5 Crucial Tips To Successfully Involve Your Dog In Your Wedding (And Avoid Disaster!)

Bride and groom at boho altar with beagle jumping in front of them

Picture this:

You and your partner are ready to walk down the aisle and say your ‘I dos.’ Everyone you love is gathered on the white, sandy beach today to celebrate your love. You hear the wedding bells and the soft, soothing sound of the waves crashing gently into shore behind you, and you can’t help but smile.

This is perfect!

Any second now, you and your soulmate will say your vows, exchange rings, and…

And at that moment, you hear your dad’s voice rise. ‘No, Marley. Bad dog. Spit it out.’

You look around and realize, to your horror, that Marley, your beloved furry baby, BFF, and ring bearer for the evening, has decided to swallow your precious wedding rings, turning your dream wedding into a horrible nightmare!

Where did you go wrong?

Involving your dog in the wedding was supposed to lead to adorable moments—maybe a few unexpected laughs and surprises, but NOT this.

But Marley isn’t the only one who has messed up.

Pups and furry babies have pulled off stunts like pooping mid-ceremony and knocking over the cake when no one was looking time and again, which is why here’s a quick guide to help you involve your dog in the wedding without turning it into a family comedy.

So, buckle up, grab a squeaky toy, and some extra treats, and read these five crucial tips to avoid doggy drama and create wedding wonder!

1.     Pre’paw’ration is key

Whether you are thinking of involving your dog in your wedding ceremony or simply plan to have them attend, you need to plan and prepare them for the event.

Begin by ensuring they are well trained and can respond to commands. If this means you need to squeeze in a crash course in obedience training alongside waltz lessons, it might be well worth it. Teach them fundamental instructions such as “sit,” “stay,” and “leave it” so they can make it through the ceremony without running amok.

You’ll want your pet to be on their best behavior during the ceremony and photo shoots. If you want them to walk you down the aisle, practice, and practice some more. Running through the routine with them decreases their chances of forgetting what to do on the final day.

2.     Sniff Out the Perfect Venue

When selecting a location, check to make sure it is dog-friendly. Look for outdoor areas where your pet friends may run about and explore. A large space will keep your dog entertained without worrying about delicate decor being knocked over.

Do your research and determine whether there are any special regulations or limits, such as leash laws or dedicated dog areas. Many venues may be pet-friendly, but they still require a wedding pet assistant to accompany the pets at all times.

Also, make sure you keep pet’s personality in mind. If your dog doesn’t like the beach, having a beach wedding might just add to their anxiety and lead to chaos on your big day.

3.    Fetching Fashion

Comical dog in white collar, black tie and glasses with paws covering eyes

While it may be tempting to go all out on stylish doggy wedding outfit to match the wedding party (I mean, who can resist a pup in a tux?!) make sure you put their comfort and safety first.

Choose clothing that fits comfortably without restricting movement, and allow your dog to try on their wedding attire ahead of time to ensure they have enough time to adjust.

If they don’t get comfortable in a costume after multiple tries, be flexible and let it slide. Have a quick photo shoot before the event and let them run around in customized collars for the rest of the ceremony.

4.    Delegate Doggy Duty

Delegate canine duty and hire a dog wedding sitter to avoid unnecessary stress for you and your dog. Be sure to find someone who is familiar with your dog and can handle them in various scenarios.

Your dog’s professional wedding sitter will keep an eye on your four-legged buddy to ensure they are calm, cool, and collected during and after the event.

They can even help you take your dog down the aisle or look after them throughout the reception. With a dependable doggie delegate, you can concentrate on saying “I do” without worrying about canine mishaps—like, knocking over the cake or chasing squirrels.

With a faithful “paws-on” doggy delegate by your side, you can concentrate on saying “I do” without worrying about any “ruff” canine mishaps.

5.     Create a Zen Zone

Even the best-behaved dogs need some “pawsitive” downtime from the wedding “mutt-rimony.”

Create a safe haven for your furry friends to retreat to when they need a break. Set up a “zen woof” area away from the chaos, complete with their favorite bed, toys, and a water bowl. This tranquil retreat will ensure they can unwind without turning your dog-friendly wedding into an unplanned comedy performance!

A Dog-Friendly Wedding for YOUR Pup

With these pawsome tips in your arsenal, you’re ready to embark on a tail-wagging adventure involving your dog at your wedding. But remember, what might work for one pup may not work for yours.

So, make sure you keep their personality, temperament, and preferences in mind when trying to include them in your wedding.

If your dog needs to burn some energy before the event, ask your wedding sitter for a package that includes playing fetch at the park before the event. If they are afraid of loud noises, opt for pick-up and drop-off services.

Now grab a leash, knot your bowtie, and embrace the doggy madness with open paws. With love, laughter, and a sprinkle of canine charm, your dog-friendly wedding will be an unforgettable celebration of your love—and your pup’s irresistible cuteness!

Katrina Weir

Animal lover, dreamer and romantic. I love helping couples achieve their dream wedding with their precious pets by their side.

Looking for more pet wedding inspiration?

Look no further! Check out our latest articles and guides to help you plan the pet-friendly wedding of your dreams.

How To Plan a Memorable and Intimate Dog-Friendly Wedding

Dreaming of an intimate ceremony surrounded by friends and family and just your furry friend trotting by your side? Then, you need to look at intimate, dog-friendly wedding venues that aren’t just cosy but also welcome your pet as part…...

Ellie Anderson
memorable and intimate dog-friendly wedding