8 Tips For A Dog-Friendly Wedding Ceremony

Whether you met while walking your furry friend or had a meet cute at the local dog park, there are a number of couples who like to find ways to incorporate their fur babies into their wedding ceremonies. If you would like to throw a dog-friendly wedding ceremony that goes off without a hitch, be sure to read on and learn more about the eight following tips.

1. Speak With Your Venue Before Making a Final Decision

Dog with flowers

If you have your heart set on including your dogs in your wedding ceremony, it is important to remember that not all venues are accepting of this fact and that you should always inquire about their policies before making a final decision.

Don’t ever make the mistake of assuming that every venue will share your love for animals, and be sure to communicate your expectations to the appropriate parties before you potentially make a major mistake during the selection process. You may also wish to interview several different venues before making a choice so that you can compare and contrast their policies on the matter.

2. Speak With Your Photographer

Photography at Bridal Party

Your photographer should be made aware of the presence of your dogs in the ceremony before they are even hired. They will need to know what your plans are for the ceremony so that they can plan all of their shots accordingly and include your dog as needed.

They will be grateful for the heads up and more willing to accommodate any requests that you may have. As always, communication is key with any of the vendors that you are hiring for your wedding day, especially if you plan on allowing your dog to take part in the festivities.

3. Consider The Needs Of Your Pet

Wedding guests and dog
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Not every pet is going to have the same needs, and not all dogs are born with the same personalities. You’ll have to stop and consider your pup’s personality before you assign them their very own starring role in your nuptials.

Some dogs crave the spotlight and will enjoy having all eyes on them, while other dogs are more reticent and prefer to be in the background. Ensuring the animal’s comfort should be one of your foremost concerns. Otherwise, you may place the pet in a position where they are not ready to perform once the big day finally arrives.

4. Clearly Define Their Role

A dog is not a mind reader, and if you want their inclusion in your ceremony to go well, you’ll need to clearly define their role during the earliest possible stages. For example, let’s say that you plan to dress up your dog and have them wear a costume. It is in your best interests to practice with your pooch ahead of time so that they understand the role in the proceedings.

You should also have a strong idea of how much time you need from them during the actual ceremony. Dogs can get impatient, and if you are expecting them to remain perfectly well behaved during a lengthy wedding, this could lead to a number of different issues and cause your guests to reconsider attending dog-friendly wedding ceremonies in the future.

5. Let Your Guests Know

wedding guests celebrating

While most of your guests will probably find the inclusion of your dogs to be utterly adorable, it is important to remember that even the most open-minded guests might not be able to share the same venue as your beloved animals.

Some of the guests at your ceremony are likely to suffer from an animal allergy of some kind, so don’t forget to give everyone a fair warning long before the big day. Noting the inclusion of your dogs on the invitation or in a private phone call provides the guest with an opportunity to make alternate arrangements if necessary.

6. Enlist a Pet Sitter

You are going to have a great deal of responsibility on your wedding day, and the last thing you need to worry about is the welfare of the dogs you have included. Ask a professional pet sitter or a family member who is proven to be proficient when it comes to handling dogs to assist you so that you are not spending valuable time fretting over this task.

7. Keep Plenty of Food and Water On Hand

With all of the wedding hubbub that is going to be taking place, it can be tough to remember your dog’s basic needs, which still need to be met. All of the essentials must be on hand and ready to go, as the dog is bound to experience hunger and thirst throughout the ceremony.

The dog is also going to be watching everyone else eat and drink once the ceremony has been completed, so it is imperative for owners to make sure that they keep some of their best friend’s favorite treats close by so that they are not left out of the fun.

8. Familiarize Them With The Venue

Flower Backdrop for Outdoor Wedding

When you want your dog to be a part of your wedding ceremony, you’ll want to take them to the venue beforehand and give them the opportunity to become more familiar with their surroundings, as this simple gesture allows them to be less fearful.

Any activity that you wish to have your dog take part in should be practiced at the venue as well. Going through the motions a handful of times before the actual ceremony increases the chances of your dog being able to handle its role without any sort of stage fright.

Final Thought

The most important requirement for making a dog-friendly wedding will be common sense. Know the dog, your crowd, and your venue, and if all of them line up successfully, you can expect the best.

Otherwise, maybe a little soul searching is in order…

Rebecca B. Lawrence

About Rebecca B. Lawrence

Rebbeca has been writing about weddings, jewelry, and fashion for years. Her favorite place to hang out, aside from this website, is Pinterest. She loves Art Deco Jewelry, beach-themed weddings, and anything related to the British Royal Family.