Are you a pet lover? Do you consider your cat, dog, horse or even your alpaca a member of the family?
Have you ever thought about including them in your wedding?
It may seem farfetched but it’s not impossible to have your dog be the ring bearer. Or your kitty be the flower girl. Your horse or alpaca can even pull the ‘Just Married’ wagon.
These 12 tips will get your started on things to consider and plan for when including pets in your vows.
A Wedding Purrfect For Any Pet Lover
Thousands of weddings all across the world happen everyday.
Some take place on beaches and in mountains. Others in churches, quaint little cottages and on family farms. For couples looking to tie the knot and include their 4-legged family member, these weddings can be quite fun and inspiring.
We’re here to help make including your pet in your wedding doable.
How We Can Help At Your Wedding
We can be there from the beginning stages or just at the tail end when we get your pet ready to walk down the aisle.
We can keep your dogs calm and occupied while waiting for the photographer to take pictures. This couple hired Kelley Stewart to bring their dogs to the wedding so they could be included in the wedding photos.
Our staff can take your pet to/from the venue, can help at rehearsal and can even care for your pet while you’re on your honeymoon.
Note: Not all pets have to actually be IN the wedding, they can play small roles at the beginning or at the end. There’s many possibilities and we can help determine what would be best for you and your pet (and the venue).
12 Tips To Help You Include Your Pet In Your Wedding:
- Wedding Venue – Before booking the facility, ask if they allow animals in the building and on the grounds. If animals are allowed inside, ask if there’s additional fees and for any additional information you’ll need to know about your pet being in that facility.
- Reception Venue – Before booking the reception venue, ask if they will allow your pet to accompany you and if they charge extra. See if they have a designated potty spot outside if you’re bringing a dog.
- Rehearsal – Your pet should be included in the rehearsal if they’ll be in the wedding. Anytime you include a pet in this type of activity, plan extra time. Pets don’t operate on our time schedule and may want to play ball not walk down the aisle. Plan for potty breaks and playtime. THIS is the time when you want to work out the kinks. If you hired a pet sitter or wedding pet care attendant, they can help tremendously. Things will go much smoother for you and the bridal party.
- Bridal Party – Make sure no one in your bridal party is allergic to pets or your type of pet. You don’t want the bridge groom or a bridesmaid to start sneezing while you’re reciting your vows!
- Your Pet’s Quirks and Personality – Whatever pet you’re including in your wedding, take into consideration his age and habits. Young dogs that aren’t completely reliable in the potty department can cause problems. Dogs that get anxious easily might find this type of event too traumatizing. Also, dogs that can’t handle strangers approaching and possibly petting might be too stressed in this environment. Here’s another situation to consider, let’s say your wedding rings will be attached to your Siamese kitties collar. Your kitty decides to freak out and run away from the handler because she doesn’t do well around new people. This is where knowing your pet (and practicing) comes into play. Hire a pet sitter to help make sure things go smoothly.
- Pet Transportation To and From Wedding and Reception – Plan how your pet will get to and from the wedding. If your horse or other large animal will be part of the wedding, transportation will definitely have to be arranged.
- Hire A Professional Wedding Pet Care Attendant or Wedding Pet Concierge– A professional wedding pet care attendant will plan ahead and take care of all the details regarding your pet. You can focus on what you need to and won’t have to worry about your pet getting into mischief. Your pet sitter can get your pet ready for the wedding. They’ll make sure your pet has pottied before they join in the festivities. After the ceremony is over, they’ll escort your pet out and make sure they’re ready to go to the reception area, back to your home or other designated location. If you don’t want your pet to stay for the reception, your pet sitter can stay with your pet while you get ready for your honeymoon. If you want your pet to join you on your honeymoon, you can book your pet care attendant for this arrangement as well.
- Honeymooning With Your Pet – You can hire a wedding pet care attendant to take care of your pet while you’re on your honeymoon. Your dog can take in some adventure and travel then go back to the hotel with the pet sitter. Your personal pet caretaker will keep your pet safe and happy while you and your spouse are enjoying time together. And best of all, when you want to include your canine pal, just call your pet sitter.
- Photographer – When selecting a photographer, advise them that your pet will be part of the event. Make sure they aren’t allergic or have a fear of your particular type of pet. Ask if they’re comfortable taking photographs of you, your spouse and your pet.
- Wedding Attire For Pet – If your dog HATES wearing those cute little sweaters you buy every winter, try a more simpler piece of clothing. A bow-tie, pretty ribbon, flower or harness covered in your wedding colors might be appropriate and easier for your dog to wear. (Side note: It’s a good idea to make sure pets have short nails and smell nice since many people will probably want to say hi to your furbaby.)
- Announcement, Wedding Favors and Thank You’s – When designing your announcement, be sure to include that Fido, Fifi or Black Beauty will be in the wedding. This prepares your guests in case they have allergies or if they’re afraid of animals. Your favors can include a memento of your pet, a doggy bag or photo with you, your spouse and your pet. When preparing thank you’s, make note of guests that were particularly fond of your pet and write something directly to them thanking them for their interest in your baby.
- Music At Reception – If your dog will be part of the celebration, why not include some fun songs about dogs, like, “Who Let The Dogs Out?” Your dog will have tons of fun spending time with you and your wedding guests, just make sure you keep an eye on him for signs of distress from loud noise, over stimulation or other behavior he might exhibit. If you have a wedding pet care attendant, they should be able to do all this for you, so can focus on dancing and mingling with your guests.
There you have it. 12 tips to get you going on the right path in planning your big day with your pet. We hope you have a great time planning your beautiful ceremony and honeymoon and remember, we’re here to help if you do decide you need a wedding pet care attendant, pet sitter or pet taxi. Contact us here!
Making Your Day Brighter,
Kelley Stewart, CEO|Pet Sitter
sit-stay-play In-home pet sitting & more.LLC
Serving Muncie, Anderson, Indianapolis and east central Indiana