We all adore our furry companions and it's not a surprise that many couples want to include their pets in their wedding day.
Let's face it, there is nothing more adorable than a french terrier in a tux! And if dress ups are not your thing, there are so many cute decoartive items you can buy. I've even seen custom made wedding collars or special flower arrangements to be fitted on lead and collar. Make sure you check with your florist though as some flowers are poisonous for dogs. Also any other dress up items should fit perfectly and not cause any discomfort, and ensure that any accessories like bow ties don't come loose and pose a choking hazard to your pet.
If you're planning to include your dog, there are a few more precautions you need to take to keep your pet safe and happy during the day.
Consider your pet's personality, he can simply be a guest of honour or you can give them a specific role like ring bearer, flower girl or page boy. I photographed a wedding in St ives last year, where George the french bull terrier was the ring bearer of the day and they created a great short film to be shown at the ceremony. I hardly ever seen so many people laughing at a ceremony! The story was the following: It turns out that the best man forgot the rings at the ceremony! So he calls George to save the wedding day. George, lazy as he is, still in bed, gets the wake up call and has to chase through St Ives to get to the venue in time with the rings.. The film was not just funny and a great contribution to the ceremony, but also showed off the surrounding area and St Ives beaches beautifully. George became famous after the wedding as the film went viral on youtube with over 55000 views!
Here is the link:
But before you give your pet a starring role, think about if this will be an enjoyable experience for him. Even a most friendly and well behaved dog could be overwhelmed by a crowd of guests, so it's reasonable to organise a pet sitter. You can hire them or choose one of your friends who is familiar with your dog. It is just one thing less to worry about.
Make sure you include your pooch in some of the couple portraits. It's usually a great time of day where they can stretch their legs and come along with us for the photoshoot. I love getting them involved, they make some great shots!
At the reception you could include photos of your dog in the decoration, or make wedding favours in tribute to your pooch. I've also seen couples collecting and donating money to animal charities like the greyhound trust, which is a nice gesture and serves a good cause.
some table decoration ideas including your pooch..
With a lot to tick off your 'to do' list, it's easy to forget this simple-yet important step, check with the venue if your pet is allowed. You don't want to show up on the day with your four legged ring bearer in tow only to be told he needs to stay off the property!
And if you manage to take your furry friend to your big day, what's better than a fresh air dog walk in a beautiful setting to cure the hangover the day after..