walker.
- Wear a pillow harness with the rings attached and be the ring bearer.
- Wear a flower collar and be the flower puppy.
- Get ready with you and your bridesmaids and take photos together like a puppy bouquet photo!
- Include your dog in the wedding party photoshoot or family photoshoot.
- Have your pup at your wedding ceremony so they can watch along with everyone.
DOG’S WEDDING DAY DUTIES
You will want to give your dog a duty for the day. Here are some duties your dog can do on your wedding day:
WHO’S IN CHARGE
Once you have decided the role that your dog will play in your wedding day, you need to either hire or assign someone to be in charge of your dog for the day. You don’t want another thing to worry about on your wedding day. Of course you want your dog to be there, but you don’t want their safety to be a concern. A responsible family member or friend can be in charge of where your dog is on the day of the wedding, their duties, feeding them, and bringing them to the bathroom.Another option is hiring a company. They will be informed of the schedule of the day and take care of your dog. Often times, dog walkers and pet sitters can take on this duty, especially if you have established a long-term relationship with them. This person can also reward your dog with treats after they have cooperated in photos or walked down the aisle.
MY DOG CAN’T PHYSICALLY ATTEND
If you have a small dog like a Cairn Terrier, it may be easy for them to attend your wedding. Read our blog about Molly the Cairn Terrier who participated in her mom’s wedding. If you have a larger dog like a German Shepherd, it may be difficult for them to attend. Depending on the behavior and demeanor of your dog, you’ll need to determine the best way to include your dog on your wedding day. If you decide that your dog cannot physically attend your wedding, there are plenty of ideas on how you can still include them. Here are a few ideas:
- Order a dog cake topper that looks like your dog and have him or her included on your wedding cake. You can order a custom painted dog cake topper here.
- Instead of gifting your guests with a wedding favor, you can choose to make a donation to a dog rescue group or organization in honor of your dog. An announcement is usually placed somewhere by the entrance of your wedding or near the guest book. The announcement would read something like: “In honor of (dog’s name) and in lieu of wedding favors, we have chosen to make a donation to our favorite dog rescue.”
- Some may have a beloved dog that passed away before the wedding. In honor of the lost pet, the bride can attach a tiny charm to her bouquet. This is a popular way to honor family members you wish could attend, like grandmothers.
You can place a tiny photo in a charm or you can use the charm from one of our solid pewter keychains and attach them to the bouquet. It’ll be just for the bride to see and have the dog with them in spirit.
AFTER THE WEDDING
After your wedding is over, it’ll be time to send thank you notes. This is a fun way to include your dog. Order thank you cards that have a photo printed on the front and write a note on the inside. The photo will be of the bride, groom, the entire wedding party, and your dog. Ask your wedding photographer to capture this photo on the day of your wedding so you can use it later. View a sample of the thank you note below.
We’d love to hear from you if you included your dog on your wedding day! There are so many ways, both heartfelt and unique, to include your fur child on your wedding day.
Written July 2nd, 2019
Kim is the co-owner of DogLoverStore with her husband, John. She earned her BS in operations management at the University of Massachusetts Dartmouth. She enjoys walking in nature, gardening in the sun, eating sour candy, going on drives, yoga, and reading.