Dogs at Weddings, Yes or No?

Dogs at weddings, yes or no? If you haven’t watched my about me video, you may not know that I
l❤VE pets. Especially dogs! I will always say yes to this question for any pet, especially if you consider that pet a member of your family, as I do. Let’s chat about things to consider when planning a wedding with a precious furbaby involved.

The bride with her dog during bridal prep on her wedding day.

Dogs at Weddings and Your Wedding Venue

Usually the first step in planning a wedding is choosing that perfect wedding venue. If you are considering having a dog or any pet with your on your wedding day as a ring bearer, flower furbaby or pup of honor, make sure your venue will allow for this.

Ask your chosen venue about their pet policy. Some venues may have a “no pet” rule which may be due to health or legal requirements. You should make yourself aware of these things. Don’t just assume you can bring along your pet. It could become a very uncomfortable and troublesome situation if the wedding venue asks you to send your dog home. If they are ok with having your dog at the venue then ask if your pup can visit prior to the wedding to get used to the environment. Have a rehearsal with your furbaby, it may make things go a little smoother on the big day.

Furbabys and Your Wedding Vendors

It’s a great idea to make sure your other wedding vendors who will be involved in your actual wedding day know there will be a pet there on the day of. Definitely let your photographer know and choose a photographer who is great with pets because you are going to want amazing pictures with your furbaby family member.

Daycare and The Doggie Bag!

Your wedding day will be super busy and you will not be able to take care of your dog properly. Choose someone to handle your furbaby for the entire day, someone who they are comfortable with. You need to choose someone your furbaby will listen to and take commands from. Let this person know the commands your dog is used to as well.

Pack a doggie daycare bag for your furbaby, including treats, water bottle, food, toys and anything else you may think he or she needs for the wedding day. If you are not able to give your dog or pet commands the day of your wedding, make sure you have lots of treats to help the person who will be supporting you in that role. I know my furbaby Jax, will respond to treats even when he is being unruly. Bribery helps alot! Make sure whomever you choose to take care of your dog or pet that day knows the commands you use to keep them in line as well.

The bride and groom with their flower furbaby during their wedding pictures at the Best Western Chocolate Lake in Halifax, NS.

Dogs at Weddings and Your Wedding Guests

Make sure your guests are aware their will be a dog or pet partaking in your wedding. This way those guests who may be allergic or fearful of dogs can plan accordingly.

Your Dog’s Character

Consider your pets character and disposition. Is your furbaby friendly or aggressive? Are they calm or hyper? Will they be able to truly handle what you are asking of them? Are they good with strangers and children or will their presence cause stress for your pet? If you are thinking about having them walk up the aisle, will they obey and do just that? . At the very least they should know the sit and stay command. They should be an adorable addition to your wedding day, not a distraction.

Consider which portions of your wedding your dog would be able to handle, getting ready, ceremony, reception or the entire day. One last thing, consider your own temperament, would your furbaby cause you stress on your wedding day. In the end, it’s better to do what is best for your pet. If you feel your pet shouldn’t be present, I know this may be disappointing but consider honoring your furbaby in the details of your wedding day. More to come below on how to do just this.

The bride shows off her little dog who will be with her during the wedding at the Atlantica Hotel in Halifax.

Your Dog’s Wedding Attire

Are you thinking about dressing your dog up in wedding attire? If your dog is comfortable wearing clothing consider a cute little tux or dress. If they are not so comfortable in clothing perhaps a floral collar would be a better choice.

A cute shih tzu dressed up in a wedding skirt and bow color for the bride and groom's wedding ceremony in Halifax NS.

Doggy Ring Bearer

Don’t expect your pet to be able to walk up the aisle by themselves during your ceremony. It is best to always have your furbaby walking up the aisle with someone they are comfortable with. There are just too many distractions and people to distract your pet on that long walk up the aisle. If your pet doesn’t have the temperament to walk up the aisle with anyone but you, the bride and groom, consider having them walk down the aisle as your depart the ceremony with both of you instead.

The bride and groom walk down the aisle after their wedding ceremony with their dog at the Best Western Chocolate Lake in Halifax, NS.

The Wedding Rings and the Aisle

Make sure your pup has been peed out prior to walking up the aisle. The last thing you want is for them to do is pee on the way up the aisle or worse, number 2:(

If you are thinking about having your pet walk up the aisle with your wedding rings attached to his or her collar, just don’t do it. Attach fake rings instead. If the distractions become to much for your pet and they have to be removed from the ceremony, your rings won’t go with them by accident. If your pet decides to take off after a scented trail, your rings won’t go with them. I know my dog loves to roll around on the ground whenever he has the chance. I can see those rings going missing in that scenario. Just don’t do it.

The bride and groom with their shih tzu at their wedding ceremony at the Atlantica Hotel in Halifax.

Other Things To Include Dogs at Weddings in…

Include your dog in your formal wedding photos, like you would leave them out right? Think about your wedding accessories and incorporate your furbaby into those areas, like your wedding cake topper, place cards, thank you notes and more.

Dakota and Myself on My Wedding Day

At the time of my wedding day my sister had a husky that I just adored, her name was Dakota. I considered her my furbaby and wanted a picture with her that day. Us together on my wedding day taken by my wedding photographer Denise Ward. If you are thinking about having a wedding with your beloved furbaby then we definitely need to chat!

An image of me on my wedding day with Dakota taken during wedding photos in Cole Harbour, Dartmouth, NS.

Capturing your L❤VE story is my passion…let’s chat!

Additional Links

  1.  Check out some of my favorite wedding advise blog posts…
    Planning A Nova Scotia Wedding-a 12 months timeline.
    NS Wedding Venues Plus Tips For Choosing the Perfect Venue.

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