Updated: Oct 6, 2022
You might be wondering how to include your pet(s) on your wedding day, and we’re here to help. Say ‘Yup to the Pup’ and incorporate your pup into your big milestone event! If you have a cat or other social pet, they can be included too!
It’s important to make sure your wedding venue, whether it be indoors or outdoors, allows pets. Sometimes exceptions can be made for special events, but always make sure to ask before planning the details, to avoid future issues. If you aren’t sure how your pet will handle loud noises, such as a room full of people, music, or a microphone, it’s a good idea to help desensitize them before the wedding day. Also make sure your pet has the proper identification on them in case of emergencies. The goal is to have a safe, fun, and fulfilling experience with your pet on your big day! Since you are going to be a bit preoccupied all day, you can hire a pet-sitter to take care of your dog to ensure things go smoothly. Whether it’s a friend or trusted Furball Fitness Pet Sitter, you will know that your dog is safe and happy, so you won’t have to worry. There are a few necessities that are good to have on hand for a big event. Such as a leash & collar or harness, fresh water; a bowl, poop bags, grooming essentials, treats or food, and maybe a toy or blanket. You can put together a Wedding Day Survival Bag for your pup so everything the pet-sitter might need will be easily accessible.
You want to look your best for your wedding, and so should your pup! Something to consider well before the big day is a grooming appointment for your dog. Depending on what breed you have, your dog may need a more thorough grooming, so it’s best to schedule an appointment with your groomer (or ours!) in advance to ensure you get on the schedule in time. If you’ve got a low-maintenance breed, a nice spa day will get them squeaky clean with a shiny coat. If you’ve got a higher-maintenance breed, a full groom with a snazzy haircut will have them looking sharp. A fresh nail trim or Dremel will cut down on the click-clacking noise that long nails can make, so don’t forget to add that in there. During the events of your wedding day, it is important to have a few light grooming essentials on hand in case there are any mishaps. Some wet wipes, a brush or comb, and a hand towel are a few examples. You can purchase a new collar and leash set to make your pet stand out too! If your pup tolerates clothing, there are a multitude of options out there, from bandanas and bowties to dresses and suits! Shop around beforehand to make sure you get the size, color, and style of clothing or accessory you desire for your pup. Check to make sure it fits well and your dog will tolerate it, well before the wedding day. You can practice desensitizing them to any clothing or accessories so they can become more comfortable!
A pet-sitter (like Furball Fitness!) is a good idea to have during the ceremony so that you can focus on saying “I do”. The sitter can handle your dog before and after their big moment, hang out with them the whole time, or even walk your pup down the aisle! The classic ‘Ring Bearer’ or ‘Flower Girl’ roles are great interactive moments for your pup. Using a piece of string, you can gently secure the rings to the string first, then tie the other end around your dog’s collar. A simple bow will make it easy to undo at the alter and if it happens to fall off, the rings will still be attached to the string for safety. Walking down the aisle with rings doesn’t need to be complicated, and if you want a combination of the
two roles you can add artificial flowers to your pup’s collar with hot glue. If your dog can hold and carry items in their mouth, then there are so many options, including a flower basket or a ring box. Another item to attach to your pup so they can walk down the aisle is a sign, saying “my humans are getting married!” or “Here she comes!”. For those pups who can’t contain their excitement about your wedding, a sitting position might be more appropriate. A Groomspup or Bridespup can hold a spot up front with some help from the nearest wedding party member, and some treats too of course. There’s also the VIPup seat, if being in front of a crowd makes your dog nervous! Stationed in the front row, you can reserve a special ‘chair spot’ with a sign saying “RESERVED FOR VIPup”. Remove the chair and throw down their favorite cushion and you’re good to go! It would help to have someone near by with treats and water, in case your pup’s attention span doesn’t last the entire ceremony. You can always place the VIPup seat in the back, if you’re concerned about distractions or noise for your dog. Including your furkid in your ceremony can be very memorable and special. The same concepts apply to cats as well, if they accept being out of the house and around people. Some cats are very social and can handle a brief moment of quiet fame, while others might do better participating through a video feed. If you have other pets, such as a bearded dragon or guinea pig, you can evaluate their tolerance levels and see if they can physically participate in your day. If they aren’t able to, that’s okay, you can still incorporate little signs and items that remind your guests of them!
The reception is another avenue to include your pet in your big day. Receptions tend to be quite loud and stimulating. Keep this in mind while planning how to incorporate your pup in your wedding. Understanding your dog’s limits and what they enjoy will help make it a successful event! Introducing your pup at the beginning of the reception and letting them do an entrance walk shows off their style and personality. A moment on the dance floor with a favorite song is a great way to showcase your dog, even if they aren’t that great at dancing! If your pup handles being around large groups of people and tighter spaces well, you could have them walk around with you to the tables to greet your guests and get some love. Not all pets are comfortable in a high-traffic space with lots of sounds and new smells, so you might need to think outside of the box. A “Meet Our Furkid” station is an innovative way to keep your pup comfortable during the hustle and bustle of the reception. The guests can come visit your pup in a designated area, where they are able to relax a bit. This can include your pup’s favorite bed/pillow/blanket for them to hang out and a large cushion(s) or chair(s) for guests to utilize while giving your pup some love! The space can be designed to best fit your dog’s needs to make it a safe
space to enjoy themselves. Some other things to add to the area are food/snacks, a toy, a bone, a gate enclosing the area, or even their crate if they enjoy it. Whether your pet likes hustle and bustle or prefers calm and chill, there’s options for both to be a part of your big day!
Gift favors are a great way to show your fellow pet-loving guests that you’re thinking of them and their pets. An elaborate decorated baked treated is sure to make a good impression, especially if it’s from a local dog bakery. A “doggie bag” full of smaller treats will be long-lasting and shareable. Poop bags are a must-have for dog owners, so add a little decoration to a roll and a tag that says “Roll with me furever”. For cat lovers, some cat grass or wheat grass seeds in a pouch marked “Grow with us” make for a fun project for your guest and their pet.
No matter how you incorporate your pets into your wedding, there’s a way for everyone to be included! Furball Fitness is happy to help your pup be a part of your big day! Click here for more information.