By Melissa Desjardins
A pet plays a significant role in a couple’s life, and for many pet parents, family festivities would not feel complete without their pet’s involvement. Have you been to a wedding with a pet involved? It’s always a crowd pleaser when a dog, fresh from the groomers, trots down the aisle in a sharp new tux or a sparkly pink tutu. It’s no wonder that many couples are now including their pets in their big day! Here are some tips for customizing your wedding to include your furry child!
First, choose an appropriate role for the dog depending on his or her behavior and temperament. An energetic puppy might need to be on a leash held by an usher or ring bearer, while an older, more relaxed dog may be free to lounge during the ceremony.
Other tips to consider:
- Is your pet good around a large crowd and crowded areas?
- Does your dog have separation anxiety that might cause him or her to cry and charge you when he/she sees you coming down the aisle?
- Does your venue allow pets?
- Be equipped with treats in case you need to encourage better behavior!
- Put this information on your wedding website as a warning to anyone who dislikes dogs or has allergies.
- Be sure to check if any flowers or plants being used at your wedding are toxic to your pet.
- Make sure you are prepared because you don’t want to have to worry about anything on your big day! Make arrangements with a family member, friend or trusted pet sitter who will be responsible for your beloved pet on the wedding day. This person should exercise your pet before the big debut to get all the energy out and to make sure they go to the bathroom!
- Be sure your photographer knows you plan on having your dog in the wedding and that your pet should be in the photos. From the first look to after the ceremony, your pet will need to ready and present for photos!
- Lastly, you want to make sure your pup looks as good as you do, dressed to the nines with class and sass. Perhaps your wedding has a theme that you can incorporate into the outfit, or you can keep it simple with a bow tie or a collar with your wedding date on it. You can go formal with a custom tuxedo and top hat, or just have a ring bearer harness — the possibilities are endless! Just ensure that any accessories won’t come loose and pose a choking hazard to your pet. Whatever you dream up for your pampered pooch can be done!
If your beloved pet can’t be physically present at your wedding for any reason, you can still honor them and have them be part of the day by including photos at the reception on your table number cards, in a collage or even part of your wedding favors. You could also include your dog in your engagement and/or save the date photos.
Just remember, this is your wedding, it should be meaningful and exactly the way you want it – dog and all!
Melissa Desjardins is the owner and photographer behind Desjar Photography, fun and modern wedding photography with an edge. Visit www.desjarphoto.com to view her portfolio and find more information.
All photos courtesy of Desjar Photography.